Author Topic: Augmenting Solar w/ an AC Battery Charger  (Read 3293 times)


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Augmenting Solar w/ an AC Battery Charger
« on: January 28, 2009, 06:04:43 PM »
The power has gone out several times in the last year here in OK, each time I fire up the ol' genny and run various things around the house.  I have posted a thread in the past about my small solar setup (3 panels, 2 big ass batteries, blah, blah, blah - don't have the link right now) - I use this rig to run my deep freeze pretty much all the time - including during power outages.

Whenever I am running the generator I inevitably begin to thing about if I had to use it during an extended SHTF scenario and then begin thinking about how to get the most functionality out the machine while it is running.  After a little research I decided to purchase an AC battery charger that can run off the genny and charge my solar bank to full capacity while the generator is running- or charge salvaged car batteries - or almost any batteries that I am using to power god knows what - for whatever reason.  This piece of equipment can be used in normal day to day operations as well to top off my batteries in the winter time (like now) when the sun has been hidden for days and the batteries are depleted.  After doing some research I determined that you can't buy just any ol' charger if you have "special" batteries.  I use Gel-Cell batteries - so I decided on this model charger:

I want to reiterate that my main motivation for doing this (prep wise) was to try to make the maximum use of my scarce resources (fuel) during a SHTF situation.  So, I think this is pertinent to anyone's situation not just those with some solar or wind rigs - anyone can wire some spare car, golf-cart, fork lift batteries they were able to salvage and thereby store up some juice when they are running their generator.

I got it in the mail today - and as it is a snow day and I couldn't really leave the casa - I decided to attempt to implement it into my system.

First step:  Lay out all my stuff (that is 2 conductor 8 AWG wire in the gray, this will run between the charger and the batteries) -

Next - prep the wire by putting terminal lugs on one end (which will attach to the batteries), and stripping the other end (which will feed into the charger):

Next - wire the positive to battery #1, and the negative to battery #2, and the respective other ends, to their homes in the charger's postive/ negative terminals:

Next - plug in the charger into the wall and boom - batteries are charging @ 15 amps - which is about as much as my 3 panels put out during the winter time:

« Last Edit: January 28, 2009, 06:12:06 PM by Rock2Fox »


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Re: Augmenting Solar w/ an AC Battery Charger
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2009, 09:36:43 PM »
your other post about your solar setup (very nice setup you have)

Offline cmxterra

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Re: Augmenting Solar w/ an AC Battery Charger
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2009, 07:21:12 AM »
I still want your batteries