Thursday, July 26, 2012

Rethink solar

7AM - Rethinking solar
Mr. Sunny is using his second set of deep cycle batteries. His first set of batteries were the Exide Golf Car model bought in April, 2003 from Sam's Club for only $47/each. The second set were manufactured by Crown Battery bought in December, 2007 from American Battery in San Diego for $106/each.

Our electrical needs on the TiogaRV Team are much different today than they were back in 2003. Back then we had a full size desktop computer and monitor. To go online in 2003, we used our Mr. Datastorm who had several pieces of electrical equipment (modem, controller and the antenna). To go online now, all we need is our Apple MacBookPro and a little wireless modem!

So, we are rethinking solar. Especially the battery part of our solar electric system. Our set of Crown deep cycle batteries are still operating, but much less efficiently than when new. The Crowns were abused a while back when I was away on vacation. During that time, a few of the batteries had their plates uncovered (low electrolyte level).  It might be a good time to consider replacing the Crown batteries. However, we now feel that instead of (6) deep cycle batteries, we may only need (4). 

LTH Batteries: Recently we learned that the Johnson Controls company, manufacturer of LTH batteries here in Mexico, sells a line of deep cycle batteries. We believe that LTH has branch location in the nearby City of San Juan del Rio. We are planning a shopping trip to Johnson/LTH with the idea of buying (4) new deep cycle batteries. At that time, we also want to replace MsTioga's house battery located in her engine compartment.

5PM - Map problems!
The TiogaRV Team just returned from San Juan del Rio. During the late morning and early afternoon, we tried to find the Estafeta Depot. We wanted to use Estafeta-Ground to ship our Datastorm stuff to Steve O'Bosky in California. We tried hard, but just could not find Estafeta. Our Garmin Nuvi GPS showed the Depot to be in a residential neighborhood. That's not right.

Finally, we decided to ship only the essential Datastorm stuff to Steve. We used DHL to do the shipping. We are junking all the remaining Datastorm stuff.

Looking for the LTH warehouse
We had the same map problems looking for the LTH warehouse. Somehow the location eluded us. The GPS showed several locations with the same address. Weird!

However, we did find an AutoZone that sold the LTH 6Volt Deep Cycle Golf Car battery, re-branded to AutoZone. However, AutoZone only had batteries dated January, 2011. Not good.

We will have to ask around for info about buying these batteries. I believe that we can order them from a local auto supply store.

It was suggested in ShoutBox, that we try buying only 2-batteries to replace the 6 that we are using now. We like that idea, and are going to give it a try.

Lots f clouds