Barrery Current Saver

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 13:29
ThreadID: 11055 Views:1758 Replies:6 FollowUps:8
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Bit quite today with everyone at LD. Has anyone tried the Battery Saver advertised on the site & is it worth it as our battery only lasted 1 day camped over xmas even with the engel cover fitted.
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Reply By: ianmc - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 13:39

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 13:39
Did you have it on freeze?
Maybe thats Engel for you!
It could be that your battery was not REALLY fully charged when you set up.
Elsewhere on this forum it has been mentioned that an alternator might only take it to 70% unless running for many hours.
AnswerID: 49366

Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 14:24

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 14:24
It was set on 2 & car had been driven for 8 hrs the day before.
FollowupID: 311182

Reply By: Dave from Fraser Coast 4WD Club - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 14:48

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 14:48
I don't know about the current saver, but I'd suggest that there is a problem with either the engel, the battery or the alternator and solenoid (i'm assuming your using a decent sized battery like N70)
AnswerID: 49375

Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 16:04

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 16:04
Yes I am using a N70 battery & heavy wiring direct to fridge. I am also considering the isolator as the problem as we were towing the KK & charging it's battry as well.
FollowupID: 311184

Follow Up By: Dave from Fraser Coast 4WD Club - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 16:10

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 16:10
I'm not sure what you mean (below) about a seperate isolator??

Once the solenoid is closed (regardless of the number of them) the batteries will attempt to equalise their charge level (unless diode protected (maybe that's what you mean by isolater))
FollowupID: 311187

Reply By: Member - Captain (WA) - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 15:20

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 15:20
I run my engels for 2 days/ 1 night plus some use of a 55watt rear light and no problems. My battery is a 600 CCA Century severe service, not a deep cycle one.

How old is the battery and how good is the wiring from the battery to the engels?

Poor wiring can lead to excessive volt drop, which means not only would the engels draw more amps, but it would be on for a lot longer. This would cause excessive battery drain.

I would hazzard a guess that either the wiring is not up to it, or the battery is on the way out. Given that you are asking about the battery saver, i guess you suspect the battery. While I haven't used the megapulse battery saver myself, I have heard some good reports from other threads and intend to get one for myself.


AnswerID: 49376

Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 16:05

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 16:05
Thanks captain I think I will get 1 too & run camper battry thru seperate isolator
FollowupID: 311185

Follow Up By: Mad Dog Morgan (Geelong) - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 18:09

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 18:09
Not sure if Bob is talking about the Megapulse or the other device available which controls how often the fridge switches off and on.
There's no doubt about the megapulse theory though, just too much evidence supporting it. I emailed them a few days ago for a price but no reply yet. These devices are really simple and there's a number of circuits avalable on the web and a whopping big forum I was reading the other day about them so I will probably home brew my own.
FollowupID: 311197

Follow Up By: Member - Captain (WA) - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 19:18

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 19:18
Bob, are you referring to the megapulse battery "regenerator" or the battery saver that simply cuts off the fridge for a certain time period every hour? If so, previous threads on the battery saver have not been good, unlike the good reports on the megapulse.

The "bat saver" results in the fridge temperature cycling as the commpressor cannot come on when the temp rises if the bat saver is in the "off" period. Thus the fridge gets warmer and when the "on" period arrives, the compressor runs all the time. The "bat saver" ends up replacing the fridge thermostat and instead of running the fridge on temperature, you end up only allowing the fridge to run based on the 'bat saver" setting, resulting in large swings in the fridge temperature with little overall battery power saving.

In the extreme, this can result in frozen food not being properly frozen and you could unwittingly contaminate your frozen food. Or WORSE, if on the fridge setting, may end up with warm beer!!!

If your current battery is near new and in good condition, the megapulse will have little effect at this stage (but will probably help as it gets older). What type of battery isolation system are you running? A solenoid type (even the smart solenoids) will not fully recharge your battery unless driven for very long periods. It gets even worse with 3 batteries (2 for the 4X4, 1 for the van).

The only system that will properly charge multiple batteries is a charge/isolator like the rotronics. This isolates and charges each battery in turn, but priority is given to the starting battery. The drawback to this is the cost, over $1,000 for a true 3 battery isolation system. I personally use a smart solenoid on the second battery in my Patrol and a manual switch to charge the 115Ah battery in my van. I know it is not as efficient as the rotronics, but cannot justify the price.


FollowupID: 311203

Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Sunday, Mar 07, 2004 at 10:52

Sunday, Mar 07, 2004 at 10:52
The battery saver that stops & starts the fridge changing the cycle time.
FollowupID: 311242

Reply By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 18:54

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 18:54
Whadda ya mean quiet? We've still got the same forum stats today - being 40 new post plus 170 replies plus 110 followups in one day!! Maybe with that group gone for the weekend, the rest of our audience feels a bit more inclined to get a word in edgewise!! ha ha
Michelle Martin
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AnswerID: 49396

Follow Up By: Member - Andrew & Jen (Melb) - Thursday, Mar 18, 2004 at 09:50

Thursday, Mar 18, 2004 at 09:50
Cheeky bugger! Just went back searching on batteries and found this!!
FollowupID: 312578

Reply By: Roachie - Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 20:18

Saturday, Mar 06, 2004 at 20:18
G'day Bob & Lex,
I don't know anything about the battery saver gizzmo; but I do have a system that seems to work well for me.
I have a Nissan GU with dual batteries; number 2 is a Exide Extreme. I have an ARB (read "Engel") 40 litre fridge which stays in the truck and runs 24/7. Unfortunately I'm a pen pusher (or should that be "keyboard jockey" these days), so my truck doesn't get driven much during the week. I have installed a 240v inlet (like on the side of a caravan). There is a 4 plug powerboard in the cargo area. I keep the fridge plugged into it and also have a battery charger set on "trickle". Each night when I get home from work, I plug the 240v cord into the inlet. This takes over then running of the fridge automatically and also fires up the batt charger (which I have hooked up to the 2nd battery only, by using a cigi plug going into a socket in the back).
On the camper, which spends more time in the shed than I would prefer (we use it on average at least once a month), I have a Exide Orbital blue top. The camper has it's own small on-board charger too. As the camper is plugged into the mains as well, it keeps the battery charged & the 3-way fridge cold all the time, ready for next trip. I have a Megapulse hooked up to the Orbital in the camper and keep a el-cheapo 12v flouro running off the battery 24/7 also for a "load". Apart from a 4 year old Deep Cycle (which I had in the camper) carking it before Xmas, I haven't had any problems. I now don't buy deep cyclers as they are too hard to get re-charged once they lose their edge on longer trips.
Good luck.
AnswerID: 49405

Reply By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Sunday, Mar 07, 2004 at 11:18

Sunday, Mar 07, 2004 at 11:18
Thanks guys i'll do some research on what the fridge draws. only have the prob when the camper battery is in the loop & I don't want to spend $1000 to upgrade the Rotronics.
AnswerID: 49430

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