HEY BENWD YOU HAVE TO USE A BATTERY ISOLATOR .ALL DUAL BATTERY SETUPS SHOULD HAVE THAT, MY TRUCK IS FACTORY INSTALLED . ISOLATORS ARE AVAILABLE AT AUTO PARTS STORES , SOME RV SUPPLY STORES . YOU RUN YOUR CABLES INTO THE ISOLATOR AND OUT TO THE BATTERIES . THE ISOLATOR SEPARATES THE TWO BATTERIES ,ALLOWS CHARGING,AND USE OF EACH BATTERY BUT NOT DRAWS FROM BATTERY TO BATTERY. AS I SAID EARLIER ITS BEEN AWHILE SINCE I DID A DUAL SETUP, THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN FOR THE LOCAL FIRE DEPT, WITH THOSE WE USED A BATTERY CUT OFF SWITCH ALONG WITH THE ISOLATORS . TEAM3360
I don't see anything on the CW link that says who made it or the exact specs but it would seem to be a diode isloator. While they do work very well, they do have the draw-back of a .7V drop across them. Probably not a serious problem unless you are a hard-core dry camper. In that case it could be somewhat of an issue. Most avid solar users prefer to go with the relay type of isolator to avoid that extra load. Not being much of a dry camper, it wouldn't bother me.
quote:You can leave the converter in place and add an inverter/charger [three stage] across the bats. And the more you read up on these the more interested you will become in doing it.
I don't have, or plan to install an inverter, but I do have a question for those who have one. I thought that most factory installed inverters were a direct replacement for the converter and served not only as a source of 120V-ac when on the batteries, but that they also replace the converter to supply the 12V-dc to the lights and other such items in the RV as well as serving as a multi-stage charger for the coach batteries? Are you saying that you need both?
No, a converter will provide 12v and so will an inverter with charger. The inverter will often provide a better charger (3 stage as mentioned) and 120 vAC as well, so is to be preferred where practical. The only time you would need both is if the inverter did NOT have a charger built in. This would be the case on some of the smaller inverters. Generally when you get up to 2KW inverters and above, most have chargers built in.
I think you'll find that the batteries are part of the 12v circuity. They are across the output of whatever is providing the 12v, and not only provide storage, but filtering of the power.