Ford Ranger PX2 Dual Battery System & Accessory Installation

We get asked a lot about Ford Rangers and the modifications we can do to them. So, here’s mine. I thought I’d give you a quick run through. It’s actually got a lot done so we’ll just plough through it front to rear.

So the first thing we’ll start off with, it’s got a full LLA, led headlight upgrade, so high, low, and park in the front are all converted to led and they’re amazing. They’re fantastically bright. And then, I’m not really a bull bar kind of guy. We’ve got that on our other vehicle. So, we fitted a Great Whites light bar down here in the gap. I like it. And we’ll show you a little bit later on, it’s also got a backlit, halo feature that comes on with my park lights, so that’s pretty cool.

Pretty much the rest to show you under the bonnet, and we’ll get you a close up here in a minute. It’s just my fuse panel and all my relays that control everything we’ll go through as we move down the vehicle.

Inside The Cab

So, here we are, we’re inside the cab now. We’ll move through. The first thing I’ve done is fit a light force fascia. You can get these for the PX2 Rangers and in that, we’ve managed to fit a dual volt meter, one for the front battery, one for the auxiliary, behind the seat battery. Switch for my rear light bar, a TowPro for my caravan, and then a switch for my front light bar. We also still retain the factory 12 volt outlet.

The other thing we’ve done that’s super cool, is this Polaris display unit. Basically, what that gives me is full Hema mapping, a front camera, and also it connects to, we’ve run an integration with my Safety Dave camera on my caravan. And so, while we’re driving along, that runs a full caravan rear cam.

Dual Battery System

So here we are behind the back seat. Obviously with a Ranger, with a dual cab, you don’t have much room so we’ve put an awful lot of stuff behind here. I’ve got my compressor that I’ve just mounted to a switch and my output here rather than plumbing it all over the vehicle. It just means you pop open the door, plug in there, it’s much easier. And then, obviously the elephant in the room, is our big dual battery system we’ve got here. So, this is 108 Amp hour, lead crystal battery. It’s got a Redarc 1240 DC-DC and basically a fuse box for all the outputs and the red plug that you’ll see on a close up. That is our solar input.

We’ve found these to be fantastic, we’re nearly on triple figures on the installs of them. The beauty of the lead crystal is that it charges up to three times faster than the AGM. So, what it means is I get three days out of my fridge and then I’ve really only got to go for an hour run and I’m charged up, ready to go for another three days. So, these have been fantastic and I can’t recommend them enough.

In The Tub

So here we are down in the tub, guys. First thing to show, Great Whites light bar, with the backlit halo. What we’ve done is we’ve wired up the halo backlighting to the factory tub lighting. What that means is when you open the door, it lights up the tub and gives you a nice white light at night, but when you close the doors and you start the vehicle, the light goes out so that’s really important so you don’t have any rear facing white lights.

The other thing we’ve done is, all my outputs for my dual battery system are down here. What I’ve done is, I’ve flush mounted them on. And that keeps it neat and tidy and means that anything can float and roll around in the ute and it’s not going to get damaged. We’ve installed a cigarette, dual USB, and then an Anderson in a fully enclosed space. I use an Anderson to run my fridge, just so I don’t get bad connections. I’ve found cigarette socket always comes loose.

Trailer Plugs

So here we are, last stop on the tour, down the back of the vehicle. We’ll start down here with just Anderson plug, standard Anderson plug through an isolator to charge the batteries in my caravan, factory 12 pin plug, and then the cool one is, this is a Safety Dave WOZA that we’ve retrofitted to the Polaris head unit. What that means is that the camera on my caravan, which is a Safety Dave, now integrates with the Polaris head unit we showed you on the dash. The Anderson plug is just an isolated Anderson plug and that charges the lithium batteries in my caravan.

If you’ve made it through to the end of this video, well done, but if you’ve got any questions, then give us a call, on 1300 227 353. You could e-mail us at [email protected] or leave us a comment below.

Toyota Hilux Under Bonnet Dual Battery System

Toyota Hilux Under Bonnet Dual Battery System

Hi guys, Andrew here from Accelerate Auto Electrics & Air Conditioning with Josh, one of our dual battery experts.

One of the questions we get asked a lot is where should I put my dual battery or my auxiliary battery? Should it go under the bonnet or in a box in the back?

This is actually Josh’s Toyota Hilux. We’re here looking at it and he’s put his under the bonnet. We’re gonna let him tell us why he thinks it’s better under the bonnet, in his vehicle. Take it away Josh.

Josh: So, I went under the bonnet mainly to save space in my tub. A lot of the battery boxes are big and bulky and take up a lot of room.

The Toyota Hilux’s are good for that because you can get an under bonnet battery tray that still fits nice and tidy out of the way. You can get a 105 amp hour battery under the bonnet. This is ample to run your fridges and accessories for a couple of days. In conjunction with that, with the Toyota Hilux’s, you have to use a DCDC charger.

I have used the Redarc BCDC1225D, which is solar capable, and also maintains my battery to a hundred percent. A lot of these new cars have computer controlled alternators and smart alternators, so they need a correct charging profile. Otherwise your battery will never charge correctly and the computers don’t agree with it.

Andrew: So, how many days do you get outta your fridge Josh?

Josh: I get about three days without solar, before I have to start my vehicle and run and charge my battery back up.

Andrew:  Good, and what size solar panel have you got?

Josh: I use a 120 watt portable, little solar panel that I throw out in the sun. That way I can keep my car parked in the shade.

Andrew: Okay, cool. Anything else you’ve put on it for us, just quickly?

Josh: So, I’ve done LED upgrades in my headlights. I’ve got a slim line light bar mounted in my grill, because I haven’t got to the point where I want a bull bar.  I quite like the look of the slim factory body lines. I’ve got built in work lights in the back, that again run off my auxiliary battery. I also run my UHF and all that, which is all inside the cab as well.

Andrew: So any regrets putting it under the bonnet?

Josh: No, I don’t regret putting it under the bonnet. Mainly because, if it’s possible to go under the bonnet, I think it’s the best, most easiest way to do a dual battery system. As yeah, you save a lot of space.

Andrew: What we’ll do is we’ll take you inside and will give you a quick look at Josh’s dash. He’s used the factory switches that we use on our light bars and so on, so you can get a good look at that.

Inside The Cab

Josh: So inside my cab, I run the factory fit Toyota style blanks, so they replace the factory blanks. In this one here, I have a voltmeter and USB, which runs off my second battery to keep all my devices and phones, and tablets charged on the move.

Next to it I run the factory fit UHF plug. In a lot of these vehicles there is nowhere to mount the hand pieces. I didn’t wanna drill holes all through my dash to mount a hand piece. So I run the Uniden unit with all the controls and speaker, built into the hand piece. And when I don’t want it in use, I can just unplug that and put it away in my glove box. That way I don’t have cables and things dangling all over the place.

On the driver side of my vehicle I have the factory fit Toyota switches, that runs my auxiliary work lights, my fog lights, and my driving lights on the front. Now, we’re gonna go to the back and I’ll show you my work lights and the set up I have in my tray.

In The Ute Tub

So in the back of my Ute, I run just an Anderson plug in the side, which mainly runs my fridge. If I need to when I’m out camping, I then plug in a junction box. On this I run another voltmeter, some USB Chargers, and some cig sockets to run camp lights and stuff like that.

Also, I have my UHF aerial mounted in the back here. It’s a 6.5 DBI Uniden aerial. Once again, I didn’t have a bull bar, so I found an alternative place to mount it, and it’s quite tidy in the back.

At the top I run two LED work lights. These mostly come in use when I’m backing my boat down the boat ramps at night. Just to give me a bit more light and also when I’m camping, to find those campsites.

Andrew: So that was a quick run through of Josh’s Toyota Hilux, with his under bonnet dual battery system and a few other mods he’s done. If you have any questions give us a call on 1300 227 353 Email us at [email protected] or feel free to comment below.

Where Can I Fit a Dual Battery System?

Depending on your vehicle, there are a few options when it comes to where you can fit a dual battery system. Today we’re gonna run you through the most popular options to fit a dual battery system and which common vehicles they are best suited to.

Under Bonnet

So, first up, let’s chat about an under bonnet dual battery system. This option involves fitting two batteries under the bonnet of your vehicle. In some cases, the vehicle actually comes with two starting batteries as standard. In this situation, we’d replace both batteries, one would be replaced with a high-powered starting battery and the other would be replaced with an auxiliary or dual battery.

In other cases, if the vehicle comes standard with one starting battery and an empty space somewhere for a second battery, we would leave the starting battery and fit an auxiliary or dual battery in an empty space under the bonnet.

Under bonnet has to use a deep cycle usually calcium type of battery. For most people, the under bonnet is an ideal dual battery solution as it keeps the auxiliary battery out of the way without having to take up space somewhere in the vehicle.

Under bonnet systems can be fitted to a number of popular four-wheel drives including the Toyota Landcruiser Prado, or Hilux, a Nissan Navara, a Ford Ranger PJ or PK, the Holden Colorado and Rodeo the Isuzu D-MAX and MU-X, some Jeep Wranglers and Cherokees and VW Amaroks.

Under Tray or Canopy

Next up is a great solution for a ute. The under tray or canopy setup. This is quite a popular option for people who have a ute with canopies or under tray storage as it keeps your battery locked away without taking up space in the cab of the vehicle.

The versatility of this option is what makes it so popular. With so many options for sizes and types of batteries on the market today, there are very few limits to what type of system we can install under the tray or in a canopy.

The main downside of this setup is that you will lose some storage space in your canopy or in your tray. This is where our next and newest option comes in.

In-Cab

We have recently developed an in-cab dual battery solution for utes and dual cab vehicles that is our best space saver yet.

This system involves fitting a lead crystal battery behind the rear seats of dual cab utes. This frees up the entire canopy or tray and allows for a more secure and protected dual battery system. We can customise the location of plugs and sockets, put them anywhere in the vehicle and also fit anything else that you may need.

Due to the design and size requirements, this type of system is limited to a select group of vehicles. At the moment we can put this in the Ford Ranger and Mazda BT-50s.

If you have a different vehicle, get in touch, we’ll do some measurements and see if it’s a suitable option for you. If you want to know a bit more about our in-cab dual battery solutions, check out another video here:

Portable Battery Box

As awesome as these three in-vehicle systems are, they do have one major drawback, you need have the vehicle close by to power everything. This isn’t so bad when you’re parked up in one spot for a while but if you want a bit more freedom, this is where our final option comes in.

The portable battery box.

There are so many variations of portable battery boxes on the market. There are pre-made boxes with all the outlets and sockets you will ever need and maybe some that you never actually will use. However, if you’re after something a little bit more suited to your specific needs, we have a range of custom portable battery boxes available.

We have four standard options available that are assembled in house. Or you can choose to have one made that is completely customised with the sockets and plugs that you need and the isolator or DC-to-DC charger of your choice. The main benefit of a portable battery box is that it’s portable.

You can remove the box from your vehicle and set it up in camp to run a fridge or lights. Perfect for those who like to venture further off the beaten track.

So, these are the most common options available for where you can fit a dual battery system.

Which one do you prefer?

Let us know in the comments below. If you’ve got any other questions, you can give us a call, 1300 227 353 or contact us online.

200 Series Toyota Landcruiser Dual Battery System Options

Hi, Andrew here from Accelerate Auto, Electrics and Air Conditioning. I just had a look down in my workshop and realised we’ve got five 200 Series Toyota Landcruisers getting fit outs today.

It’s actually not that uncommon for us at the moment. So I thought that we’d do a quick video, we’d do a runaround, and then this afternoon, we’ll show you what we’ve been busy doing today.

200 Series Toyota Landcruiser Dual Battery System – Install #1

This is one of the ones that we’ve finished today. This one’s had pretty much one of the most common jobs we do to these 200’s.

What we’ve done today is we’ve installed a second battery using a genuine second Toyota tray. This is actually the version that only came out with one battery, if you know. So we’ve used the genuine second tray in the other side.

And we generally end up installing some kind of light bar or spot lights.

We’ve done a few of them. I’ll show you them later, but this has got the Titan Light Bar on it. We’ve installed that today.

We’ve installed the REDARC BCDC1240. We’ll show you some close ups of that mounted behind the grill to help its cooling.

We’ve installed an RACQ Deep Cycle Battery on this one. The reason why is the customer’s a tourer, and obviously with RACQ, nationwide warranty, no better battery for a tourer out there. Doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, but will definitely do its job, and anywhere you are in Australia, you won’t have an issue.

We’ve also installed Anderson Plug that we’ll show you down the rear, and various outlets in the back.

As I said before, we’ve used the factory Toyota tray. We do this ’cause one thing that’s very important with these systems is to use at least 105 amp hour battery.

There are other systems around where they fit a smaller battery up in the back corner. You just do not get the fridge run time that everybody’s looking for. With 105, you’ll get at least two to three days, and it’s really what you need in a system.

So whenever you’re looking at any different 200 Series dual-battery system, always ensure that you’re gonna get at least 100 or 105 amp hour battery, and then it’s very important with them. We have a lot of customers who are disappointed with the performance when they use a smaller battery.

Okay, so here we are down the back of the car. The main reason why we installed this dual-battery system is so the customer can run his fridge and charge various things at the back here. So the reason why we’ve got four outlets is we’ve got a cigarette socket, and Engel and a USB socket, and a volt meter to top it off.

Okay, so one other thing we’ve done on this vehicle is they come out with a factory cigarette lighter that’s obviously wired to ignition.

We’ve replaced that cigarette lighter with a dual-USB port that’s actually wired to the auxiliary battery permanent power, so that means you can charge your iPads and so on with the ignition switched off, or anybody in the back has constant power to running any sort of devices like that while you’re travelling.

We’ve also run an Anderson Plug. The reason why I’m showing you this one is we actually use the Trailer Vision Anderson cover. It’s really neat. We don’t see many people using these, but we think it’s pretty much a necessity on the back of such a good-looking car.

200 Series Toyota Landcruiser Dual Battery System – Install #2

I’m gonna show you yet another 200 Series Toyota Landcruiser Dual Battery System fit out we’ve done today.

This one, we’ve used the Supercharge All Rounder 105 amp hour battery.  So again, that’ll give you two to three days running with your fridge in the rear. We’ve also fitted some King Spotlights.

Always a challenge, but they’re going on quite well. And this one, we’ve used the REDARC 1225 BCDC in the front. And that’s really most of it.

We’ll show you some close ups of what we’ve done in the bonnet.

Okay, and here we are down the back of the vehicle. Now, it seems to be our standard, but we keep having our customers want to do it this way and see it this way, and we keep doing it.

So what we end up doing is cigarette socket, Engel socket and then dual USB socket with a volt meter, as well. Seems to work quite well. Give customers all the options.

One thing we do a bit differently is we run a couple of separate feeds down here. You’ll find sometimes it’s easy just to run one feed and loop it all up.

What that means is if you have a problem in one circuit, everything goes, so you’ll notice up the front, there was a couple of different fuses. And that fuses this all individually.

Okay, and another touch that we’ve added to it, even though we fitted the Kings Spotlights, we actually have fitted a factory looking switch, rather than using the one supplied with the kit.

We used this and it makes it a much more professional install and actually fits in with the other switches quite well.

If you want any more information on 200 Series Toyota Landcruiser dual battery systems, light bar installations, or you have any questions in general that need to be answered, feel free to comment below, contact us online or give us a call on 1300-227-353.

All About Anderson Plugs – Colours, Sizes & Uses Explained

If you’re looking to get a dual battery system in your vehicle or you’re towing a caravan or camper trailer, chances are you have probably heard all about Anderson plugs. Put simply, an Anderson plug is a specialised plug we use to connect devices that use high-current circuits.

Sizes & Colours

Anderson plugs come in a range of sizes and colours, the most common being the grey and the red 50-amp ones. You can get up to a 350-amp. The bigger the current, the bigger the Anderson plug we need.

A red Anderson plug will only fit into a red Anderson plug. We can’t connect, basically, a red and a grey. The only real reason you’ll have the different colours is so that you always remember to connect the right accessory into the right accessory on your caravan circuit or car.

When to Use an Anderson Plug

Charging Circuits

The Anderson plug is designed to handle a high, continuous load, so this makes it ideal to use in charging circuits. The most common use that we install Anderson plugs for is charging the auxiliary battery in your caravan or camper trailer when driving.

It’s fitted to the rear of the vehicle like this one here. This is the ideal alternative to running a charge feed through your 12-pin plug. Too much current charging through a 12-pin plug can cause the pins to melt as they’re not large enough to handle the current from most modern alternators. Having an Anderson plugs means you can safely pass more charge through to your caravan’s battery charge system, keeping the caravan batteries charged up while you travel to your next destination.

Solar Panel Connection

Another common use for Anderson plugs is to connect a solar panel via a regulator to top up your batteries. We often fit these to four-wheel drives and caravans with dual battery systems in an easy to access location so they could easily top up their auxiliary batteries via the solar panel without having to run your vehicle.

Powering ESC (Electronic Stability Control)

We’ll also regularly fit another Anderson plug to your tow bar if you’ve got a caravan that requires power to ESC, which is electronic stability control. Although your ESC can be run through a 12-pin if necessary, we recommend using an Anderson plug because it’s a more secure connection when driving, and ease of disconnection if you’re going off-road. It’s common practice to use a red Anderson plug for ESC and a grey one for your charge feed on the back of your car so you can easily identify them.

12 Volt Accessory Power Alternative

Due to their secure locking design, Anderson plugs also make great alternatives for powering high-draw 12-volt accessories such as fridges and air compressors. Anderson plugs are much more robust and hold a more secure connection than the standard 12-volt cigarette socket. They’re particularly good for those of us who like to venture off the beaten track.

I hope this video has given you a bit more information about what Anderson plugs are and why we recommend installing them as part of a dual battery system in your four-wheel drive, caravan, or camper trailer.

If you have any further questions about Anderson plugs, give us a call on 1300 227 353, contact us online or comment below.