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Getting the balance right


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We keen motorhomers (but amateur autoelectricians) need to take care not to over-engineer things with our tinkering, especially perhaps when we are planning to "improve" the professional design of our MH's 12v charging and battery systems by adding "improvements" like extra leisure batteries, B2B chargers and inverters. We would do well to keep a sense of proportion about these things.


For example I read about the risk of voltage spikes from mains electricity supplies so I bought and fitted a surge suppressor to the power supply to my Electroblock. This was several years ago and then I read an expert view that these were really unnecessary. Then recently I read on here about a clever little DIN rail voltage protector with a voltage display, so I couldn't resist buying one of those (only £10) and fitted that to the mini consummer unit to which my MH's external supply is connected, largely I suspect because I knew the consummer unit had space for it, alongside the MCB. So I now have a pretty LED display of the voltage my MH is receiving from the mains when it's connected. And my Electroblok has double protection against over voltage. You have to open the cupboard and get down on your knees to see it but the information is there if I ever want it. My second leisure battery was probably completely unnecessary too because we are light 12v consummers and one leisure battery would be quite sufficient and I'm probably just carrying the extra weight to no good purpose.


I have so far resisted fitting an inverter. My blessed wife doesn't use a hair dryer so I'm under no pressure. I did however buy one when I saw what I thought was a bargain but never got around to fitting it before I learned that it was cheap because it wasn't a sign wave inverter, so it never will get fitted. I did buy a Honda generator which we carriec around for several year and used rarely, really only to ensure it got used occassionally and now it sits at home in the garage - where at least it has served as a stand-by supply for the house when we've had power cuts.


I've had dreams of proper wild camping and had the urge to equip myself accordingly but in the twelve years we've had this MH, we've only ever slept in a truly wild place once, and that was a very isolated woodland location where we were the only ones there - but it was actually a CL and it's "pitches" just happened to be isolated clearings in a wood.


Hey ho, I'll start to get the balance right eventually.

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Congratulations of fitting the mains protection device, they are really good.


May I suggest you take extra care about reverse polarity?


I don't know which version you have but we are in the middle of testing 4 different models and the very first one we connected 'reverse polarity' blew the electronics inside the unit.

It looks like the designers never expected a house electrician to get the polarity wrong?


We have suspended testing while we examine the unit to see if we can repair it and then modify it to cope with reverse polarity.






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