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Old 10-14-2016, 01:51 PM   #1
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Toad battery maintainer

Hi folks...towing a 2014 CRV behind a 2016 Bay Star...ran the factory wiring from the fuse box under the dash to the 7-pin and installed a battery maintainer which does nort work. Thought about running the wire through a auto reset circuit breaker direct to the battery...the wiring is 14ga wondering if it will handle the load. Or spending the $50 and ordering one listed as reliable.
Thanks, Dave Mc
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Old 10-14-2016, 02:39 PM   #2
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Dave-

I'm not sure I understand the problem.

Are you not getting 12V at the coach's 7-pin hitch connector? Or are you not getting 12V at the CRV's battery? If it's the former, test for 12V at the coach's fuse panel under the dash, if that's where you picked up the charge source. I believe the fuse panel is live only when the ignition is on.

Other BayStar owners have successfully used the provided "orange" and "black" wires to power their charge lines, despite their being 14 AWG. There should be no need to run a new charge line on the coach side of the umbilical.
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Old 10-14-2016, 02:48 PM   #3
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This one doesn't work worth a flip either.

https://rvibrake.com/products/towed-...ant=8804388741
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Old 10-14-2016, 02:57 PM   #4
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I'm using the Hopkins, works fine

Accessories | BrakeBuddy - Braking systems for motorhomes towing a vehicle
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Old 10-14-2016, 03:10 PM   #5
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I'm not sure why there's any need to run wires from the fuse box. On my CR-V I ran wires directly from the positive and negative battery terminals to a connector near the 7-pin. I was concerned that the wire gauge in the 7-pin and the umbilical harness might be too small for adequate charging, so I ran my charging line external to the umbilical cable and used zip ties to attach it. I'm using a Toad Charge kit which provides a circuit breaker and a diode which prevents current flow unless the MH alternator is running.

I know that a lot of RVers simply make a direct connection between the MH batteries and the toad's. Under most circumstances that will be fine, but if you get a short to ground somewhere in the charging circuit you don't have any overcurrent protection for the MH's charging circuit. Furthermore, if you park overnight and don't disconnect you run the risk that an electrical issue in the toad, such as a failing battery, could draw down the MH's batteries overnight.

You may choose to ignore these issues and that is your right. Most of the time you will be Ok without taking any precautions. Electrical protection devices are designed to protect you when things don't go as planned.
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Old 10-14-2016, 03:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susiedavid View Post
Hi folks...towing a 2014 CRV behind a 2016 Bay Star...ran the factory wiring from the fuse box under the dash to the 7-pin and installed a battery maintainer which does nort work. Thought about running the wire through a auto reset circuit breaker direct to the battery...the wiring is 14ga wondering if it will handle the load. Or spending the $50 and ordering one listed as reliable.
Thanks, Dave Mc
Dave,
I'm assuming your main issue is a dead battery on the CRV? I had many dead battery issues on my 2013 until I finally replaced the OEM group 51 400 CCA (not much larger than your lawn tractor) battery with a group 24 850 CCA battery which is standard on the Honda Odessy. The change is very simple and WILL eliminate ALL of your battery problems. Guaranteed!
I use a 14 gauge charge line from the coach to the toad battery with a fuse at each end (toad and mh). I do not pull fuses or use any other devices. I have towed for two days without unhooking with just running the car in the AM for a few minutes to lube the transmission.
Your Honda parts department can supply a new two piece plastic battery tray for an Odessy that directly replaces the original CRV to accommodate the larger battery. Cost total, less than $20.
Then purchase a good quality Group 24 maintenance free battery from NAPA or auto parts store of your choice. About $150.
Remove the original battery and tray, install the new tray and battery and you will never be plagued with dead battery problem again. No mods required to make the change other than the new tray and battery.
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Old 10-14-2016, 03:22 PM   #7
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Have 12vdc at the toad using factory wiring just wondering if the 14 ga wiring would be OK direct to the toad battery through a 15 amp fuse.
PS the Hopkins maintainer is the on that Isn't working.
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Old 10-14-2016, 04:09 PM   #8
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Dave-

Some people do connect the wire to a fuse or self-resetting circuit beaker and thence to the toad positive battery post. The circuit breaker has the advantage of not requiring as much attention from you. The flip side of that is that is a short is intermittent, you won't know it!

A diode may be needed. See this post.

A RVI or Hopkins or LSL Toad-Charge is optional. Some of these devices provide the diode function. I installed a Toad-Charge in our toad.

My two coaches have had 10 AWG or 12 AWG charge lines, with 15A fuses. I'd think that 15A would protect 14 AWG. If you're concerned, a 10A fuse/circuit breaker should still pass adequate charging current. On the BayStar, another option is to tie both the "orange" and "black" 14 AWG wires together as the charge line.
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Old 10-15-2016, 04:11 PM   #9
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I would be sceptical connecting anything auxiliary to your OE fused wiring. Unless your OE wiring is specifically designed to accept aux. wiring you run the risk of damaging or causing future OE and aux. wiring problems.

You also need to look at the specs of the MH's plug.

What I did was install a separate charging wire and plug for the toad's battery. My MH happened to have an incomplete charging circuit already installed from the factory, that ran half way back to the rear end.

Motorhomes that have towing charging circuits typically will use a fuse or circuit breaker connected to a relay to provide power for a charge circuit.

For a trailer or toad power/charge circuit I would most likely use a automotive 30/40 amp relay connected to the ign. wire and battery. So there is no power to the trailer or toad connection when the engine is not running. The relay prevents two batteries from draining one another.

( 8 to 10 gauge wire is commonly used (factory size for many MH's) for a 12 volt charge/power wire for a trailer or toad)

(Battery - 12 volts) ---(fuse
or circuit breaker)--- (relay) ---{12 volts}---- (tow plug)
(ign) ----------------------------------------------------|

if your battery charger says it requires only 14 gauge gauge power wire from the MH, It may not be taking into account voltage drop. This is one reason why from 8 to 10 gauge wire is often used. Normally you want a maximum of 3 percent voltage drop. In some cases, from less than 1 to 2 percent is preferred.

Also the more amps from a charge circuit will provide better charging. A toad battery charger usually works based on a min. current, where a higher current will be more efficient. If e.g. your toad battery becomes near drained it can take a 6 to 10 amp AC/DC charger overnight to bring it back to full capacity.

I might consider an in-toad charger if it is a multi-stage charger and possibly has PWM (pulse width modulation). Some AGM batteries don't charge well using standard car chargers and chargers not designed for AGM batteries.

I think I might first take a look at a RC Lipo/multi chemistry charger. Most can be programmed to charge a car Lead Acid battery. Can be found sometimes for under $20.00 +/-. Most are able to run from ~10 to ~18 volt DC power source. These chargers are designed to charge different battery chemistries which usually includes lead acid.

I have been using AGM as car / tow vehicle battery because they normally last longer than open cell starting batteries. The last one I purchased for a vehicle is almost 10 years old and still operating nearly to specs.

Voltage drop calculator:

http://www.calculator.net/voltage-drop-calculator.html

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Old 10-21-2016, 04:46 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone...I spliced the orange and black factory wires together and connected to the fuse box under the dash through a 15amp fuse. Terminated together at the 7-blade 12vdc pin. Ran a 12 ga from the toad 6-pin to the new battery (installed a group 24, a bit tight but dropped right in), through a diode and a 10 amp fuse. Ran a 16 ga from the negative battery terminal to the ground pin on the 6-pin shared with the tow lighting wiring (separate from the CRV wiring) We won't be towing for a few weeks to see how well this fix will work...I am confident. Really do not know why I installed the ground wire to the battery...had the time and materials I guess.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:53 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Susiedavid View Post
Thanks everyone...I spliced the orange and black factory wires together and connected to the fuse box under the dash through a 15amp fuse. Terminated together at the 7-blade 12vdc pin. Ran a 12 ga from the toad 6-pin to the new battery (installed a group 24, a bit tight but dropped right in), through a diode and a 10 amp fuse. Ran a 16 ga from the negative battery terminal to the ground pin on the 6-pin shared with the tow lighting wiring (separate from the CRV wiring) We won't be towing for a few weeks to see how well this fix will work...I am confident. Really do not know why I installed the ground wire to the battery...had the time and materials I guess.

Your dead battery problems are Gone. You won't regret the switch.
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