C Tec trickle feed for rechararging batteries

Submitted: Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 10:04
ThreadID: 30439 Views:6398 Replies:6 FollowUps:5
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was asking questions about solar power at a party when it was suggested i use C Tec battery charger so i can top up my batteries from 240v at caravan parks
friends houses , and then could i take a small gennie for when i m out in the scrub
to charge up my battery?
you re thoughts most appreciated tony
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Reply By: Member - Ozdyssey (QLD) - Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 11:36

Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 11:36
This is what I do but I'm waiting for the 14amp CTEK to be released. Good 3-5 stage chargers which will charge your battery up to it's max.

I will prob hard wire it to the battery so I can just grab the 240vt lead and plug into genny or at a CP etc

I'm also looking at solar to maintain battery charge on extended trips. When I pull up 1st thing will be to pull out the solar (foldable 80w I think) and setup, this way I'm not waiting for the battery to run down and then try to pull it back up from 50% for example, instead trying to maintain the current charge or close.
AnswerID: 153095

Follow Up By: Mr Z - Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 17:47

Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 17:47
is there talk of a 14a model coming out?
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Follow Up By: Member - Ozdyssey (QLD) - Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 18:42

Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 18:42
they are advertising it as available in the CMCA Wanderers mag - calling tomorrow to find out
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Reply By: atoyot - Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 11:41

Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 11:41
I have 2 CTek chargers as they were the only ones I could find that are splash-proof and rated for outside use, for when you are at a caravan park. There are cheaper multi step chargers around, but after having blown another charger up from getting a drop of water in it (I was being careful in placing it), I think the CTek range is the only one that can handle water. I'd go the 7amp charger and I can report that these chargers will charge batteries to between 95 and 100% capacity. Also, if using a gennie, it is still better to use the charger on the gennie as they will charge better than the 12v output will. Just need to be careful about the quality of the 240v from the gennie. The Honda or Yamaha's are amongst the best, I believe,
regards
Andrew
AnswerID: 153096

Reply By: Member - Norm C (QLD) - Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 12:39

Sunday, Feb 05, 2006 at 12:39
I've got the CTEK 25 Amp model. Great piece of kit. I previously had the 7 Amp one, but upgraded as I have 3 Deep Cycle batteries. 2 are AGMs on the CT and they can accept a high rate of charge.
Also carry a 1KVA Kipor gennie for the rare times I need to charge (using the CTEK) when camped.
AnswerID: 153111

Reply By: Member - Wim (Qld) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 09:39

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 09:39
Tony W.

Recently purchased a 100amp deep cycle battery.
I have two simple chargers for other batteries so thought I would get a charger with some extra smarts (Ctek).
New battery, new battery box and new charger, can not go wrong.
Unfortunately the Ctek did go into float mode, resulting in the the battery exploding.
Charger was checked and found to be faulty. Charger replaced but not the battery or box.

Disappointed....

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AnswerID: 153287

Reply By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:13

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:13
I'm just about to replace my perfectly good N70ZZ Exide Extreme 2nd battery in the Patrol, because it now lives in the cargo area and I know it's not "safe" there because of the potential for it to gas and then explode (not good...)

So, if I get one of these you-beaut AGM jobbies of about 120a/h as advertised by Fridge & Solar for about $300-, I'm also gunna have to upgrade my charger. The 30 year old ARLEC 4 amp charger just won't be up to the task.

So, this post has had me searching the net for these CTEK chargers and also I thought of getting another 3 stage "SMART" charger, like I already have on the camper trailer.

Now, can anybody explain to me why I'd be wanting to spend $302-50 (base price plus GST and freight) for a 7amp Ctek, when I could get another 20 amp, 3 stage SMART charger off ebay for $285- all up?

Not having a go at anybody or any product, just wondering if these Ctek units are sooo good that a 7 amp unit of theirs costs about the same as the 20 amp unit.

Cheers

Roachie
AnswerID: 153309

Follow Up By: Member - Norm C (QLD) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:31

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:31
Roachie, an AGM should be great for your needs. You can even store and use them on their side if that is best for space. Your 4 Amp charger should charge it, just not as fast as is possible with a bigger charger.
You are right on the price of chargers, but a lot of so called 'Smart Chargers' on the market are not very smart at all.
The CTek is a good charger and you can get them cheaper than you state if you shop around.

But of course, CTek isn't the only good charger. There are others.

Another point. If you have a good 3 stage charger in the CT, why can't you use that? Must be a way to make it mobile, or if it is near the front of the CT, run some 10mm or similar wire as an extension. You shouldn't get too much voltage drop. I'm assuming you are only charging this way while stopped and not running the charger via an inverter while mobile.

Even if using the 3 stage and inverter while mobile, you could run to your vehicle battery via an Anderson Plug.

Just a thought and may save you heaps on a second 3 stage charger.

I've got just one 25Amp CTek which I use for both the CT (2 x AGMs) and the vehicle DC (105AH Federal)
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Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 13:01

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 13:01
Thanks Norm,
I've got the camper's charger permanently bolted in and hard-wired. But, it does have an extra outlet (pos only) for charging a 2nd battery, so maybe I could rig something up I guess.
It's mainly for use at home as I run my fridge 24/7 and at night that includes plugging the 240v in to the bullbar-mounted socket which takes over the running of the Engel and also runs the Arlec to re-charge the battery which has run down during the day. During the week the Patrol doesn't get to have long runs....only a few klicks to and from work (I really SHOULD walk more often, I know).
I do think that a 4 amp input would be sufficient to re-charge the AGM over night, but I've read that for an expensive battery, it's best to have a multi-stage charger; not just some antiquated old ALEC piece of rubbish.
Thanks mate
Roachie
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FollowupID: 407246

Follow Up By: Mike DiD - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 19:22

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 19:22
A 4 amp charger can only put in 40 amphours "overnight" - not enough to charge typical batteries we use.

Mike
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FollowupID: 407345

Reply By: Mike DiD - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 19:27

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 19:27
If you want a Three-Stage charger that is not waterproof, you can save a lot of money by buying a recent release from Jaycar - 12 amps for $99. They are currently awaiting new stock.
www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=MB3612

It will charge at 12 amps (or 6 amps) so it limits the initial current (Stage 1) to 1/4C for batteries larger than 25 amphour.

Since this current is not adjustable over a wide range, it is only advertised as a Two Stage charger - e.g. it will not function as a Three Stage Charger for a 7 amphour battery - it won't overcharge it, it will just exceed the recommended Stage 1 current for it (1.8 amps).

Like most other ThreeStage Chargers, the Stage 2 voltage is 14.4 volts, which is ideal for most AGMs.

Mike

AnswerID: 153421

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