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  1. #1
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    Imagine XLE 21BHE Lithium battery conversion

    Hi,

    I need some help with steps involved in converting over my batteries to Lithium. TT delivery is early next month and asked my dealer to reduce my final price by $100 as I have no use for their lead batteries (maybe could babe gotten more). I am thinking of having the dealer install the lithium (2 x lion energy 105ah from Costco) for me.
    Questions:
    1. Is the converter/charger that comes stock sufficient? I was told it will charge up to 80% and remained via solar?
    2. What’s best location for the batteries?
    3. Any other things I should be thinking of while I have them swap out?

    Any input is much appreciated. Thank you

  2. #2
    Site Team Ynot4me2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TT hunting View Post
    Hi,

    I need some help with steps involved in converting over my batteries to Lithium. TT delivery is early next month and asked my dealer to reduce my final price by $100 as I have no use for their lead batteries (maybe could babe gotten more). I am thinking of having the dealer install the lithium (2 x lion energy 105ah from Costco) for me.
    Questions:
    1. Is the converter/charger that comes stock sufficient? I was told it will charge up to 80% and remained via solar?
    2. What’s best location for the batteries?
    3. Any other things I should be thinking of while I have them swap out?

    Any input is much appreciated. Thank you
    There's no need to change anything. You can easily drop the lifepo4 in the place the LA would go. Your charger will charge it to 95% I believe but that is still far more AH then a LA would give you. Later on you can replace the charger. I would lock the battery box though if you plan on installing it outside on the a frame.

    Sent from my SM-P610 using Tapatalk
    Steph & Lise
    2019 F150 Lariat 2.7 EB
    2020 Imagine XLS 22MLE

  3. #3
    Site Sponsor SolarPoweredRV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TT hunting View Post
    Hi,

    I need some help with steps involved in converting over my batteries to Lithium. TT delivery is early next month and asked my dealer to reduce my final price by $100 as I have no use for their lead batteries (maybe could babe gotten more). I am thinking of having the dealer install the lithium (2 x lion energy 105ah from Costco) for me.
    Questions:
    1. Is the converter/charger that comes stock sufficient? I was told it will charge up to 80% and remained via solar?
    2. What’s best location for the batteries?
    3. Any other things I should be thinking of while I have them swap out?

    Any input is much appreciated. Thank you
    Let's start with your last question first...

    Are you planning on camping in cold weather (32 degrees or below)? If yes, then you need to realize that you will not be able to charge your batteries in the colder weather, you can still use energy from your batteries, just not charge them in the cold.

    Do you have Solar on the camper now, or will you consider Solar in the future? If yes, the charging in the cold becomes a slightly more important issue because the Solar will want to charge your batteries even though it is cold outside. Don't worry too much about this cold weather charging because your batteries have a thermal disconnect that will protect the batteries from cold charging, just be aware that if you camp in cold weather your choice of battery replacement becomes more important.

    If you have the physical space it is usually best to place the batteries where the OEM battery was intended to be placed. Note: with the LiFePo4 batteries you have the option to install them inside the camper, or in a heated/cold protected hold without the need for ventilation.

    Changing out the Converter is not immediately required. However, you will not get the best performance out of your new batteries without a "Lithium Ready" Converter. Additionally, LiFePo4 batteries prefer to be charged to 100% so you run the risk of shortening the longevity of your batteries the longer you use the OEM Converter. If you are planning a Solar project where you will be installing an Inverter/Charger and eliminating the Converter completely, then you could delay replacing the Converter, otherwise you would be better off replacing the Converter with a unit like Progressive Dynamics Lithium Converters (note: they even have a Lithium Converter that will fit inside the existing power center, if your Converter is not a stand-alone unit).

    Good luck and congrats on your new coach!

    PS: 80% charge from an OEM Converter is optimistic.
    David and Peggy
    2019 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.7L Diesel, Dually, Long Bed
    Running with 20k Reese Goosebox (Love It) and Ford Factory "Puck" system.
    Stopping with 8,000 lb Disc Brakes and Titan Hydraulic over Electric Brakes system.
    Powering all this fun with 1200 Watts of Solar, two Tesla, Model S, battery modules, 24 volt Victron Inverter.
    2018 Solitude 310 GK

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolarPoweredRV View Post
    Let's start with your last question first...

    Are you planning on camping in cold weather (32 degrees or below)? If yes, then you need to realize that you will not be able to charge your batteries in the colder weather, you can still use energy from your batteries, just not charge them in the cold.

    Do you have Solar on the camper now, or will you consider Solar in the future? If yes, the charging in the cold becomes a slightly more important issue because the Solar will want to charge your batteries even though it is cold outside. Don't worry too much about this cold weather charging because your batteries have a thermal disconnect that will protect the batteries from cold charging, just be aware that if you camp in cold weather your choice of battery replacement becomes more important.

    If you have the physical space it is usually best to place the batteries where the OEM battery was intended to be placed. Note: with the LiFePo4 batteries you have the option to install them inside the camper, or in a heated/cold protected hold without the need for ventilation.

    Changing out the Converter is not immediately required. However, you will not get the best performance out of your new batteries without a "Lithium Ready" Converter. Additionally, LiFePo4 batteries prefer to be charged to 100% so you run the risk of shortening the longevity of your batteries the longer you use the OEM Converter. If you are planning a Solar project where you will be installing an Inverter/Charger and eliminating the Converter completely, then you could delay replacing the Converter, otherwise you would be better off replacing the Converter with a unit like Progressive Dynamics Lithium Converters (note: they even have a Lithium Converter that will fit inside the existing power center, if your Converter is not a stand-alone unit).

    Good luck and congrats on your new coach!

    PS: 80% charge from an OEM Converter is optimistic.

    Rarely planning on camping in cold weather. The camper comes with a 165W solar panel. I like the idea of swapping out to a lithium controller. I believe the imagine XLE 21bhe comes with a 30 amp wfco converter and a furrion 25 amp mppt charge controller. Do you know if this one will work? https://www.etrailer.com/RV-Converte...PD9160ALV.html
    I will also need a controller on top of this? Any recommendations?

    I am leaning towards having the dealer install the lithium batteries in the pass through storage area but not sure if that will end up being a laborious install?

    Anyone have pictures of their lithium battery set ups?

  5. #5
    Site Sponsor SolarPoweredRV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TT hunting View Post
    Rarely planning on camping in cold weather. The camper comes with a 165W solar panel. I like the idea of swapping out to a lithium controller. I believe the imagine XLE 21bhe comes with a 30 amp wfco converter and a furrion 25 amp mppt charge controller. Do you know if this one will work? https://www.etrailer.com/RV-Converte...PD9160ALV.html
    I will also need a controller on top of this? Any recommendations?

    I am leaning towards having the dealer install the lithium batteries in the pass through storage area but not sure if that will end up being a laborious install?

    Anyone have pictures of their lithium battery set ups?
    No, you will not need a controller on top of what you want to install.

    Yes, that Converter will work, however, you might have a built-in Converter (A Converter that is part of your Power Center) which would require a Converter more like this:

    https://www.etrailer.com/Accessories...4560LICSV.html

    I would suggest you have the Dealer install the Converter as well (so long as they can install the Progressive Dynamics Converter).

    Having your new, expensive batteries installed inside the hold is very much worth while, you will not regret it. To minimize the footprint of having your batteries inside the hold, you might consider stacking them on top of each other, instead of getting them installed on the floor side by side.

    PS: There is a chance that the OEM Converter is "Lithium Ready" and all you need to do is change a setting on the OEM Converter to charge LiFePo4 batteries.
    Last edited by SolarPoweredRV; 10-19-2021 at 02:22 AM.
    David and Peggy
    2019 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.7L Diesel, Dually, Long Bed
    Running with 20k Reese Goosebox (Love It) and Ford Factory "Puck" system.
    Stopping with 8,000 lb Disc Brakes and Titan Hydraulic over Electric Brakes system.
    Powering all this fun with 1200 Watts of Solar, two Tesla, Model S, battery modules, 24 volt Victron Inverter.
    2018 Solitude 310 GK

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolarPoweredRV View Post
    No, you will not need a controller on top of what you want to install.

    Yes, that Converter will work, however, you might have a built-in Converter (A Converter that is part of your Power Center) which would require a Converter more like this:

    https://www.etrailer.com/Accessories...4560LICSV.html

    I would suggest you have the Dealer install the Converter as well (so long as they can install the Progressive Dynamics Converter).

    Having your new, expensive batteries installed inside the hold is very much worth while, you will not regret it. To minimize the footprint of having your batteries inside the hold, you might consider stacking them on top of each other, instead of getting them installed on the floor side by side.

    PS: There is a chance that the OEM Converter is "Lithium Ready" and all you need to do is change a setting on the OEM Converter to charge LiFePo4 batteries.


    Just wanted to share with everyone as here is more info from GD:

    Our Imagine XLS brand will not come with an inverter but is prepped. The converter is a WFCO 30 AMP AC / 35 AMP DC part number WF-8735-PB-GE. This is located in the kitchen base cabinet near the sink.

    We are using a Furrion 25 AMP charge controller – part number FSCC30PW-BL – this will be found in the front pass through storage area on the off door side.

    The current converter will only charge lithium to 80% when plugged into shore power and the charge controller will charge to 100% from solar

    I would not recommend upgrading to a 60 AMP converter and would discuss this with your dealer as we do not offer this as an option from the factory



    WHY would they not recommend going to 60 amp? Kind of confused

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolarPoweredRV View Post
    Let's start with your last question first...

    Are you planning on camping in cold weather (32 degrees or below)? If yes, then you need to realize that you will not be able to charge your batteries in the colder weather, you can still use energy from your batteries, just not charge them in the cold.
    For clarification, the battery temp can't be below 32 degrees. If you have a way to get heat on the batteries (some have a heated option or a heating matt) or mount in a heated compartment you wont have the charge limitation.
    2021 Solitude 375 RES-R

  8. #8
    Site Sponsor SolarPoweredRV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKellerJr View Post
    For clarification, the battery temp can't be below 32 degrees. If you have a way to get heat on the batteries (some have a heated option or a heating matt) or mount in a heated compartment you wont have the charge limitation.
    There is not an issue with the batteries operating below 32 degrees, only with charging.

    According to Lion Energy's Owner's manual for the 105ah batteries the operating temperatures are:

    Charge: 32F to ~ 113F

    Discharge: -4F to 131F

    By-the-way, I liked Lion Energy's "Welcome to the Pride" slogan on the cover of their Owner's Manual.
    David and Peggy
    2019 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.7L Diesel, Dually, Long Bed
    Running with 20k Reese Goosebox (Love It) and Ford Factory "Puck" system.
    Stopping with 8,000 lb Disc Brakes and Titan Hydraulic over Electric Brakes system.
    Powering all this fun with 1200 Watts of Solar, two Tesla, Model S, battery modules, 24 volt Victron Inverter.
    2018 Solitude 310 GK

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolarPoweredRV View Post
    There is not an issue with the batteries operating below 32 degrees, only with charging.

    According to Lion Energy's Owner's manual for the 105ah batteries the operating temperatures are:

    Charge: 32F to ~ 113F

    Discharge: -4F to 131F

    By-the-way, I liked Lion Energy's "Welcome to the Pride" slogan on the cover of their Owner's Manual.
    I realize that. I was just clarifying that the actual battery temp is what matters, the air temp is irrelevant. Put one in a enclosed case with a heat mat and you'll buy yourself quite a bit of temperature range. Just need to keep the battery cells themselves above whatever temp limitation they have.

    As you said, it really isn't much of an issue, THE BMS should protect the battery.
    2021 Solitude 375 RES-R

  10. #10
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    GD support stated “The current converter is not lithium ready so it will only charge to 80% when hooked to shore power. I believe WFCO makes a similar converter that is capable of fully charging lithium batteries.”
    They can’t make suggestions on which is best. What do you guys think of Progressive Dynamics PD4135KV Inteli-Power 4100 Series Converter? Will this work? Any other recommendations as GD recommended against a 60amp one.

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