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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:06 am    Post subject: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

So I'm finalizing my aux battery setup and I really want to keep it fairly simple. Will probably add on to it as needed down the road. I am just using an isolator and not going to install the switch to jump start with the aux battery. I have small jump box in case I get stranded. I plan to tap/unhook the #3 (radio, interior lights, etc) from main fuse panel and tie those devices to the aux fuse panel. Still have to decide on my solar panel setup.

I tend to not use a ton of power when camping and I only fo for a couple days at a time so I am not looking to go overkill just enough to be off grid for a couple days at most. Any suggestions (wire sizes, fuses) to my setup or concerns Im all ears. Attached below are the items I am using.

Note: Ground Block will be ground to chassis! and inverter will most likely be 2-4awg wire.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Charger
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00CBTRMZ4/?coliid=I3803..._lig_dp_it

Charging Relay
https://www.amazon.com/Blue-Sea-Systems-Automatc-C...amp;sr=8-2

Aux Battery

Renogy Deep Cycle AGM Battery 12 Volt 100Ah for RV, Solar Marine and Off-grid Applications https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075RFXHYK/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_nV5iEbBWWR1JC

Fuse Panel
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001P6FTHC/?coliid=I3039..._lig_dp_it

Battery
https://www.amazon.com/Renogy-Battery-Marine-Off-g...amp;sr=8-2

Ground Block
https://www.amazon.com/Blue-Sea-Systems-Common-10-...amp;sr=8-1

Circuit Breakers
https://www.amazon.com/STETION-Resettable-Circuit-...amp;sr=8-4

Jump Start
https://www.amazon.com/Antigravity-Batteries-AG-XP...2341248951

Inverter
https://www.amazon.com/Renogy-1000W-120VAC-Inverte...amp;sr=8-5
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Last edited by casey79westfalia on Sat Jan 18, 2020 5:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
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zimflux
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:28 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Only since it wasn't mentioned.... Your current alternator, if it doesn't have an adjustable regulator, won't keep up with the required charging voltage for the AGM type battery. I assume from time to time you'll use the charger to top it off.

Use 4 gauge wire. Keep your runs as short as possible.

Curious what you're going to use the inverter for? Pretty much everything can be 12-volt nowadays.

Otherwise looks like a proper basic economical setup. 👍
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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:31 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Quote:
PostPosted: Today 8:28 am Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup
Only since it wasn't mentioned.... Your current alternator, if it doesn't have an adjustable regulator, won't keep up with the required charging voltage for the AGM type battery. I assume from time to time you'll use the charger to top it off.

Use 4 gauge wire. Keep your runs as short as possible.

Curious what you're going to use the inverter for? Pretty much everything can be 12-volt nowadays.

Otherwise looks like a proper basic economical setup. 👍


thanks! I am running a 1.8t conversion and I do have the upgraded 120 amp alternator. It does look like it has a voltage regulator built in from what I have read.

Inverter may not be installed initially. I agree I am going to see if it poses an issue down the rd and add it if needed.
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Timwhy
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 10:27 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

I think I would add an On/Off switch for the ACR, as it is bidirectional. There may be times that you don't want to be charging both battery bank at the same time.

1000 watt inverter seems big, why all the wattage?
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 11:31 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

This one always bothered me.

What happens if the genius charger and solar are both sending voltage to the AGM? Which device manages the AGM charging profile?

Here is a typical charge profile. I canít figure how two independent devices can manage a single battery using a profile like this.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 11:58 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

I never really thought of that RMCD.

In my case, my MPPT Victron should detect float state and cut off most of power to battery.

Also some of your wire looks too big - however it ultimately depends on length of cable. I use this calculator often

https://www.wirebarn.com/Wire-Calculator-_ep_41.html

Any 'source' of power should have a fuse inline to battery. Shore charger/solar charger.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 1:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Timwhy wrote:
I think I would add an On/Off switch for the ACR, as it is bidirectional. There may be times that you don't want to be charging both battery bank at the same time.

1000 watt inverter seems big, why all the wattage?


Good point. The Blue Seas 7622 includes an on/off/auto switch function. But it's $100 more so a simple switch could at least handle the off function. The forced on function is nice to combine batteries regardless of voltage.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 1:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

I'm thinking of something similar. Question...
Why does the fuse panel need to be grounded? doesn't it just distribute the 12 v to the accessories?
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 1:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

jocoman wrote:
I'm thinking of something similar. Question...
Why does the fuse panel need to be grounded? doesn't it just distribute the 12 v to the accessories?


It depends on the style of fuse panel. Some offer ground posts for the circuits, others don't. The way this is drawn it looks like the ground to the fuse panel is superfluous.

Alternatively, the OP could ground the fuse panel and run circuit grounds there too instead of the bus (no, I don't mean school bus, zeitgeist).
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 2:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

jocoman wrote:
Question...
Why does the fuse panel need to be grounded? doesn't it just distribute the 12 v to the accessories?


For use in marine applications. As a rule, boats have negative polarity wiring to match the positive. They are not grounded through a metal frame as terrestrial vehicles are.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 3:31 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Hi

This caught my attention:

casey79westfalia wrote:

I tend to not use a ton of power when camping and I only fo for a couple days at a time so I am not looking to go overkill just enough to be off grid for a couple days at most.


You shouldn't need any solar then. Unless there's some heavy amperage equipment you need to run? The usual stuff doesn't require much (LEDs, music, phone charging...).

My advice would be to install your aux battery setup without solar first, see how it works for you (what's your aux battery voltage after 2 days, etc). Then you can decide if you need solar panels.
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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 3:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Quote:
Hi

This caught my attention:

casey79westfalia wrote:

I tend to not use a ton of power when camping and I only fo for a couple days at a time so I am not looking to go overkill just enough to be off grid for a couple days at most.


You shouldn't need any solar then. Unless there's some heavy amperage equipment you need to run? The usual stuff doesn't require much (LEDs, music, phone charging...).

My advice would be to install your aux battery setup without solar first, see how it works for you (what's your aux battery voltage after 2 days, etc). Then you can decide if you need solar panels.


This is the plan! Then add solar and inverter and other items as I go! Thanks
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 5:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

X2 on donít need solar to be a weekender. Three years in, a (I know) gowesty kit continues to work great for 3 nights charging devices, using interior lights, and running a 12v fan for 8-10 hours a day.

That said, Iím adding solar now because Christmas and my family needed suggestions
So I like the staggered approach. Of course, youíve already proven your patience in your build thread whixh, btw, is awesome.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 6:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

A good electrical plan starts with an enumeration of all loads , current and time needed

Most weekender camping can be electrically served by the starter battery and single external jump pack as back up.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 6:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Thanks Guys. So here's the thing. I'm a weekend warrior right now! I do plan on doing a cross country trip in the coming year or so with my family. Currently I will be running the following on the aux.

Truckfridge T49
5kw Diesel heater (still researching what model to buy)
Interior Led Lights
Sink pump
Radio
USB ports for charging
Some 12v fans for hot days

That's really it for now!

If needs change I can always upgrade the 100ah battery and jump to a 200ah and add the solar.
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http://www.baycountrymotors.com

My 87 Syncro Westfalia 1.8t Restoration

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=418933

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 8:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

[quote="jimf909"]
jocoman wrote:


Alternatively, the OP could ground the fuse panel and run circuit grounds there too instead of the bus (no, I don't mean school bus, zeitgeist).

I have the same BlueSeas fuse block and my grounds are run to it, as you stated one could do above.

If I had a lot of feeds to the back of the van, I suppose running grounds to a
common grounding point back there would save wire and effort.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 8:26 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Depending on the size of the aux. battery the fridge and heater could push you into solar or run-the-motor for a while territory, e.g. if the aux batt is less than 100 ah and you run the heater all night or open the fridge and you head out for a three-day wknd, etc.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2020 7:45 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Just thinking... but i read that agm batteries should not exceed a 40 amp charge.
Maybe the fuse on the agm battery should be 40 amps to prevent to much current presented to the AGM?
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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2020 9:40 am    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

Quote:
Just thinking... but i read that agm batteries should not exceed a 40 amp charge.
Maybe the fuse on the agm battery should be 40 amps to prevent to much current presented to the AGM?


Good point, I checked the specs on my battery and it does say max charge is 40a.
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Currently looking for 62 Double Cab, 66 Westfalia Parts!
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http://www.baycountrymotors.com

My 87 Syncro Westfalia 1.8t Restoration

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=418933

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Aux Battery Setup Reply with quote

casey79westfalia wrote:
[]
Currently I will be running the following on the aux.

Truckfridge T49
5kw Diesel heater (still researching what model to buy)
Interior Led Lights
Sink pump
Radio
USB ports for charging
Some 12v fans for hot days

You will not need a 5kW diesel heater - a 2kW one will be perfectly adequate even at very low outside temps with the pop-top up! The 5kW ones do not go low enough to stop the temperature inside rising above normal levels - you'd have to open a window or other vent and keep adjusting that.

The cheapo Chinese diesel heaters work fine especially if you buy an Afterburner controller. Wink
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