6v vs. 12v RV Batteries
Many people are confused when it comes to the issue of using two 6v deep cycle batteries in your RV, rather than 12v batteries. There are a few reasons why wiring two 6v batteries in series are superior to a single 12v battery, or even two 12v batteries.
Getting More Amp Hours
Basically, the amp hour rating is how many amps the battery will deliver, and how many hours it will take before the battery is completely discharged. The more amp hours you have means, you can run the electrical system on battery longer, without draining the batteries.
The typical amp hour rating for 6v batteries wired in parallel is 225 amp hours, but using two typical 12v batteries wired in parallel will give you 140 to 170 amp-hours. As you can see, the two 6v batteries equal around 2 ½ 12v batteries when it comes to amp hours.
Two 6 volt batteries wired in series will give you more amp hours than a single 12v battery, or even two 12v batteries wired in parallel. It’s actually a cheaper way to get a higher amp hour rating. Likewise, it’s a good way to extend your battery’s life between recharges.
Two 6 volt batteries wired in series creates a 12-volt system without losing out on amp-hour ratings. This is a very good solution for all kinds of RVs, including travel trailers, where extending your battery life is highly desired.
Longer Battery Life
6-volt batteries have thicker plates as well as more space per cell, meaning a longer life span. Also, wiring in series tends to make a battery last longer.
6-volt deep cycle batteries for RVs are recommended because the thicker plates can be discharged and recharged many, many times, and are manufactured to last longer than a 12v battery.
Upgrading to 6-volt Deep Cycle Batteries
RV owners often will upgrade their batteries from two 12v to two 6 volt batteries. Wiring them in Series will create 12 volts, which is required to run your RV.
Advantages of 6-volt batteries
- Greater Amp-hour capacity
- Better capacity for discharging and recharging
- Longer battery life with proper maintenance
- Lighter in weight
- They cost more to buy initially
- 6v batteries are often taller and may need a different battery box
- Are not as readily available at retail stores
When your 12v batteries finally need to be replaced, it’s recommended that you upgrade your batteries to two 6v deep cycle batteries. The advantages of 6v batteries far outweigh any negatives. However, you may need to replace or reconfigure your battery box to make them fit.