8 out of 10 technical problems we hear, such as too little power to tip or the engine running erratically, are related to batteries that are not recharged in time. If the voltage of the battery is too low, a larger current flows through the carbon brushes of the motor, causing them to wear out prematurely. However, many of these problems can be avoided with proper maintenance and regular battery charging.
How to charge your battery
Charging the battery can be done in two ways. Always make sure that the battery switch is switched on, otherwise you will not be able to charge.
In the standard equipment, TwinTrailer offers a charging plug that the customer or the dealer can connect to a trickle charger. Using the plug, you can connect the charger via the contact point near the control. The red wire (+) and the black wire (–) must be connected as shown in the photo below:
There are many different trickle chargers on the market ranging from EUR 50 to EUR 500. We recommend a model that can supply a minimum of 10A to a maximum of 15A charging current. If a battery of 90Ah is 'empty', it will be fully charged at 10A, in 4.5 hours.
There are also chargers of 5A. They will not only need twice as much time to charge, but will also be able to 'de-sulfate' the battery less. Due to daily use, a layer of sulphate is deposited on the lead plates, which reduces the electrical conductivity. By using a heavier charger, this sulphate layer is broken down and the lead plates are cleaned, as it were, which only extends the lifespan.
The second way in which the TwinTrailer can be charged is via the built-in battery charger that has been available as an option since 2021. This charger is definitely of good quality, shockproof and waterproof. You then have a plug on the outside of the technical unit with which you can easily connect the TwinTrailer to the mains power. More technical information about this option will follow later in a separate article.
Better not via the 13-pin plug
It is very important to note that the TwinTrailer battery is NOT charged via the 13-pin plug. Despite the fact that some brands do offer this, we have deliberately not opted for this:
- A battery is recharged depending on how much time you drive on the road. Some users drive only 10min. to one yard, other maybe 1 hour. As a manufacturer, we have no control over this.
- A battery is discharged depending on how many times you tip per day and how heavy the load is. As a constructor, we have no control over this either.
It must also be said that a constant power supply from the 13-pin plug is not an ideal power supply for charging a battery. Especially if you compare this with the modern trickle chargers. See the chart below:
This trickle charger goes through a full program with different currents and voltages that regenerate the battery giving it a longer life. This is never possible via the 13-pin plug.
We don't want to give the users a false feeling that with such a solution the battery will always be charged, because that way one will certainly get into trouble. Hence our conscious choice not to charge the TwinTrailer this way and we therefore strongly advise against this.
Since we consider it very important that our customers can always count on their TwinTrailer, since 2021 every TwinTrailer has been fitted with a battery indicator in the standard equipment. This has a display with the battery voltage (volts) and a color scale. This gives you a reminder that the battery needs to be charged and an extra check whether the charger is properly connected. Curious how it works exactly? You can find the manual here. The battery indicator can also be put on older models thanks to the specific kit we made for this.
Charging too often does not exist, but too little is detrimental to the life of the battery, but also to your engine. Save yourself this frustration by charging regularly!