Best RV batteries for dry camping

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Powering life on the road


One of the big attractions of the campervan lifestyle is the ability to get out in nature. It’s a drive away from civilization into nature. As beautiful as remote nature can be, it can leave you cut off. Dry camping (otherwise known as off-grid camping) can literally cut you off from the mains electricity. Dry camping is remote and not on the likes of a campsite. There is no direct electricity so the campervan must generate its own. In other words, a campervan must have an alternative way to generate electricity. This is where the likes of an additional battery can provide additional electricity. This article will explore the best RV batteries for dry camping.


Best RV batteries for dry camping


Before the search begins for the best RV batteries for dry camping, you must determine exactly how much power you need. A useful measure for the power needed is amps. Different appliances require a different amount of amps. Things such as lights or charging a phone won’t require high amounts of power. However, the likes of kettles and microwaves will require a significant amount of energy. Therefore, previous trips are useful to see exactly what you used and the power that was needed. Alteratively a planned trip could provide enough insight into the potential power needs for your trip.


6 Volt batteries


Known for lasting longer than a 12 Volt battery but taking up less room, these can supply a fair bit of power.

12 Volt batteries


Car batteries are generally 12 Volts. They can supply enough power to start a car, run the electrics and lights. Unlike a 6 Volt battery, they can’t be charged and discharged as much. An alternator will recharge a car battery on the move. If static, the battery won’t have the chance to recharge and will eventually run out.

Lead-acid Deep Cycle Batteries


These are a common addition to campervans. An acid electrolyte solution consisting of water and sulphuric acid surrounds lead plates. Known for being able to discharge a large number of times. You can expect to get up to 8 years out of one of these batteries. Compared to other batteries, they can discharge a higher percentage of their capacity without getting damaged.

Absorbent Glass Mat (AGM) Batteries


Modelled on lead-acid batteries, expect glass fibres to replace the lead. These fibres allow a superior discharge to lead batteries. Furthermore, they don’t require maintenance like lead-acid batteries. For these benefits, they cost more to purchase.

Lithium-Ion Batteries


Likely, you have already heard of thee batteries. Used in the likes of iPhones and smart gadgets. An advancement on lead batteries they weigh less and have more charge. Unlike some batteries, when they get discharged, it causes damage. In lithium-ion batteries, you can practically use all the charge and recharge again.


Short term dry camping


If your trip consists of a weekend away, an additional battery can help satisfy your power needs. A 12-volt deep cycle battery should be enough to meet your electrical needs. Often known as leisure batteries, these are used in boats and campervans to add more power availability. As they’re lead-acid deep cycle batteries, they can last many years. These batteries are relatively affordable and easy to install.

Long term dry camping


When a weekend becomes a week, a more powerful battery can be needed. Although they are the most expensive battery on the market, buying a lithium-ion battery can be considered. You get what you pay for with these batteries. These batteries have several advantages. They’re smaller in size and more compact than lead or glass batteries. On the contrary, you can fully discharge them without worrying about causing costly damage to them. Like all batteries, they lose capacity over time; however, this takes many years.


Which is the best battery for dry camping?


There is no right or wrong answer when choosing a battery, only the correct fit for your needs. If you require a lot of power, you can even use multiple batteries in conjunction with each other to meet your electrical needs. Furthermore, to meet your budgeting needs, you can go from lead-acid batteries to lithium-ion ones. With battery charging, all can be used then charged up again. Using the likes of split charging and solar energy, you can keep your batteries replenished with charge.

An important consideration is that cheaper is not always better. Generally, with batteries, you get what you pay for. Buy new and direct from manufacturers to get a warranty. On the second-hand market, you don’t truly know what you are buying. It may be useful to know more about power inverters to understand how to release the power of your battery. First, you must choose the battery. I hope this article gives you a good starting point to purchase the correct battery for your needs.

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