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Electric Hook Up

Hi everyone

Am new to camper vans - just bought an old T25 and planning to head off to France and around the UK in Spring/Summer.

I recently changed the leisure battery (the old one was dead) so now have 90AH to run a few little things like mini TVs and phone chargers and (intermittently) an electric coolbox.

The leisure battery charges itself when the van is moving and a switch on the dashboard is pressed on.

Whilst my leisure battery should be enough for most eventualities, particularly if the van is on the move each day, I can envisage times when I will be in the same place (campsite) for days at a time and electric hook up might be available.

The van has no electric hook up at present and I am wondering:-

1) What is the quickest, easiest and cheapest way to hook up to campsite electrics (I don’t particularly want drill holes in the van and/or fit sockets on the walls etc and I don't mind the odd trailing wire or window open a crack etc)?

2) Is it possible and/or advisable to simply hook up my leisure battery to a charger, plug the charger into the mains supply, and then run the tv, coolbox, chargers etc off the leisure battery?

3) Do I need different hook up equipment in France to that of the UK – or do I just need a little adaptor?

Grateful for your advice – sorry these questions are probably very basic.

Thanks

Ian

Hi Ian Exciting to hear of

Hi Ian

Exciting to hear of your travels.

Lets answer your questions.

1. One of these through the window is the easiest way
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/15m-Electric-ORANGE-HOOK-UP-CABLE-Camping-Cara...

Get a long one 15m is a minimum really.
The blue socket on the end is fine for all UK campsites, and the occasional modern campsite in Europe.
However, most campsites in Europe use the continental adapter, so you'll need to get one of these to go on the end of the lead above
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Mains-Hookup-Adaptor-Europe-16A-Schuko-/250875...

With those 2 parts you'll be able to connect to any campsites electrics.

2. Should be fine. Get a leisure battery charger, rather than a car battery charger. CTEK are good.
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/CTEK-Multi-MXS5-0-12V-Battery-Charger-Conditio...

Something to note though. Your battery when charged is 12.8 volts. Too get power into the battery the charger pushes out 14.4 volts. So when you are charing the battery, anything connected to the battery will get 14.4 volts. It is worth checking that all of your appliances work with 14.4 volts. Almost all do. The alternator of your van generates something like 14 volts anyway, so if things work/charge when the engine is running it will be much the same when the battery is charging from the mains.

I'd recommend doing it.

3. Oops. See point 1, the continental adapter.

Have a great trip :)

Hi, I know you don't want to

Hi, I know you don't want to "drill holes" in the van but I had the same feeling before I started. Once i'd cut the roof out for the vent, the old jig saw was cutting away for side vents and the hook up. Believe me,it's not as bad as it seems, buy a flush box to go in the side of the van mark out the size, drill the 1st guide hole and about 30 secs later....job done. Mastic the rim of the box and in it goes. Looks neat and professional. wire it up to a "garage distribution unit" and then off to your sockets and lights.HOWEVER....Totally ignore this if your adament! LOL!.

Anonymous's picture
Thanks for the replies Darren

Thanks for the replies Darren and MG.

Darren - thanks for the link. That certainly looks like the cheap and easy way to proceed. Regarding the battery charger, this is the one I am currently using - http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/partNumber/7402168.htm - do you think it will be alright to recharge my Leisure Battery?

I would prefer not to buy another (CTEK) one if I don't have to.

Thanks for the advice

Ian

Hi Ian That one will be fine,

Hi Ian

That one will be fine, but make sure you use it on the trickle setting. That will be kinder to the leisure battery.

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