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Old 10-12-2018, 03:59 AM   #1
alexk243
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Default Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

Since I decided to forgo the large inverter/charger I am left with the issue that in the rare chance that I am spending the night in a location with a hookup I am unable to plug in and charge my battery. My biggest draw is a 300w 12v water heating coil. Any recommendations for chargers that will connect to 120v AC and charge a 200ah battery?

I have AC connections for shore power on the outside of the vehicle, they just go to outlets on the inside of the vehicle.
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Old 10-12-2018, 05:50 AM   #2
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

We use the Ctek Multi US 25000 to shore charge our Transit with 220Ah AGM bank.
Great charger for around the farm too.

https://smartercharger.com/products/...ulti-us-25000/

All the best,
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Old 10-12-2018, 03:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

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Originally Posted by hein View Post
We use the Ctek Multi US 25000 to shore charge our Transit with 220Ah AGM bank.
Great charger for around the farm too.

https://smartercharger.com/products/...ulti-us-25000/

All the best,
Hein
Nice unit, but a bit out of my price range. I won't really use this much so would like to stay under $100. Is that possible to get 25a?
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Old 10-12-2018, 03:56 PM   #4
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

Are you trying to supply the heater at night too?

You'll need about 25 A to supply that heater and a charger that doesn't have unnecessarily complicated charging algorithm. Double it or so if you want to charge a depleted bank in a reasonable time.

Most cost effective = AC heater, small portable charger of about 30A

Charge time and mounting location?

Portable or fixed?
Interior or exterior?

To charge that bank in a reasonable time without any loads, I'd suggest nothing smaller than a 30A or so charger....

I have a 40A portable charger I'll sometimes use (I have an inv/charger) and it takes about 6-8 hours while when the 225aH bank is at half....

Interior mounting: Kisae has units up to 60a, allows programming (3 stage algo), a remote panel, and is the most cost effective. There are higher end brands like magnum and xantrex - great units. Samlex has a very simple 3-stage (simple is good) charging algorithm - and is robust under DC loads. It is a bit more expensive and they have a remote.

You'll want a temp sensor...if charger is not mounted near (outside vs in), the temp sensor will need to be a remote one

Exterior : Victron, CTEK (although I find it can be easily fooled by DC loads), among others. Victron has bluetooth in some units and does just fine with DC loads.

Check out donrowe.com for interior units.

Exterior - Amazon, pkys.com, among others.
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Old 10-12-2018, 04:10 PM   #5
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

No, the heater will only run during the day to heat up water for a shower, would be nice to have it plugged in when I'm staying at a location where there is AC hookups (which is rare).

Right now I never plug in. I don't stay in one place long enough so between the engine and solar the batteries stay charged, just debating the option if it's cheap enough. If not, I'll forgo hot water for showers until I figure out a better method.

The charger world be mounted permanently or fixed within the vehicle. The water heater write up is in my van build thread, listed below.
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Old 10-12-2018, 04:12 PM   #6
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

I've used this charger for 12 years ... (it's now $115 list vs the $99 i paid back then, comments make me think it frequently is discounted to $99):
https://www.sears.com/diehard-platin...p-02871328000P

It can handle different battery styles (flood, gel, AGM), it has selectable rates of 40 A, 15 A and 2 Amps.
It has a 125 amp "starter assist" mode and an "alternator %" function (which i've never explored)
It even has an automatic de-sulferization mode (you can't invoke it... it just does it when it thinks it should)
The battery i (occasionally) use it on has lasted those 12 years, so i'm happy.
I also use it to charge my T1N's starter battery in-vehicle if it's been parked for a month or two.

It's not tiny (about 8 inches tall, 12 wide and 14 or so long)

This is the owner's manual for an earlier 80A model, but it explains the operations: PlatinumCharger-80A-L0805603.pdf

My 125A model does not have the 6 volt functions listed in that manual ... that position of the "battery type" selects Sears' Platinum AGM batteries (which i have) for "special" handling.

--dick
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Old 10-12-2018, 04:21 PM   #7
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

Ah...ok no loads..

Go portable...it's cheaper. you may even find it will power your load if large enough. Install Anderson 50A connectors on the charger and your pack...call it a day! Use #8 wire from the pack to the anderson connector. Install a fuse ~1.2x the max size of the charger on the battery side - an inline maxifuse holder will do great. Make a 2nd Anderson to aligator clip cable to allow you to connect to starter or other batt and a call it a day.

DeWalt makes a physically small unit for sale at HD - 30A I think...that should work. Or the one dick posted.
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Old 10-12-2018, 04:26 PM   #8
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

Quote:
Originally Posted by alexk243 View Post
No, the heater will only run during the day to heat up water for a shower, would be nice to have it plugged in when I'm staying at a location where there is AC hookups (which is rare).

Right now I never plug in. I don't stay in one place long enough so between the engine and solar the batteries stay charged, just debating the option if it's cheap enough. If not, I'll forgo hot water for showers until I figure out a better method.

The charger world be mounted permanently or fixed within the vehicle. The water heater write up is in my van build thread, listed below.
For the shower water heater:

https://sprinter-source.com/forum/sh...1&postcount=12

Just plug it into your shore power outlets and buy a 12 volt DC pump to get water out of the container.
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Old 10-12-2018, 04:55 PM   #9
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

Quote:
Originally Posted by Graphite Dave View Post
For the shower water heater:

https://sprinter-source.com/forum/sh...1&postcount=12

Just plug it into your shore power outlets and buy a 12 volt DC pump to get water out of the container.
There is already all the systems in place for the shower (water tank, 12v pump, plumbing, 12v heater coil in tank) I am just trying to charge the battery while parked with a AC hookup as the heater coil takes a lot of power to run (25a) and that will drain down my battery real fast if the engine is off. Here is the post on my water heater setup: https://sprinter-source.com/forum/sh...6&postcount=58

Looks like the best way to go is a standard car battery charger, not sure there is any permanent solution that is cheaper.

I like the Dewalt ones from HD like this one: https://amzn.to/2ITElWa

Would that work while there is a 25a 12v DC load on my battery?
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Old 10-12-2018, 06:23 PM   #10
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Default Re: Best Battery Charger for Occasional Shore Power

Quote:
Originally Posted by alexk243 View Post
There is already all the systems in place for the shower (water tank, 12v pump, plumbing, 12v heater coil in tank) I am just trying to charge the battery while parked with a AC hookup as the heater coil takes a lot of power to run (25a) and that will drain down my battery real fast if the engine is off. Here is the post on my water heater setup: https://sprinter-source.com/forum/sh...6&postcount=58

Looks like the best way to go is a standard car battery charger, not sure there is any permanent solution that is cheaper.

I like the Dewalt ones from HD like this one: https://amzn.to/2ITElWa

Would that work while there is a 25a 12v DC load on my battery?
That charger does not appear to have adjustable set points to provide a proper 3 stage charge profile to match your batteries design. A proper charger will extend your batteries life.
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