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Plug-in Active Battery Management JK Owners

#1 User is offline   UTKJinFL 

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 12:15 AM

Where I live, rock crawling is very popular and people come from all over to take on the trails of Moab and St George. What is also even more popular is 'expedition' style adventuring though the miles and miles as well as vehicle-based camping. A very common upgrade to any vehicle is a fridge and to go along with it; a dual battery system. I, like most people spend the majority of my trail time in single overnight or two night trips where it may not be necessary so pend the money and take up the space required for a dual battery system. I do acknowledge that after spending time in the wilderness with family, it's very important that the vehicle starts so everyone can go home; this the driving force behind the investment in a dual battery system.

For the past year, I've been working on and off trying to come up with an alternative to a dual batt system that will provide the safety net to get you home and also protect your starter battery from a deep discharge. All the products I've found will disconnect loads and are fairly simple to install, but they all operate a too low of a voltage to actually protect your battery (11V) if you're in the habit of using devices with the engine off (fridge, led lights, camera chargers, etc). I got to hang out with some of you at EJS 2012 and talked about the prototype system I've been testing in my 4Runner. I've made a major improvement to the system since then and came up with a kit that would be 'plug-n-play' for the JK (actually, all Chrysler products '07-up).

Here's a picture of the kit on the bench:

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And here's the installation. Unplug the transponder box by the key cylinder, plug the kit into the transponder and then plug the OEM harness into the kit... done. The whole job should take 30 mins.

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What does the kit do? It monitors the battery voltage at all times automatically. If voltage drops below the set threshold voltage (12.1V default but can be changed), there will be an audible alert for 45 seconds. If during the 45 seconds voltage rises above 12.1V the alert will turn off and the device goes back to monitoring. This was an important improvement to the initial design because in the case of a fridge, the initial voltage sag of a compressor kicking on would send a signal for the kit to move into Stage 2 which was not needed. So lets say voltage sags below the 12.1V threshold and it doesn't come back after 45 sec, the kit will then start the vehicle run to charge the battery (default is 24 mins) then shut the vehicle off and go back to monitoring.

While the vehicle is running, anyone pushing the brake or the gas without the key in the cylinder will cause the vehicle to shut down immediately. If you already have a dual batt system, and additional single wire can change the monitoring to the 2nd batt.

What do you guys think?
MOAB Tested
2006 KJ Turbo Diesel
1997 4Runner w/stuff

#2 User is offline   JeepNWilly 

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 09:28 AM

Awesome, I remember you showing me the prototype at EJS 2012. Glad to see you moving along with the awesome project. :2thumup:
2006 Wrangler X , 2014 JK Unlimited Sport
Keep Calm And Wave On

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#3 User is offline   MikeJoel 

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 02:39 AM

yeah, awesome project there man :2thumup:

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