Charging Caravan Batteries

I want to charge/keep charged, 2/105 a/h deep cycle batteries in the caravan.
If I run a + and - cable from the auxiliary battery under the bonnet to a direct + and- connection on the caravan batteries, via an Andersen plug at the back of the car.
Will this work, subject to appropriate size cables being used ?
The car is diesel 4.2 T/C engine with the std Toyota L/C alternator.
Thanks for any advise.
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Reply By: ABR - SIDEWINDER - Tuesday, Oct 07, 2014 at 23:59

Tuesday, Oct 07, 2014 at 23:59
Yes quite simple but fit fuses or breakers too.

Regards

Derek from ABR

AnswerID: 540064

Follow Up By: Geoffr17 - Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 09:21

Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 09:21
Hi .

No need for a dc - dc charger to up the voltage to 14.4 v for the camper battery ?.

Cheers.
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FollowupID: 825795

Reply By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 07:34

Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 07:34
G'day George,

I have my Landcruiser set up much as Derek has laid out. I have heavy cables from the main cranking batteries to a deep cycle AGM 100 AH auxiliary battery. In this circuit I have a VSR to prevent discharging the cranking batteries when running an Engel fridge.
I have run heavy positive and negative cables from the auxiliary battery to a 50 amp Anderson plug at the rear of the vehicle. The van also has an Anderson plug. I just plug the 2 together while traveling and that takes care of the van batteries. I can isolate this circuit with a battery isolator switch if not required. When we stop in a caravan park with power we keep the Engel in the car running and the vehicle battery charged up by connecting an extension cable with Anderson plugs on either end. This allows the vehicle battery to be charged by the Smart Charger in the van. I do this because you can't always park the car in a position to make the connection as you would on the road.
Might sound complex to lay it out in words but is pretty simple in practice and works well.
As Derek has pointed out make sure all cable runs are protected by fuses. Most important, and use nice heavy cables to prevent voltage drop.
I used the caravan park set up with 12v cables rather than what I have seen where guys plug a 240v cable in through a window and switch their on board fridges to 240.
A bit dangerous in my mind.

Cheers
Pop
AnswerID: 540067

Reply By: Member - Alan H (QLD) - Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 08:06

Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 08:06
Have you thought of trying solar?

I have 4 batteries in my van and no connection to tow vehicle. They are kept fully charged solely by solar (4 panels)

If the weather was heavy overcast for several days I would head for a caravan park where a battery charger in the van would take over. Still get small amount of power in light rain.

Alan
AnswerID: 540070

Reply By: ChrisK - Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 08:59

Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 08:59
George,

Have a look at this web site. Look at the bottom of this page... I think it supports the other advice offered. I too have a LC but the 200 variety and this is exactly how mine is setup. I had the same gear in my Jeep GC before this also. Worked a treat for many years.
AnswerID: 540073

Follow Up By: ChrisK - Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 09:01

Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 09:01
Sorry, but forgot to mention that this site has lots of useful info and has been a good reference over the years.
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FollowupID: 825792

Reply By: Honky - Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 20:04

Wednesday, Oct 08, 2014 at 20:04
In my opinion and experience, solar and dc to dc chargers are over rated.
If you can reduce the voltage drop to a very low figure you can't beat charging batteries from the alternator.
For solar you need a massive system to run all day just to put in as much as an hours worth of driving.
Compare the cost and weight and wind drag of say 4x 120 sold panels, dcdc charger to just running wires to the back of the vehicle through a voltage regulator.
The KISS method is the best and cheapest.
If you are not driving for at least an hour a day than the solar path may be worthwhile but only with at least 2 x 120 watt panels.

Only my opinion.

Honky
AnswerID: 540105

Reply By: Phillipn - Thursday, Oct 09, 2014 at 09:32

Thursday, Oct 09, 2014 at 09:32
All wire needs to be not less than 6 B&S to ovoid voltage loss.
AnswerID: 540124

Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Thursday, Oct 09, 2014 at 15:47

Thursday, Oct 09, 2014 at 15:47
Yes George, your proposal will work but will require adequately sized cables between the two auxiliary batteries. I suggest 6B&S.

You may also care to look at my blog Auxiliary Battery Systems - Wiring Diagrams for further information and alternative arrangements together with other useful links.
Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 540135

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