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Lifepo4 batteries
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Treenut
Holland, Michigan
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March 8, 1924 - 6:45 am
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Has anyone in this forum replaced their house bank with LiFePo4 lithium iron phosphate batteries?  I am in the process of updating my entire electrical system and re-locating the batteries to the hold under the chart table seat on my DE38.  I was wondering about the experiances anyone else has had after doing this.[Image Can Not Be Found]Power-panel.jpgImage Enlarger

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Scott Carle
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February 25, 2020 - 8:27 am
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I would definitely do this if I had the money.. You will probably not have to replace your batteries in your lifetime after doing so. Lighter with 100 times the recharge cycles available.

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Scott Carle DE38 Cutter s/v Valkyr
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mgav451
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April 28, 2020 - 10:49 am
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What brand lifepo4 are you going with? I'm in the process myself. Don't like victron and all their gadgets wires and gizmos. I'm looking into battleborns and balmar 614 regulator and 170amp alt. to avoid a bms dump. But I I don't think battleborn think as sailors do so it hard to get a good answer. However they are very helpful and knowledge full. I just don't think they know how quirky sailors are about efficency,simplicity,and not wasi g a drop of fuel or a watt of power. Ha ha. 

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mgav451
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June 4, 2020 - 9:26 pm
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I just installed (4) 100ah battle born lithium’s.now I’m using a dc/dc charger to charge a lead start battery. I have it switched backwards so I can select what battery to,use rather then what battery to charge. I will,run everything off the lithium bank and in the event of an emergency I’ll have the lead start battery I can switch over to start and use the vhf. I added a Balmar xt 170 amp alt with a Balmar mc614 regulator that I had to custom program. Also added a sterling alternator protection device. Also got a progresivendynamics lithium charger.....

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Treenut
Holland, Michigan
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June 22, 2020 - 7:37 pm
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I too changed my house bank to LifePo4, but I went with 2-Victron 200 AH in lieu of 4-100 to save space, weight, and cables.  I am using a Victron AGM for my starter battery, and charge the lithium bank from the alternator through the starter battery to a Victron Cyrix li-CT.  I also installed a Victron Multiplus 12/3000 and BMS.  So far everything works great, we'll see how it performs long term.  It was expensive going all Victron, but I figured since I am a novice at this if I bought everything from them they couldn't say it was someone else' equipment at fault 🙂New-multiplus.jpgImage Enlarger

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mgav451
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June 24, 2020 - 6:05 pm
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I see you used the bep pro. I used it to and it’s so nice! 

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bobmcd625
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April 13, 1925 - 3:30 am
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Greetings fellow DownEasterners.

I have to replace my aging flooded lead acid batteries (4 Group 27s at 90 ah each) and have considered the Li option, but does not seem economical for my situation.

So I plan on going for 4 AGMs, probably Gr 31s at 105 ah each,  but...my main concern is the physical work of swapping out the old ones and placing in the new ones.

I was at West Marine yesterday to look at these guys and boy, are they heavy.  I am not weak, but I could barely get one off the floor.  The thought of trying to manipulate four of these into the engine room and into the designated spaces aft of the engine leaves me flabber gassed.  How can I do it?  Actually just about to give up and get a boat yard to handle it, but that still leaves the question of how to get the buggers into those compartments.  I can only think of a few planks on which they can be slid into place, but that's still rather tricky.

I see that some of you are locating the batteries in the main cabin under bunks, etc which does make sense.  Especially with the Li units.  But that entails a whole lot of new wiring which I'd rather avoid.

Please let me know what your experience is.  Maybe I am missing something obvious....I hope so.

 

Fair winds...

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Scott Carle
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April 16, 1925 - 9:18 am
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if you can fit into the engine compartment it is easy even with bigger batteries. Get a 6 to 8 inch wide board long enough to go from the front of the engine to the battery shelf. Have a helper and a 8 ft piece of line. 🙂 crawl in over the engine. get as comfortable as is possible. Have helper push board in to you so it is resting on top of engine and battery shelf. Helper set battery on engine end and tie rope to it and pass other end to you. Now as he and you stabilize board he pushes and you pull with rope to slide battery over board. Works quick and easy. Hardest part for me at 6'2" is getting in and out of the evil space.

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Scott Carle DE38 Cutter s/v Valkyr
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bobmcd625
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April 18, 1925 - 6:22 am
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Thanks, Scott.  That's pretty much what I was thinking.  I have the same problem, being 6'3" and not as flexible as I used to be.

Have to disconnect and remove the old ones first and then reverse the process.

I hate to pay for stuff I should be able to do, but I am going to out source this job.  Still.  Those guys have to be careful not to drop any of these buggers....

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bobmcd625
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April 18, 1925 - 6:25 am
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While I am on the soap box, I'll throw out a question about Firefly batteries. 

Any experience at your end of the continent?  They are AGM but claim to be able to discharge much more hence one does not need so many units.

Am looking into them but most likely will get West Marine AGMs.

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Scott Carle
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April 19, 1925 - 5:57 pm
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No experience with firefly but I won't use the west marine AGM's. went through a couple sets of them over the last decade. all of them died within 4 years or so with swollen cells across 2 shore chargers and one solar charger. the last shore charger was a really nice high end unit and so was the solar charger. Both fully programmable etc... first shore charger was one of the cheaper automatic units. Though it was the problem but same results regardless of quality of charger. A lot of them died within the warranty period. Probably got half of the ones I bought replaced that way. I had a 4 battery bank and went through 10 or 11 of the 100 amp hour west marine branded AGMs in 10 years. I was expecting a service life of about 8 years per set.. instead got 4ish years. Should have gotten some good golf cart batteries and one of the automatic watering systems that I could feed from a jug hung under the deck just inside the entrance to the engine compartment. Easy to see and access to fill. I just don't like agms based on my experience. and my understanding is that gel cell batteries are even finickier.

these are pricey as hell but can be recharged over 3500 times this 105 amp hour unit gives you twice the usable electricity that an agm does due to you being able to discharge it way deeper than a lead acid or agm for the same amp hour capacity. if you do a full discharge/charge cycle once a day it is rated for 9.6 year service life and it is warranty for that number of . If you actually used it at a 25 to 35 % discharge per day it would most likely last about 20 years.

the batteries have integrated battery management systems and keep track of how many charge discharge cycles it goes through and that is what they base the warranty on from what I understand.

https://lionenergy.com/products/lion-safari-ut-1300

warranty reads
WARRANTY REPAIRS/REPLACEMENTS
For repair or replacement, contact customer service at 1-385-375-8191. Do not ship unit until you
receive a Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) number from customer service at Lion Energy.
Lion Energy will not be responsible for any shipping or handling damage.
LIMITED LIFETIME WARRANTY
This warranty for the unit is extended to the original purchaser or user and it covers defects in
materials and workmanship. The Safari UT 1300 has a limited lifetime warranty of the battery
cells, rated at 80% of the capacity (105Ah x .8 = 84Ah).
Under extreme use (maximum charge and discharge rates) the battery cells expected life
cycle is 3500. At “normal usage” the expected life cycles will be greater.
This warranty is invalidated if any of the following occurs, but not limited to:




Failure to follow the instructions in the User’s Manual.
Accidental or unreasonable use, misuse, over charging or loading, or normal wear.
Extended storage without recharging or repairs done by an unauthorized person or
modification.
Opening or modifying the battery casing
This warranty is in lieu of all other express warranties. Lion Energy will not be liable for
consequential or incidental damages. Changes or modifications not expressly approved by
Lion Energy could void the user's authority to operate this device.

these are what I want for my house solar system when I build it.. not sure I will be able to afford it but its what I want.

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Scott Carle DE38 Cutter s/v Valkyr
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mgav451
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June 8, 2021 - 7:26 am
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I used battleborns with balmar smart regulator custom programed work flawlwss. I can even turn off the alt to get max hp from my engine

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bobmcd625
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July 2, 2021 - 12:42 pm
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I am way behind in my forum reading so only now, July 2, saw the answers from April!

For me it's too late.  I got four Gr 31 AGM from West Marine and managed, thanks to Scott's tips, to get them in place behind the engine.

Now to hook them up and hope for the best.

Maybe should have looked more closely at LiFePhos but the cost is pretty steep.

Thanks for the input and again, so sorry for the loss of Valkyr.

Bob

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