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Old 10-01-2019, 02:29 PM   #1
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Factory Frame Mount Battery Box

I see on ebay there are some factory frame mount battery box options. Is it safe to assume that most any E350 would have the holes/nuts already for these? Are they passenger or driver side specific? I need to relocate the starter battery and this is the most logical option. Would be nice to use a factory part that bolts into pre-existing nut so long as it doesn't hang super low.
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Old 10-01-2019, 06:42 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by b. rock View Post
I see on ebay there are some factory frame mount battery box options. Is it safe to assume that most any E350 would have the holes/nuts already for these? Are they passenger or driver side specific? I need to relocate the starter battery and this is the most logical option. Would be nice to use a factory part that bolts into pre-existing nut so long as it doesn't hang super low.

The factory battery boxes I've seen attach to the passenger side frame rail, just below the floor under the side door(s). I think there's a specific one for the vans, but I'm not certain. On the one I removed recently at a wrecking yard, there were holes in the frame with spring steel clip nuts to bolt to from inside the box. Ford might have used existing frame holes and tailored the box to suit.


If you are buying one or more from ebay, spend the extra dough and buy the plastic lid to go with the box. Ford wants and arm and a leg for them, and they always seem to be missing (they are a weird shape, building your own lid would be a chore)
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Old 10-04-2019, 09:19 AM   #3
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I did notice that about the lids - a couple boxes didn't have them, and the lids on their own were the price of a whole box. Kind of odd.

Thanks, and good to know on the steel clip nuts. Fortunately those shouldn't be hard to source. Passenger side is what I was hoping as that's what side the wires are on now.
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Old 10-04-2019, 03:25 PM   #4
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Note that it fits a Group 65 battery and the most Ah I've seen on those is around 60-70ah. I have one installed from the factory and the battery is shot in it. Kind of a pain to drop the box with the battery in it so I've been putting it off.
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Old 10-05-2019, 12:15 PM   #5
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Factory frame mounted boxes are what I went with. Agile Off Road had a pair John found when I inquired. One was missing the top, other had a broken top. I fixed the broken top and ordered a new one... Then realized the tops won't fix the 100AH AGM's I bought...

https://www.amazon.com/Mighty-Max-Ba...dp/B00S2MCC7M/

Group 30H just fits after elongating holes on the battery boxes to lower them a bit. Interference is on the outside edge of the batteries where they just touch the bottom of the barn step.

Lyall
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:05 PM   #6
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Hi all. I have two of these mounted similarly under the barn doors holding AGM batteries, and am planning on moving the batteries indoors for two reasons.

First, and last significant issue is that they are a pain to drop and work on in an urgent situation. I learned this lesson the hard way in a campground in the Atacama desert where I didn't have access to a floor jack.

Second, and more importantly is the poor positioning of the boxes on the rail opposite the exhaust. If you are in cold climates or are always traveling 50mph+, the location and heat generated by the exhaust is not an issue... However, if your are ever planning on idling, traveling up long and steep mountain passes at expectedly low speeds, spend time in the southern part of the US (or anywhere in the tropics), or encounter stop and go traffic - you might want to reconsider positioning your batteries in this location. During our 8+ month trip through South America we toasted our batteries, I believe due to excessive heat production in this mounting position. Sometimes the battery monitor read over 140°. In veracruz state México, the batteries never dropped below 120°, even as I was traveling 50 mph. In fact, driving around Seattle in stop and go traffic causes my battery monitor's high temp alarm to trigger (alarm is set at 117°).

Considering that actively charging an AGM battery under high temperatures (120°+) can destroy the battery (and appears to have ruined $500 worth of batteries in my case), in retrospect I have realized that this is probably the worst place that I could have mounted my batteries.

As always YMMV.

-Jeff
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Old 10-16-2019, 11:50 AM   #7
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I am starting my build out, and planning out where everything might go. Which batteries are high on that list. But if they are mounted under the body, isn't there a risk of water getting up there and shorting them out? Or if you have to do a small river crossing out on a trail, I feel you could get a lot of water up there. (and if you go with a bigger river crossing could submerge them)

Or is putting them under, more of a thing for non 4x4 vans?
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Old 10-16-2019, 12:06 PM   #8
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That's an interesting note on the heat @jjbusch. Really hadn't thought of that to be honest. I would also expect batteries inside of an engine bay to experience rather high temperatures as well however, especially as speeds decrease and ambient temps increase. Did you end up actually mounting yours inside the cab, or is that still not fully determined?

@duggyfresh - the spacing between the terminals might be far enough apart to prevent shorting during a river crossing but I'm not 100% positive. I've forded some fairly deep water before in previous vehicles but never up to battery terminal height.

I realized that my van's previous life as a shuttle might shut down this idea as it has a set of steps right where I would be putting them. Hmmm.
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Old 10-19-2019, 04:15 PM   #9
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@b. rock, I still have them under the van. We just returned from our 25k mile trip and moving the batteries is quite low on my priority list right now. When I do move them, it will be inside the vehicle - currently I have two locations in mind.

I really don't think the battery location inside the engine compartment would suffer such high heat, but I don't have a temp monitor on that battery, so I could be mistaken - especially considering how tight everything is packed in the engine bay.

As for water, I didn't ford any streams or submerge our batteries, so I can't give any input on the water question, other than normal road wash not having an impact.

One other recommendation... If you do place them under the van, I would recommend using a fuse that you can mount just off the battery, and access without dropping the batteries. I used the blue seas MRBF which mount directly on the battery terminal. Thankfully I never had one blow, but if it had I would have needed to drop the batteries just to change the fuse - that whole processes is a pain and requires a floor jack (at least for me).

Good luck on whatever you decide to do!
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Old Yesterday, 08:14 AM   #10
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I have two factory frame mount battery boxes that i'll sell you. Located in Chattanooga, TN. Send me a DM if you want to work a deal.


Justin
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