Solar trickle charger

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SHRS2000
Joined: Mon 02 Jan, 2017 12:25
Posts: 33

  Z3 roadster 2.2i

Solar trickle charger

Post by SHRS2000 » Thu 28 Dec, 2017 09:40

The Z3 is off the road for the Winter.

I've got a solar trickle charger & just wondered how to attach it to the Z3. I use it on other cars by attaching directly to the battery but on the Z3 I noticed it has charging/jump points in the engine bay. Will the battery charge if I connect to these? Also, would it work via the cigarette lighter? I looked at connecting to the Z3 battery but, obviously, the boot light stays on so unless I take the bulb out doesn't seem an option.

Any help & or ideas much appreciated.

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colb
Joined: Sat 05 May, 2012 23:46
Posts: 596

  Z3 roadster 1.8 TU
Location: Newport South Wales UK

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by colb » Thu 28 Dec, 2017 12:12

Charger best connection would be direct to battery terminals in the boot although you could use the jump start the terminals in the engine compartment, the loss of current between the jump start terminals and the battery would be minimal given the length of wiring between the two. Don't forget there is a bonnet switch for the alarm to consider when using the jump start terminals so you may have to leave the bonnet unlatched to allow the charger cable to feed into the engine compartment which will activate the alarm switch. If you use the under bonnet terminals best not to lock the car so the alarm is not activated.
I think the cigarette lighter is live all the time (ignition off) so you could plug the charger into the lighter socket to give the battery a charge however you still have the problem of running the charger mains cable into the car, best would be over the top of a slightly lowered drivers window.
If you connect direct to the battery just remove the boot light bulb to stop it draining the battery.

My car is off the road for the winter, try and start it weekly and run it up to temperature, always plug in a volt meter in the Cig socket to monitor the voltage before and after starting just to check what the alternator is putting out. If its less than 12v before starting I would put it on trickle charge when I finished running it, I have automatic battery conditioners so once plugged in its safe to leave it connected till next time I check the car.

Not a fan of Solar chargers, their output is very variable.
Colb
1999 BMW 1.8 Z3
1998 Honda Deauville NT650V

SHRS2000
Joined: Mon 02 Jan, 2017 12:25
Posts: 33

  Z3 roadster 2.2i

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by SHRS2000 » Thu 28 Dec, 2017 14:17

colb wrote:
Thu 28 Dec, 2017 12:12
Charger best connection would be direct to battery terminals in the boot although you could use the jump start the terminals in the engine compartment, the loss of current between the jump start terminals and the battery would be minimal given the length of wiring between the two. Don't forget there is a bonnet switch for the alarm to consider when using the jump start terminals so you may have to leave the bonnet unlatched to allow the charger cable to feed into the engine compartment which will activate the alarm switch. If you use the under bonnet terminals best not to lock the car so the alarm is not activated.
I think the cigarette lighter is live all the time (ignition off) so you could plug the charger into the lighter socket to give the battery a charge however you still have the problem of running the charger mains cable into the car, best would be over the top of a slightly lowered drivers window.
If you connect direct to the battery just remove the boot light bulb to stop it draining the battery.

My car is off the road for the winter, try and start it weekly and run it up to temperature, always plug in a volt meter in the Cig socket to monitor the voltage before and after starting just to check what the alternator is putting out. If its less than 12v before starting I would put it on trickle charge when I finished running it, I have automatic battery conditioners so once plugged in its safe to leave it connected till next time I check the car.

Not a fan of Solar chargers, their output is very variable.
Many thanks for the reply. Unfortunately there is no power where I store the car so it has to be solar otherwise I'd have a CTEK charger. I normally start the car once or twice a month & run up to temperature as you suggest. I'll try it via the lighter socket & good tip with the voltmeter. just ordered one from eBay. :thumb:

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colb
Joined: Sat 05 May, 2012 23:46
Posts: 596

  Z3 roadster 1.8 TU
Location: Newport South Wales UK

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by colb » Thu 28 Dec, 2017 14:45

Forgot to mention a 12v Wind generator, when the brother in law got rid of his boat I rigged it up outside the garage and fed it to the car. Worked quite well, always seemed to have enough wind to spin it up and produce a charge for the battery.
Bit of an outlay but better than a solar charger as long as you get wind where you are.
Colb
1999 BMW 1.8 Z3
1998 Honda Deauville NT650V

SHRS2000
Joined: Mon 02 Jan, 2017 12:25
Posts: 33

  Z3 roadster 2.2i

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by SHRS2000 » Thu 28 Dec, 2017 15:50

colb wrote:
Thu 28 Dec, 2017 14:45
Forgot to mention a 12v Wind generator, when the brother in law got rid of his boat I rigged it up outside the garage and fed it to the car. Worked quite well, always seemed to have enough wind to spin it up and produce a charge for the battery.
Bit of an outlay but better than a solar charger as long as you get wind where you are.
Cheers! I'll have a look at that. Quite high up so nearly always some wind.

nang
Joined: Sat 25 Jun, 2016 04:27
Posts: 34

  Z3 roadster 2.8

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by nang » Sat 30 Dec, 2017 03:25

I plug mine direct to the battery and shut the boot. I figure with the thin wires and the rubber boot seals, it won't do any harm. It hasn't so far. It's an electric charger though. :)
Tony.

mickdev
Joined: Thu 18 Feb, 2016 17:38
Posts: 38

  Z3 roadster 1.8 TU

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by mickdev » Thu 04 Jan, 2018 13:04

I have a solar charger, I lengthened the wires by soldering extra onto the original leads, connected it through the battery terminals in the boot, there is enough gap between boot and body not to trap the cables

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100GRA
Z Register member
Joined: Mon 15 Aug, 2005 20:06
Posts: 353

  Z3 roadster 2.8
Location: Sheffield or Pickering

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by 100GRA » Mon 08 Jan, 2018 17:08

I have my car hooked up to a battery conditioner all winter, connected via the battery contacts under the bonnet from a lead which drops down from the garage ceiling. If you feed the cable through into the engine bay at the front of the wheel arch, there is ample room to close the bonnet and leave the car locked as normal.
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henrycrun
Joined: Wed 18 Apr, 2007 20:48
Posts: 521

  Z3 roadster 1.9
Location: Ely

Re: Solar trickle charger

Post by henrycrun » Wed 17 Jan, 2018 19:42

Just pop it in the cigarette lighter socket

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