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2022 2500RL, Upgrades: lithium, inverter, converter, transfer switch, etc.

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  • 2022 2500RL, Upgrades: lithium, inverter, converter, transfer switch, etc.

    I completed modifications to the electrical system consisting of:

    1. Two Renogy 100amp-hr lithium batteries.
    2. 2000w Renogy Inverter
    3. 20a DC-DC charger
    4. Watchdog 30amp
    5. Homebrew transfer switch
    6. Moved all DC wires/circuits/fuses from the frame to a fuse panel in the storage pass-thru.
    7. Upgraded the converter to a lithium capable one, WF-8955LIS-MBA

    Here is the electrical schematic of what I did:

    Click image for larger version  Name:	2022 2500RL Electrical System Design 2MAY22.jpg Views:	24 Size:	88.6 KB ID:	83815

    Here are some photos of the install:

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    Discussion:

    The transfer switch uses two relays - one to keep the shore power hot and neutral separate from the inverter's hot and neutral, and another one to disconnect the converter while on inverter power. Coincidentally, the electric theater seats are powered from this same circuit breaker, so no need to worry if they are on when on inverter power. The relays are:

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QXWZP3R
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00DWIKF2A

    In the 2500RL, the power distribution system is in the wall between the bath and bedroom, at the floor. I was able to fish a couple 10-2 NM-WG wires from under the sink to the little enclosed box (universal docking station) in the storage pass-through. I wanted to bring the shore power into the storage area so that I could install a hard-wired surge protector. I then routed it back to the distribution panel via the transfer relay.

    I intentionally used the normally closed contacts of the relays for shore power operation, with the relay coils becoming active when the inverter is activated. I decided the small power drain is not a big battery penalty, since most of the time when in storage or in hook-ups at a campground the relays will be "idle". Most of the inverter use will simply be to make coffee or use the microwave without having to start a generator when dry camping. The remote on/off/monitor switch for the inverter is in the bathroom wall, a relatively easy location to fish the wire to. I did notice that the inverter "stumbles" a little on initial power up, meaning I hear a couple clicks/rattles of the relays before they "hard" engage. The inverter instructions say to let it power up for a few seconds prior to adding any load, and this is probably why. I could add some sort of delay relay in, but probably won't bother unless a good reason presents itself.

    The battery disconnect actually, well, disconnects the battery! I did not like, but understand why, the factory design has so much junk still running even when disconnected. I want to know that all power is off. Someone mentioned in another thread regarding the break-away switch. I debated keeping this on full time, but ruled it out. One will not connect the trailer without battery power since the tongue jack is electric. I could make arguments either way on this one. I removed the factory disconnect switch and labeled it as "not used".

    The wires that were down on the frame on the circuit breaker were fished back up through the hole they went down through initially, also in the docking area box. I will re-foam the area I disrupted to do this. The tongue jack and break-away switch wires were spliced along the frame and heat shrunk to seal them. I also tied the ground wire back to it's original location on the frame.

    I may add a horizontal support under the floor, between the two frame members, to give added support and stiffness to the floor of the storage area. The batteries are about 60 lbs or so. The rest of the hardware is mounted to a 1/2" piece of plywood, mounted to a fairly stiff vertical wall. I really don't know if additional support is needed or not. I suspect there are toolboxes weighing that much in some storage areas. A green treat 2x4 spanning most of the way left/right screwed under the floor would do a lot if needed. I believe the floor is plywood so it will not likely sag (as compared to OSB types of materials).

    I want to thank those who previously posted great information and tips that I freely swiped. It was a fun project! Well, sitting with my neck bent in the pass-through got old...
    Last edited by howson; 05-03-2022, 06:13 AM.
    2022 Imagine 2500RL VIN 573TE3029N6637046
    2022 Ford F-150 Lariat, SuperCrew, long box, max tow

  • #2
    Additional pictures:

    Click image for larger version

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    Click image for larger version

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ID:	83822
    2022 Imagine 2500RL VIN 573TE3029N6637046
    2022 Ford F-150 Lariat, SuperCrew, long box, max tow

    Comment


    • #3
      Great info here Alex. Just getting into the RV thing with a new Imagine 23 mle. have just started researching this same modification. Just wondering if you made any changes to your solar panel?
      2022 Imagine XLS23LDE
      2022 Silverado 2500HD 4x4 High Country Duramax
      Hensley Arrow Hitch

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Collin Ellis View Post
        Great info here Alex. Just getting into the RV thing with a new Imagine 23 mle. have just started researching this same modification. Just wondering if you made any changes to your solar panel?
        Collin, thanks. No changes to the solar yet nor planned.
        2022 Imagine 2500RL VIN 573TE3029N6637046
        2022 Ford F-150 Lariat, SuperCrew, long box, max tow

        Comment


        • #5
          Very impressive Alex. That's a nice clean install, and the wiring diagram is very helpful.

          Jim
          GDRV Forum Moderator
          GDRV SW USA Rally Support Coordinator

          Jim and Ginnie
          2017 Reflection 297RSTS

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by TucsonJim View Post
            Very impressive Alex. That's a nice clean install, and the wiring diagram is very helpful.

            Jim
            Jim - thanks.
            2022 Imagine 2500RL VIN 573TE3029N6637046
            2022 Ford F-150 Lariat, SuperCrew, long box, max tow

            Comment


            • #7
              Alex, that is a really neat/clean install! Great work! You wont' find too many shops doing pretty work like that!!
              Home Base: Fairfax, Virginia
              2021 Grand Design Reflection 315RLTS Travel Trailer
              2002 Ford F350 7.3 Diesel 4X4 SRW

              Comment


              • #8
                Jimmer Thanks for the kind words!

                I will be making one small change - I used a 12g power cord between the transfer switch and the inverter, but simply put a male plug on the inverter end. However, the receptacles on the inverter are only good for 8.3 amps. I will connect a 12-2 to the hard wire ports on the inverter instead.

                I'm still contemplating a time delay relay, to give a few seconds' delay between inverter activation and transfer switch engagement...
                2022 Imagine 2500RL VIN 573TE3029N6637046
                2022 Ford F-150 Lariat, SuperCrew, long box, max tow

                Comment


                • #9
                  Really dig that battery box. You have a dovetail jig / machine?

                  I think the reason they do the disconnect with things staying powered has a lot to do with the switch and it's location. If it were more difficult to put in break mode, they may make it a true disconnect.
                  Joseph
                  Tow
                  Vehicle: 2018 GMC K2500 Denali Diesel
                  Coach: 303RLS Delivered March 5, 2021
                  South of Houston Texas

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Jlawles2 Joseph - thanks. I use a router and a Porter Cable jig. I wanted to protect the batteries, yet keep it lightweight and allow cooling of the batteries. It is 1/2" Baltic birch plywood, cover 1/4". Nothing on the bottom - the batteries sit on the floor.
                    2022 Imagine 2500RL VIN 573TE3029N6637046
                    2022 Ford F-150 Lariat, SuperCrew, long box, max tow

                    Comment

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