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Permanent mounted charger wiring....

Discussion in 'Fuel System & Electrics' started by Rocky, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. Rocky

    Rocky Well-Known Member

    I want to permanently mount a ctek charger in the car so that whenever we plug in to 240V power, the batteries are charged. I would install it so that can be switched off or fed to main or aux battery.

    We currently have a redarc charge controller between the batteries, plus solar fed through a regulator to the aux battery.

    Is there any problem with setting this up or any protection that should be installed also? My main question is really whether there is any danger if accidentally the car was started while still connected and charging?

    Chris
     
  2. T1 Terry

    T1 Terry Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,765
    Location:
    Mannum South Australia
    The charger will have some sort of overload protection, either a fuse or a manual or possibly auto reset circuit breaker so no damage will be done to the charger. As the charger output is set at max battery voltage no damage to the vehicle electrics will occur either. Just don't drive off with the cord still plugged in, sounds silly but you would be surprised just how often it happens.

    T1 Terry
     
  3. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,457
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    A comment from Col Rivers book on solar power is of interest.

    "Mains battery chargers can usually be paralleled directly across solar and vehicle charging systems. Both can be used simultaneously, but as the battery voltage rises, the solar regulator may perceive the battery charger as an adequately-charged battery and shut down."

    I personally carry a Ctek smart charger not permanently mounted. The reason for this is that I can use it to charge someone elses battery. I did this on a recent camp where someone had run down their battery and we couldn't get jumper leads long enough. One of the other campers had a generator and we used that and the charger to get enough in the battery to get him on the way. We could have done this with the solar panels but it was 25A verses 4A at the time.

    I also use the smart charger to charge batteries in other vehicles that I own when required.

    Ian
     
  4. Rocky

    Rocky Well-Known Member

    Haha,
    I was thinking about this one and will all Bo ok I reckon. It will be mounted in a way that 2 screws, bolts or some sort of strap will be removed. Will becwired through a standard 240 socket/plug and use the standard output plug from the ctek with the battery clamp part in the tool box! That way I won't be abandoning the other happy campers :)

    Terry, funnily enough this is one of my main concerns, I figure that If I do drive away with the cord plugged in, only the relatively cheap power inlet would be damaged and the charger itself would be fine!

    Thanks guys,
    Chris

     
  5. Syncro27

    Syncro27 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    6,646
    Location:
    Terrigal, NSW Central Coast
    I hate to hi-jack our thread Chris, but also what would be the best solar panel system to use that is separate to the vehicle - Ie park the kombi in the shade a run a long lead out to the sunny area where the portable solar panel sits.

    This would be just to charge a 4A/hr Weaco fridge.

    What would I need and where is the best place to get it from?

    Thanks,
     
  6. gabba69

    gabba69 Member

    Messages:
    167
    Location:
    Woolloongabba, Brisbane
    I've permanently mounted a ctek in my engine bay and wired via a short extension to my external plug and haven't looked back. Every time I go away I plug the car in a few days earlier to fully charge the batteries and flick the fridge on the day before and then leave with fully charged batteries.

    Syncro I've just recently bought a 120w folding solar panel kit (complete with regulator and leads) on ebay and I'm stoked. Works a treat. I'm running a 65L Waeco front opening fridge off a 120a/hr battery and so far it seems to be ample to keep my battery above 50%.
     
  7. Syncro27

    Syncro27 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    6,646
    Location:
    Terrigal, NSW Central Coast

    Thanks John.

    Evil bay seems like the place to go for solar bits.
     
  8. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,457
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    I too use 120W folding panels that came from Kylkine Campers. There link is:

    http://www.kampers.com.au/common.php?c=2&t=1&pt=main

    One thing I did do is replace the thinner leads that were standard with much heavier and twice as long leads. I also added an Anderson plug at the back of the panels so that I can roll the lead up separately as it was too heavy to handle when attached permanently. Even the standard leads were a bit of a nuisance when putting the panels in their cover. With this set up I can certainly park in the shade and put the panels in the sun. The lead is 20 meters instead of the 10 meters that came with the panels. The cable I used is the same that we use to run charging to a battery in a van through an Anderson plug. You can get it from most caravan suppliers. It was about twice as thick as the original.

    Ian
     
  9. T1 Terry

    T1 Terry Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,765
    Location:
    Mannum South Australia
    One tip is to mount the regulator at the batteries not the panels, it's to do with wiring resistance and the regulator getting the wrong voltage reading and shutting down too early.

    T1 Terry
     

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