bing tracking image

Redarc In-Vehicle BCDC Battery Charger Review

content loading

Customers compare RED96FR to these similar products




Products Featured in this Video



Review of the Redarc In-Vehicle BCDC Battery Charger


Hello everybody, Clayton here at etrailer.com. Here at etrailer, we install, test and review a lot of different products to help you as a customer make a more educated decision before you purchase. Today, we're going to be working on a dump trailer and we're going to be taking a look at and I'll be showing you how to install the Redarc in vehicle BCDC battery charger. Now adding a battery charger to your dump trailer is going to be a huge upgrade, 'cause the power required to actually dump the bed is very high. So you're gonna have to charge that trailer every night if you intend to use it every day. And that can get pretty irritating because if you show up to the job site, more often than not your battery is going to be dead.

So adding a battery charger is going to be awesome 'cause you can just charge it while you're driving or going to job site to job site, and you can be sure to dump your trailer every time we get there. We are going to have a few different ways to set up our charging system. But the premise is to get our auxiliary battery charged from our vehicle power. We're going to have 12 volt power that comes out of our 7 way and out of our additional wire here it's going to run all the way up to our junction box. And then from that junction box, we're going to have a wire that runs up, start operating in it, in turn charging our battery.

Having a battery charger on our trailer that we're going to be using for work, is going to be awesome. Like I said, every time you get to the job site you're going to be able to operate your trailer properly. You're not gonna have to worry about charging it at night. It's just going to charge whenever you're driving. So it's kind of out of sight out of mind.

As long as you plug in your wiring, you're good to go. Like I said, we are using this on a dump trailer application but this charger is pretty awesome because it's going to work for a lot of different applications you might have. Whether it's a boat trailer, a hydraulic pump, a lift gate, or even a camper, anything like that, you're gonna be able to charge those batteries and make sure you have that full power, whenever you get to your site. Now you might be asking yourself, what's going to be the benefit of adding the Redarc BCDC to my trailer, to charge my auxiliary battery. And the simple reason is, the start battery on the truck is going to run through that charge line in our truck, back to our trailer battery that's actually going to lose some voltage.

So adding the Redarc is going to be able to get us that max power to charge our auxiliary battery on the trailer without losing that voltage. On a typical 150 amp, 12 volt alternator, the BCDC is going to provide 11 amps of peak boost for the auxiliary battery. The BCDC also isolates the start battery from the auxiliary battery, and this is going to avoid over discharge of the start battery. My professional opinion, this is going to be a huge upgrade for your trailer. Like I said, there are a few different applications and knowing that your battery is always going to be charged is definitely going to be a good peace of mind to have. With that being said, we can look at some of the more technical aspects of our BCDC. Something that I really like about this kit in particular is we are going to have four different charging profiles. So whether you want maximum output, medium output minimum output, or even a lithium battery, this is going to work well for you. When we're selecting our profiles, profile A is going to set our maximum voltage to 14.6 volts. And all we're going to do for that is leave our orange wire disconnected. And for selecting profile B, we're going to connect our orange wire to the common ground. And this is going to set our maximum voltage to 15 volts. For profile C, we're going to connect our orange wire to our red wire, and that's going to set our maximum voltage to 15.3 volts. And if you do have a lithium battery that ally profile's going to work for you. You're going to connect your orange and your green wire, and this is going to set it up to work with a lithium battery. One really cool feature of our Redarc that I personally like is that it is going to work with a variable voltage alternators. And those are commonly referred to as smart alternators. To determine if your truck does have a smart alternator, there's going to be a sensor that goes to the negative battery cable that runs off of your alternator. It's going to be easy to look forward to know if the truck does have that smart alternator or not. Another way to determine if your vehicle has a smart alternator, is going to be to test it. You'll need a multi-meter. Start the engine ensuring any fans, radios, lights and accessories are turned off. Take a voltage reading across the main vehicle battery, leave running for about five to 10 minutes, then take your voltage reading again. If your readings are around 14.4 volts then you're most likely to have a traditional non-smart alternator. If your reading is closer to 12.5 or 13.5, then it's going to be likely that you do have a smart alternator. If you are having trouble figuring this out you can always call your dealer to get a good answer. We already have different charging profiles indicated on our LED display on the top of our Redarc. And this is going to let us know if it's working properly. And it's going to tell us which profile we're in. And we are going to have our charge status indicated right here on our display. And our power input from our battery is going to be fuse protected. So you don't have to worry about it getting too much voltage end up frying the Redarc. Something that I really like about our operating unit, it's going to be fully sealed from the outside elements. It's also going to have internal cooling fans to keep it from getting too hot. This is going to be good up to 176 degrees Fahrenheit. So that's definitely pretty hot. I don't think we're going to have to worry about that, because with this lid closed, it does get hot in here but since we have those cooling fans, we're not going to have to worry about it. It's really going to give us a lot of insurance to know our electrical components are going to be protected. And like I said, in my personal and professional opinion, this is honestly the best upgrade you can do for your trailer, if you're using it for work. It's kind of where those no-brainer things. I had a trailer I was using for work, I would throw it on there in a heartbeat. With that being said, I'll walk you through how to get it installed now. To start our installation, you need to remove your dump trailer's auxiliary battery from the storage box. We're now ready to mount our operating unit to our box. I went ahead and did so, I just used a few self-tappers around the outside. You want to mount this where it's going to be protected by the battery, but not make contact with the battery. Then we want to run our black ground wire. I just went ahead and did that next to our operating unit. And we are going to be running our red wire down to our 12 volt power in our junction box. And our blue wire is going to run out to our 7 way. Since we do have a variable voltage alternator on our truck. I added some wire loom to our red and our blue wire then dropped it down through the hole here. This is going to run underneath of our box and over to our junction box. This is where that wire loom drops down containing our red and our blue wire. And it runs right down to here. I actually added a heat shrink butt connector to our blue wire, extending it and using this yellow wire. Our yellow wire is going to run out of our wire loom following our junction box wiring up to our 7 way. We're just going to zip tie that along our plug. Then our red wire is going to come out right down here, run into our junction box and connect to our 12 volt power post. And I do recommend picking up one of our etrailer junction boxes, it just makes this whole process a lot quicker. As you can see, everything's color coded and it's going to be super easy to know where everything goes. For our charging profile, We are not going to be using our green and our orange wire. You want to make sure you cap those off and the exposed wires are not touching. I just went ahead and zip tied this with some electrical tape up here just to keep out of the way. And then if we ever change our battery, we can come back and add our new profile. Like I said, our black wire that runs off of our operating unit is going to go to ground. Our red wire goes to 12 volt power in our junction box. Then our brown wire is going to go to our 12 volt battery inside of our dump trailer. Now I just went ahead and already cramped our end that goes into our fuse onto here. But you do want to make sure you don't extend this brown wire. So I went ahead and just cut it off and then added our ring terminal. And for our power, we will need to pick up a 30 amp inline fuse from Redarc. And you do want to make sure that you seal off this end, that way nothing grounds out on any tools or anything that might be thrown into our storage box. You can use electrical tape or heat shrink, clearly whatever you have available. You can now slide our ring terminal onto our fuse and tighten down our nut. We will need to mount this fuse to the side of our box. You do want to keep in mind of where your battery is going to be because you want this as close to the battery as humanly possible. We dropped our battery and it gave us a good idea. I'm just going to mount this right here next to our operating unit. It's going to keep our fuse from getting damaged, if our battery does happen to slide around but it's still going to be close enough to get a good connection. We did have to pick up some extra wire to run to our battery, since that brown wire wasn't long enough. We just went ahead and crimped on our ring terminal the same way, and then now we add this to our fuse. You do want to make sure to push your fuse cover back down, now let's get it mounted. We can now grab our battery. We'll drop that back into our battery box. We're ready to add a ring terminal and make our connections. We do want to leave a little bit of room for play cause the battery does shift around a little bit in the box right there should be good. So we can just grab our snips, we'll cut that wire off. Then we will strip back the end. Then we can add a ring terminal. Then we are going to remove our nut, add our power wire for our dump trailer back to the battery, we'll add the ring terminal and our nut. It's also going to be very important to have some holes for ventilation. We have a big hole down here in the bottom. We have some open holes over here on the side. This is going to allow heat to come in and out and not get trapped inside of our storage box. With our trailer side installed, we can now move to our truck and get our wire in. Since we are using our blue wire for variable voltage because our alternator is a low voltage alternator, we need to run a wire from the rear of our truck up to our fuse panel and find our ignition source. And we ran it up and over our frame rail that comes out right up here. You ran it up along this factory wiring and it comes up and over our fuel tank, you can see it right up there. So it follows our fuel tank on the top, all the way over down here. And then I pulled it from the top of our fuel tank and zip tied it to this factory wiring. And then it runs up over our crossmember here, and then to the other side of our frame rail. Our wire comes up through here over this crossmember. And then there's factory wiring that I followed, all the way pulled it up to our engine bay. And I'm going to zip tie it to these lines coming off of our brake booster, just to keep it in place. We want to locate our fuse panel, in our truck it's gonna be located right here I'm gonna lift our cover off, and we want to find a fuse that turns on when we turn our ignition on. And there's a 10 amp fuse located right here that does that, we have a fuse puller, and pull that out. The fuse that we're pulling on this truck is a 10 amp micro fuse. There are three different types of fuses that you might see. We have our micro, our mini and our standard. If we can grab our micro fuse holder, we'll add a fuse to each slot then we will push this into where that fuse was located, then we're going to strip back this end of our wire, add it to our butt connector, we can now plug it in to our fuse. We're now ready to cut our wire and add our female bullet connector, we're just going to cut it right about here, slide it on and cramp it down. With our trailer hooked up to our truck and our truck running, you can see our LEDs. Now our LED in that A spot over here on the far right, indicates that we're charging the lead acid battery, which is perfect because that's how we wanted to set it up. Then our voltage and our stage lights are both lit. So we know we're good and our trailer's charging. Now, when we get to our job site, we can go ahead, hook up our battery and dump the load in our trailer. Having a fully charged battery is really nice whenever we get to our job site, 'cause we can lift up our dump trailer or start camping or anything like that. We know we have that fully charged battery to do what we need to do. That's going to do it for our look at and our installation of Redarcs in vehicle BCDC battery charger on our dump trailer..


Info for this part was:

Employee Jacob T
Video Edited:
Jacob T
Employee Dustin K
Video Edited:
Dustin K
Employee Chris R
Video Edited:
Chris R
Employee David F
Installed by:
David F
Employee Clayton O
Test Fit:
Clayton O

At etrailer.com we provide the best information available about the products we sell. We take the quality of our information seriously so that you can get the right part the first time. Let us know if anything is missing or if you have any questions.