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The Real Reason We Installed Battle Born Lithium Batteries (Again) [2022 Review]

The Real Reason We Installed Battle Born Lithium Batteries (Again) [2022 Review]

If you’ve had any discussions with anyone about RV batteries, you’ve likely heard the name Battle Born Batteries. That’s because they’re known as one of the best lithium battery manufacturers for RV’s and boats.

Their LiFePO4 batteries have been a game-changer, not just for individuals but also for the entire RV industry. They are nearly maintenance-free, outlast other battery technologies, and are easy to use.

We installed Battle Born lithium batteries—again! Let’s dive into why we love Battle Born Batteries so much.

*Disclaimer: We are brand partners of Battle Born Batteries and have received benefits in the form of products and funds in exchange for work-for-hire videos, social posts, and content inclusion.

We Installed Battle Born Lithium Batteries, Again

Since we first began RVing in 2015, we’ve used lithium batteries in 5 different RV’s. Four of them have been Battle Born Batteries. Our first build we used a battery module out of a wrecked Tesla Model S mainly because other RV lithium batteries we not available yet.

Lance 1172 Truck Camper – 1st Build

Our first time using Battle Born’s LiFePO4 batteries was when we traveled to the Arctic Ocean in a Lance 1172 truck camper to film our Go North series in 2019. Battle Born sponsored our trip to help make it happen, and we were genuinely thrilled with the capabilities it allowed.

This build included a Victron MultiPlus 3000W inverter, five Battle Born GC2 100Ah batteries, and a Victron BMV-712 battery monitor.

➡ View the full schematic for our first build here: Lance Truck Camper Lithium Batteries + Alternator Charging

No Generator RV Alternator Charging Electrical System Overview & Performance | Go North Explore More

DRV Mobile Suites Fifth Wheel – 2nd Build

Our second build took place the following year, in 2020. We upgraded our Tesla battery module to a bank of eight Battle Born 100Ah batteries. We also installed ten 230W flexible solar panels (2300W total) on the roof of our 2005 DRV Mobile Suites 5th Wheel to charge the batteries.

This RV solar system utilized three Victron Smart Solar MPPT 100/50 charge controllers, a Victron MultiPlus 5000W inverter, a Victron Orion converter, and a Victron BMV-712 battery monitor.

➡ View the full schematic for our second build here: Ultimate Off-Grid RV Solar Power System Build

Ultimate RV Off-Grid Solar System Build - 2760 Watts of Solar ☀️ 11Kwh Battery, on a 32' Fifth wheel

Overland Truck Camper – 3rd Build

Then, in 2021, we renovated a 2000 Bigfoot truck camper. We intended to use this RV for overlanding, so we needed a rugged off-grid power system to meet our needs. That’s why we went with two 270Ah Battle Born GC3 Game Changer 3.0 lithium batteries.

This system included a Victron Lynx shunt and distributor, a Victron MultiPlus 3000W inverter, three Victron MPPT 75/10 solar charge controllers, and three flexible solar panels totaling 495W. 

What Goes Into an Off-Grid Power System? Overland RV Solar Power System With 12V Air Conditioning

Monaco Dynasty Class A Motorhome – 4th (Latest) Build

Our most recent battery install took place this year. We bought a 2008 Monaco Dynasty Class A motorhome in February of 2022. This coach came with eight lead-acid batteries; however, they leaked battery acid and needed replacing. Again, we chose Battle Born and installed eight GC2 100Ah LiFePO4 batteries in a like for like configuration.

Mondco Battle Born Batteries
Our Lates Battle Born Battery Build

A lot of people have commented that spending this much on batteries seems crazy but for us, these batteries make our mobile lifestyle more comfortable than almost any other upgrade and we feel they are a necessity.

In a Class A motorhome, it also seems like a small price to pay for such a huge upgrade compared to the cost of the RV. We bought our unit used but new a coach like this costs over $500k. At that point, this investment is a small price to pay to get all the benefits of these amazing batteries is a small price to pay.

The Benefits of Lithium Batteries vs. Lead-Acid Batteries

There are lots of reasons to opt for lithium batteries in place of lead-acid. Over the years we have experienced all these and more benefits from our batteries.

Increased Power Capacity

One of the key benefits of lithium batteries is their ability to serve up almost their entire capacity as functional power. Lead-acid batteries should only use about 50% of their rated capacity before suffering degradation of the battery’s life and the amount of power it can put out.

For example, a 100Ah lithium battery can truly provide consistent power for close to 100 amp-hours. A 100Ah lead-acid battery can only deliver about half its capacity of consistent power.

In addition, lithium batteries maintain a higher voltage longer and do not sag like lead-acid, making the power more usable for a longer period of time.

new Battle Born battery in a box
Lithium batteries are 30% to 40% lighter than their lead-acid counterparts.

Lightweight

Even at the same rated capacity, lithium batteries are much lighter than their lead-acid counterparts. Because lithium batteries have a much higher energy density, they’re often 30% to 50% lighter. That is a tremendous benefit when using them in an RV or camper van where every bit of weight counts.

When removing my last set of lead-acid batteries I had forgotten how heavy they were. At 70 lbs a piece the lead acid was so hard to handle. When i picked up the 30 lbs battleborn they felt almost like toys and its hard to believe they pack as much power as they do!

Heavy Dangerous Battery
So Heavy and dangerous! Look at those danger stickers plus they were leaking lead-containing acid! These things are Toxic and not something you want to be around.

With our new set of batteries, we dropped 320 lbs of weight and gained 3 times the energy! Wow.

It Can Run Heavy Loads (Peukert Effect)

Lithium batteries are also much more efficient than lead-acid batteries when put under a heavy load. When running larger appliances that use significant power, a heavy load is put on the batteries. Lithium batteries are highly efficient, handling this scenario well. Lead-acid batteries, actually lose power. This is because of a phenomenon called the Peukert Effect.

Basically, the Peukert Effect means that when a lead-acid battery is discharged (drained) under a heavy load (or at a high discharge rate), the internal resistance causes a dip in voltage and wastes energy in the battery. That reduces how much capacity the battery can provide. This is one of the main reasons lead-acid batteries can’t effectively provide the same amount of amp hours for their rating.

With our new installation, we saw this first hand as we tried operating our microwave and vacuum on the lead acids. Under high discharges, they would lose twice as much energy as the new lithiums!

Fast Charging

Lithium batteries are more efficient than lead-acid batteries. In addition to providing more usable power at a more consistent rate, this also works in reverse when charging.

A lithium battery charges much more rapidly than its lead-acid counterpart. That’s because it can handle a higher amperage from the charger. They also do not need the high voltage long absorption times of lead-acid making topping them off quick and easy.

This is a HUGE benefit when it comes to solar charging. Because they do not require any particular charge and are 99% efficient power in = power out. When the sun shines they charge no matter what.

Easy Maintenance

There is essentially no maintenance on a lithium battery, particularly LiFePO4 batteries from Battle Born.

You must clean lead-acid batteries and they need to be free of dirt and corrosion. You also need to occasionally water them if they are flooded. Lead-acid all need equalization and proper charging profiles as well. If you don’t keep an eye on them they will get damaged.

Lithium batteries don’t need the same treatment. Battle Born’s batteries also come with a built-in Battery Management System (BMS), which protects their cells against short circuits, high currents, excessive heat, cold, and high or low voltages. It also keeps them running efficiently.

Battle Born Batteries fifth wheel install
Lithium batteries are practically maintenance-free, giving you more location freedom for your installation.

Long Lifespan 

Though lithium batteries cost quite a bit more than lead-acid batteries, that cost is greatly offset by the convenience of consistent power and capacity and the much longer lifespan they have.

Don't Waste Your Money On Batteries - The Shocking Truth I Discovered When Testing RV Batteries
We did some heavy testing and figured out the cost lifespan in this video

Lithium batteries tend to last around 10 times longer than lead-acid batteries in real-world testing. Even when careful not to discharge lead-acid batteries below the damage-inducing 50% capacity mark, lithium batteries tend to last about 10 times as many life cycles. This holds true for the more expensive AGM lead-acid batteries. There’s an even greater difference when compared to the cheaper traditional flooded lead-acid batteries.

We have used our battery systems for over 5 years very hard with deep daily discharges and they are still going strong. A lead-acid set would not have lasted even 2 years under the same conditions.

Best for Solar Power

When pairing batteries with solar power, lithium batteries are the hands-down winner. That’s because they can handle irregular charging and don’t suffer severe detrimental effects from a partial charge.

This is quite common when charging batteries via solar power. You can’t control when or for how long the solar panels will receive enough sunshine to charge the batteries. That results in uneven rates of charging and partial charges.

flexible solar panel
Lithium batteries charge faster than lead-acid, making them a better option for solar systems.

Lead-acid batteries don’t handle either of these situations well. They work best off of a consistent rate of charge and benefit from being fully charged, as voltage can dip along with the battery’s state of charge.

Plus, lithium batteries charge faster, meaning they need less time to fully charge when the sun is shining.

With our latest build, we saw a 30% gain in solar storage with the same 1200W system just because of the efficiency and better charging profiles!

Why Battle Born Batteries?

As the name suggests, Battle Born Batteries was founded with a mission to provide a reliable and battle-tested battery for those who need it most. And that’s exactly what it’s done. Over the years, the company has become known for its rugged and durable batteries, perfect for those who work or play in harsh conditions.

In addition to its quality products, Battle Born Batteries also offers great customer service. Its team is always available to help with questions or concerns, and it offers a hassle-free return policy.

Battle Born Customer Story- Mortons on the Move in Arizona

Whether you’re looking for a battery for your car, boat, RV, or off-grid home, Battle Born Batteries is a great option.

The Technology

There are also some technical reasons why we installed Battle Born Batteries again. First of all, they use high-quality cylindrical cells in their LiFePO4 batteries. Cylindrical cells are more efficient, and reliable, and deliver a longer lifespan than prismatic cells. In addition Battle Born Tests every single one of their cells and matches them to produce the best matched internal resistance of the battery.

The company also embraces an intelligent, internal battery management system that helps to keep your battery working at peak performance for longer. The BMS monitors the battery for overcharging or over-discharging. It also monitors battery temperature, checks for loose connections and internal shorts, and balances the charge across cells to operate at optimum capacity.

And because Battle Born lithium batteries are so simple and reliable – needing little to no maintenance – you can be sure that they’ll be there when you need them most.

Monaco Dynasty lithium battery install
We’re excited to power our Monaco Dynasty Class A motorhome with reliable LiFePO4 batteries.

UL Listed and Tested

Another reason we chose Battle Born lithium batteries is that they’re among the most certified-listed batteries in the world. According to Battle Born, their lithium cells are UL 1642 certified, and the battery packs themselves are UL 2054 and IEC 62133 certified. Each battery also has a Department of Transportation listing of 38.3, which is required even to allow them to be shipped.

Very few other manufacturers have had their batteries tested to these standards.

Assembled in the USA

Battle Born Batteries is a brand of Dragonfly Energy, which is the company that spearheaded the innovations that make Battle Born’s LiFePO4 batteries—the leading choice on the market. All Battle Born lithium batteries are researched, designed, and assembled in the USA.

This is actually a rarity in the lithium battery industry, where many Battle Born competitors import the entire battery from outside the U.S.

The Adventure Begins - Driving to Washington & Our RV Lithium Battery Install | Go North Ep 4
We got to build our very own Battle Born lithium batteries for our Go North expedition.
Check it out in Episode 4!

Knowledgeable and Passionate Nevada-Based Team

As we mentioned before, we chose Battle Born because their customer service folks and tech support staff really know their stuff. Based out of Reno, Nev., no matter the issue, Battle Born is always available to help with questions or concerns and offers a hassle-free return policy.

This filters down from the top. Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Denis Phares and Chief Operating Officer (COO), Sean Nichols are the founders of the company. They were two University of Nevada MBA students that developed the LiFePO4 technology found in Battle Born Batteries.

They maintain their passion for creating a powerful green energy solution, which is evident in the knowledge and commitment they have instilled in everyone at Battle Born.

Battle Born Batteries crew with the Mortons
Hanging out with some of the Battle Born crew!

After Using Battle Born Batteries, We’ll Never Go Back to Lead-Acid

Having experienced the benefits of Battle Born Batteries and the advantages of their LiFePO4 batteries, there is no way we will ever go back to lead-acid.

Our Battle Born Batteries charge faster, last longer, and provide more consistent energy. This is all without any maintenance. And with the amazing support and how Battle Born Batteries stands behind its products, why would we ever consider anything less?

Have you made the switch to Battle Born lithium batteries? Share your experience in the comments below.


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Kent

Monday 30th of May 2022

Are you saying that the BIM battery isolator did not protect your alternator from overheating? I am about to order a system from BB and they are telling me that I don't need the DC to DC charger for my motorhome.

Tony S

Sunday 15th of May 2022

Our last motorhome was an all-electric diesel pusher and had 4 AGM batteries for the house (upgraded from the manufacturer’s lead-acid batteries). We found little benefit to them. They didn’t last any longer or perform better than the less expensive wet cells; only positive was the maintenance advantage. I always had battery anxiety when off grid, worrying if they would be over discharged by morning. Frequently, I had no choice but switch on the generator before official generator hours, lest my battery bank be damaged or lose power to the fridge.

In March we bought a gently used diesel pusher in which the seller had upgraded to four 100 amp hour Battleborn batteries along with an upgraded solar array; three 330 watt panels. There is a night and day difference with this set up. Typically the batteries are still at 58% charged when I get up, and can make coffee, etc and not worry about enough power. The seller told me that we could add 2 additional Battleborns if installed within a year of the others. I’m not sure if we need them, but may not hurt to have the extra juice. Feel free to weigh in on this with your opinion.

bfraz

Sunday 15th of May 2022

$5,000 for a pair of camper batteries. Let that logic sink in for a while.

Tom McGrath

Wednesday 11th of May 2022

While I am happy that Battle Born Batteries are made in the USA, and may even have better customer service, I can't justify the 3X extra cost for the battery. I have dealt with other Chinese dealers and was satisfied with them. After using two 300AH batteries from China for 2 years, I have had no issues with the batteries. I have referred friends to use the lower-cost batteries and they too are satisfied. After Will Prowse tore apart some of the Chinese batteries and found that they are well made, I'm convinced that I have made the right choice and recommend others to buy these batteries. Sorry Battle Born, but you need to cut some of your profits!

Jim Edwards

Wednesday 11th of May 2022

Everything you say about the Battle Born batteries is true. However, I am considering a different lithium battery maker for my new 5th wheel. Ampere Time makes high-quality lithium batteries but previously suffered from not having a low-temp sensor to prevent charging at below freezing temperatures. However, they are now making self-heating batteries that overcome that limitation. At a 60% to 70% price point compared to the Battle Born batteries, they seem a very logical choice.

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