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Why I’m Upgrading My Overland Battery To Li Time LiFePO4

It was seven years ago that I built my first overland vehicle with an electrical system. It was designed to be a mobile base camp for my wife and I as we explored Mexico and Central America for two years. In that vehicle we used AGM (absorbed glass mat) batteries to meet our electrical storage needs. These batteries provide sealed, maintenance free power storage and they met our needs acceptably well.

overland vehicle with solar
Overlanding with DIY Solar

What makes LiFePO4 better?

Batteries made with LiFePO4 (lithium iron phosphate) technology provide sealed, maintenance free power storage just like our old AGM batteries but with some major performance advantages. The biggest advantage for an overlander is that LiFePO4 batteries are capable of storing the same amount of useable power in a much smaller, lighter package.

As an example, we had a 150 amp hour AGM battery bank that weighed 120 pounds and occupied 1,576 cubic inches of space. Due to the nature of AGM technology, the batteries can only be discharged 50% without greatly reducing the battery’s life cycle. So, our usable power storage was 75 amp hours.

AGM battery bank on scale
Weighing Camper Battery Bank

Compare that to a 100 amp hour LiFePO4 battery that can be discharged more than 90%. You get 90 amp hours of usable power storage in a unit weighing 25 pounds and occupying 742 cubic inches.

lifepo4 camper battery

Weight and space are at an absolute premium in most overland vehicles. I think every overlander would agree that saving 95 pounds and 834 cubic inches of storage space without giving anything up sounds pretty awesome.

Why didn’t I get lithium batteries in the first place?

Well, a lot has changed in the past seven years. Lithium batteries were around back then, but the technology has improved and many more manufacturers have begun building units specifically designed to meet the needs of RVs and overlanders. As a result there are better products available at a fraction of what they cost seven years ago. Back then a 100Ah deep cycle lithium battery cost around $1,000. Now companies like Li Time are offering 100Ah batteries with the improved LiFePO4 technology for $300, which is less than I paid for my AGMs back then. The increased competition in this market has greatly benefited the consumer in recent years.

What will my new battery bank be?

My new battery is a 12V 200Ah LiFePo4 unit from Li Time (formerly Ampere Time). This battery will provide over 180Ah of usable storage, occupies 1517 cubic inches of space, and only weighs 46 pounds. Plus, it is currently being offered for only $600 on and you can get an extra 4% off with code: Matt

lifepo4 battery next to overland vehicle
My New LiFePO4 Camper Battery

This battery will fit in the same space as my old AGM battery, weighs 74 pounds less, and will provide more than double the power! That means running my refrigerator and fans all night without needing to run my truck to charge batteries in the morning. And that makes me a happy camper.

guy working on overland vehicle


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