Dual Battery Systems

DC to DC - LifePO4 - Solar - 12 Volt

Battery Types and Myths
 

The Basics:

To work out what sort of Dual Battery System you need - You first need to work out how much power you use. each day.  (total Output per day)  - Your Minimum Battery Size will need to at least equal one day of consumption. 
Your set up can  have up to 3 chargers - 240 Volt mains charger, DCDC Alternator charger, and a Solar Charger. Which combination of the chargers you need can be tailored to give you usable charge depending on your travel style. Use the Chart below or at the bottom of this page if your on a mobile phone -  to work out how much power you need.  The Chart accommodates Summer usage on one side, and Winter Usage on the other - As required power will vary in the climates you travel through. 

Workshop calculations on battery / charger needed to do the job below:

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You can substitute your own figures into these charts for a good estimate of the battery / charger combo you'll need to do the job. 

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Tough Touring Dual Battery Kits - Installed in Vehicle 

Tough Touring currently puts together 4 different "Installed" dual battery kits for Vehicles and 3 Different "portable" Power Packs for Off Grid Power Supply for Vehicles, Caravans and Homes . Our kits are Built to suit customers needing solid reliable power in remote areas.  To make it s simple to work out which one will suit your needs - we've named them according to their power supply rates...  If you know how much power you use - One of the kits below should do it.  

Suitable for running fridge, lights and other 12Volt Accessories. (Will run an Engel 40l Fridge about 3 days without Sun or driving and Fully Recharges itself in just 3 hours once you start the motor)

Suitable for  running fridge, lights and charging computers, cameras, drones as well as a small sandwich press (jaffle iron). Fully Recharges from empty in about 5 hours once car started.

Suitable for running fridge, lights and charging computers, cameras, drones and typical lower power household appliances like crock pots, some bread machines, small toasters, small coffee machines, PODS etc.

Suitable for running almost any household electrical appliance as well as running fridges, lights, etc. Can Be Used as Emergency Back up power on Homes, Farms and Caravans.

Portable Power Packs

Tough Touring Builds Portable Power Packs - Delivering the same componets as used in the installed kits, but with the flexibility and convenience of being pre installed into a Rhino Spacecase - Totally portable and removable when not in use. 

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Tough Touring Builds a Range of Portable Power Packs to Suit People wanting Off Grid Constant Renewable energy supply.

Built into a neat Rhino spacecase:

  • Victron 30 amp/hr DC-DC charger, Victron 700w Pure Sine Inverter, 100/20 Victron Solar Regulator, Amphibian 240Volt safety switch - numerous DC outputs including a mean mother output box / double powerpoint and  Andersons / USB
    cabling to reach from battery to charger, charger to battery and battery to accessories plug shown. 

  • 3D Printed accessory plugs, 2 cig sockets, 3 Anderson, 2 Merit Plugs. LED Voltage monitor built-in flush mount.

  • I x vision 100 Amp/hr , LifePO4 lithium battery and all neatly wired in and packed into a Rhino 410x410x410 storage box. 

 

Installation:

  • While the Power pack is Totally ready to go and self contained,  You would typically be also getting a solar panel installed somewhere (on your roof tent) and a cable run from your cranking battery to where you are going to keep the box (for the DC DC charger). 

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Kit 1 - 100Amphr 12 Volt Dual Battery - The Set up for Running a fridge in your truck:

One of the best things you'll ever add to your van, truck or car is a fridge. Add the fridge and you add a new set of issues, keeping it powered and clean. 

Here's what I've learned in brief in 20+ years of portable fridge use:

  • Spend the money on a low current draw fridge. The more you spend on the fridge, the less you'll spend on the really expensive stuff, like batteries.

  • Calculate how much power you will use in a day.

  • To do this - Simply multiply the power your fridge uses in Amps/hr by 24 hours - you'll get a figure like this:
    2.4 Amps per hour x 24 hours = 57.6 Amps. 

  • Now that you know how many Amps you're going to use a day - you can buy the batteries. Lithium batteries are bang for buck the best and cheapest in the long run. So the 100Amp Battery will suppy the first 57.6Amps needed for day 1  - and you'll have 43 amps left until flat on Day 2. At which point your going to have to start the chargers.

  • Your battery chargers can be one of three types. Solar Regulator Charger  or DC-DC Charger or  240Volt Charger (Generator or Caravan Park) or a combination of all three. 

  • If you rely on solar you will get about 6 hours of charging time per day (as long as you're not in the shade)- Its much cheaper and much more sustainable long term  to run big solar panels than Big Batteries! A 400w panel can deliver over 20amps per hour. Amazing if your sitting stationary - endless free power.

  • If you rely on DC-DC chargers if your charger is a 30 AMP DC/DC charger - Your Battery will be re-filled from empty in just 3 hours. 

  • Combinations of DC-DC and Solar Regulator
    Usually the way to go for offroad touring. 

    Running Combinations of Chargers that are different brands can cause 1 or more chargers to 'argue' and no charging at all is the result.

  • We Like the Victron 'Smart' components the best They can be installed together or seperatly and 'smart' works out that other chargers are operating and sorts this out for maximum effective charging. Victron chargers - they can handle inputs of household (BIG) Solar panels running at 36 volts and provide smart DC DC chargers at affordable prices. Their components are all installable separately too so you can fit them into tight spaces and a failure on one won't stop the rest of the system from running. 
    Note:
     If you're going to run Redarc BMS you are limited a bit with solar panels - as Redarc only supports RV panels that run at 12 Volts (you cannot run the big household ones). That means less free power. 

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