• Stephen Jansky
    2
    Ray,

    I have been using the SC-2030 and TM-2030 for several years with my 2 Trojan T-145s with 450 watts of solar and had good results. I recently upgraded to a single SOK 206 AH Lithium battery and made the suggested changes to the "P" settings. But when observing the AH input readout it was continually going up and down with a steady cloudless noon sun here in Colorado with temps in the mid 50s. The battery was at slightly over 13 volts when I hooked it up. Have you seen this with your set up or have any suggestions?
  • Ray
    842
    Maybe the battery had reached full charge and the BMS or controller was limiting the amperage.
    You may want to reboot the Trimetric, by undoing the power to it. Remove the fuse for a few seconds then put it back in. I'd do that with the battery drained down a bit. Then let it charge and come back to 100% capacity. That should reset it for the new battery.

    Here are my current settings I'm using for my Lion 3 battery bank seems to work well

    nyxhdqx94befvkcq.jpg
  • Stephen Jansky
    2
    Ray,

    Thanks for the suggestions. What I did was left the Intellipower converter in boost mode and now the voltage is 14.6 and a steady zero amps into battery. I forced the SOC charge reading to 100 and will disconnect solar for a few days to bring down the battery then reconnect solar to see if the roller coaster amps into battery is gone. I have had everything disconnected and batteries in garage over the winter so this is the first connection for several months. My settings differ as below:
    P1 14.4
    P7 L3
    P8 14.6
    P13 11.2
    P14 0.3
    P15 12.8
    P16 10.0
    Not sure if those differences would cause the up and down amps, but if what I outlined above does not work I will reset to your settings.
    Thanks again - we are getting a nice stretch of warm days - gets the RV juices flowing again. Any idea when or if you will head south this year?
  • Ray
    842
    No idea the government doesn't say when the border will be open again. So who knows at this point. They expect our age group can get a vaccine by summer sometime. So hoping we can head down come September.
  • Stephen Jansky
    2
    The wife has had both her shots and I get my second next Friday. Things are opening up more as more high risk age groups, front line workers, and people with compromising conditions get their shots.
  • POPPS
    6
    Ray, with the voltage on P8 set at 15V is there a point on the charging cycle when the batteries might be charging at 15V even if the charged set point is 14.6V ????
  • Greg F
    306
    I'm not familiar with the trimetric charger but if it is customizable for it's charging voltages it's better to err on the low side with Lithium batteries. LiFePO4 chemistry is almost full at 3.4v/cell or 13.6v for 4 cells in series. Unlike led acid these batteries do not benefit from regular 100% full charging, in fact they will probably enjoy more lifecycles by limiting the voltage range. The maximum charging voltage a LFP cell should see without fear of damage is 3.65 or 14.6volts in a 12v battery. Any more than that and you are relying on the batteries BMS to protect the battery by disconnecting the current from the charger internally in the battery. That is the job of the BMS so all should be fine but the relative gain in battery capacity is almost zero after 14v anyway.

    14v would fill 99+% of a cells capacity.

    My own chargers are set at the equivalent of 13.7v on a 12v battery. IMO there really isn't any good reason to apply more voltage to an LFP battery other than that it will retain a higher charging current towards the tail end of its capacity during the charge cycle. That can be valuable if you are trying to squeeze every bit of solar charging for the last bit of the batteries capacity. That is the only real benefit to these higher charging voltages IMO.




    azuz9z2fc8qxwmnc.png
  • Ray
    842
    No, the lithium BMS would shut it down at 14.6V, but I remember the Bogart engineer told me to leave the solar controller max limit at least 15V so the charger would work properly. It's really there as a safety limit for the RV 12V circuits. But he said if it gets set too low it messes with things in the chargers algorithm.
    With my lithium, I never see higher than 14.6V and that's only at the very tail end of the charge.
    But with my old lead-acid, it wasn't uncommon to see 15 volts or slightly more when it was cold and the temp compensation was active. I actually had the max limit p8 set to 15.3V back then.
  • Ray
    842
    I think most of these drop-in batteries with internal BMS need to hit the higher 14+ voltage levels every once in a while to keep the cells in balance.
    Here is what Battle Born says on the subject.

  • POPPS
    6
    Thanks Ray, good information.
  • Greg F
    306
    It confuses me. As it has been explained to me the passive type BMS used in drop-ins are simply a switch that is activated be individual cell voltages. One the first cell gets to the voltage limit the pack is isolated from charging all together. Passive BMS does not balance. Maybe BB is using an active balancing BMS but those typically are always balancing. Cells don't gain or lose capacity so they need to always be adjusting so they all land together at the top or bottom. The interconnecting cables are typically small and can only carry so much current.

    In any case I was curious enough to ask BB. If they do have some sort of system that top balances but only at high voltages I might be interested in a similar system myself or would at least like to educate myself on how it works.

    So far no response but if they do I will let you know what they say.
  • Ray
    842
    This is what the Lion Energy FAQ says:

    Can I use a Standard Charger?

    Yes! You could use a standard battery charger and it will charge the batteries. However, since most chargers are designed for a lead acid battery, they are made to go up to a certain voltage. On a lead acid battery their "full" is about 13.8V. The UT 1300 can accept a charge up to 14.6V. Most chargers would get the batteries to 13.8V. For best performance, we recommend a lithium charger.

    So it seems they are saying for best performance they what them to get to a full charge.
    Though when I'm here on full hookups for months on end I've been just letting the bank sit at about 50% which is what my OEM charger will charge them to, I've read its not good to let lithium sit for long periods at full charge Though in the real world I don't know how much damage that really does, if it only shaves 10-20% off the life span who really cares in 10 years we will be likely using a totally different technology. :)
  • Greg F
    306
    So, here is the response:

    b52vaw9z9ubsdmxm.png


    In that video from BB they say it is the passive mechanism of the BMS that balances the cells. That is what had me confused. There is no mechanism in a passive BMS to balance cells in series.

    It is also not higher voltage that balances the cells. The cells will all rise at their own rate based on their capacity. The first cell that hits the voltage trigger for the BMS will shut the battery charging off. The remaining cells will just not be completely full. A very small difference anyway if you could balance and fill them all equally/fully.

    A 12v 4 cell LiFePO4 battery is full at 13.6-13.7 with a very small amount left possible after that. I think the reason why companies like Lion and BB chase these higher voltages is the faster charging rate that can occur towards the top end of the charge cycle due to most controllers that stage down the charging rate as the battery voltage approaches the battery full SOC programmed into the charger.

    The narrator in that video is Denis the company CEO. The e-mail response was from an engineer there. I am still not satisfied with their explanations. I was pretty sure that their BMS had nothing to do with balancing as the video mentioned but I am also fairly certain it is not charging voltage either that is miraculously balancing cells in series. There is no way to explain that in my mind.

    But, I am happy to learn if I am wrong. :) I do appreciate that they responded to a fairly technical question.
    Attachment
    Screen Shot 2021-03-08 at 9.12.16 PM (69K)
  • Greg F
    306
    I asked some follow up questions. It's pretty cool that BB takes the time to answer. I'm sure I will learn something.

    BTW I ordered 3 BB 100ah batteries directly from BB to install in an RV that we sold after taking my custom battery out. I have to say that the packaging and general quality of the batteries was excellent.
  • Ray
    842
    This is what's in the Lion UT1300 manual https://assets.website-files.com/5d0bc808bb07e41f508ebc52/5ecd931112817ae085a67451_UT1300_Manual_052620.pdf

    05.What type of charger do I need to charge the Safari UT 1300?
    You can use a lead acid charger and set it to its highest
    voltage setting (closest to 14.6V). However, we recommend
    if you want optimal performance, use a lithium charger. It
    can be purchased at various online stores or through
    physical retail or RV dealer store locations.

    06. What are the charge settings I should use for the
    Safari UT 1300?

    We recommend a lithium charger. You can use a lead acid
    charger. If the lead acid charger is programmable, use the
    Lithium setting if it has one. If it doesn’t, set the Bulk to
    14.6V with no time limit and the absorption, float and
    equalize to 0 or off. If these have to be set to something,
    then set all to 14.6V. If the lead acid charger can’t be
    programmed, it will still charge the UT 1300 up to approx.
    13.6V and 80% capacity. If you put the UT 1300 in 24V
    series, we recommend charging at 27.8V. For a series in 36V,
    41.7V and for a 48V in series, 55.6V.
  • Stephen Jansky
    2
    Ray,

    Even after draining the battery down by 65 amps I still was getting the roller coaster charging amps. I sent a quick email to Bogart and they called me back within an hour and had me change the P1 and P8. He said that the charging volts and the max volts have to be further apart so that the system doesn't perform like what I was seeing. He said the system was hitting max volts for an instant causing the decrease in amps - then system would see lower volts and send max amps again in cyclic manner. So now I have 14.4 P1 and 15.0 P8 and the charging amps are a steady high level.

    The front range, Denver area, is prepping for possible "bomb cyclone" of up to 50 to 60 inches of snow between Friday and Sunday. Here on the western slope we are only expecting 6-12 inches so probably will not see whole lot of solar charging in next few days.
  • Ray
    842
    Thanks for the update :up:
  • POPPS
    6
    AH HA I have the same problem but wasn't smart enough to call Bogart. I was trying different settings but never getting the results I needed. If we ever get back to Arizona I will have to check my P1 and P8 and not be shy about asking Bogart if I need more help with the system.
    There is nothing like a GOOD forum (Ray's) to help so many of us that need it.
  • Stephen Jansky
    2
    Popps

    Just a quick update to the roller coaster charging amps. Today after several cloudy snowy days i went to check on the solar and I was seeing the same roller coaster charging again. The battery was only down by 10 amps and the SC-2030 was in absorb mode. What I did to remedy was to raise the P8 parameter to 19.0 volts - then SC-2030 stayed in bulk mode and was charging at steady 18 amps. I am going to send email to Bogart to ask when system goes to absorb mode, why it does roller coaster charging in absorb, and why the max volts would have any affect on when system goes into absorb mode. I will update with any info I get back.
    I agree that Ray's website and videos are an excellent source of tried and true RV info and reviews. Thanks Ray
  • POPPS
    6
    Interesting, I have been hesitant to increase the voltage on P8 for one main reason, lack of knowledge LOL. Actually my concern is with the inverter, which runs 24/7 to power my fridge and deep freeze. Let us say the high limit shut down for the inverter is 15.5 Volts. If P8 is set at 16-20 Volts is it possible the inverter will detect this higher voltage and shut it self down???
  • Ed Camping
    7
    I have two Valance Lithium batteries and the Bogart Charge controller and battery monitor. I used to use P8 at 14.6 with not issues, however I just moved it up to 15.0 for the reasons from Bogart. Very happy with the charge controller.
  • Nitehawk
    6
    Ray, have you investigated a company called "Canbat"? They claim to be the number 1 lithium battery company in . I have been looking for a while to purchase new batteries and would like to get it done before they open up the borders.this company has a nice website as well
    https://canbat.com/lithium-rv-battery/
  • Ray
    842
    No, can't say I've even heard of them before but there seem to be more and more companies selling lithium popping up all the time. Good to see a Canadian-based company.
    Looks like they have their warehouse in Burnaby BC

    sotyjmn8snojwi5c.jpg
  • johnontario
    1
    Another Cdn LiFe04 company in Thunder Bay, 'Lynac". I haven 't pulled the trigger yet 'cause my 5 yr old Crowns are still chugging away but soon..............
  • Pine Sap
    0
    P16 [V Float] = 10 ? Maybe more like 13.6?
  • Garth
    6
    A local doctor & his buddies from Lac LaBiche, AB have started ABlithium.ca . They are bring in a container of batteries/month supposedly from the same factory as Dakota batteries are made. Main drawback is 3 year warranty but I took the plunge & ordered 2 12 volt 100ah batteries for $1,008 CAD including shipping & taxes. Delivery will be first week of May assuming the container ship arrives in Vancouver as scheduled.
    I will have 4 100 watt panels & the Bogart 2030 charger/monitor/WiFi module. I'll confirm with Bogart but I think I'll follow your setup initially.

    bh9zf42c2jpnhae1.png
  • Les
    1
    I also ordered 3- 100 amp batteries from Alberta lithium. Priced at $450.00 per battery. My batteries are supposed to be in on April 19. The April shipment is sold out. At that price I thought it was worth the chance. Will let you know how they pan out. He sells several different lithium batteries
  • Ray
    842
    WOW :gasp: that's only around $350 US for 100AH LiFEPO, that's a smoking deal.
  • Ray
    842
    I noticed the model number on the Alberta Lithium battery looked like TE12100 in the photo on the website. Doing a Google search revealed the possible manufacture is LithTech- https://www.ltc-energy.com/Lithtech-TE12100-Solar-Lifepo4-12v-100ah-Lithium-Iron-Phosphate-Battery-Pack-pd40656765.html
    I see the model number on Alibaba https://lith-tec.en.alibaba.com/product/1600121314869-821546857/Lithtech_TE12100_Solar_System_Battery_Deep_Cycle_Battery_12v_100ah.html?spm=a2700.shop_plser.41413.15.706c601cuNLv0Z
  • Nitehawk
    6
    I also took the plunge. Just have to get all the other components together now especially the charger converter to replace what I currently have
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