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Battery State Indicator


F185
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Not sure if this has been covered before but using a multimeter plugged straight into a 12v socket I find is easier than opening the battery cover and placing the probes on the battery contacts to check its condition.

My vans only got a silly little light that turns from green to red as it discharges so this is great for using on non EHU sites as it gives a more accurate state of the battery

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Compass Corona (Magnum) 524 (2003) -----------VW Passat Alltrack 170 BHP DSG

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Not sure if this has been covered before but using a multimeter plugged straight into a 12v socket I find is easier than opening the battery cover and placing the probes on the battery contacts to check its condition.

My vans only got a silly little light that turns from green to red as it discharges so this is great for using on non EHU sites as it gives a more accurate state of the battery

 

Or if you have a cigar lighter socket in the van you could use one of these

 

http://www. ebay. co. uk/itm/LED-CAR-VAN-12v-24v-BATTERY-VOLT-VOLTAGE-METER-MONITOR-GAUGE-CIGAR-LIGHTER-PLUG-/201121572996?pt=UK_CarsParts_Vehicles_CarParts_SM&hash=item2ed3c7a884

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A radio ham caravan owner I saw recently had fitted a multimeter in the front box wired to the battery on the other side of the bulkhead. I did suggest he gave thought to the fact that gas cylinders close by in the box may be a risk.

 

His idea did allow him to check battery state easily I suppose.

Having a plug as you suggest is a good option. Extra leads can be bought for multimeters and a spare set is possible.

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The only issue with this is that most vans I've seen all 12 v sockets are fed from the same fuse and cable. If any other 12v load is applied anywhere on the system, inaccurate readings will be the result and there's not much difference between fully charged and 50% in terms of voltage so even a small volts drop on the cables would severely affect the accuracy. For it to work accurately, all 12v devices should be off when the readings are taken.

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I use the built in Bailey meter its good enough, I also have a plug in voltmeter for the 12 volt sockets, the latter can read out slightly either 0. 1volt high or low, I have two one lives in the car.

 

I don't see why you need to read the off load volts only?

To determine the effectiveness of a supply any reading is usually taken under load.

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Maybe it's not such a good thing then, but it works for me when the vans sat on the drive or in storage doing nothing with a charged battery, I just find it easier than opening the battery box cover and holding the probes on the contacts to get a indication of state of battery.

Compass Corona (Magnum) 524 (2003) -----------VW Passat Alltrack 170 BHP DSG

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You do what works for you and let the others do whatever they want. ;)

2018 S-Max Titanium 2. 0 Tdci (177. 54bhp,180ps,132kw) Powershift + 2015 Unicorn III Cadz, Ventura Marlin porch awning

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Maybe it's not such a good thing then, but it works for me when the vans sat on the drive or in storage doing nothing with a charged battery, I just find it easier than opening the battery box cover and holding the probes on the contacts to get a indication of state of battery.

I wouldn't say its a bad idea, especially if you don't have the 12volt sockets fitted in the newer caravans.

 

What I did when I was in a similar situation was to fit a cheap digital panel voltmeter, but we used them at work so no cost.

Edited by xtrailman
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F 185,

Checking the voltage off load at a 12V socket is equally as good as checking it across the battery terminals. It is also a lot easier and you don't get wet if it is raining! F 193

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F 185,

Checking the voltage off load at a 12V socket is equally as good as checking it across the battery terminals. It is also a lot easier and you don't get wet if it is raining! F 193

You'll have to put ya foulie on

post-68970-0-55355100-1408301986_thumb.jpg

Compass Corona (Magnum) 524 (2003) -----------VW Passat Alltrack 170 BHP DSG

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You'll have to put ya foulie on

Thank you for the photo, I was on F141 before F193 and very briefly the Starling before that. They were all scrapped shortly after I left them! (I don't think that I was in any way responsible )

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Blimey Barlyn you served on some good old ships, was F141 the undine? She had an open bridge didn't she.

Yes it was the Undine but in my day it had enclosed bridge and was in effect a sister ship of the Rocket. We commissioned the Undine and several months later suffered severe storm damage so it was written off. So we took the Rocket out of the reserve fleet and finished the commission on that. In 2 years we steamed 97000 miles with some memorable times.

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I use the built in Bailey meter its good enough, I also have a plug in voltmeter for the 12 volt sockets, the latter can read out slightly either 0. 1volt high or low, I have two one lives in the car. I don't see why you need to read the off load volts only?To determine the effectiveness of a supply any reading is usually taken under load.

As stated due to volts drop in the cable to the point where the measurement is being taken.

Maybe it's not such a good thing then, but it works for me when the vans sat on the drive or in storage doing nothing with a charged battery, I just find it easier than opening the battery box cover and holding the probes on the contacts to get a indication of state of battery.

That's not what I was saying, the only point I'm trying to make is be aware that you MAY get some reading inaccuracies due to volts drop in the wiring IF a load is present. Put your 12v lighting on and then run a heavyish load such as a fan, do the lights dim slightly,me specially when the fan is just starting? That's volts drop some of which is happening at the battery terminal and some of it in the cabling. As long as you're aware, you can take it into consideration.

F 185,

Checking the voltage off load at a 12V socket is equally as good as checking it across the battery terminals.

Which is exactly the point I made, switch loads off to ensure you're reading the terminal voltage not the terminal voltage-volts drop in the cable to and from the fuse box.

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