Couple of electrical questions please ?

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Charlie, May 1, 2016.

  1. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

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    Am planning on getting an auto electrician to fit a couple of wee devices to the van next weekend . Havent bought the yet so thats where your advice will come in .

    First one is a battery master or a similar device. I know of the Vanbitz one but are there others that work well ?

    Second one is a Battery monitor. The NASA BM1 is the one I like the look of but again alternative suggestions very welcome.

    A specific question on the BM1 as I know a few of you have that one. Is the display back lit all of the time or does it go off after a while. Dont really want it glowing through the night .

    My understanding of electrics is none. My dyslexia makes reading wiring a complete non starter which is why I will not and cannot attempt what I believe is the simple job of wiring these things in. So please if advising of technicalities keep it simple or I wont understand .

    Many thanks !!
     
  2. ericroy

    ericroy Funster

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    The NASA BM1 has a backlight that you switch on and off as required. In my view the main competitor to the NASA battery monitors would be the one by Victron.

    The NASA BM1 comes with the ability to also monitor starter battery - I think that is an extra cost with the Victron?
     
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  3. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    @Charlie


    Sterling Power also do one, called Battery Maintainer.. http://sterling-power.com/products/battery-to-battery-charger-maintainer

    apart form the small difference in price.. the Sterling model has a 3 amp output , Vanbitz is 1.1 amp ‘trickle charge’

    Quote from product PDF https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0..._c966174c-768b-4445-b65c-b54de9b0d078.pdf?747


    The battery maintainer is a charging device that enables an extra battery bank to be kept 'topped up' from the main battery bank which has the charging device(s) connected to it (e.g. alternator, battery charger, solar cell / wind turbine etc). The unit transfers approximately 3A (12V) and requires the charging devices to be turned on to work. It is best suited at keeping a starter battery topped up and maintained by the charge that your house bank receives.


    I have a Vanbitz .. it was fitted when I bought the van..
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2016
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  4. PeteH

    PeteH Funster

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    I used to have a Short wire with a 10amp fuse which bridged the two "banks", on my R-V. It worked to keep both up from the Solar panel, I did the same with the Winnebago when it was in store in Texas, and if I forgot to remove it the worst thing that happened was the fuse blew!. Cost about 30pence I think!.

    Pete
     
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  5. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    Our van has the BM1 and it is probably the most useful gadget we have as I can see battery voltage and whether we are charging or discharging at a glance. The display is quite large and can be read at a distance. However, I see Murvi are now fitting the Victron one as standard so I guess that is a recommendation for it although I think the display is smaller than the BM1.
     
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  6. peterc10

    peterc10 Funster

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    I have the Victron one - fitted by the dealer at my request. Must say it is very good. Shows current in or out, voltage, watts, Ah used since last full charge and number of hours left on battery at current discharge rate. Display backlights when you press the button. Display is small so you can't see it from a distance, but that is no problem for me. It enables me to see exactly what is happening when we are not on EHU.
     
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  7. Taran_Las

    Taran_Las Funster

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  8. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

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    Forgive my ignorance but just to clarify the BM1 will switch between batteries so I can look at both ? Would be great if you could tell me in laymans terms how it works ?

    Thank you !
    Thanks ! Try as I have I cant read the part number or see a price ? Part number would be ace or the part model type number ?

    Thanks again !
     
  9. NickNic

    NickNic Funster Life Member

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    Instruction manual here Scroll down for a diagram of how it's connected. There's also an explanation of how it works.

    If you want it to monitor both batteries you need some extra cabling which isn't supplied with the unit.
     
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  10. Taran_Las

    Taran_Las Funster

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    @Charlie

    Southdowns Motorhomes

    CBE Battery Power Distribution Unit (CSB2)

    Total £21.74 incl postage, packing & Vat.

    Please note the above prices were from 10 Aug 2014.

     
  11. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

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    Much appreciated. Thank you !!

    Trying to find that unit on EBay or Amazon as I need it for next Saturday.. Doesent come up in the search though
     
  12. Techno

    Techno Funster Life Member

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  13. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Which has been working a treat here for years now.
     
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  14. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    Be careful of that one, it says it will only charge the vehicle battery if the leisure battery goes above 13.6 volts. On my setup with a Victron solar controller the float voltage when the leisure batteries are charged is 13.6 volts and I haven't seen it go above that figure yet.

    So I guess it depends what voltages you are likely to see across the leisure batteries.
     
  15. Techno

    Techno Funster Life Member

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    It's fine it switches on at 13.6 not over
    CBE csb2 exactly the same unit as Phil posted
     
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  16. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

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    Thanks all .. Thanks Andy for the link !!
     
  17. Teamsaga

    Teamsaga Funster

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    Hi Charlie
    I thought your sargent control unit and panel already monitors your batteries and when on hook up the smart charger changes over as required.
    regards Phil
     
  18. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

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    The Sargent unit is ok but gives limited information. When on EHU I have to switch between charging the liesure battery ot the vehicle battery. It would be nice if it simply charged both together at the same time.
     
  19. Taran_Las

    Taran_Las Funster

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    Mine would have worked for many more years had God not intervened:eek:

    ;)
     
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  20. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Sue him.
     
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