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Where is it?!

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Post by Fantail19 Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:47 pm

It seems like a daft question. One which I feel I should know the answer to.

But, having visited our Broadway today - for the first time in over five months (like many of you out there I know). We knew the vehicle battery would be as dead as a Dodo. But, having had the same issue in December 2019, we were prepared - and able to jumpstart it from our other vehicle.

No, the question is this. Having been a keen reader of various forums - and the Broadway handbook, I know two things: 1) the vehicle battery will be kaput and next to useless and will need replacing and 2) there is no information about the battery or it's replacement in the handbook! Where is the battery?

So, we know the points at which we can jumpstart the vehicle, but, they do not appear to be battery like! And even if they were, they are next to impossible to access. So, the vehicle battery must be somewhere else? It's not under the passenger seat... that's a toolbox/jack...

In anticipation of your advice and help - I say, thank you very much. And, let's hope we can all get back to the lifestyle / hobby we enjoy soon - and learn new things into the bargain!
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Post by bolero boy Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:53 pm

the vehicle battery is under the floor near the passenger seat, covered by a PVC panel.the jump points are under the bonnet.
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Post by Fantail19 Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:59 pm

Thanks bolero boy. Yep, we'd got the jump points no problem. And we weren't that far from the battery actually! We started lifting that panel - but, it seemed to go right across the front of the cab floor? So, deemed that - "not necessarily that easy!!" 

From your experience - does that make the battery swap a relatively straight forward option then? Thanks again.
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Post by yammy Tue Apr 06, 2021 4:13 pm

Fantail19 wrote:Thanks bolero boy. Yep, we'd got the jump points no problem. And we weren't that far from the battery actually! We started lifting that panel - but, it seemed to go right across the front of the cab floor? So, deemed that - "not necessarily that easy!!" 

From your experience - does that make the battery swap a relatively straight forward option then? Thanks again.
My previous van was a Fiat cab which i assume is pretty identical to the Peugeot and the vehicle battery was in the same place in the passenger cab floor. It is quite a large cover held down with plastic screws, it wasn't difficult to remove. I had to replace 3 batteries over the 6 years i had the van due to flat batteries. i would suggest battery getting a battery management system and linking the leisure battery together with the vehicle battery and a solar panel so that when the leisure battery is fully charged it will then start charging the vehicle battery. Had no problems since even leaving the van unused for a couple of months.
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Post by Fantail19 Tue Apr 06, 2021 4:21 pm

Hi yammy, cheers thanks - yes, we have an 80W solar panel - factory fitted, but that doesn't seem to be enough over the winter - and of course, during lockdown we've not been to the vehicle in storage for over five months. We have the factory fitted Sargent EC700 which is the battery management system... I think? Unless, you meant something else? Thanks again.
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Post by bolero boy Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:33 pm

Fantail, much forum discussion re the vagaries of AS/Sargent supplied 'solar systems'..
have a quick search and youll find moths of nighttime (and daytime) reading...
the 80w panel 'should' be sufficient to support both batteries provided that its installed correctly...the issue is that its routed through the Srgent PSU which is very resource hungry, negating most of the winter sunshine.
bypassing it and fitting a more modern MPPT controller (the nub of these threads) frees up the potential pf the panel.
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Post by Peter Brown Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:43 pm

Its only the newer Sargent systems that are inefficient. 80W is perfectly adequate to keep both batteries charged via an EC325 or EC328.
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Post by bolero boy Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:48 pm

Peter Brown wrote:Its only the newer Sargent systems  that are inefficient.  80W is perfectly adequate to keep both batteries charged via an EC325 or EC328.
Thats not much help to Fantail, Peter, he's got a 2019 van...hence my advice which might prove useful?
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Post by Peter Brown Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:09 pm

bolero boy wrote:
Peter Brown wrote:Its only the newer Sargent systems  that are inefficient.  80W is perfectly adequate to keep both batteries charged via an EC325 or EC328.
Thats not much help to Fantail, Peter, he's got a 2019 van...hence my advice which might prove useful?

I agree but many others will also read these posts so should be aware that not all Sargent systems have that problem.
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Post by marconi Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:20 pm

Fantail19 wrote:Hi yammy, cheers thanks - yes, we have an 80W solar panel - factory fitted, but that doesn't seem to be enough over the winter - and of course, during lockdown we've not been to the vehicle in storage for over five months. We have the factory fitted Sargent EC700 which is the battery management system... I think? Unless, you meant something else? Thanks again.
Did you leave the EC700 switched on by any chance. If it was shut down the Solar Panel / EC700 might have kept the Vehicle Battery charged, but it ignores the Leisure Battery. 
For extended storage though do you have the Red Isolation button on the ignition switch.
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Post by Fantail19 Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:11 pm

bolero boy wrote:Fantail, much forum discussion re the vagaries of AS/Sargent supplied 'solar systems'..
have a quick search and youll find moths of nighttime (and daytime) reading...
the 80w panel 'should' be sufficient to support both batteries provided that its installed correctly...the issue is that its routed through the Srgent PSU which is very resource hungry, negating most of the winter sunshine.
bypassing it and fitting a more modern MPPT controller (the nub of these threads) frees up the potential pf the panel.
Yes, I've read many of the forum discussions around the vagaries of the AS/Sargent EC700 PSU... almost as mind blowing as identifying the correct tyre pressures for the van! But, I digress!

Unfortunately, I wouldn't know where or how to start bypassing the EC700 and fitting a "more modern" MPPT controller. A tad disappointing that in a 2019 van - the power controller requires something more modern!! In that, it isn't up-to-date itself!! Obviously more research required! My Sargent PSU was replaced under warranty as it wasn't working correctly (between lockdown 1 and 2) - from memory, it was showing solar charging, when the solar panel had been disconnected (to assist with identifying the issue around the battery drain in storage).
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Post by Fantail19 Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:18 pm

marconi wrote:
Fantail19 wrote:Hi yammy, cheers thanks - yes, we have an 80W solar panel - factory fitted, but that doesn't seem to be enough over the winter - and of course, during lockdown we've not been to the vehicle in storage for over five months. We have the factory fitted Sargent EC700 which is the battery management system... I think? Unless, you meant something else? Thanks again.
Did you leave the EC700 switched on by any chance. If it was shut down the Solar Panel / EC700 might have kept the Vehicle Battery charged, but it ignores the Leisure Battery. 
For extended storage though do you have the Red Isolation button on the ignition switch.
Hi Marconi, thanks for your comments. No, the EC700 was shut down. Oh! I thought I'd read that the EC700 even when shut down, the solar charge continues to alternately charge the vehicle and leisure battery? And that it was earlier models (EC500?) that only charged the leisure battery? [I must be remembering that wrong... I'll go and read up on that again!]

Yes, for extended storage, we do have the red isolation button. But, understood that engaging that, not only disconnects central locking, but also isolates the alarm/tracker? But, then again I guess - when the battery is dead as a Dodo, the central locking and alarm and tracker are basically isolated too!!
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Post by bolero boy Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:56 am

the EC700 needs to ON to manage the 'smart charging' across both batteries...with it shutdown, it cant do this but instead routes all charge to the vehicle battery.
a 'more modern' MPPT twin output solar controller can manage smart charging without the EC700 being on...hence the recommendation to bypass it. 
a controller like this (eg Votronic Duo Dig) will pass a small trickle chage to the vehicle battery along with the bulk of the charge to the leisure battery.
with the EC700 off you wont get the drain that it is resonsible for.
as you know, very many threads on this subject....possibly the hottest topic on ASOF.
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Post by Fantail19 Fri Apr 09, 2021 2:18 pm

Thanks for all your comments and suggestions. We managed to put our Broadway on ehu for around 10 hours yesterday, which will be better than nothing.. then next week, should be on ehu for around 48 hours or so. Then we will know whether there is hope for either battery to survive the lockdown!
I recorded the details for the leisure battery (to ensure correct one purchased when needed); and although I took the floor panel up to inspect the vehicle battery - found it  impossible to get the full details of the battery, without starting to disassemble the various wiring plates.. I managed to get... 12V 95ah and 680A; with approximate measurements 170mm x 360mm x 160mm... 
Two days before the 10 hour charge, it had a 3 hour charge, which obviously was never going to be enough to start it... so we had to jump it with our other car - which we have had for two years .... and you guessed it... we couldn't find the battery!! So, in a near blizzard, scrabbling through the handbook (having assumed the battery would be in the "usual place"), discovered that Vauxhall had helpfully put it under the floor in the boot!!
A day without learning something, is a day wasted!!
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Post by inspiredron Sat Apr 10, 2021 12:03 am

Disappointing for you to have to buy new batteries after less than 2 years. As PB said the EC328 was rather better than the updated EC500 which in itself was better than the infamous EC700. But even then, from ignorance, I let my vehicle battery drop to only 2V on first winter layup with this van. (My Hymer lasted 3 months without EHU and on EHU charged both battery at once). I did a recharge/discharge cycle several times and didn't have to replace battery till early 2020. After much research I chose a Varta LFD90 as recommended by the late AllafEvans as suitable for my type of use. Suggest you read his posts.

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Post by Caraman Sat Apr 10, 2021 8:15 pm

Fantail19 wrote:
marconi wrote:
Fantail19 wrote:Hi yammy, cheers thanks - yes, we have an 80W solar panel - factory fitted, but that doesn't seem to be enough over the winter - and of course, during lockdown we've not been to the vehicle in storage for over five months. We have the factory fitted Sargent EC700 which is the battery management system... I think? Unless, you meant something else? Thanks again.
Did you leave the EC700 switched on by any chance. If it was shut down the Solar Panel / EC700 might have kept the Vehicle Battery charged, but it ignores the Leisure Battery. 
For extended storage though do you have the Red Isolation button on the ignition switch.
Hi Marconi, thanks for your comments. No, the EC700 was shut down. Oh! I thought I'd read that the EC700 even when shut down, the solar charge continues to alternately charge the vehicle and leisure battery? And that it was earlier models (EC500?) that only charged the leisure battery? [I must be remembering that wrong... I'll go and read up on that again!]

Yes, for extended storage, we do have the red isolation button. But, understood that engaging that, not only disconnects central locking, but also isolates the alarm/tracker? But, then again I guess - when the battery is dead as a Dodo, the central locking and alarm and tracker are basically isolated too!!
Using the red isolation button will not stop the tracker from working.  However, if you have a vehicle alarm fitted powered via the vehicle electrics that is armed, it will trigger 7 minutes after using the red button.  So the answer is not to arm the alarm.  The central locking will stop working after 7 minutes but by then you should have locked the motorhome - it won't unlock itself after 7 minutes.  I found from Jan onwards that with the EC700 off the vehicle battery was maintained adequately by the solar panel and so no need to use the red button which will stop any charge reaching the battery.  However, I haven't tested it in Nov/Dec.  If in doubt use the red button but for no longer than 3 months without a recharge.
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Post by Fantail19 Sun Apr 11, 2021 10:48 am

Caraman wrote:
Fantail19 wrote:
marconi wrote:
Did you leave the EC700 switched on by any chance. If it was shut down the Solar Panel / EC700 might have kept the Vehicle Battery charged, but it ignores the Leisure Battery. 
For extended storage though do you have the Red Isolation button on the ignition switch.
Hi Marconi, thanks for your comments. No, the EC700 was shut down. Oh! I thought I'd read that the EC700 even when shut down, the solar charge continues to alternately charge the vehicle and leisure battery? And that it was earlier models (EC500?) that only charged the leisure battery? [I must be remembering that wrong... I'll go and read up on that again!]

Yes, for extended storage, we do have the red isolation button. But, understood that engaging that, not only disconnects central locking, but also isolates the alarm/tracker? But, then again I guess - when the battery is dead as a Dodo, the central locking and alarm and tracker are basically isolated too!!
Using the red isolation button will not stop the tracker from working.  However, if you have a vehicle alarm fitted powered via the vehicle electrics that is armed, it will trigger 7 minutes after using the red button.  So the answer is not to arm the alarm.  The central locking will stop working after 7 minutes but by then you should have locked the motorhome - it won't unlock itself after 7 minutes.  I found from Jan onwards that with the EC700 off the vehicle battery was maintained adequately by the solar panel and so no need to use the red button which will stop any charge reaching the battery.  However, I haven't tested it in Nov/Dec.  If in doubt use the red button but for no longer than 3 months without a recharge.
Thanks for that Caraman, useful info... I'll certainly be trying that out.
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