Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

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Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

Postby Martino » 07 Jul 2018, 13:27

Hi
Does anyone have any advice on replacing the internal leisure battery charger on a 1990 westy Joker with an alternative?
Is it possible to just wire in a 240v trickle charger?
thanks
1990 Westfalia Joker, 1.6TD JX German Import (LHD)
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Re: Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

Postby nsjtaylor » 08 Jul 2018, 01:24

If you're referring to the black box under the rear seat/bed, replace it with a Victron smart charger. It's quite literally a modern equivalent of ye olde buzzing black box, complete with separate/independent outputs for leisure and starter batteries (same as your black box). You can use all the existing wiring, and will save a ton of space under the bench.
"Bob" - 1984 Westfalia Joker High-Top, 1.9DG
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Re: Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

Postby California Dreamin » 16 Jul 2018, 22:39

The original BBB (black box) has two outputs, it charges both leisure and starter batteries on separate outputs. This means if you want like for like options are limited and expensive. The way I see it there are several options:
1) fit a single output smart charger to the leisure battery but ensure the starter battery is isolated by carrying out the popular mod which swaps the radio, cigarette lighter and interior lights from starter to leisure battery circuit. This basically prevents possible starter battery drain whilst camping negating the need to charge the starter battery.
2) As above ^^^^ (single output smart charger) but used in conjunction with a 'voltage sensing relay' which when setup will sense 'charge voltage' and connect leisure and starter batteries together whenever the van is plugged in to the mains.
3) keeping the original electrics and split charge relay but fitting TWO smart charges: not as daft as it sounds because you can buy two different rated smart chargers (6 amp plus for the leisure battery/batteries and a smaller 3 - 4 amp one for the starter battery. Despite buying two charges, this might actually be cheaper than buying a higher output unit with two outputs. Just make sure any smart charges bought automatically charge and don't need setting up every time they are turned on.

Some options...

Martin
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Re: Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

Postby nsjtaylor » 20 Jul 2018, 13:35

California Dreamin wrote:The original BBB (black box) has two outputs, it charges both leisure and starter batteries on separate outputs. This means if you want like for like options are limited and expensive. The way I see it there are several options:
1) fit a single output smart charger to the leisure battery but ensure the starter battery is isolated by carrying out the popular mod which swaps the radio, cigarette lighter and interior lights from starter to leisure battery circuit. This basically prevents possible starter battery drain whilst camping negating the need to charge the starter battery.
2) As above ^^^^ (single output smart charger) but used in conjunction with a 'voltage sensing relay' which when setup will sense 'charge voltage' and connect leisure and starter batteries together whenever the van is plugged in to the mains.
3) keeping the original electrics and split charge relay but fitting TWO smart charges: not as daft as it sounds because you can buy two different rated smart chargers (6 amp plus for the leisure battery/batteries and a smaller 3 - 4 amp one for the starter battery. Despite buying two charges, this might actually be cheaper than buying a higher output unit with two outputs. Just make sure any smart charges bought automatically charge and don't need setting up every time they are turned on.

Some options...

Martin


...or buy a Victron charger with 3 (three) independent 12v outputs (of which you'd use two) at a total cost of £145 inc. VAT and delivery. That's what you use to replace the BBB with, if you want the same functionality (but modern and better) and minimal wiring fuss; I installed one in my Westie a few months ago.

https://www.travelvolts.net/product-page/victron-ip22-12-15-3
"Bob" - 1984 Westfalia Joker High-Top, 1.9DG
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Re: Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

Postby Martino » 01 Aug 2018, 15:14

Thanks for this
I'll have a look at the options
Martino
1990 Westfalia Joker, 1.6TD JX German Import (LHD)
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Re: Replacing the leisure battery charger (1990 Joker)

Postby Martino » 27 Aug 2018, 15:41

Went with the Victron Charger in the end - really nice piece of kit, quiet and takes up far less space than the BBB.
Its also bluetooth so you can check on battery / charging status on an app on your phone and use this to switch between modes if you want to.
Thanks for the advice
Cheers
Martino
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