Your camping battery setup will either make or break your camping experience. It doesn't matter if you have a spacious tent and all the leisure items you want—you won't really be able to enjoy them with insufficient power. While it's true that you initially need a good portable battery for this, the entire efficiency of your setup does not depend on the power pack alone. How you use, recharge, and store it as well as the other materials you'll be pairing your battery with will affect how effective of a camping power you'll get.
It is also a good idea to be aware that every camping battery setup is different. Your tent-camping power needs will not be the same as the power requirements of those who are off-grid camping in their RV. Usually, traditional camping won't need as much installation compared to having your battery fixed & ready for use inside a vehicle. Avid campers and RV owners would know how to fix up their battery in varying settings but if you're a newbie adventurer, it's often recommended to ask for professional help to ensure maximum efficiency and safety.
What Do You Need For a Camping Battery Setup?
First things first, get a good battery. The most commonly used recreational power packs are 12V batteries since it's the best size for packing during outings or fitting in RVs. In terms of type, it's ideal to go for a deep cycle battery, particularly a lithium-based one like a LiFePO4 battery. These have the best overall quality and are dubbed the safest batteries in the market too.
LiFePO4 batteries are known to have an edge over other camping battery packs due to their integrated battery management system (BMS). This BMS optimises every cell inside the battery for stable performance and prevents common battery issues such as overheating and short circuits. While other battery options like deep cycle AGM batteries fare well and are more affordable, investing in a LiFePO4 battery is more cost-effective due to its top-notch performance plus impressive service life that can last up to a decade.
Bringing the appropriate charger for your battery pack plays a crucial role in its lifespan and performance. There are three ways you can recharge your battery after use. Number one is by driving, wherein you hook your deep cycle battery to the starter battery in your car and it’s topped off by the alternator while you're driving.
Another option is by using a standard battery charger. Make sure to use the correct one according to the type of battery pack for camping that you have. If you have a lithium camping battery, recharge it using a lithium battery charger with the same voltage. The number of charging hours will also depend on your charger's amp size so go for a bigger one if you want to have a full charge faster.
Last but not least, you can also pair your battery with solar panels for charging. This is often done for RVs like caravans and camper trailers for unlimited power supply, especially when camping in remote locations. It's free, renewable energy and is also an environment-friendly way to power up your outdoor trips.
Any 12V camping setup will need additional accessories. If you're pairing batteries and solar panels, you need to have a solar charge regulator to avoid overcharging your battery pack. Meanwhile, charging via a car alternator will require a Voltage Sensitive Relay (VSR) or DC to DC charger. You might need adaptors as well for 12V devices and an inverter to plug in larger 240V appliances. See to it that all other essentials in your camping battery setup are compatible with one another to avoid damage and safety risks.
Is a Dual Camping Battery Setup Good?
A dual battery system is mostly used in RVs and 4x4 vehicles. This means that apart from your main car battery, you also have an auxiliary battery meant for running whatever appliances you have inside. These two batteries function separately since neither one of them is designed to perform both the task of kickstarting the engine and powering the electronics at the same time.
A starter battery supplies short, concentrated bursts of energy for cranking up the vehicle. The secondary battery, on the other hand, should provide a longer, continuous stream of power. This ideally should be a deep cycle battery too, as it's the perfect power pack for extended periods of use. This type of camping battery setup is beneficial for recreational vehicles in the sense that it ensures everything is running smoothly and there will be no issue about power shortage throughout your entire trip.
Is 100Ah Enough For a Camping Battery Setup?
The majority of campers often go for a 100Ah deep cycle battery, especially for weekend trips. It's typically considered to be the standard capacity for outdoor use, but it still boils down to how much load you're planning to draw from your battery. A handful of appliances can definitely be covered by a 100Ah lithium battery but if you have extra essentials to run, you can also go for 200Ah or even 400Ah batteries.
You can get a good estimate of your power needs by listing down the wattage of all your electronic equipment plus their running time and getting the total power output. This can be done manually or online using power calculators for a quicker, more convenient method. It also allows you to easily size up your battery and avoid getting stuck with no power when you're outdoors.
More from Outbax
Choose from the best range of portable power sources at Outbax for your camping battery setup! We have a collection of 12 volt and 24V batteries here, caravan batteries, and even slimline lithium batteries. The best part is that they are all available at a lower price to accommodate adventurers on a budget. Shopping is convenient as well with an entirely online process coupled with a team of customer service who love the outdoors as much as you do.
We also have portable solar panels and inverter generators for sale if you're looking for alternative or extra power sources. They come in different types for varying power requirements as well and are guaranteed to be of premium quality to give you great value for your money. Catch our awesome deals and visit our website today!