How Long Will a 200ah Battery Last? (Explained)


How Long Will a 12v 200ah Battery Last

Have you ever wondered how long will a 200ah battery last? Look no more. We´ve got you covered.

Alright. So you are out there on the road. Your RV is equipped with a 200ah battery.

So, how long will a 200ah battery last? On average a 200ah battery will last between 2-hours and 8-hours depending on how many amps your appliances are drawing. If you are drawing 25-amps, then expect it to last 8-hours. In many cases, an RV shouldn’t really be drawing more than 8-10-amps an hour. This means that, at a push, you may be able to get almost a day on a single charge.

We are going to run you through absolutely everything that you need to know. Hopefully, by the end of this page, you will be better versed in how long you can expect that battery to last.

Although, do bear in mind that you will never be able to know 100% for sure. Let us explain.

What is AH?

Let’s start with the simpler questions and work our way up from there. What does AH actually mean?

What is AH, well, AH stands for ‘ampere-hour’. The number is, essentially, a combination of the capacity of the battery and the amount of power that it is able to offer over the course of an hour.

So, when we say that a battery is 200ah. We mean that it is 200-amps (i.e. the amount of stored power in the battery) and it can provide these 200-amps over the course of an hour.

If this is confusing, don’t worry. You will unravel what this means throughout the rest of this article.

Read also: What Size Solar Panel To Charge 100ah Battery? (Explained)

Can You Predict How Long the Battery Will Last Accurately?

Before we dive into talking about how long you can expect your 200ah battery to last, we do want to clear one thing up. This is the fact that you cannot 100% predict with certainty how long that battery is going to last.

what can i run off a 200ah battery

You can only guess. Somewhat irritatingly, that guess is always going to be a guess. There is no way to monitor your battery usage and say “yes, this is how long it will last next time”, because things can change. There are a few different reasons for this.

Batteries lose capacity over time

As batteries get older, they have an increasingly difficult time trying to ‘store’ power. This happens to all batteries, but it is a huge problem with NiCAD batteries and older battery technology. 

This means that while your 200ah battery may have a 200ah capacity now, in a few years, if you don’t care for your batteries, the capacity could end up being halved.

The way in which your batteries need to be cared for will be dependent on the battery technology that you have. This means that we aren’t going to give you a massive ‘care guide’ for batteries here. Instead, carry out a bit of research into the type of battery that you own.

For example, if you have NiCAD batteries, then you will be expected to fully discharge the battery before you recharge it.

If you have Lithium-Ion batteries, then you should never be fully draining the batteries if you wish them to operate at peak performance for as long as possible.

Read also: 5 Effective Ways to Charge a Dead Travel Trailer Battery

The operating temperature can impact batteries

Batteries that are too hot or too cold tend to have a lower operating capacity. So, you will probably want to pay attention to the places where you have your battery stored.

For example, a battery that is outside and supplying power will likely have a lower AH than a battery that is inside, nice, and toasty with you (but not too toasty!)

The quicker the battery drains power, the lower the AH

This is where things get a little bit confusing, and even science doesn’t have all the answers for us here.

The theory is that the quicker a battery drains power, the lower the AH is. For example, in the case of a 200ah battery, you would expect it to be able to provide you with 200amps of power over the course of an hour.

However, if you worked that battery to the absolute maximum, i.e. you were trying to pull 200-amps over the course of an hour all at once, then the battery may not even last the full hour.

However, if you pulled 50-amps in an hour, then you may expect the battery to run the full 4-hours without any issues.

Nobody seems to know why this is the case. Things get even more confusing when this little quirk can vary from battery to battery, and even from charge to charge.

To be honest, though. This is something that is probably not going to be that much of a problem for the vast majority of people. Unless you are constantly pushing your battery to the absolute brink, you should be able to get a reasonable estimate for how long it is going to last you.

Read also: Can You Jump Start A Generator Battery?

How Long Will a 200ah Battery Last?

So, with all of that in mind, we can finally answer the question; how long will a 200ah battery last? Well, let’s break it down!

  • 200-amps
  • One hour

This means that if you are draining 200-amps of battery from the battery, then you can expect it to last around 1-hour (although, it will be slightly less if you are drawing the full 200-amps)

Since this battery capacity is 200-amps, you can break it down even more. For example:

  • If you are drawing 100-amps, then expect it to last 2-hours
  • If you are drawing 50-amps, then expect it to last 4-hours
  • If you are drawing 25-amps, then expect it to last 8-hours

Obviously, how long the battery lasts is going to be hugely dependent on what you are trying to run from the battery. This means that you are going to need to dive into the appliances that you have in your RV and work out how much power they draw.

In many cases, an RV shouldn’t really be drawing more than 8-10-amps an hour. This means that, at a push, you may be able to get almost a day on a single charge.

This is assuming that, at some point, you will only have the most essential appliances running in your RV i.e. the ones that can never be turned off.

This means your fridge. If you are constantly running a TV, laptop, etc. then you can expect the battery to last a whole lot less than this. In fact, you may have it run for under half a day.

Part of being in an RV is knowing how to manage your power consumption.

Amperage Draw Chart (Appliances)

What can I run off a 200ah battery? This will depend on the amperage of your appliances. On average you shouldn’t expect to draw more than 8-10-amps an hour. In the following table you can see how much amperage the most common devices consume during operation:

EquipmentAmperage DrawHow long will the 200ah battery last? (Hours)
Toaster8-10 Amps20
Coffee Maker5-8 Amps22
Television HD, Digital1.5-4 Amps40
Refrigerator5-8 Amps22
Space Heater (1600 watts)7-13 Amps15
Water Heater (6-gallon, heating)8-13 Amps14
Satellite Receiver/Game Console0.5-0.8 Amps170
Vacuum (Hand-Held)2-6 Amps40
Hair Dryer (High)7-13 Amps15
Frying Pan (Cooking – High)7-12 Amps17
RV Converter (charging)1-8 Amps25
RV Air Conditioner (Running)13-16 Amps12
Furnace Fan7-9 Amps16
Microwave Oven (Standard)7-13 Amps15
Washer/Dryer14-16 Amps12
Appliance amperage draw chart

Power Consumption For Electrical Appliances

What can I run off a 200ah battery

Here in the chart below you can see the average power consumption for electrical appliances:

RV and Camping AppliancesRates Watts (running)
RV Roof-Top AC (15,000 BTU)2,000 W
RV Roof-Top AC (13,500 BTU)1,500 W
RV Roof-Top AC (11,000 BTU)1,010 W
Dehumidifier785 W
Vacuum1,100 W
Electric Water Heater (6 Gal.)1,440 W
Clothes Washer1,150 W
Fan200 W
Electric Blanket80 W
Space Heater1,800 W
Coffee Maker800 W
Electric Grill1,650 W
Toaster850 – 1,250 W
Dorm Size Refrigerator350 W
12″ B&W TV30 W
27″ Color TV500 W
Laptop200 W
Satellite Dish & Receiver30 W
Battery Charger (Cell Phone)25 W
Inflator Pump50 W
Power consumption chart for electrical appliances

How Do You Discover How Much Power the RV Requires?

If you are lucky, every single appliance will have the amperage they draw written on it somewhere. If it doesn’t, then you should easily be able to find the information online. 

👉 Some of the items in your RV will probably draw far less power than you would assume. For example, an average RV fridge will likely not draw more than 2 to 4 amps per hour, and that is the item that is likely going to be drawing the most continual power from your RV’s battery.

Most items are probably going to be under 1-amp per hour.

👉 As you walk around your RV, then you will notice that there are some items that will draw a lot of power. For example, a blender is going to draw a huge amount of amps per hour. However, you have to remember that these appliances are designed to be used for a couple of minutes at a time.

As a result, they are not really going to be a huge power draw on your battery. After all, none of us are going to be running a blender continually for an hour, neither will we be running a microwave, another huge power hog, continually.

👉 We suggest that you walk around your RV and make a note of the appliances that will likely be turned on most of the time. For example, your fridge, air conditioner, and maybe a water heater.

This should give you a rough number of amps that you are going to be burning through an hour.

👉 You should then pay attention to the items that you may be using every so often. For example, a phone charger may need to be used once or twice per day.

A TV may be on for a few hours a day, and any cooking equipment may be used for an hour or two. Again, make a note of the number of amps that each of these items requires from the battery.

Once you have gone through and added everything up, we wouldn’t be surprised if you worked out that your 200ah battery lasts for at least a day.

If you don’t have a fridge, then you may find that the battery lasts for a lot longer than this. 

Read also: Pop Up Camper Battery: Type of Battery, Maintenance, and Setup

Should You Buy More Batteries?

In most cases, if you have a 200ah battery, you won’t need to purchase more batteries. As long as you have some way to keep that battery charged properly, then you should be able to get a whole day out of it.

However, if you have no continual power source e.g. you are planning on charging everything via solar power which can be somewhat sporadic at the best  Some people will have a backup battery.

That way the batteries will always be able to provide you with the amount of power that you need.

However, we really do not suggest that you buy more batteries unless you really need to buy them. This is because 200ah batteries can be expensive, particularly when it comes to newer technology.

The only time that you should really be buying multiple batteries is if you really cannot deal with being without power for long stretches of time.

At the most, the only appliance in your RV that will need to have a continual source of power will be your fridge.

We can assure you that no matter how fast you can charge that battery, there should always be enough power left over to ensure that your fridge is constantly running. 

How Long Will Two Lithium RV Batteries Last? Total RV Run Time with 2 100 Amp Hour Lithium Batteries >> Check out the video below:

Conclusion 

As we said, there is no real way to give you a 100% accurate answer for how long your 200ah battery will last. It will vary from charge to charge.

However, for the average RV, you can expect a 200ah battery to last at least a day.

If you want a slightly more accurate answer (but not 100% accurate), then it would be wise to go through your RV and add up the amperage that each of the appliances draws.

You will probably be surprised to know just how little power your RV is actually drawing. Most won’t go anywhere over the 7-amp mark, and that is even when you are running a heavy load.

References

http://www.portablesolarexpert.com/how-long-will-a-24v-200ah-battery-last

Mike Gilmour

Hi, I'm Mike, co-founder, and editor of RV and Playa. My passion is traveling (with my RV) and enjoying the day at the beach (Playa)! Well, I originally created this blog as a way to share what I've learned by experimenting with the RV lifestyle, and I want to help others develop in life through new skills and opportunities.

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