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Hook up at home or not to hook up at home?

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Post by Caraman Sun Oct 30, 2022 6:22 pm

As I have said before, the fitted 80W panel and solar regulator will keep the LB fully charged throughout the year providing the power hungry EC500 is shutdown and so it should as the LB will be under no load.  The 80W panel will also keep the VB fully charged if a dual battery regulator is fitted that bypasses the EC500, providing the VB is fully charged to start with and the EC500 is shutdown.
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Post by Tinwheeler Sun Oct 30, 2022 6:30 pm

Caraman wrote:As I have said before, the fitted 80W panel and solar regulator will keep the LB fully charged throughout the year providing the power hungry EC500 is shutdown and so it should as the LB will be under no load.  The 80W panel will also keep the VB fully charged if a dual battery regulator is fitted that bypasses the EC500, providing the VB is fully charged to start with and the EC500 is shutdown.
As ours got little sunlight, it was far easier to simply plug the van in during the winter months.
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Post by Pete F Mon Nov 07, 2022 8:04 am

Like many others on here I use the hook up to keep the batteries charged but I also use it for another purpose that I haven’t seen mentioned in the replies. 
I keep a small dehumidifier on the go and especially in the colder months it fills up on a regular basis.
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Post by Caraman Mon Nov 07, 2022 8:36 am

Pete F wrote:Like many others on here I use the hook up to keep the batteries charged but I also use it for another purpose that I haven’t seen mentioned in the replies. 
I keep a small dehumidifier on the go and especially in the colder months it fills up on a regular basis.
There has been discussion on other threads about the dehumidifiers 'v' heaters.  I don't see the need to use either but would favour dehumidifiers over heaters as they should use less energy and tackle damp head on which is the reason for using a heater.  However, just as heaters are ultimately heating up the outside, dehumidifiers are dehumidifying the outside as motorhomes by design are not sealed.  So when it's damp outside, the dehumidifier will extract more water from inside the van just as a heater will come on more frequently inside a van when it's cold outside.
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Post by FreelanderUK Mon Nov 07, 2022 9:46 am

The thing with dehumidifiers and Motorhomes or caravans is that they are not a sealed air tight box so all you are doing is dragging the damp cold air in from outside though the various vents

In 37 years of caravans and Motorhomes ( last 16 year with a Motorhome) I have never used a heater or dehumidifier in a van and never had damp ,mould or mildew , but each to there own

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Post by IanH Mon Nov 07, 2022 9:50 am

True, as the motorhome is much better ventilated than a house, the dehumidifier is trying to dry all the air is passes through its fan. Most of that will be outside air.
Also, is the dehumidifier a desiccant or compressor type, if compressor it'll be of limited to no use at low temperatures, such as inside a motorhome in winter.
We are fortunate in that ours is stored here, at home and the door side just happens to be facing SE, so any nice day I simply open the door and leave it open as long as the weather is nice on that day.
The solar looks after both batteries all year round, they are always more or less 100% charged at all times....then again, there is nothing with Sargent written on it anywhere near this van!!!!
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Post by groundhog Mon Nov 07, 2022 10:18 am

Our 110w solar panel is not enough to keep the engine battery topped up for long periods, guess the sargent unit is a drain. We have a timer switch and ehu plugged in to that for two hours a night and it is absolutely fine. Have done that for many years. As others have said rarely put heat in the van but air it regularly, in the winter we try to take it out regularly to keep everything ticking over, will run things periodically just to keep them active.
A caravan engineer told me not running the heating and appliances for very long periods can cause problems, not sure how true that is though!
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Post by v8oholic Mon Nov 07, 2022 12:06 pm

I’ll be making sure to keep my batteries at 100% this winter of all winters, and the diesel and LPG tanks are full. If there was sabotage of an undersea gas pipeline in the middle of another beast from the east, the house might have no electricity or heating for days. I won’t keep the water tank full simply because of winterisation, but I do have a quantity of bottled water.

I have a smart plug in the garage where the EHU plugs in which is easily switched on and off by Alexa or a schedule whenever necessary, and I monitor levels remotely using the AS monitor website. Even though it’s only on the drive.
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Post by rgermain Mon Nov 07, 2022 4:49 pm

Never need to check my levels as the solar and MPPT with sargent turned off and no ehu they are always fully charged smile!.

I have said this many many times on here.
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Post by Caraman Mon Nov 07, 2022 5:49 pm

rgermain wrote:Never need to check my levels as the solar and MPPT with sargent turned off and no ehu they are always fully charged smile!.

I have said this many many times on here.
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Richard
The key is to turn off the Sargent whether the above solar mod has been carried out or not, which I have also said many times on here.  Without the solar mod the LB on the EC700 and VB on the EC500 will need recharging at least every 3 months.  With the mod and just the 80W panel, both batteries should remain fully charged indefinitely and, when the Sargent is turned back on, summer off-grid performance will be improved.
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Post by Dbvwt Mon Nov 07, 2022 6:35 pm

Before I get slated and banned from the forum, in my defence I’ve had a long weekend sanding down doors, door frames and walls. I hate decorating at the best of times but those jobs I really hate!

Does anybody else get completely bored by the tedious repetition of certain subjects which have been covered time and time again on here? I know that newcomers don’t realise that these things have been done to death but it often feels like ‘Groundhog Day’  (nothing personal groundhog smile!)

Apologies for the rant, don’t be too hard on me!!
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Post by rogerblack Mon Nov 07, 2022 8:00 pm

I love seeing these threads, Al, because it vindicates my decision to go on spending money to keep our 2002 Pollensa on the road, as it predates any of these fancy electronic control panels which seem to be so prone to problems. 

We have good old fashioned individual discrete switches, controls and dials for all of our on board kit. This has proved to be very reliable, easy to fix using basic skills when rarely required and if one function does pack up it has no effect on everything else. I despair at how often I read on forums of folk whose all singing controller has failed leaving them with no lights, heating hot water etc.

Tip for when decorating or doing menial tasks you dislike: stick the earbuds in and put on some happy music - that'll make it more bearable!  good2

Sorry, back on topic . . .


Last edited by rogerblack on Mon Nov 07, 2022 9:08 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : typo)

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Post by IanH Mon Nov 07, 2022 9:03 pm

Dbvwt wrote:Before I get slated and banned from the forum, in my defence I’ve had a long weekend sanding down doors, door frames and walls. I hate decorating at the best of times but those jobs I really hate!

Does anybody else get completely bored by the tedious repetition of certain subjects which have been covered time and time again on here? I know that newcomers don’t realise that these things have been done to death but it often feels like ‘Groundhog Day’  (nothing personal groundhog smile!)

Apologies for the rant, don’t be too hard on me!!
Clearly and uncharacteristically, you seem stressed Dave. confused3
So, I've bought you this book, you can read it in the MH should cheer you up![You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
PM me your postal address and I'll send it to you (Won't actually!!)

You are right though and being more serious Bilbo, kinda started this off in a PM with me. The problem is that newbies have exactly the same problems we've all had but don't know they think there's is unique. So, I've started alerting some to looking in SEARCH first, then Members Factsheets. A few have thanked me/us up!
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Post by Molly3 Tue Nov 08, 2022 12:29 am

Many views on this subject in summer my solar keeps up , but in winter the shade kills it .I fully charge after a trip then connect to mains through a timer ,I monitor the battery using a battery monitor then increase or decrease the time as necessary., I personally would not leave it connected 24/7 . I have a Sargents 328 witch seems to have a high stand-by drain ..
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Post by Dbvwt Tue Nov 08, 2022 12:42 am

Uncharacteristic maybe Ian but I’m certainly not stressed allthumbz

I’ve been feeling it for a while hence why I’ve not been posting much of late. 
Anyway, less of my moaning as the forum brings genuine help and joy to many.

Back to the topic and apologies for my outburst.
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Post by inspiredron Tue Nov 08, 2022 10:40 am

I have some sympathy with you Dave. I have also posted less recently as the forum has become very repetitive. However, it's search function is not ideal as even the advanced search uses OR for a multi word search resulting in lots of irrelevant hits. That can be addressed by using the built in Google search functionality but that is not intuitively obvious. Perhaps a fact sheet tutorial on how to search efficiently would help reduce the repetition and provide a "go-to" to which newbies might be directed?
The specific charging and batteries chestnut is, of course, down to negative progress by Sargent and A/S ever since the EC328 was ditched ,🤬

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