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Old 07-26-2010
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Wiring question - Echo Charger and Batt Monitor

Hi All...

I think I know the answer to this but I was hoping someone could tell me their thoughts. I am trying to figure out the proper way to add an intelligent battery charger, an echo charger and a battery monitor all together in the same system.

I have two AGM batteries, one for house and one for start. The battery switch is of the "off - on - combine" type so normally, the batteries are never joined. Combine is only used for emergency starting.

The house battery does not share a ground with the start battery. The house battery is connected to a battery monitor shunt on its negative side. An intelligent battery charger is on the house battery, with the positive on the battery post and the negative on the monitor shunt. I'm only interested in monitoring the house battery for current.

The start battery has the engine alternator on positive and the negative on the engine block. Of course the positive is also to the starter.

The negative terminals of the batteries have no connection through any path.

Enter the echo charger. The echo charger wants the two batteries to have their negative terminals tied together. My confusion is, if I connect the two negative terminals, will that screw up my battery monitor? I think I can do this because the house current still would flow through the shunt. The charging current still flows through the shunt for the house battery. I think the only potential problem will be that the charging shunt will measure charge current flowing into the starter battery, which might confuse it.

Are there any issues I missed? Are there better ways to do this?

Thanks...

Jim
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