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Thread: Duel Batteries for Plowing

  1. #1
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    Default Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Duel Batteries for Plowing.

    Who thinks that just upgrading to a bigger alternator is the answer and why?





    Ps If your plows electric motor is drawing 306amps it's time for a new electric motor

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. i run one battery. deep cell marine. stock 105amp alternator.

    all i have for lights is the rotator led.


    headlights dim when running plow. always has. i ignore it.

    some day something will break. then i will upgrade.
    i know i should fix it. people tell me i should fix it. or upgrade. but i suppose if i really cared i would have done it by now.......... so i wont lie and say i worry about it.

    motor has been going too. i keep ignoring that as well. makes some strange screeching like sounds now and again. volt gauge drops hard. but. always comes back up.
    all good. (and yeah b&b. i know i said i was going to change out the motor like a month ago but,,,,,,,well i havent yet. lol)

    so dual batteries or new alt.................if it finally dies maybe. but it just keeps running so...........................

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    I run a stock from Ford dual batt setup...

    My lights don't dim AT ALL when operating the plow...seriously. Nothing like my 150 single batt setup.

    The only thing that I notice that changes is the heater won't run as strong when moving the plow.

    Can't remember how big my alt is?..
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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    I have a single 1020cca battery and a 105amp alternator. I also have a power converter,which runs the laptop, that beeps at me when I am moving the plow alot, especially if the wipers, lights and heater are all on high.

    After looking into it, I will be going with a 250 amp alternator. Because having more battery capacity, when your alternator can't keep up, just means your gonna make it a little longer before having 2 dead batteries. If you have an alt that can keep up, you don't need alot of storage capacity.

    Plus, my stock 105amp alt has 100k on it, who knows how much longer it will last. When I get my new 250amp, I can keep my 105 for a backup.
    -Steve

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    I'm a 2 battery set up guy.
    I'll back up why This is the best solution for plowing and how to do it properly.

    1. An alternator does not produce much amperage below 1k-15 hundred rpm's.

    2.. Your plow draws less than 100 amps.( I know the electric motors are rated for 200amps) but few draw over 70amps when in operation.

    When you are lifting your plow to back up I bet you are stopped and your rpms are at idle or very close to it. A alternator does not produce much if any amperage at this time so the battery has to supply the additional power. One battery may not be able to flow enough amperage fast enough so your lights dim and your dash light comes on and the waring buzzer goes off.... Low voltage...

    Then when you are backing up your rpms come up and you recharge the battery.

    TWO batteries can.
    They can supply the needed power.
    It is no harder on your alt to recharge 1 rundown battery than is is to recharge two. Most of the time your voltage regulator is controlling the charge rate.

    Think about it?
    When you are charging a battery with your battery charger and you use a high charging rate over 5-10amps the battery boils. What if you could change it at 100amps? It would boil out and probably explode.

    Voltage regulator.....




    It is not prolonging anything such as a run down battery. Two batteries can better absorb the charging rate of a hi output alt better than one battery can and they can supply the need amperage draw when called for.



    A 100-125amp alt with 2 batteries will do the job all day and night with out a problem.
    You don't need to turn off your head lights in an tempt to conserve power. You can run it all and your Binky too.


    Before you condemn your system clean all of your electrical conections from the alt to your plow. Think about replacing or adding a second wire from your alt to your battery as the stock cable is to small for the job at hand. It can not flow enough amperage. Upgrade all of the wiring this includes the grounds also.

    Now, If you are going to use 2 batteries for plowing
    DO NOT USE A BATTERY ISOLATOR......never,, ever.
    (read that again).

    Use 2 batteries of the same age and amperage do not mix and match.
    When adding the 2nd battery run the -neg, to a ground on the engine block. Run the + power lead to the alt. Then connect the batteries together pos+ to pos+,,,, neg- to neg-.
    I used 3ga cabling.


    Bottom line. Your ALT will not supply the power you need at idle to lift your plow, the 2 batteries will.
    Last edited by SnoFarmer; 02-02-2009 at 11:45 AM.

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    I run twin 950CCA batteries and 220amp custom alternator from DB electrical....just finished the install...can't wait to plow with it tomorrow night!!!
    Uh Oh, nothing on the truck has broke in the last couple weeks...something big must be about to happen s)


    IT WILL DEFINITELY NOT SNOW THIS WINTER ;)

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    A custom alt is an other idea.
    I mentioned how/when they work...


    What happens when your custom alt goes bad?
    Some of them require special(custom) brackets to hold them in place. So running to the local parts house for a replacement in now out of the question.

    a boss plow MAX amp.
    12 VDC High Torque Motor
    221 Amps, 12 VDC, @ 2000 PSI

    Most run under 150amps when it operation.
    An alt will not put out anything close to this at idle, below 1200mpms so your battery needs to supply the power.


    When your alt goes bad replace it with a ALT that has around 100+amp rating that will go right in the stock brackets.

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    My custom alt. was built using the same size case as the stock one....if i ever have a problem with it i can just bold the stock one back in real quick and i'm all set!
    Uh Oh, nothing on the truck has broke in the last couple weeks...something big must be about to happen s)


    IT WILL DEFINITELY NOT SNOW THIS WINTER ;)

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    This may be a good thread for a sticky as Im sure this topic will come up a lot.

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    you gotta let off the lift button when you reach the pile or when you run out of lift...otherwise it goes into bypass and kills your battery.

    it's a simple mistake, but i found myself accidentally holding up to long..usually after around 30hours
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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Ok, I've done this game both ways. Greg you are right about the two batteries supplying the needed amperage draw at low rpm's.

    The issue though is that IF the alternator is too small then it strains to recharge even good batteries.

    Here's a good exercise to try.

    Get an induction amp meter capable of no less than 250 amp. Digital preferred.

    Clamp it on the alternator wire from the alt output.

    Start the truck. Write the # down as you add each piece.
    Heater, headlights, radio, any lights you use while plowing.

    The last # is the amperage needed to RUN your vehicle before using the plow.

    Now lift the plow all the way up to dead head and write down the #. This is the max alternator output at IDLE.

    Now take the RPM upto 1500 and lift the plow again to dead head. Write this # down. This is the MAX alt output for most alternators.

    IF the IDLE # minus the vehicle run # is less that 40 amps YOU NEED MORE ALTERNATOR to begin with.

    IF the 1500 RPM # minus the vehicle run# is less than 80 amps YOU NEED MORE ALTERNATOR.

    Use the same amp gauge to test the motor draw for the plow. More than 250 amps at dead head means it's time to start looking at the motor or the grounding for the system.

    Greg the 3Ga wire is much better than the stock 4Ga that most of the plow MFG's run. I prefer 2GA superflex fine strand wire though for all connections.

    The other thing that makes a HUGE difference is changing out the wire from the alternator to the battery. Up grade to 4 GA wire or 2 GA wire and add a 250 AMP fuse link to it and the unit charges much better.

    GROUND to the motor block and to the FRAME of the vehicle from both batteries with a clean ground point does wonders too especially for the newer DODGE trucks.


    OH and on the custom alternators one would think that the MFG's would have a PLOW PACKAGE alternator that gave full charge at low RPM's as it's easy to do with the proper voltage regulator set up and diode board.

    OH well Just my HDAO

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    What happens with these big alternators output when that power is not needed, like in the summer?

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Quote Originally Posted by bike5200 View Post
    What happens with these big alternators output when that power is not needed, like in the summer?
    ummmm. Nothing.


    But you win the dumbest question of the day award!!!!!!!!!!


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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Quote Originally Posted by bike5200 View Post
    What happens with these big alternators output when that power is not needed, like in the summer?
    The alternator has no output if not needed

    I think
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Kendrick View Post

    .....'Now learn to pay attention. Life's tough, it's even tougher if you're stupid.

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Quote Originally Posted by bri View Post
    ummmm. Nothing.


    But you win the dumbest question of the day award!!!!!!!!!!

    Bri, the only question that is dumb, is the one not asked.
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    There will be an all knowing young kid to say otherwise but trust me, you dont want to run these with a vbox

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Quote Originally Posted by JD Dave View Post
    Bri, the only question that is dumb, is the one not asked.
    not true. i ask dumb questions all the time !!!

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Quote Originally Posted by bike5200 View Post
    What happens with these big alternators output when that power is not needed, like in the summer?
    Nothing Steve. The alt will only supply what current is needed for the demand at hand, since the alt's output is regulated.

    No different that the current alt on your truck now. Even though it may be capable of supplying 100 amp's of current it will only produce what the truck needs to operate at that given time and what the battery needs to stay fully charged.

    Example...simply driving along the truck may only be consuming/requiring 30 amps to operate the various electrical demands (fuel inj, fuel pump, heater etc) even though the alt is capable of much more. Same way with a high output alt. It'll only produce what you need...and on a plow truck you want it to be able to do just that without overtaxing the alt. Thats why bigger is always better. It's better to have more alt than you need in order to cover most conditions you'll be operating under than it is to run a smaller alt and expect it to run at full capacity to do the same job.

    A 100 amp alt expected to run at full capacity won't live as long as (for example) a 200 amp that can lumber along at 100 amp output.

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    Default Re: Duel Batteries for Plowing

    Quote Originally Posted by bri View Post
    not true. i ask dumb questions all the time !!!
    And apparently you can't differentiate the difference between them. eyes:

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