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Old 09-11-2019, 01:25 PM   #1
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 84
Ignition contact cable, where to hook from?

Howdy Folks, some context:

Since I've got a 170a renogy Li battery, I've realized it wasn't getting full charge from my keyline 140A isolator. After investigation I discovered the amazing world of multi-stage charging that lithium batteries like.

So I proceed to buy the new Renogy 40a DC to DC charger, which is supposed to solve this problem by:
- Keeping constant 40a charge output
- Use a multi stage charging algorithm
- Boost voltage to compensate for cable loss
This is the one

This darn thing is not as easy to setup. Unlike the keyline charger which is a VSR (turns on when it senses the voltage). This one needs a positive signal input to activate and start charging.
The manual mention to connect the vehicle ignition signal so its hot when the vehicle starts.
I did this before for my reverse camera installing a cable out from the fuse box which felt pretty sketchy, soldering down there I managed to melt a bit of the fuse box plastic plastic so I was wondering if there's a better way to hook up from the ignition bus contact, it can be inside or under the hood.

I hope I explained myself right, I don't know much about cars terminology but I'll be happy to answer any questions

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Old 09-11-2019, 03:21 PM   #2
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Location: Corvallis, OR
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Ford has a couple sources. There's "body builder up-fitter" plugs scattered around the van. I assume you are putting the charger inside? The closest up-fitter plug is behind the B-pillar trim. You should have both accessory on and engine on wires in that plug. You can buy a pigtail from Ford (or amazon or wherever) or cut the wire and add your own plug or just splice it with a waterproof butt connector.

2000 E450 dually V10 wagon
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Old 09-12-2019, 11:50 AM   #3
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If your van has a trailer towing package you should also be able to find a "hot when running" wire in that bundle -- the big round trailer light plugs usually have a pin for charging the trailer battery while driving.

Soldering on the fusebox is iffy, as you found out. While it's a bit sketch as well, I like the fuse holders that plug into a fuse slot and hold the existing fuse plus an additional. Finding a spot to install where they don't block other fuses can be tough though.
1990 E-250 Sportsmobile w/ penthouse top, converted when new by SMB Texas.
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Old 09-13-2019, 04:02 PM   #4
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Location: Beaverton, OR
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As noted previously these tend to make hooking into fuse box easier

Of course connecting into an existing provided connector would be the cleanest.

Interestingly, I found the Transit provides a controlled soft ground (250 ma of sink current) enough to control a relay.

I have also found that these

Posi-Taps are a clean way to tap into an existing wire

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