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Add a second battery...but where to mount it? #735285
April 19th 2018 9:50 am
April 19th 2018 9:50 am
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 18
NW Washington
KaijuHunter Offline OP
stranger
KaijuHunter  Offline OP
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Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 18
NW Washington
Hi...I have a 1990 GMC Rally Sport STX van. It has a single battery and I want to add a second one. It has factory A/C so there isn't a lot of room on the other side of the engine compartment. Does anyone have any ideas?


1990 GMC Sport Rally STX 4X4 Monster Van
[Linked Image]
AdSense long
Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #735286
April 19th 2018 10:52 am
April 19th 2018 10:52 am
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 1,201
West Texas
W
Wedgy Offline
old hand
Wedgy  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 1,201
West Texas
Hi Kai,

Welcome to the site. Sounds like a way cool GMC. Love to see some pics.

Just assuming you're looking for a dual engine battery system, and not a house battery in a plastic boat box inside the Van. Lol

Im looking through my factory parts illustration books for an auxiliary battery location. Just wanted to letcha know. I haven't found it yet, but I think there might possibly be a dual battery application for a diesel? I seem to remember seeing a battery located underneath. Lot of real estate under there, in my EXT anyway. I'm thinking about mounting a box underneath for a house battery. Jegs, and Summit Racing make fancy ones, butt ugly and cheap works fine for me...

Good hunting Kai, and Van On!


"Who New? Blue"
1990 Chevy G30 454
Church Van, maternity division

"Old Blue"
1988 Dodge B250

"Cabin Cruiser"
'94 Dodge B350 www.xplorermotorhome.com/
Xplorer MH model 230 230 hp MPI 360 LA Wedgy OD auto

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Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: Wedgy] #735290
April 19th 2018 11:37 am
April 19th 2018 11:37 am
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 18
NW Washington
KaijuHunter Offline OP
stranger
KaijuHunter  Offline OP
stranger
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 18
NW Washington
Thanks! I'll keep looking too!



1990 GMC Sport Rally STX 4X4 Monster Van
[Linked Image]
Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #735297
April 19th 2018 5:18 pm
April 19th 2018 5:18 pm
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 55
Fairfax Virginia
StanVan Offline
journeyman
StanVan  Offline
journeyman
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 55
Fairfax Virginia
I don't know about a '90, but the newer GMs mount it on the frame(as in outside), under the drivers seat. It then easily connects to the system fuse panel under the seat(inside).


Einstein, when describing radio said "Wire telegraph is like a very long cat. You pull his tail in NY and he meows in LA. And radio works the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat."
Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #735638
April 27th 2018 5:03 pm
April 27th 2018 5:03 pm
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 18
NW Washington
KaijuHunter Offline OP
stranger
KaijuHunter  Offline OP
stranger
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 18
NW Washington
I actually had the battery give me some problems the other day. If/when I add a second battery it will be in the back of the van. That way if I'm parked in a parking lot I can get a jump start with the rear battery or the front. Will probably use an AGM battery mounted inside an RV battery box.


1990 GMC Sport Rally STX 4X4 Monster Van
[Linked Image]
Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #735772
May 01st 2018 1:24 am
May 01st 2018 1:24 am
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 9,796
On Route 66 in Bethany Oklahom...
Uncle_Fester Offline
Festerus Vannimus
Uncle_Fester  Offline
Festerus Vannimus
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 9,796
On Route 66 in Bethany Oklahom...
You could mount BOTH batteries in a box mounted under the body, to the frame rail, run longer battery cable to reach the starter and alternator, and also add to “jump start lugs” in the passenger side foot well, towards the rear tire so it is out of the way 95% or more of the time.

I seam to recall someone here did a thread on a set up like that, but has been awhile now....


My van :
1991 Dodge B-250 (Junk Yard Dawg)
5.2 tbi V8, auto trans, and junk yard parts....


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Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #735786
May 01st 2018 3:17 pm
May 01st 2018 3:17 pm
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,678
San Diego
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wrcsixeight Offline
veteran
wrcsixeight  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,678
San Diego
I can fit two group 27 batteries under my body behind drivers seat.

At one point I carried 2 there and one in my engine compartment. Not soon enough, realized that I never needed that much battery capacity, then downsized to one group 27 and one group 31.

When the group 31 got weak and one cell was heating abnormally on the bottom when charging, I removed it and had only on Northstar Group 27 AGM for starting and engine.

Next month, it will have been my only battery for house loads and engine starting, for 3 full years and is approaching 700 deep cycles and in November will be 5 years old.

But I have a shunted battery monitor that lets me see how much capacity I take and return to the battery.

It takes about 11 feet of cabling to reach from my alternator (+) output stud to the underbody battery.

The quality of the cable terminations is often overlooked or perhaps not considered, but they play a huge part in how effective it recharges, and how safe it is.

Properly terminating battery cables cannot be done with vice grips and the hammer crimpers also have a suspect electrical connection.

While one need not go to ABYC standards for battery cables, the following is a good read on the correct way to make battery cables:

https://marinehowto.com/making-your-own-battery-cables/

This outfit makes custom cables for a better price and from much better components than you will find in auto parts stores:

http://www.genuinedealz.com/custom-cables


Most people will charge the secondary battery through some sort of isolation device which takes power from engine battery, but the stock alternator circuit to engine battery was never intended to have an additional depleted battery tacked onto the end of that circuit, and it acts like an electrical bottle neck severly slowing charging.

There should also be 2 new fuses installed in the tacked on circuit, each one withing a few inches of battery terminals.

if one takes power for second battery from alternator (+) stud, only one extra fuse is required, and the circuit is usually much shorter. Leading to more effective charging while underway.

But NO vehicles voltage regulator is designed to reharge a depleted additional battery quickly, or even fully.

Get a plug in charger and use it whenever you get home from an outing, even if the drive home was 6 hours.

For Lead acid battery longevity, it is best to always recharge to a true 100% recharge asap, and your alternator will NOT do that.

charging from 80% charged to 100% charged takes no less than 3.5 hours, and that is when the battery is brough upto the mid 14v range. Most systems will drop to the mid to upper 13's volt range after a few minutes and charging slows by 2/3rds at this lesser electrical pressure.

One never really knows how much battery capacity is remaining, until it can no longer power what they need. If their needs are low they might never know until the abused battery shorts a cell.

It sucks when one is takes by surprise with a failed battery from lack of proper and prompt recharging, and alternator only recharging is a guarantee that the depleted battery is never properly or fully recharged.


Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #735788
May 01st 2018 4:57 pm
May 01st 2018 4:57 pm
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 11,933
Fircrest, WA
Reed Offline
Maniac
Reed  Offline
Maniac
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 11,933
Fircrest, WA
Wow, thanks wrcsixeight! Loads of GREAT info there. Thanks for sharing!


Windows- they're what make a van worth owning!
Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #746515
March 23rd 2019 8:59 am
March 23rd 2019 8:59 am
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 728
East Nottingham, PennsylVANia
BudVanBeer1 Offline
old hand
BudVanBeer1  Offline
old hand
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 728
East Nottingham, PennsylVANia
wrcsixeight, I have a question...you say that a 6 hr ride won't fully charge the extra battery and it should be charged from a 110v plug in unit when home. Should the extra battery be disconnected from the isolator while charging at home??


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Re: Add a second battery...but where to mount it? [Re: KaijuHunter] #746537
March 23rd 2019 11:27 pm
March 23rd 2019 11:27 pm
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,678
San Diego
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wrcsixeight Offline
veteran
wrcsixeight  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,678
San Diego
No reason to disconnect isolator device.

Even a 'dual sense' voltage based relay. Which parallels the batteries anytime either battery receives charging voltages. Will simply recharge engine battery back to full. It remains unlikely the engine battery is actually top charged and thus would be overcharged. It is far more likely that any plug In Charging source will still underecharge anyway. Multiple restarts after removing surface charge voltage are usually required to.truly fully charge a reguarly deeply cycled lead acid battery. This is proveable.time and again with a good hydrometer.,but most prefer the soothing yet inaccurate lying feel good green light.

Some Schumacher 'smart' chargers will however., sometimes, take batteries into the 16 volt range. In general these higher voltages cann be a bit much for some devices still hooked to battery. And in such a case safer to charge battery isolated from everything.

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