MS2012

Can I use a Magnum MS2012 with a Battle Born LiFePO4 battery bank?

  |   LiFePO4 Charging   |   18 Comments

The MS2012 inverter charger by Magnum Energy is a “pure” sine wave inverter making it compatible with all A/C devices. These units were built to meet the most demanding environments whether it be in a mobile application, off grid, or a power back up installation, the Magnum inverter charger can handle the job. This unit is arguably the most popular inverter charger used in RV’s, so we decided to test it out with our Battle Born LiFePO4 batteries.

 

The Magnum MS2012 inverter charger will constantly monitor your battery banks voltage to ensure you are never without power. When first connected to a battery bank the unit will go straight into a bulk charge which will rapidly bring the banks voltage up to 14.4V. If the user is using the optional Magnum remote, they will be able to adjust to the desired voltage. Once the programmed voltage is reached the charging will switch to an absorption stage to finish the charging cycle. The great thing about this charger is the remote because it gives you complete control over the unit. As a user you are able to set float voltage, low voltage cut offs, and many more parameters to ensure your battery is maintained in the best way possible.

 

The inverter side of the Magnum 2012 is as straight forward as it gets: connect you’re A/C line to the main distribution panel of the unit and just like that you are ready to go! With this being a pure sine inverter you have nothing to worry about when it comes to your electrical devices.
Here at Battle Born Batteries we ran the unit numerous ways to really understand how it was going to work with our batteries. Our intial test was just to simply turn the inverter on and see how low it would drain the batteries in its default settings. In this test we saw the voltage drop to 9.1 before our BMS kicked off and interrupted the circuit. When we went to use the Charger side of this unit we learned that if your battery bank falls below 5v, the unit will detect a fault and not charge because a battery is not detected. To fix this issue, we recommend setting the low voltage cut off on the inverter to 11.5 volts or higher to ensure the inverter cuts off before the BMS activates in the battery.

 

If by chance your battery bank cuts off at low voltage and the inverter charger won’t recharge, there are 2 simple fixes.

 

-1.If you are in a motorized RV or are connected inline with an alternator, just start the engine and the BMS will click back on automatically.

 

-2.If you are not in line with an alternator, you can use any 12 volt source, including a Li-ion jump start pack to “wake” the battery up so the inverter charger will start delivering current to the batteries.

 

This issue does not exist in a system when a converter is used for charging. Also keep in mind when you set the low voltage cut off of the inverter charger to 11.5 volts (which is the point when your LiFePO4 batteries are empty) you will prevent this issue.
In our test we saw the charger bring our batteries voltage up to 14.56V delivering roughly 38A of current. Once it reached this point it dropped into a float mode slowly delivering less and less current.

 

Overall this inverter charger will work great with our batteries! However we do suggest the remote is purchased with the unit so the charging rates and battery status can be easily monitored and adjusted. Unfortunately without the remote there is no other way to adjust the charging values or low voltage cut off which is why we highly recommend this add on.

 

Suggested adjustments

Bulk charge: 14.4v

Float: >13.6v

Low voltage cut off: 11.5v

18 Comments
  • Ron Feinberg | May 10, 2018 at 2:59 pm

    I have the auto generator start module (AGS) for my Magnum MS-2812.
    What do you recommend the voltage setting be programmed to start the generator?

    Thanks,
    Ron

    • Dianne F | May 29, 2018 at 9:35 am

      Ron,
      Great question. We recommend that you start the generator between 11.5 and 11.8 volts. At this point you have drawn most of the power from the battery and you will not run into issues of your battery getting low enough for the BMS to shutdown. Please email us anytime [email protected] with more questions.

  • Duane Clause | Sep 10, 2018 at 8:18 am

    On the generator start question, can the battery bank be used to start the generator?
    If so, is there a practical low voltage cut off that can be used and still allow the generator to start?

    • Dianne F | Sep 12, 2018 at 8:58 am

      Duane,
      Great question. As mentioned before, we recommend that you start the generator between 11.5 and 11.8 volts. At this point you have drawn most of the power from the battery and you will not run into issues of your battery getting low enough for the Battery Management System to shutdown. Please email us anytime [email protected] or call us at 855-292-2831 with more questions.

  • Joe Hogan | Sep 12, 2018 at 6:37 am

    Thank you for a great product. As I prepare my 2018 Canyon Star with the MS2012 inverter for the Battle Born batteries by adding the ME-RC controller, is there anything else that is required before I install 4 of the 100 amp GC2 size batteries? Will the engine alternator be adequate for charging these batteries when on the road? The coach came with six 225 amp 6v batteries but two are in the engine compartment. I’ll forgo replacing the two in the engine compartment and just replace the four in the house battery tray. 400 amps should be adequate.

    • Dianne F | Sep 12, 2018 at 8:38 am

      Hi Joe,
      This all seems good but it would also be a good idea to add a Battery Isolation Manager (BIM) to your setup so the batteries aren’t pulling all the power from the alternator. This device regulates that by connecting for 15 minutes, and disconnecting for 20 minutes. It then repeats this cycle until the coach battery is charged. I will include a link to the BIM we have made for Lithium: https://battlebornbatteries.com/shop/lifepo4-battery-isolation-manager/

      If you have any other questions please let us know through here or give us a call: 855-292-2831.
      Thank you!

  • Duane Clause | Oct 8, 2018 at 6:31 am

    Hello,
    Back top my generator start question, not a low voltage start.

    The batteries are not recommend for automotive engine starting purposes. What about RV generators?

    Can I use a 5 x 100ah battery bank ( to start my RV generator (Onan 8KW QD) or do I need to supply a separate starting battery for the gen?

  • Tayler Bingham | Nov 27, 2018 at 5:24 am

    While the 2012 efficiently chargers BB batteries when connected to shore power or when the generator is running my understanding is when driving the batteries are charged by the engine alternator. Is the charging profile of the alternator appropriate today BB batteries?

    • Dianne F | Nov 28, 2018 at 1:05 pm

      Hello Tayler,

      You can set up the batteries to charge via the engine’s alternator, but you will need to consider some other components it doesn’t just automatically happen. What components we suggest would be based off of how many batteries you have. If you were to be charging 3 or more batteries off the alternator, they could pull too much power and cause the alternator to overheat. In that case we would recommend a battery isolation manager. We have one on our website that is specifically made for lithium batteries, it works on a duty cycle and will charge your lithium battery bank for 15 minutes then take 20 minutes off of charging. It is called the Li-Bim and is on our website under accessories if you would like to check it out.

      When charging one or 2 batteries off of the alternator you want to be careful with how many amps your alternator is charging the battery with. For one battery you wouldn’t want anything over 50 amps for 2 batteries you wouldn’t want anything over 100amps, in this case we would recommend a battery to battery charger that limits the amps when charging your batteries. It also has a lithium setting so it will charge your batteries with the correct charging profile. We recommend the Sterling battery to battery chargers, those are on our website under battery chargers.

      If you have any further questions, it might be easier to give us a call you can reach us at 855-292-2831.

      Thank you!

      Jodi

  • Todd A | Dec 17, 2018 at 7:49 pm

    Hello Battle Born – I have 2 – 12v 100AH batteries in my RV which I purchased 1 1/2 years ago from you, they have been and continue to work great! I am charging with a Magnum MS2012 with the remote and have absorb set to 14.4V, float at 13.6V and equalize at 14.4V. I have not seen any discussion on the Absorb time setting for these chargers, can you please tell me the correct setting for this? Thank You

    • Dianne F | Dec 18, 2018 at 4:51 pm

      Hello Todd,

      For absorption time you will want to set one half hour per battery. For example, if you had two batteries you would set your absorption time for one hour.

      Jodi

  • Lance Wende | Dec 19, 2018 at 6:57 am

    I have 6- 100ah BBs. Do I need to worry about charging with the TV alternator if I’m full-time and running solar while driving? What about cloudy days?

    • Dianne F | Jan 3, 2019 at 8:23 am

      Hi Lance,

      Thanks for reaching out to us, we appreciate it.
      Your alternator has the ability to charge the batteries at the right voltage. Weather or not you get a good charge is dependent on the wiring back to the lithium bank and possibly the existing isolator. Typically the mix of charging with alternator and solar at the same time is not a problem. The amperage from either source is ramped back when the battery gets close to full. On cloudy days you will get less amperage coming into the battery bank and alternator charging may become a better means of bringing the lithium batteries up to a full charge.

      I hope this helps but please dont hesitate to get in touch with us by phone or email if we can help any further.

      Thank you

  • John Bell | Jan 3, 2019 at 8:23 am

    Looking at programming my Magnum 2012 charger with ME-RC remote for my new 2×100 AH battle born batteries, I see there is a constant charge/ constant voltage (CC /CV) setting available. This mode allows for setting 1. Maxamps 2.Charge volts 3.End charge (either time or amps) , essentially turning off charger 4. Recharge (voltage low limit that will trigger charger to begin a new charge. Would there be an advantage to use these settings vs your recommended custom Absorb, Float and Equalize settings?

    • Dianne F | Jan 7, 2019 at 1:55 pm

      Hello John,

      Both of the settings(custom or CC/CV) will get you the desired effect. For using the CC/CV settings: 1. Max amps will be the maximum you want the charger to supply(refer to the .5c charge rate), for your 200 AH bank it will be 100 amps. 2. Charged Volts should be 14.4 v. 3. End Charge, set this to 20 minutes per battery(40 minutes for your bank). 4. Recharge, you can set this to 13.4 volts and this will be when the bank reaches 90% SOC. If you would like the Recharge set lower you could go with 70% SOC with the voltage at 13.2v. With these settings you will not need to address the Float or equalize as they are disabled.

      Thank you,

  • John Bell | Jan 10, 2019 at 12:35 pm

    Thanks Dianne, Sorry, I forgot to ask; in the cc/cv setting ; what would you recommend for Max Time. Thanks

  • Brian | Jan 13, 2019 at 1:27 pm

    I’m using the magnum 1200 with the older remote and can’t set up a custom charge profile. Some folks are saying that I can use the Equalization for a couple of hours to get the batteries up to full charge. I have 2 100amp Battleborn LiFe04 batteries. Can I use the equalization mode to bring the batteries up to full charge and if so, for how long?

    • Dianne F | Jan 17, 2019 at 12:50 pm

      Hello Brian,

      I haven’t seen this work around used for the 1000 watt series Magnums so I couldn’t tell you if it works properly. It would make sense that if the equalization is set to 14.4V then the batteries will charge. I spoke with Magnum recently and they confirmed that the MM series of 1000 watt inverters are not compatible with lithium charging as they don’t have the “brain power” in their boards to customize this, even when you have the remote. Just remember our parameters whenever you are attempting to charge these batteries:
      Bulk/absorb 14.2V – 14.6V
      float 13.6V or lower
      No equalization(or set it to 14.4v), no temperature compensation and absorption time is 20 minutes per battery(if its an option).

      Thank you,

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