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Old 09-08-2012, 07:26 AM   #1
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Trickle charge

Ok,, I've been looking a lot of places, and cannot seem to get a good answer.. I want to mount an optima redtop battery on our excursion trailer.. It will be used to power a fridge, run a water pump, etc. can I run a trickle charge using the tail light power, so it is only charging up when the tail lights are on, or must I run a completely isolated line back from the jeep battery... I'm thinking if a 5 amp trickle charger is used than tapping into the tail light harness would be ok.. Need "expert" opinions... Thanks.

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Old 09-08-2012, 07:56 AM   #2
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You should come off the battery. And I would think that it should have a low volt cutoff so you don't end up with a dead battery in your jeep. The good part is you get the extra capacity.

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Old 09-08-2012, 09:18 AM   #3
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Tail light circuit would not be enough amperage....

If you have a towing package, there MAY be an extra line running back that is rated around 20-40 amps already in your plug..... that would be enough.

If not, run a wire, (rated at ampacity) a #10 or #8 stranded should work, from your battery back to the desired place.

A low voltage cutout is a good idea unless you are going to disconnect EACH time you stop. Do not want to drain vehicle battery. You could also just connect to a circuit that is powered only when ignition is on....make sure it has the kind of ampacity you need.

A good ground is also essential. Make sure your ground (negative) is well connected all the way back to the trailer. Do not trust the trailer plug for this if you do not have the 20-40 amp wire in the plug. Run another, separate ground....
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:02 AM   #4
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Its an expensive option, but you actually want an isolater for your system to have it "right".

Isolaters take a power source and, uh, isolate the power across several loads. Your alternator would feed your isolator, which in turn would charge your vehicle battery and your assy battery while maintaining seperate circuits for them. If you are running a fridge, youll want a bit more than a trickle feeding it for longest component life. Just like you dont drive a 5k rpm all over, dont ask your equipment to operate at its extreme.

Not to say it wont work other ways. If you want to do the trickle, run it straight from the battery.

Wih isolators you can have additional power sources, too. Get a converter and youll be able to plug your jeep into a wall outlet to run your elec system.
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:13 AM   #5
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Never used this website or specific product, but here is a 2 batt 120A isolater for 60$ or so.

http://www.pplmotorhomes.com/parts/r...y-isolator.htm
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