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Smart alternator ? options

adamangler

Wakefield Window Warrior
Messages
4,133
Location
Wakefield
So i just bought a brand new van citroen relay 2.2 blue hdi (2022)

it has stop/start

Now i was lead to believe all new vans will have a smart alternator, i saw advice online to start the van put a voltmeter on and run it for 10 mins. If the voltage doesnt drop from 14.8 then it doesnt have a smart alternator.

So i put voltmeter on, started van it jumped up to 14.8 as expected. Ran it for 20 mins the voltage did not move at all

Do i have a smart alternator or not ? doesnt appear so from this test but im confused now

does anyone know if there and any other tests i can do or anything to look for ?

if i did attach my split relay would it damage the van at all if i did have a smart alternator or would it just not work properly ?

thanks
 

Pjj

Premium Member
Messages
11,150
Location
Cornwall
To be doubly sure I would phone the garage ware you bought it. Also be vary carefull what you attach to the vehicles electric system as you may find it will invalid any warranty that was certainly the case when I bought a new Renault years ago .
 

adamangler

Wakefield Window Warrior
Messages
4,133
Location
Wakefield
I could
To be doubly sure I would phone the garage ware you bought it. Also be vary carefull what you attach to the vehicles electric system as you may find it will invalid any warranty that was certainly the case when I bought a new Renault years ago .
cheers, i`ll ring the dealer tomorrow

I could just bench charge it for now but im used to not doing anything with my split charge relay i dont think i could go back to that every night.

If i did blow it up i would remove it and keep quiet i think
 

Pjj

Premium Member
Messages
11,150
Location
Cornwall
I could

cheers, i`ll ring the dealer tomorrow

I could just bench charge it for now but im used to not doing anything with my split charge relay i dont think i could go back to that every night.

If i did blow it up i would remove it and keep quiet i think
Lol manufacturers aren’t daft they will be able to work out that you had plugged a charger into the vehicles electrical system as it will show up when they plugg in diagnostics you cannot get away with a theses days it’s all logged in there somware, my Renault was a 2014 model and all that was stored in the ecu data port back then so it’s bound to be far more safisticated now 😰😰
 

spruce

The Sprucefather
Messages
8,003
Location
Teesside
Charging a leisure battery is only a real problem with stop start technology and regenerative braking.

In the early days you would be able to switch stop start off. Some on here said you could, but you would have to do it every time you started the van. I guess the dealer could switch it off, but then again, as it's part of current emissions standards, they probably will not.

Charging at 14.8v is too high for a maintenance free lead acid leisure battery. Just that aspect alone will mean you will need a battery to battery charger rather than a split charge relay or voltage charge relay.

Charging at 14.8v will mean a quicker starter battery recharge. I would also imagine the stop start feature would automatically switch off once the starter battery got too low on charge @adamangler
 

ched999uk

Well-known member
Messages
3,101
Location
Lancashire
Lol manufacturers aren’t daft they will be able to work out that you had plugged a charger into the vehicles electrical system as it will show up when they plugg in diagnostics you cannot get away with a theses days it’s all logged in there somware, my Renault was a 2014 model and all that was stored in the ecu data port back then so it’s bound to be far more safisticated now 😰😰
Most modern vehicles monitor the amount of current you pull from the battery so they have a better idea of the state of charge. So having a split charge relay of any sort will be easy to spot from data. Again if you directly attach to the battery +ve terminal to avoid the shunt resistor then the ecu knows what the rested battery voltage should be and it would be less so it would assume a fault!!
I haven't looked for a long time but most vans and cars have the ability to tow a caravan. These used to have split charge relays to top up leisure battery and keep fridge going! So in theory you could get a towing electrics kit fitted and then tap off that as that should comply with a warranty. Not sure how good it would be at actually charging the battery though.
Might be worth looking into?
 

Ian Sheppard

Well-known member
Messages
199
Location
Crowborough
So i just bought a brand new van citroen relay 2.2 blue hdi (2022)

it has stop/start

Now i was lead to believe all new vans will have a smart alternator, i saw advice online to start the van put a voltmeter on and run it for 10 mins. If the voltage doesnt drop from 14.8 then it doesnt have a smart alternator.

So i put voltmeter on, started van it jumped up to 14.8 as expected. Ran it for 20 mins the voltage did not move at all

Do i have a smart alternator or not ? doesnt appear so from this test but im confused now

does anyone know if there and any other tests i can do or anything to look for ?

if i did attach my split relay would it damage the van at all if i did have a smart alternator or would it just not work properly ?

thanks
Alternator management systems ( Smart alternators) have been around for some time They werr brought in to control CO2 emissions from vehicles and are more commonly known as Euro5 and Euro6 standards. Euro6 has been in place since April 2015 and to date intelligent split relay systems including the V16 Charger controller work well with Euro6.

Adam your vehicle will have Euro6 and the alternator will mange voltage output based on the demand the Van systems require, First on teh list is the Van engine battery which will need charging each time you start the engine as such voltage might not drop for a while after the engine starts particularly if your making short journeys.

Alternator voltage will tend to drop when under braking ( Regen braking) or When accelerating away from Trafiic light / moving off. This is where most emissions occur as such for a few seconds either while your braking or accelerating alternator voltage may drop, As soon as the van is moving at a constant speed again the alternator looks at the load demand of the van ( For example charging a battery ) and voltage is increased to match that demand

A simple standard Variable Spit relay starts to charge when voltage rises above 13.2V ( engine start) It stops charging when voltage drops below 12.5v. In Euro6 vehicles then when you brake the alternator volts can drop below 12.5v and charging stops. In some cases the voltage might not increase enough to see the split relay start charging again.

Intelligent VSR which include the V16C work differently at the point where voltage drops during braking. Rather than stopping charging all together they pause but keep the relay closed. Once braking stops and the van is moving again and because the Relay is still closed The alternator detects the load of the Batteries including the leisure battery and charging continues as before.

In Most Euro6 vehicles then an intelligent split relay can be used. Another option would be looking at battery to battery charging which work in a similar way to intelligent split relays.

Of interest Electric vehicles still need to have a 12V DC Van battery fitted that is separate from the Battery pack. The 12V DC battery on an EV is still used to run Lights, Radio, heating ect. It is also used to control an isolator on the vehicle to connect/disconnect the EV battery pack from the motor. The 12V DC battery is then charged while the vehicle is moving as now. The difference is that an EV uses an Inverter rather than a alternator to charge the 12V battery
 

spruce

The Sprucefather
Messages
8,003
Location
Teesside
Alternator management systems ( Smart alternators) have been around for some time They werr brought in to control CO2 emissions from vehicles and are more commonly known as Euro5 and Euro6 standards. Euro6 has been in place since April 2015 and to date intelligent split relay systems including the V16 Charger controller work well with Euro6.

Adam your vehicle will have Euro6 and the alternator will mange voltage output based on the demand the Van systems require, First on teh list is the Van engine battery which will need charging each time you start the engine as such voltage might not drop for a while after the engine starts particularly if your making short journeys.

Alternator voltage will tend to drop when under braking ( Regen braking) or When accelerating away from Trafiic light / moving off. This is where most emissions occur as such for a few seconds either while your braking or accelerating alternator voltage may drop, As soon as the van is moving at a constant speed again the alternator looks at the load demand of the van ( For example charging a battery ) and voltage is increased to match that demand

A simple standard Variable Spit relay starts to charge when voltage rises above 13.2V ( engine start) It stops charging when voltage drops below 12.5v. In Euro6 vehicles then when you brake the alternator volts can drop below 12.5v and charging stops. In some cases the voltage might not increase enough to see the split relay start charging again.

Intelligent VSR which include the V16C work differently at the point where voltage drops during braking. Rather than stopping charging all together they pause but keep the relay closed. Once braking stops and the van is moving again and because the Relay is still closed The alternator detects the load of the Batteries including the leisure battery and charging continues as before.

In Most Euro6 vehicles then an intelligent split relay can be used. Another option would be looking at battery to battery charging which work in a similar way to intelligent split relays.

Of interest Electric vehicles still need to have a 12V DC Van battery fitted that is separate from the Battery pack. The 12V DC battery on an EV is still used to run Lights, Radio, heating ect. It is also used to control an isolator on the vehicle to connect/disconnect the EV battery pack from the motor. The 12V DC battery is then charged while the vehicle is moving as now. The difference is that an EV uses an Inverter rather than a alternator to charge the 12V battery
While a split charge relay will work, I still believe charging a maintenance free lead acid battery at alternator voltage of 14.8v is too high. 14.2v recommended for maintenance free and 14.6v for flooded.
 

adamangler

Wakefield Window Warrior
Messages
4,133
Location
Wakefield
Thanks for the info Ian

Pretty sure i do have a smart alternator now so battery to battery charger It is.

Most b2b chargers I can see are only 30 or 40 amp where the durite vsr I have is 140a . Will a b2b charger be able to charge as fast as a vsr ?
 

spruce

The Sprucefather
Messages
8,003
Location
Teesside
I have 60amp b2b charger on my van. That doesn't charge my 105amp leisure battery any faster than a 30amp will do.

Once the B2B charger starts up there is an initial charging peak which very quickly drops. After a day's work my usual charging rate is around 8 amps on my way home as that's all the battery will absorb.
I've also had a Durite equivalent vsr on the same van. There is hardly any charging rate difference when comparing them both @adamangler

What a b2b charger does is smooth out the charging voltage. A Durite vsr doesn't do that.
If you have a van with regenerative braking then the alternator could deliver an output of up to 18v (according to Sterling). If you have a maintenance free battery your charging voltage should be no higher than 14.2v. Your b2b charger reduces that voltage from 18v to 14.2v.
Conversely my alternator only pushes our a charge voltage of 13.9v. My b2b charger boosts that charge voltage to 14.2v.
With a Durite vsr your leisure battery is getting what the ECU is telling the alternator to do.
An alternator on a van with regenerative braking might only output 12v when it's battery is over 80% charged which is not high enough to charge a leisure battery.

If you go into YouTube Sterling have many in-depth videos on this subject.
 

adamangler

Wakefield Window Warrior
Messages
4,133
Location
Wakefield
I have 60amp b2b charger on my van. That doesn't charge my 105amp leisure battery any faster than a 30amp will do.

Once the B2B charger starts up there is an initial charging peak which very quickly drops. After a day's work my usual charging rate is around 8 amps on my way home as that's all the battery will absorb.
I've also had a Durite equivalent vsr on the same van. There is hardly any charging rate difference when comparing them both @adamangler

What a b2b charger does is smooth out the charging voltage. A Durite vsr doesn't do that.
If you have a van with regenerative braking then the alternator could deliver an output of up to 18v (according to Sterling). If you have a maintenance free battery your charging voltage should be no higher than 14.2v. Your b2b charger reduces that voltage from 18v to 14.2v.
Conversely my alternator only pushes our a charge voltage of 13.9v. My b2b charger boosts that charge voltage to 14.2v.
With a Durite vsr your leisure battery is getting what the ECU is telling the alternator to do.
An alternator on a van with regenerative braking might only output 12v when it's battery is over 80% charged which is not high enough to charge a leisure battery.

If you go into YouTube Sterling have many in-depth videos on this subject.

Cheers Spruce.

It's just since I fitted a durite vsr to my van a couple of months ago I haven't had to Bench charge once. Very surprised by how good it is. Quite often we run 2 shuflo pumps for 6/7 hours a day and I can't flatten the battery to the point in needs bench charging.

So are you saying I would be wasting my money getting a 60 amp b2b over a 30 amp one?

If that's the case I'll go for the 30 as they are quite a bit cheaper.

I will certainly do some more research before buying
 

spruce

The Sprucefather
Messages
8,003
Location
Teesside
Cheers Spruce.

It's just since I fitted a durite vsr to my van a couple of months ago I haven't had to Bench charge once. Very surprised by how good it is. Quite often we run 2 shuflo pumps for 6/7 hours a day and I can't flatten the battery to the point in needs bench charging.

So are you saying I would be wasting my money getting a 60 amp b2b over a 30 amp one?

If that's the case I'll go for the 30 as they are quite a bit cheaper.

I will certainly do some more research before buying
In my experience with my Sterling BB1260; Yes.

I have a Victron battery monitor on board as well, so I can see what the state of the leisure battery is at any time on the move from the ap on my phone.

I have a 105amp combo leisure battery. It's a starter and leisure battery combination. It will kick out a good amp output for engine starting, but doesn't absorb a high charge input.
 
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