|My Main Electrical Panel|
|A Common "Charge Thief"|
|The Knife switch Disconnect|
So, on to connecting the "Amp Thief."
You will be connecting 3 wires.Yes, you read that right ONLY three wires! One is the ground. This connects to the chassis or any ground point you can find (even a battery negative post.) The next 2 are for power. The first one connects to the engine start battery positive and the second one connects to the house battery positive. These wires can also be connected to any convenient place you can access positive wires from both batteries. Your battery isolator or perhaps the solenoid disconnect switches. If you are unsure have someone install it, or run the wires to the batteries directly to avoid any issues. Make sure you use heavy enough gauge wire if you need more than what is supplied by the manufacturer of the charger.
|Engine Battery with Blue Wire Attached|
Make sure you clean any corrosion from the terminals to make a good electrical contact. Yes, I should have cleaned mine MUCH better. I'm replacing the batteries this year, at the end of the season so....
Next, locate your house battery(ies.) these could be almost anyplace. I've seen them in separate compartments, under the hood, inside the RV on a vented box, hanging underneath...you name it, I've seen it. Anyway...find yours! Once there, connect the other positive wire (the YELLOW one!) to the positive post. If you have MANY batteries, it's a good idea to connect this to the same battery that feeds your RV's electrical needs. It's always better to deplete the power evenly across all the batteries than to favor one.
|Charger Mounted and Wired|
|Green LED Means Maintaining|
Mount the charger anywhere that is convenient. It's basically waterproof and shocks don't bother it either. I mounted mine to a convenient vertical support in the engine bay with plastic "zip" ties. You can mount it with the included self tapping screws as well. I made sure to mount it in such a way so that I could see the three LEDs that indicate what it's doing at any given time.
Green is Maintaining, Yellow means charging and Red is a Reverse Polarity problem. Likely, you've got a positive to a negative or vice versa. Check the wiring!
So far, it is working very well. The Solar Charging System charges the batteries, the charge thief charges the engine start battery and everyone's happy. No dead batteries, no "Battery Boost Switch" needed. Also great for long term storage, if you have a source of power! A very elegant solution to a general problem.
Be Seeing You...Down The Road,
Rich "The Wanderman"