Electric Trailer Jack Wiring Diagram – This post was originally published in September 2020 and is ideal for battery storage systems up to 300-400 amp hours. We update it from time to time.
This post includes detailed wiring diagrams and a complete list of materials needed to put together a very reliable and robust electrical system for your RV that’s capable of extended off-grid adventures and powering just about anything you throw at it.
Electric Trailer Jack Wiring Diagram
If you’re confused about an electrical or solar system for your DIY motorhome, you’ve come to the right place. We have many resources, including blog posts and videos, example wiring diagrams (see below), and even offer service and installation from our workshop in Sarasota, Florida. If you’re really stuck, we also offer consulting and design services.
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Below are some of our examples of motorhome/RV power systems. Each contains a blog post, detailed PDF wiring diagrams, and a corresponding discounted product bundle. Eventually, you will likely customize your system to your specific needs and perhaps incorporate ideas from one or more example systems.
Consider purchasing your power system equipment from our store. Our packages offer great prices (yes, better than Amazon), free shipping, and you’ll have access to expert support and support our ability to create more content.
It is very important to understand that there are hundreds of ways to skin a cat. how bad We don’t skin cats and neither should you. Either way, the point is that this information should be considered a guide and not gospel. You can certainly build this system exactly as detailed, but I recommend that you consider your specific needs and then configure accordingly.
Also, the length of the cables is important. This electrical diagram assumes that the “primary” electrical system runs about 20′ from the vehicle’s battery to the driver’s side wheel where it is installed. By “primary” I mean most of the stuff you see on the wiring diagram – all the main parts but not the “branch circuits” that feed the actual loads in the van like lights and fans etc. He also carries all the burdens. Components are close to each other; No more than 5(ish) feet of cable between them. If your actual configuration differs from this, you must adjust the wire gauge (AWG) accordingly. The Blue Sea Circuit Wizard is a great tool for figuring out what gauge cable you need. Put the load in amps, the length of the cable and how long it will run in minutes and it will tell you the correct gauge. I usually choose “over capacity”. Thread is quite cheap compared to other parts. In this wiring diagram I’ve also tweaked it to make it a bit easier so you don’t need as many types/gauges of wire and lugs etc.
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Speaking of wiring… you can use a wire loom to protect your wires while you run them through areas where rubbing against objects can damage them. So let me introduce you to this “Wire Loom Insertion Tool”. It is quite a game changer.
With most 2,000 or 3,000 watt inverters, it will match the 30 amp input from shore power.
Power: Up to 3000 extra watts. So if you manage to run enough things in your van to get through 30 amp service from shore power, the inverter will fill the gap instead of tripping the shore power breaker. So this is unlikely to happen unless you’re running some type
Loads on your equipment, it is important to provide adequate circuit protection and wiring “just in case”. So this wiring diagram calls for a 50 amp switch downstream with 6 AWG wire instead of the more “typical” 30 amp switch with 10 AWG wire.
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If you look closely at the specifications of Victron Multiplus inverters, they don’t actually support 2000 or 3000 watts continuous respectively. This isn’t important, but it’s a bit confusing because of what they’re called.
The Multiplus 12/3000/120 produces 2400 watts continuous output at 77 degrees, 2200 watts at 104 degrees, and up to 6000 watts surge.
The Multiplus 12/2000/80 delivers 1600 watts continuous output at 77 degrees, 1450 watts at 104 degrees and boost up to 4000 watts.
Once you’ve fully wired your system, you’ll need to at least set up/program the Multiplus to work with the batteries you’ve chosen, and maybe tweak some of the other settings. We have another post on how to do that.
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Besides complexity, another pain point around electrical systems is how expensive they are. In particular, leading brands of lithium batteries (such as the Victron Superpack batteries shown in our example and other popular brands such as Battleborn) are very expensive: around $1,000 for each 100 amp hour. It’s a classic “pay for what you get” type of scenario, and there are good reasons to buy high-quality components. For example, they are of excellent quality, designed to last for many years with a 10-year guarantee (!). But, the truth is that
. You might ask yourself, do I want to carry twice as much stuff in my van for a few years or half as much for a decade?
Anyway, Will Prowse made an excellent video testing a well-made but low-cost lithium battery that’s worth a look. An example is the SOK 206 amp hour battery currently selling for $1,029 on Amazon.
If you have an AC load that must be powered by shore (utility) power only, (not AC power inverted), you can use the “AC output 2” connection on the multiplex inverter/charger, which is “live” only. Then there is an onshore current. A good example of this available would be an AC/DC refrigerator. Many of these will “default” to using AC power when available. If you have connected an outlet near your inverter-powered refrigerator, the refrigerator will switch to that power source whenever the inverter is on (inverting), which is less energy efficient than continuing to operate without 12-volt direct current. If you instead plug it into the AC outlet that powers the refrigerator, it will only draw AC power when you have shore or utility power.
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Unlike some other battery-to-battery charging products that sense voltage and activate charging based on that, the Renoji DC-to-DC charger (or battery-to-battery charger) I used requires you to connect a positive 12-volt signal. cable” from the vehicle’s ignition switch so that it charges the van’s (vehicle’s) battery only when the ignition is on. Without this ignition trigger or voltage sensing on the unit, a battery-to-battery charger can easily drain the van’s battery because the battery-to-battery charger will draw current without an alternator providing the charge.
After some research I found that some Promaster vans (I think 2016 or newer) have an “upfitter connector” on the passenger side “pillar” which is the area behind the passenger seat where the seat belt attaches to the wall of the van. If you remove the black plastic trim on the bottom of this “pillar”, you will see a white multi-pin connector (photo below). This is an “upfitter connection” that provides multiple connection points for the ProMaster in one place. This PDF file (ProMaster Upfitter Connector Diagram PDF) details this connector, including what each pin on the connector is or does. It turns out that pin #13 is the “ignition feed” which is 12 volts positive when the ignition switch is on. So I used it as a “trigger” for the Renogy DC to DC charger.
Note: If you have an older ProMaster that does not have this upfitter connection, you may want to consider connecting the cockpit area light wiring as detailed in this post. Another option is to use a “tap a fuse” type splitter on fuse #31 in the ProMaster fuse block (under the steering wheel). The photo shows this location. These items allow you to keep a fuse for the original circuit but tap that fuse location for another circuit. In this case you would use a 5 amp fuse for each.
To do this, I had to order the correct “male” version of this connector (part number 1-480710-0) as well as the “pin” itself (part number 350218-1). The way this works is by soldering the correct wire to an empty pin and then inserting that pin into the correct position on the connector, allowing you to access and connect various things to this top connector. These parts are pretty cheap, so I bought a few with the expectation of destroying a few to find out how they all work. I’m glad I did because I really destroyed some experiments. Overall, it’s not difficult, but it took a while to find the right pieces and figure out how they fit together. So I hope this saves you that time!
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Wire coming from Pin # 13 of Upfitter
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