We wake up this morning, and undeterred from yesterday efforts, Jane wants to go for another run. This time she went at her own pace, and I went at mine. Running is pretty natural to me, but Jane does not find it easy, but she gives it her best shot! I came back and showered and decided to crank the van to get some juice into the battery. Shit! It is flat!
So we decided it was time that we went and bought a new battery and have a think about fitting a dual battery. I had looked online on dual battery kits, and Jesus, they were expensive, so I decided that I would wire it up my way.
For those of you that understand cars, this is what I had in mind…
I was going to take a cable from the positive of the car battery and put that to the positive of the new auxiliary battery. I then was going to join the two negatives up. This would then need a switch in to break the connection between the two batteries so that when we are driving, they are BOTH charging. When we just want to run a fan or my laptop, it will only kill the 2nd auxiliary battery and not the battery used by the campervan to start.
The other thing we needed was to make it idiot-proof as we could be doing this under the influence of beer or tiredness! So I decided a big red battery cut off key would do the trick lovely! So with this in my mind, we set out to find a couple of batteries and the bits to do it.
We walked into the main industrial area in Hervey Bay town, and we check out the prices of Batteries at all the usual places, and we were shocked at the prices. $160 was about the cheapest we could find a battery, and we needed two of the fellas! I decided to check out a place called Battery World.
I explained what I had planned to do to the chap, and he agreed it was a pretty simple and cost-effective way of doing things. I asked him the price of batteries, and he said about the same as we had been quoted. I was a little shocked; however, I had the cheek to ask if he had some ok second-hand ones, and he said yes. We paid $30 for the new van battery, and because we wanted a big Auxiliary battery, it was $50, and he could sort out all the cabling and connectors as well!
We decided to walk back to the campsite and ask someone to give us a jump to get the van to Battery world. They said they would measure the cables up for us etc. Oh boy, we had five people round our camper van trying to help, which is nice, but I knew how to jump a van and boy, these guys didn’t. I was not in a position to say shut up and let me do it! after about 30 min’s by sheer luck than judgment, the van fires into life (thank god)
We get it to Battery World, and the guy has decided that he is not that busy today so that he can help us with a few things! He takes the old battery out and tests the alternator is still working, which it is, and he fits the new van battery. Then we discuss where the second battery was going, and I decide it should go in a box and is there a way we can put a fuse in so we can make it safe etc.
In the end, they end up fitting it for us, which we are truly grateful for because they didn’t have to, but not only that, they only charged us for the bits! The guy was very nice and went beyond the call of duty to help, so all in all we got it all supplied and fitted for $155, which I thought was perfect and a piece of mind also!
That was pretty much our day spent