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How to Extend Battery Life When Boondocking In Your RV

by Anonymous
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How to Extend Battery Life When Boondocking In Your RV

How to Extend Battery Life When Boondocking In Your RV

We would like to know how long we should expect the average batteries (we have two new ones) should last when wilderness camping; only using the water pump to flush toilet and the minimum light at night with our 5th wheel?

Our second question is in what states is it illegal to have your LP gas on for the refrigerator when traveling down the road?

Thank you

ANSWER: Greetings thanks for submitting your question on our Ask An RV Question Page.

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How long your batteries will last while boondocking (camping in the wilderness) depends on the type of batteries that are being used as the house batteries on your 5th Wheel Trailer.

If the house batteries are standard 12 volt car batteries, they will last the least amount of time. If the batteries are 12 volt RV/Marine Deep Cycle batteries they will last longer than the car batteries. If the batteries are 6 volt true deep cycle batteries they will last the longest.

If this all sounds confusing to you take a moment to read the answers I gave to the questions below and then come back to this page to get the rest of your questions answered.

Are 2 Six Volt Batteries Better Than 1 Twelve Volt Battery To Provide Power To Inside Of RV

Do I Really Need A Deep Cycle Battery In My RV?

So as you see I cannot give you an exact answer to how long your batteries will last while boondocking, since I do not know what types of batteries you are using currently.

If you would like to extend the time that your batteries will last; you might want to look into installing a Solar Battery Charging System on your 5th wheel. Solar Battery Charging Systems use the power of the sun to provide a trickle charge to your house batteries. Depending on the wattage of the system you install; it can greatly extend the time the batteries can be used.

Here are some of the best places to get a good deal on a Solar Battery Charging System. Camping Worldicon carries RV Solar Charger Kitsicon. eBay has a large selection of Solar Battery Charging Systems and Amazon.com has a good selection of RV Solar Battery Chargers.

There are also portable solar charging kits available such as those offered by Zamp Solar. In the video below RVing Expert Mark Polk from RV Education 101 shows you how easy the Zamp Solar Portable Battery Chargers are to set up and use.

Click Here to see all the RV Educational DVDs available from RVing Expert Mark Polk



As far as your question on driving down the road with your refrigerator being powered by propane. To the best of my knowledge there are no state laws in the US prohibiting using propane in an RV while going down the road.

There are some tunnels in the US that do not allow you to go through the tunnel with the propane on; they have signs letting you know to turn off your propane before entering the tunnels. Most of them provide a pull out so you can shut off your propane. Ferry services also require you to turn off the propane when your RV is being transported on them.

Hopefully the above information has been helpful to you.

Do you have any suggestions or comments on this topic? You can add them to this page by clicking on the "Click Here To Post Comments" link located near the bottom of this page.

Happy RVing

RVing Al

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What about LEDs
by: Anonymous

There are things that you can do to make your batteries last longer other that better batteries and solar chargers - switch to LED lights and if you use an inverter switch to 12V equipment where possible (e.g. TV).

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Propane while driving
by: Anonymous

It is illegal in California to have the propane refrigerator operating while driving.

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