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How to setup my dual battery system

Discussion in ''How To' & 'Handy Hints'' started by greengiraffes, Sep 24, 2007.

  1. greengiraffes

    greengiraffes New Member

    Messages:
    81
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC
    Monty is longing for some camping and since summer is almost upon us, we decided its time our new addition to the family should get an auxiliary battery setup. I am tossing the idea around about whether I can do it myself or if I should go to an auto electrician. I'm usually game to try things myself but anything with the electrical system is a bit daunting.

    Would anyone be keen to help me hook up the auxiliary system or know of a good auto electrician in the inner melbourne area? We are looking to add an AGM deep cycle battery, battery isolator, and then hooking the stereo, fridge, and inner compartment lighting to the 2nd battery(?).

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Greg
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2007
  2. Organichead

    Organichead New Member

    Messages:
    232
    Location:
    Adelaide Hills, SA
    Hi Greg, in the same position as you. have had a quote for battery, auto switch over and connection for about $550 including $350 for the battery alone, but I really fancy DIY. Just need plans and simple English but as we know, no two kombis are the same...Good luck......org........
     
  3. syncro

    syncro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    8,915
    Location:
    Southern Highlands
  4. wheeliemeister

    wheeliemeister New Member

    Messages:
    1
  5. greengiraffes

    greengiraffes New Member

    Messages:
    81
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC
    Thanks for the diagram Syncro. Maybe I'm overthinking this (my wife says it wouldn't be the first time and I'm sure not the last) but I'll ask all of the questions that seem to be confusing me.:???:

    With the accesories only option in the diagram, is it suggesting two of the SC40 parts (if it isn't is it a worthwhile option?) or is it that the 2nd and main battery are completely seperate? If completely seperate, how does the 2nd battery recharge? Alternator, home charger??

    If we do the standard installation how does the auxilliary battery not run too low? I know thats what a deep cycle battery is good at but several sites have mentioned that it will still shorten the battery life if you continually are running it too low.

    Also, one site mentioned you can significantly shorten your main battery life and potentially even cause an engine fire with the strain on the main battery when you start your engine and the 2nd (more drained battery) and the main reconnect.

    I know its a lot of questions but Monty and I have been trying to grasp what needs to happen. Each site seems to say something a little different and its hard to tell if there are just multiple sollutions or if they are just trying to more successfully sell their product.

    Thanks again to everyone who has helped so far. You've been great! :-D

    Greg
     
  6. syncro

    syncro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    8,915
    Location:
    Southern Highlands
    Give Tim a call at Traxide 07 5569 2557

    Make sure that you get a Kombi Club Forum discount.

    The 30A circuit breaker ensures that the auxillary battery does not start the car under any circumstances.
    This is an automatic fit and forget system.
     
  7. greengiraffes

    greengiraffes New Member

    Messages:
    81
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC
    Obviosly overthinking. Thanks for that Syncro, I'll give Tim a call.
     
  8. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,402
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    The diagram from Synchro is a good one. The only thing I would add if the run of the joining lead is long is some sort of fuse close to the battery depending on where the isolator is situated. If the run is long and the lead passes through any bulkheads etc I would think of putting say a 100 amp fuse at each end of the run to protect the vehicle if the cable should wear through. A blown fuse is preferred to a burnt battery and fire. See the info at

    http://www.fridge-and-solar.net/dual_bat.htm
     
  9. syncro

    syncro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    8,915
    Location:
    Southern Highlands
    A 100A fuse would never blow as it is too large. I would just buy an extra circuit breaker and put one at either end if it is a long run. If the battery is in the usual place in the engine compartment I wouldn't bother.
     
  10. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    Hi Syncro
    I had a 70 amp circuit breaker in my 100 series diesel landcruiser in the engine bay..... They are known for getting "warm" under the hood...the point being the circuit breaker use to "blow" under a small current secondary to the heat of the engine.....So mount your circuit breaker close to the battery but away from the engine.
     
  11. Rabilliard

    Rabilliard New Member

    Messages:
    93
    Location:
    Aspley, Brisbane
  12. ttmck

    ttmck Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    2,733
    Location:
    Hallett Cove STH AUS
    said this before , but i have the traxide system with a 150 amp hour agm battery , all my aux runs come off the agm battery which are block mounted fused . the system has never let me down at all its simple fitment and tim at traxide will help you , with all your questions . i recomend this system for ease of fitment and once fitted you just forget about it !
     
  13. drivesafe

    drivesafe Member

    Messages:
    103
    Hi folks, I make the Traxide Dual Battery Controllers and was wondering if I could answer some of your questions for you to help you understand how these and other DBS work and which ones would best suit your needs.

    Cheers.
     
  14. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    Drivesafe I have seen other dual battery controllers that can first charge your starting battery and then your aux battery after it reaches a full charge does the sc-80 do that?
     
  15. drivesafe

    drivesafe Member

    Messages:
    103
    Hi Doc, just about all Dual Battery Controllers work by monitoring the vehicle’s voltage, once the motor is running, the alternator is then producing current and supplying the main ( cranking ) battery and as the revs increase to idle speed in most cases, the amount of current being produced by the alternator is usually much higher than the is needed but the main battery so the vehicle voltage also rises and once above a pre-set level, the isolator cuts in and the auxiliary battery is then charged at the same time.

    As you can see, the isolator doesn't actually wait for the main battery to become fully charged before charging the auxiliary battery and as most alternators can easily charge two or three batteries at the same time, there is no real reason to wait for the main battery to become fully charged.

    Now there are also a small number of high end DBS that actually charge the main battery to full charge then disconnect it from the alternator and connect the auxiliary battery to the alternator and then fully charges it.

    Personally, I find no valid reason for separating batteries to charge them because, as posted above, an alternator is quite capable of charging a number of batteries at the same time.

    Cheers.
     
  16. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    Thanks Drivesafe good answer, the other question I have is that Kombi's don't have an accessory circuit does that mean with the twin battery set up we leave only the alternator starter motor and coil on the starter battery and move everything else onto the aux battery? And supplementary question I also notice a lot of Kombi's seem to have a major terminal acting like a bus bar coming off the positive terminal of the coil do these need to be relocated to the aux battery......including the electronic ignition???
     
  17. drivesafe

    drivesafe Member

    Messages:
    103
    Hi again Doc, a simple rule of thumb, anything that needs power while the motor is running, like headlights, driving lights, radio and the electronic ignition, should be connected to the main battery.

    Anything that needs power with the motor off, like a fridge or camping lights and so on should be connected to the auxiliary battery. The isolator will protect against your main battery being flattened while using these accessories.

    Either way, the best way to set up connection for different circuits, whether it is off the main battery or the auxiliary battery, is to connect a fuse block to the required battery and then run your circuits from the fuse block.

    This keeps all the wiring in order and where you know to find it if you need to make any alterations or additions.

    Cheers.
     
  18. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,402
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    Drivesafe is correct and it is exactly what I have done in the '82 camper. I have moved all of the things I need when stationary to a fuse box connected to the second battery. The redarc that I use appears to work in a similar way to the unit described by drivesafe. They work well charging both batteries at the same time. No issues in about three years.
     
  19. drivesafe

    drivesafe Member

    Messages:
    103
    When you are deciding on a Dual Battery System you need to know as much about how you plan to use the system as much as you need to know how the different DBS work.

    There are vast differences in how DBSs work and pros and cons for the many types.

    Do your home work before you buy and you can save a bundle.

    Cheers.
     
  20. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,402
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    Excellent advice.
     

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