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dual battery setup

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by arq, Sep 16, 2001.

  1. arq

    arq 1/2 ton status

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    I just installed a dual battery setup. i am not to happy with it, i burned out my alarm and almost fried my battery. It's one of those from the local auto parts store. i guess i got what i paid for.

    anyone done a dual batt setup using high capacity relays(fr*d type)

    what are the draw backs(if any) of using a relay to tie both batts together.

    ARQ.

    1-72 4x4 CST Blazer
    2-71 4x4 CST Blazer
     
  2. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    My shop has done alot of dual battery setups with the ford style. Tomorrow I will be ordering the second battery tray and the relays from ford. I will let you know how it turns out. The ones we have done, I haven't gotten any feedback so I guess they tuned out fine.

    86 Jimmy 4"lift 35"MTRs Other cars 69Firebird w/525 hp,and 70GTO live in PHX,AZ<a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/modifierperformance>My vehicles</a>
     
  3. WOODYJ

    WOODYJ 1/2 ton status

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    Boy, sounds like you set it up to double your voltage rather than just help the other battery. Are you using a battery isolator or just the f**d solenoids to hook your batteries for charging purposes? Sure sounds like you wired your batteries up in series rather than parallel. The easy way to check it out is to check where you have your wires going from the f**d solenoids. It should be set up just like you would boost another car battery. Red to Red--Black to Black. Look it overand see if you have the Red To Black!! Hope this helps

    k5woody I Don't Understand The Jeep Thing Either!!!
     
  4. fr8train

    fr8train 1/2 ton status

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    Check out http://community.webshots.com/user/thatguydrew23
     
  5. arq

    arq 1/2 ton status

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    it was one of those "diode" isolating setups(batt1, alt, batt2). funny part is that everything that the aux battery was hooked up to was fried. it was just the alarm and a light. it must have been a bad diode or something.

    I've checked a few websites but don't want to spend that much if i don't have too.

    only draw back that i have read is that when the aux batt drains the system(batt and/or alt) may be damaged when connected back to the primary batt circuit.

    ARQ.

    1-72 4x4 CST Blazer
    2-71 4x4 CST Blazer<P ID="edit"><FONT class="small">Edited by arq on 09/16/01 11:33 PM.</FONT></P>
     
  6. Danno

    Danno 1/2 ton status

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    I've always been told to use a deep cycle battery for an isolated second battery setup. Standard automotive batteries don't do very well when they're discharged all the way. It actually affects the batteries capability to recharge 100%.

    I've got a diesel, and it's running dual batts, but they're not isolated. Talk to someone who has an RV and runs off of battery, they might know how to help you wire your truck up for reliable isolated power.
     
  7. Gold Rush

    Gold Rush 1/2 ton status

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    Danno,

    Do you have an m1009 with the 12/24 setup or just a regular K5 with 12 volt?


    David

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.extremeblazer.com>http://www.extremeblazer.com</a>
     
  8. Danno

    Danno 1/2 ton status

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    Just the parallel 12V setup. I don't have a military K5... Unless this used to belong to a general. It's a Silverado. :-)
     
  9. kumma

    kumma 1/2 ton status

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    where are you ordering a second tray from, is it the drivers side tray?


    "Why is there a <font color=red>watermelon</font color=red> here?"
     
  10. pcorssmit

    pcorssmit 1/2 ton status

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    This was a response I typed to a PM inquiring about my dual setup.


    Its been a few years, I never drew up schematics (prolly should have, though). Basically, I removed the ignition switch (at the base of the column), opened it up, and modified it so there were two completely seperate circuits. The engine stuff is on one side, and everything non-essential (radio, lights, acc) runs off the other. I have a continuous duty soleniod between the two batts. Basically what you would need to do is study the wiring schematic for the truck, and figure out what wires need to be re-routed where. It took some work, but I'm happy with the end result. I would advise drawing up a schematic if you decide to undertake this, (I should go back and do one), to aid in any trouble shooting down the road. Be sure to retain the OE fusible links, and add fused where neccesary.

    Also, my winch runs off the starting batt, since it is such a high-load device, but since the 2 batts are hooked together, it essentially draws off both.

    As for batts, some people like the Optimas, but based on several friends experiences with them, I'm not too impressed. I'll continue to run Exides for now. They have worked well for me, but the starting batteries don't last long after being run down all the way a couple times. The deep cycle are meant to endure this, though. Just keep the warranty papers, I figure the batts are around $80 (starting batt), and the warranty is 80-85 months, comes out to about $1/month.


    It should also be noted that a regular Ford starter solenoid is not adequate for this setup, you need a continuous duty solenoid. A starter solenoid will not last long. I got mine at Napa, looks like a Ford starter solenoid but has only 3 terminals and is rated for continuous duty.

    Best place to find a used 2nd batt tray in a junk yard is in a diesel. My truck has a 6.2 originally.

    Pete


    '83 K5, 350 TBI (ex 6.2), 700R4, NP208, Dana 60/14 bolt, 4.56s, Detroits, 3" lift, 15-39.5x15 TSLs
    '97 Dodge 2500 4x4 CC LB Sport, Cummins 5 spd
     
  11. arq

    arq 1/2 ton status

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    thanks, i think this is what i will do. I'll use the solenoid to tie the AUX battery in parallel to the MAIN battery when the ignition is ON or when i need a self JUMP. The AUX battery will be isolated when the ignition is OFF.

    I know that the starting(cranking) possition on the switch will not power the rest of the accessories, so the AUX battery will not be in the picture at that point. It'll kick in when the key is in the ON/RUN position so the ALT will charge it.

    a summary...

    ON/RUN: will let me maintian a charge on the AUX battery when the engine is running. Solenoid will tie, in parallel, both batteries.

    JUMP: will let me do a self jump start.

    OFF: will isolate the AUX for hearing the tunes all night without draining the MAIN battery.

    This is what i think i will need.
    -AUX deep cycle batt
    -battery cable
    -continuous duty solenoid
    -ON-OFF-JUMP switch

    did I miss anything??
    anything wrong with my plan??

    ARQ.

    1-72 4x4 CST Blazer
    2-71 4x4 CST Blazer
     
  12. txbartman

    txbartman 1/2 ton status

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    You have got it. I plan to run my aux battery through a separate fuse block and circuit breakers for all my auxillary stuff. But you have got it in a nutshell. I got my continuous duty 200A solenoid from a local parts store for about $35. They use these quite often for dual battery setups in both RVs and boats. It's not as fancy as the Hellroaring or Wrangler setups, but, if something goes wrong, you will know where to start. Even the best customer service may not help on a Saturday night 40 miles from the nearest town, parts shop, or paved road!

    Brian
    A new day.... May God be with us all.
    <a target="_blank" href=http://tx85gmcguy.alloffroad.com>My Tribute</a>
     
  13. arq

    arq 1/2 ton status

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    just thought of a potential problem with this. Let's say that you played tunes all night and AUX battery is drained. You get on the road and both MAIN+AUX batteries are on line. Since the AUX battery need charging the ALT will output a slightly higher voltage. This will also be seen by the MAIN battery.

    My concern is: Will the extra juice from the ALT overcharge or damage the MAIN battery???

    ARQ.

    1-72 4x4 CST Blazer
    2-71 4x4 CST Blazer
     
  14. txbartman

    txbartman 1/2 ton status

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    One mine, the primary battery and alternator connect to the starter. The primary battery side of the continuous duty solenoid also connects to the starter. This will basically create a "Y" in the circuit from teh alternator to the main battery and the aux battery if the solenoid is active.

    Electricity will follow the path of least resistance. Hence, the charge will essentially bypass the main batt and go straight to the aux battery. It doesn't go "through" the main battery. This is also why you should have your batteries wired directly together. if you do, they will always want to have the same charge. So, if one battery goes down, it will suck from the other until they are equal. So, if one is dead, they are both dead. That is where the solenoid comes into play. The batteries should only be connected when (a) the additional amperage is needed (during winching or the like), (b) temporarily for a jump, or (c) when the flow of the electricity is "into" the batteries (charging) and not "out" of the batteries.

    The key here is, electricity will follow the path of least resistance. And, if you have a battery sensing alternator, it will stop charging the batteries if both of them are full. The regulator will prevent the additional flow.

    That help?

    Brian
    A new day.... May God be with us all.
    <a target="_blank" href=http://tx85gmcguy.alloffroad.com>My Tribute</a>
     
  15. arq

    arq 1/2 ton status

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    yeap, it helped. I hate it when i jump into conclusions.
    i guess i am forgetting my basics, "Electricity will follow the path of least resistance".

    thanks,

    ARQ.

    1-72 4x4 CST Blazer
    2-71 4x4 CST Blazer
     
  16. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    kumma I got the drivers side ray from GM. It was 37 dollars. Just waiting on the relays from ford. The relay setup is 58 dollars. I got my second optimia also.

    86 Jimmy 4"lift 35"MTRs Other cars 69Firebird w/525 hp,and 70GTO live in PHX,AZ<a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/modifierperformance>My vehicles</a>
     

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