How to trickle charge starter batteries off grid? The options? (1 Viewer)

Oct 11, 2019
926
3,539
Cheshire
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65,289
MH
Converting a Van
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I'm a Total Newbie!
My van starter battery is flat as a pancake. It was reading 11.4V. I've now got it plugged into a mains charger, to see if I can bring it back to life. How long do you think it'll take?

To be fair, the van has been unused and unmoved for 8 months or so because it's awaiting repair. But it got me thinking about how I could trickle charge the van's starter battery.

I would like this to be done in an off grid way - so probably solar?

I have 340 watts of solar, and 200 ah of leisure batteries. The starter battery is 100 ah.

I was wondering if there is a way to connect the leisure system to the starter system, so the existing solar can charge both the leisure battery and the starter battery?

OR

Is it better (?) or cheaper (?) or easier (?) to get a small solar panel of say 50-100 watts and a cheap controller and have a dedicated system for the leisure battery?

Or get one of those tiny 10 w solar panel charger things that cost like Ā£30, like this one?

Amazon product

As always, I look forward to hearing all your advice. Thanks!! :roflmto: :roflmto: :roflmto:
 
May 5, 2022
1,729
11,550
Kidsgrove, North Staffordshire.
Funster No
88,502
MH
Hymer B778 PL
Exp
Since 1992
Something similar on my ride on mower. It does not have an alternator to charge the battery. You are supposed to take the battery off and charge it before you use it. I have put a small solar panel on the front of the shed then a couple of clips onto the battery. Always charged.
 
Sep 3, 2012
7,066
23,581
Cheshire
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22,759
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C Class Elddis 175
Exp
8+ years
Just get hold of a battery master and connect that ,very simple ,cheap and will trickle charge the starter battery once your leisure batteries are charged up.
Or you could change your solar controller to a dual battery outlet ,one for the leisure and one for the starter battery.

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Bobby-gg

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Feb 28, 2020
1,019
2,289
Northumberland
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69,066
MH
Ducato IH pvc
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Since 2010
As above, battery master

Recently fitted one to my ducato pvc and whilst I've never had a problem starting in the past, it certainly makes a difference to starting.

Search on the forum for more information

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funflair

LIFE MEMBER
Dec 11, 2013
18,926
29,078
Guisborough
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29,351
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MORELO palace
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since 2012
You could keep it charged with a "battery master" or similar but cheaper "battery maintainer" like Votronic unit, that's as long as you don't have LiFePO4 hab battery.
 
OP
OP
CamperJack
Oct 11, 2019
926
3,539
Cheshire
Funster No
65,289
MH
Converting a Van
Exp
I'm a Total Newbie!
Or you could change your solar controller to a dual battery outlet ,one for the leisure and one for the starter battery.

Do you have an example of a good one?

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Oct 8, 2014
1,524
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Wiltshire
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33,737
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Autotrail Excel 600B
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Previous VW Camper + Caravan
You will get a discount if you buy a Battery Master through the MHF Shop.

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Aug 1, 2021
844
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Pembrokeshire, UK
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Auto-T Expedition 66
A CBE CSB2 is a cheaper alternative to a Battery Master, that charges the starter battery from the leisure battery when the leisure battery has been raised to around 13.5v during solar (or EHU) charging.


Not many UK suppliers (try eBay), and be aware that a faulty batch were recently recalled. I'm very happy with mine. Works a treat.
 

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