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Old 05-29-2012, 07:59 AM   #1
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


I will be setting up a small battery bank (only 2 12v batteries but may add more in the future) and I want to add an fuse before the inverter-charger. What is the best way to accomplish that? Do they make fuse holders that have big lugs that connect to the batteries?

Can I use a household AC fuse such as a 100 amp cartridge fuse? I could maybe use car battery clamps that tighten around the terminals? The end of the fuse would probably be around the same size and I should be able to get it tight enough. Could that work?

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Old 05-29-2012, 08:01 AM   #2
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Google " Car Audio Fuse " (don't use the quotes) and you'l find a bunch of inline fuses that are perfect for what you are looking for. Inline breakers too, if you want to go that route. The lugs will be the correct size for the wire you should be using at that amperage. Searching for car audio power equipment will also find you good quality lugs for the battery terminals, etc.

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Old 05-29-2012, 08:19 AM   #3
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Why not a resetable breaker?

http://www.westmarine.com/webapp/wcs...ker&searchBtn=
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:43 PM   #4
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Be sure the interrupting current rating of the fuse is enough, probably several hundred amps in this case.
The voltage rating needs to be 32v or thereabouts.
Are you protecting the wiring, the batts, or what?
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:56 PM   #5
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Protecting mostly the batteries from exploding if a dead short situation occurs. I'm also trying to avoid having to special order something as that gets very expensive because of customs and all that, so if there's a way to (safely) jury rig it I'd be happy. Or perhaps some common automotive part I can find at Canadian tire or something. Idealy I should fuse each battery individually but I'll stick to fusing the bank itself.

I could technically go without a fuse but rather be safe.
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:59 PM   #6
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Seriously, just stop by a local car audio store and pickup an inline fuse holder and a 100A fuse.

Just like this but any other brand than Monster (they are way too expensive just for their name):

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Old 05-30-2012, 01:58 PM   #7
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


You can make your own using this
http://home.earthlink.net/~jimlux/hv/fuses.htm
formula.

If 178A melts #16 copper in 5 seconds and you want to melt it in 0.5 sec. it's
(178^2) x 5 = k = 158,000 = I^2 x 0.5 so
I = sqrt (158,000/0.5) =560A.
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Old 05-31-2012, 06:00 AM   #8
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Do not use a fuse designed for ac household work,
Fuses for dc are different then fuses for ac.
Large fuses for dc are readily available in the car audio market.
Larger car parts dealers will have them.
They are not cheap, because they are substancial units,
And even 12v is very dangerous at 100amps.
You can weld metal with that!
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Old 05-31-2012, 11:16 AM   #9
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


No luck finding anything. I'll go without it for now and next time I need to order stuff online from a store that does sell that stuff I'll get one. It's not really required for this device as it has it's own breaker, but figured I'd just be extra safe by adding one. One thing I also need to invest in is a lug crimper so I can make my own cables of any length I want. I'll make due with what I got available to me for now.
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Old 05-31-2012, 04:30 PM   #10
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


This site is very heplful on inverter type questions.

http://www.wind-sun.com/ForumVB/forum.php?
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Old 05-31-2012, 04:49 PM   #11
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


I've been running my test load for the past 4 hours. Been keeping track of voltage drop to get an idea what voltage is the "danger zone" to start shutting off equipment. Started off at 12.3 and it's now at 11.7. So far so good! I figure 11.0 is probably what near low zone is. May even be able to go down to 10.

Running about 300W of equipment off it for testing. Thinking of it further the fuse would almost be pointless in this setup anyway. The only way I could physically get a dead short situation is if something falls on the battery terminals, and the fuse would do nothing to protect against that.

I will still keep an eye out though. I later on want to build a 48v telco style setup, so once I find a good source for such equipment I will probably invest in that setup and do more equipment including home lighting. At that point I'd need a DC fuse panel if I want to add more DC sources.

As per my calculations I can run this current load for 8 hours, but that's not accounting for inefficiency and voltage drop (less voltage = more amps drawn), so I figure 6 hours is more realistic. Also AH rating of batteries changes based on actual load. Typical AH for my bank is 200AH (1 100AH batteries). The nice thing is that these batteries are only around 100 bucks so it's not a huge deal to add a few more if I feel I need more capacity.

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Old 05-31-2012, 08:22 PM   #12
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


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Old 05-31-2012, 08:42 PM   #13
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peukert's_law

I wouldn't go beyond 80% Depth of Discharge. You can monitor the State of Charge with a hydrometer or possibly by using the terminal voltage and load current.
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Old 05-31-2012, 11:23 PM   #14
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


I was reading up on hydrometers actually. Now I understand they can be used to determine if you need to add water. When should I be measuring this, at full charge, or at low charge, or does it matter? I imagine with a standby setup like I have I wont have to add water very often if at all, buts till want to be safe. Can I even do that live or would I need to disconnect the battery?
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:14 PM   #15
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Best way to add a 100 amp fuse to a battery bank?


Now I understand they can be used to determine if you need to add water.
>?

When should I be measuring this, at full charge, or at low charge, or does it matter?
>No matter.

Can I even do that live or would I need to disconnect the battery?
>Add distilled water anytime it's needed.

During charging lead acid batteries give off hydrogen so to avoid getting on the evening news because your battery enclosure blew up I would do a search for a recommended number of Air Changes per Hour for this application. I guess the fan should be brushless.

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