Leisure battery Charge!!

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Jac Sprat, May 29, 2016.

  1. Jac Sprat

    Jac Sprat Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    490
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Hi funsters
    We are confused.
    The overhead panel says Charge! And is showing 3AH and -0.3A
    Yet the other display shows 14.1 leisure battery and we have been parked in a sunny place (at the festival ) for three days.. However we have been using the car battery (on stationary) to recharge phones for up to an hour a day
    Should we not be doing this?
    Advice much appreciated x
     
  2. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    29,478
    Likes Received:
    16,963
    Location:
    YO11 2BD
    Which other display......solar controller ?

    Phone chargers only take a very small current so even after 3 hours it should have little effect if the battery is in good condition.
    If you have, or can borrow, a volt meter connect it directly to the leisure battery.
    I would say the o/h panel display is faulty.
     
  3. Bobby22

    Bobby22 Funster

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    3,181
    Location:
    Scotland
    3AH is what you have taken from your battery and -0.3A will be the drain.......your charge will be full after another 3amps.........you will have no problems....so dont worry.
     
  4. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    29,478
    Likes Received:
    16,963
    Location:
    YO11 2BD
    How do you get a negative drain ? ....minus 0.3 amps
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Jac Sprat

    Jac Sprat Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    490
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Thank phew
    So nothing to worry about and we can keep doing this,? Was so delighted as it means we can wild camping more often ifwe can charge the phones when stationary
     
  6. Jac Sprat

    Jac Sprat Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    490
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Am a bit confused again as a local motor homer has told us you can't see the ampage of the car battery just the voltagefromthe over head display panel.
    Also if we are charging the phone from the 12v cigar lighter is that the car or leisure battery thats being used?
     
  7. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2013
    Messages:
    4,493
    Likes Received:
    4,754
    Location:
    Guisborough
    The 12 v cigarette lighter will be from the car battery if it in the cab area. There are so many different systems that it will be difficult to say wether you are safe to use this all the time, some systems charge the engine battery as well as the habitation but others will not charge the engine battery so too much use could flatten it. If the motorhome display has only one voltage showing this will be for habitation. Yes the display is primarily voltage and then amps will be shown as going in or going out.

    Martin
     
  8. Bobby22

    Bobby22 Funster

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    3,181
    Location:
    Scotland
    On my sargent unit if i am using 12v power the amps i am using show as an negative number. The more i use the higher the number after the negative.

    I would imagine if i had solar going through the sargent with decent sun this figure would be a + positive number.

    I know that @andy63 has a display that reads out what he has used (amps) what he needs to fully charge his battery again ( amps) and it also reads other useful info that i can't remember.
     
  9. Bobby22

    Bobby22 Funster

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    3,181
    Location:
    Scotland
    There may be more than one 'cigar lighter' , if it needs the ignition key of the van turned to work then it will be your vehicle battery.

    If it is a 12v outlet in the rear of the van and it works without the van ignition then it will run from your leisure battery.

    Your solar panel will charge your leisure battery and may also top up your vehicle battery.

    If you are getting a reading of 14v it will mean your leisure battery at least will be charged.

    I have a 100w solar panel and charge 2 x phones 1x iPad and watch tv every night with no problems.
     
  10. Jac Sprat

    Jac Sprat Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    490
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Bobby how do you charge your phone on 12 v?
    Do you use a plug in the middle of the van? We have one behind the TV -,could we use that for recharging the phone? Never thought of that!
    At the moment we are using the ignition key to activate the cigar lighter at the front where we have three devices plugged in. Is this not a good idea? Sounds like we need to use our plug behind the TV instead? Sorry to ask these basic questions,....
     
  11. andy63

    andy63 Funster

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2014
    Messages:
    1,853
    Likes Received:
    6,509
    Location:
    south shields
    Hi bobby, yes it's a Stirling power management panel..
    Bit ott but it can monitor the voltage and current flow (if you install a shunt ) on 4 sources... On one source it has an amp hour counter, that's the one I use on the leisure batteries..
    You make sure your batteries are fully charged,set the amp hours to zero and it then records current flow from and to the batteries... A negative reading is your use in amp hrs and when they are fully charged it should read zero again... but you can see the current flow either out of batteries as a negative figure or a charging current into batteries at any given time...
    I've posted a few times about how useful I think it is ,but as others have said not essential...

    I don't think that's ideal over a prolonged stop unless you have some way of charging the vehicle battery or are on the move each day... as long as you are aware of the state of charge of the vehicle battery then you should be ok...Some of the dash sockets are permanently live others require the ignition on and some are now live for a period after ignition off but on a timed function say half an hour...
    If the makers provided a few more 230v and 12v outlets in convenient places like bedside and seating areas folk wouldn't have yo use the dash outlets :)
    Andy.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  12. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2011
    Messages:
    7,224
    Likes Received:
    9,612
    Location:
    Dorset
    its not ideal to use the cab 12v sockets when not on the move. in overuse circumstances you wont be able to start the engine. Just about every motorhome these days has at least one or more 12v socket off the leisure battery in the rear. often by the dedicated tv point and aerial socket. simply plug in there. phone chargers generally use between 500mA and 1A each, and laptops about 3A. your solar panel will be supplying more than that to keep the battery charged
     
  13. Jac Sprat

    Jac Sprat Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    490
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Thanks that's reassuring. We have been advised to upgrade to three flexi solar panels at £100 each including a manual one we turn to face i the sun all day on the ground. We presently have a single rigid roof panel that is five years old that our resident expert thought we should throw away. But we have been at a five day festival stationary and it's been around the 14v reading constantly.,(both batteries)
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  14. mitzimad

    mitzimad Funster

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    Messages:
    2,972
    Likes Received:
    3,328
    Location:
    walthamstow east london
    Solar panels work or dontt if it's working keep it
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  15. Bobby22

    Bobby22 Funster

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    3,181
    Location:
    Scotland
    We use our TV s 12 v socket to charge our phones and iPad and more. As i've said your 100w solar panel should be good enough even at 5 years old.

    If it ain't broke don't fix it. Your system is running well.

    Once you have parked up try not to use the vehicle electrics, only leisure battery.

    In an emergency you can always run your engine to charge everything.

    Edit: If your going to be charging a lot try and do it first thing in the morning......it will give your solar panel time to fully charge the the batteries for rest of the day, and give you plenty of power for tv, shower (pump) and lighting.
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2016
    • Like Like x 2
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  16. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Messages:
    2,782
    Likes Received:
    1,859
    Location:
    Warwickshire
    The fact that both batteries (I presume you mean habitation and starter) are showing a constant 14v, indicates that your solar regulator charges both. As you have a Hymer with a Schaudt 12v charging system, it has probably/hopefully been fitted with a Schaudt solar regulator which does indeed charge both sets of batteries if wired correctly. Have a look near the Elektrobloc and you should see a solar regulator. It will be a small (roughly 4" x 6") blue-cased unit marked LR1218 or similar. I suggest looking near the EBL as the dedicated leads supplied with the solar regulator are not very long and require it to be sited close to the EBL.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  17. Jac Sprat

    Jac Sprat Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    490
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Thanks yes the previous owner had s LR1218 fitted.
     
  18. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Messages:
    2,782
    Likes Received:
    1,859
    Location:
    Warwickshire
    Happy days!
    You will note from the LR1218 manual that the habitation battery(ies) take priority over the starter battery so take care if removing too much from the starter and hab batteries at the same time. 14.2v is the final charge level from the LR1218 although this will, of course, fall back during darkness when the panel is not operating.

    Final thought and apologies if I am telling you what you already know, but never disconnect the hab battery(ies) from the EBL without first disconnecting the solar panel's +ve INPUT to the LR1218, otherwise you may 'cook' the regulator if the sun is shining.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
Loading...

Share This Page