Battery charging

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 00:30
ThreadID: 3859 Views:2358 Replies:5 FollowUps:2
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A question for the experts but the answer is required in laymans terms!
I wish to install a battery in my caravan to power my fridge and lights and I have been offered a battery charger and I am wondering if it is capable of doing the required job? The charger is as follows: Powertech;2/6/12 volt lead acid battery charger; cat MB-3518 ; fully auto ;600ma charging current;short circut & reverse polarity protected. the question is would this charger be capable of charging a 12 volt deep cycle battery from 240 mains power? Thanks in advance Salty.
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Reply By: GaryInOz - Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 01:09

Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 01:09
First of all a clarification/correction: Is the six hundred milliamp charging current correct or did you mean six thousand (6000 mA, or 6 A)?

Assuming that you have a deep cycle of about 40-50 Ah that charger (600 mA) would take about 4 days to charge the battery. probably not what you would be looking for.

Try about a 6-10 amp car battery charger. You could probably have it semi-permanantly wired into th caravan. That should recharge a 40-50 Ah battery overnight.
AnswerID: 15237

Follow Up By: Jim&Jim - Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 13:15

Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 13:15 old devil
FollowupID: 9285

Reply By: Member - Bob - Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 07:37

Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 07:37
Gary's right Salty. If a 4 amp charger takes about 10 hours to charge a 40 Ah battery, a 400mA charger will take 100 hours! Your 600mA charger is probably designed for small lead acid batteries. Battery chargers are very cheap from retail chains such as AutoPro, DickSmith and Jaycar. I think I got a 4 A on special for $20. Another way of getting a rough idea of charging times is to compare current drain with fridge/lights running, say 6 amps, with your charger current of 0.6 amps. You will need ten times as long charging as running if you use that charger (for an hours running you will need to charge for ten).
AnswerID: 15244

Reply By: bruce - Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 10:31

Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 10:31
Our van has a 100ah d/c battery installed with a 3 amp charger..I suppliment this charging when needed with a 6 amp charger powered by a honda 1000 geny...never seem to have any problems...cheers
AnswerID: 15252

Follow Up By: GaryInOz - Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 10:51

Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 10:51
If your honda geny has a 12 volt output you would be better to connect that to the battery directly rather than stepping up to 240 volts and stepping down to 12 volts via the charger. Try making a loom with an anderson plug (high current, heavy guage wire) mounted to the outside of your van to the battery, and a loom for the geny. Also opens up the possibility of "high output" charging by your vehicle when you are on the move. Note: the standard trailer type wiring drops too much voltage to keep a van battery fully charged.
FollowupID: 9280

Reply By: Salty - Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 23:47

Saturday, Mar 15, 2003 at 23:47
Thanks people! Your info has put me on the right track and now I can install the right gear with confidence. Regards Salty.
AnswerID: 15282

Reply By: PETER - Sunday, Mar 16, 2003 at 08:34

Sunday, Mar 16, 2003 at 08:34
Hi Salty i have the same situation as you - you seem to have digested this info and formed an opinion as to which way to go. i am still bushed can you advise your thoughts thanks regards peter
AnswerID: 15294

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