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I am getting a winch, i have two kc high lights, i run the factory powered sub and another small amp. I have one optima yellow top battery. Shold I get another one and a powermaster alternator? I was thinking about a dual battery set up but now with a winch I am thinking I really should have one. What are your thoughts on this?
 

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The stock alternator should put out plenty of power for your needs. Unless you plan on running the winch for long periods of time while blasting music and having all your kights on, you shouldn't have a problem. If you get dimmings lights with the music, you might need a capacitor for the amps. If you are having troubles running the lights and sound at the same time, you might just need a more powerful alternator. I have a winch, 2 off-road lights, sears battery, and a 600watt amp and have zero problems
 

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A single battery and the 117 amp alternator most often installed by the factory is plenty for that setup.
 

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If youre having problems with dimming lights DO NOT get a capacitor. For $150 youd spend on a 2 farad cap you could buy a nice AGM battery like Kinetic or XS Power.
 

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And not dogging the Yellow Tops, but better batteries with a long reserve can be had for cheaper. Look on sonicelectronix.com upder the battery section and youll find tons of options with the best price on the net. Ive been competing in car audio for almost a decade. I know hiw to squeeze every last amp of power out of your electrical.


Also, do a little research on whats called the "Big 3" upgrade. Will help a lot with your charging system.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
No its all good guys, thank youfor all our help, The PO had the yellow top brand new when I got the jeep and I put it in. Will the yellow top be fine until i need a new battery? I don't blast my music and the amp is something like 400 watts. I was just letting you know the major draws of current.
 

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Oh yes the yellow top should be fine. When you start noticing major light dimming when using the winch or blasting the radio, its time for a new battery since neither of those sources are drawing much power.
 

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Didnt realize that. In that case the proper electrical for a jeep with an 8-10k lbs. Winch would be a 300 amp alternator with at least 2 100ah batteries. But not many people want to shell out $1000 in electrical upgrades.
 

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No, the proper setup would not be 300 amp alternator and two 100AH batteries. A good heavy duty battery can easily provide the total amperage drawn by a fully loaded winch for the non-continuous cycles typical of winching. The typical regular winch user, which I will include myself in that group, does just fine with a standard alternator and simply a good heavy duty battery. Heck I have even winched my two TJs out of situations when the engine couldn't even be started... after the winching was done and I fixed my engine problem, I was able to restart my engine each time without needing a jump start. Proper battery management skills are all you need which is gained after a little experience winching in difficult conditions.
 

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When i say proper i mean operating above 12.0 volts. Even with the engine on and the winch running at full capacity for more than 2 seconds, your car voltage is dropping way past 10.0 volts. Going that low is a huge danger to your vehicle electrical system. Even running a single 125ah battery in place of the factory battery, pulling 400+ amp is dragging your voktage down in the low to mid 9's. That will in turn cause damage to your winch with prolonged exposure to that kind of voltage. All electric equipment is rated to operate from 10.5-14.5 volts. Moving below or above that boundary will cause excess heat to build inside the electric motor causing premature failure. Winching for longer than 5 seconds without breaks of at least 2 minutes will require at minimum 300ah of battery power.
 

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Its like pulling 70,000 lbs on a gooseneck trailer with a 1 ton truck. Yes, it will do it and it will do it quite a few times. But the strain youre putting on other components is greatly reducing the life of the truck.
 

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I believe you need a bit more experience with this subject, especially with how Amp-Hours work, when you claim the voltage will drop down to 10v after two seconds of winching. Go look up a battery's cold cranking amps and you'll soon see how it can power our winches without problem and without the voltage dropping to 10v after your claimed two seconds.

Look up how Amp-Hours and CCA (Cold Cranking Amps work at http://www.batteryweb.com/faqbw.cfm#q20

For example, my Diehard Platinum P4 battery has a CCA of 850 amps which means it can provide 850 amperes at 12v when cold for 30 seconds. On its own.
 

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Ill give you a challenge then. Take a DMM and have it placed on the + and - of the winch. Pull the e brake on the jeep to give the winch some resistence and winch your jeep toward something solid. Now take a video with a stop watch beside the winch. After 5 seconds the volltage will be plumiting past 10.0. And even at that, anything lower than the resting voltage of a battery (12.4-12.8) is dangerous. If im wrong im wrong, but ive been dealing strictly with electric systems for the past 6-7 years. And cold cranking amps and the AH reserve a battery has have no correlation with each other.
 

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I'm not going to bother to use a DMM or analog volt meter because this is not a subject I need to prove or disprove since it is something all of us who use winches already know. And I started building/designing electrical and electronic circuits back in the early 60's so that's over 50 years of knowing what is up in this subject. I also taught electronics in the military and commercial industry so it's not a subject I am unfamiliar with.

Go install a winch on your rig and tell me what happens when you start winching heavy loads using normal winching cycles/times. You'll quickly see your concerns are not valid. The vast majority of us who have and use winches have a single battery and the factory alternator. That should be a pretty good indication you're unnecessarily worried.

Edit: Since you didn't like the 880 CCA figure I quoted for the Diehard Platinum, its 20 hour Amp-Hour rating is 68 which means for 6 minutes it can provide 680 amps. Like that figure better?

Since few of us with winches (do you even own one?) have problems with our single batteries and stock alternators, I'll just have to say it's not a problem. If it were, those of us who actually use our winches would all be installing dual batteries and huge honkin' alternators... and we're not. :)
 

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I'm not going to bother to use a DMM or analog volt meter because this is not a subject I need to prove or disprove since it is something all of us who use winches already know. And I started building/designing electrical and electronic circuits back in the early 60's so that's over 50 years of knowing what is up in this subject. I also taught electronics in the military and commercial industry so it's not a subject I am unfamiliar with.

Go install a winch on your rig and tell me what happens when you start winching heavy loads using normal winching cycles/times. You'll quickly see your concerns are not valid. The vast majority of us who have and use winches have a single battery and the factory alternator. That should be a pretty good indication you're unnecessarily worried.

Since few of us with winches (do you even own one?) have problems with our single batteries and stock alternators, I'll just have to say it's not a problem. If it were, we'd all be installing dual batteries and huge honkin' alternators... and we're not. :)

Youre right. Not knowing the full story can be easier than accepting the facts. Ive seen multiple winches burn up and its rarely over load of the winch, its a poor electrical backing. But i wont stop you from doing what you're doing. Just dont want other people to skimp on electrical now and burn up more than just a winch later.
 
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