HOW DOES TRIK-L-START™
WORK? TRIK-L-START™ is a "diversion charger" - Basically, it "steals"
a little bit of current from your house battery charger, diverting it
to keep your engine starting battery(s) charged. Since it is
DC-powered, it does not require any direct connection to AC power - No
extension cords or AC wiring required.
WORK WITH MY DIESEL (OR GASOLINE) STARTING BATTERIES? Yes, TRIK-L-START™ is designed
for both diesel and gas engines, and works with either single
or multiple starting batteries. Its robust 5 amp maximum output
is powerful enough to keep even the largest Cummins/Cat/Detroit
Diesel dual-battery bank fully charged, but won't overcharge the single starting
battery used with most gas-engine motorcoaches.
EVER NEED TO BE TURNED OFF OR DISCONNECTED? No, most owners leave TRIK-L-START™ connected
all the time. Unlike most AC-powered chargers, TRIK-L-START™
causes no significant drain on your batteries when it's not charging. When you're dry-camped, no current is
allowed to flow in the reverse direction (i.e., from the starting to
house batteries), so your engine always has full cranking power - even
if your house batteries are completely discharged. Finally, TRIK-L-START™
does not interfere with the normal operation of your engine alternator
while you're driving. It's completely worry-free - Install it, and forget it!
OVERCHARGE MY BATTERIES? No, TRIK-L-START™ maintains your starting battery(s) at approximately
0.2 volts below your house battery voltage. This is considered
to be the ideal setting for starting batteries, and virtually
eliminates water loss and gassing. Maintained in this manner,
your starting battery(s) should last for many years.
STORE MY MOTOR HOME WITHOUT ANY AC HOOKUPS. CAN TRIK-L-START™ BE USED TO
DRAW POWER FROM MY HOUSE BATTERIES TO KEEP MY STARTING BATTERIES
CHARGED? No, TRIK-L-START™
only works when there is a house battery charging source (i.e., DC
power converter, inverter/charger or solar panels) present. In the
absence of this charging source, TRIK-L-START™ is effectively disconnected, and doesn't supply any charge to your starting battery(s).
WHAT DO THE INDICATOR LIGHTS MEAN?
HOW IS TRIK-L-START™
has just three wires to connect - the Yellow wire connects to
the positive terminal on one of your house batteries, the Blue
wire connects to the positive terminal on (one of) your starting
battery(s), and the Black wire connects to chassis ground. Battery
clips are supplied for hooking up your TRIK-L-START™ with
quick, temporary connections, although most owners eventually
connect it permanently with the crimp-type ring terminals that
are supplied with each unit. Illustrated instructions for both
temporary and permanent installation are also included.
On motor homes that have several starting batteries, the motor home manufacturer usually connects all of them in parallel,
in order to produce 12 volts. Similarly, on motor homes that have
several 12 volt house batteries, the motor home manufacturer has
connected all of the house batteries in parallel - which means that TRIK-L-START™ can be connected to the positive posts on any of the house and starting batteries:
On motor homes that
instead use 6 volt golf cart batteries for the house battery bank, the motor home manufacturer has connected pairs of
these batteries in series to produce 12 volts
- which means that TRIK-L-START™
should be connected to the positive post of a house battery that has 12 volts
present - NOT to the positive post of a house battery that has just 6 volts
Note that accidentally connecting TRIK-L-START™ to the wrong spot won't damage anything - You just won't be able to use it until the error is corrected.
AND STARTING BATTERIES ARE LOCATED A LONG DISTANCE APART FROM
EACH OTHER. HOW DO I CONNECT THEM TO TRIK-L-START™? You can easily connect TRIK-L-START™ at your battery isolator
or emergency start relay, thereby eliminating the need to route long wires
to each battery bank:
This is also a convenient place to permanently
mount the TRIK-L-START™ unit, using the included quick-crimp
ring terminals and mounting screws. The installation instructions
describe how to find your isolator or emergency start relay, how to identify
each wire connected to it, and how to connect TRIK-L-START™to
it. Also, for Winnebago/Itasca owners, the Winnebago website has
downloadable wiring diagrams for most recent models (click HERE to access them). These diagrams are useful in identifying the location of the isolator or relay on your particular coach.
In the event that you can't locate your isolator (or can't gain access to it), extra wire can be spliced on to the TRIK-L-START™
unit in order to reach both battery banks. 16 gauge or thicker wire is
recommended. For safety's sake, the wire end which is located a considerable distance away from the TRIK-L-START™
should have a 15 amp circuit breaker installed
(immediately next to point where this end of the wire connects to the distant battery):
Failure to include this protection would allow the distant battery to
almost unlimited current to a short circuit located anywhere along the
wire's run, causing a potential fire hazard. A 15 amp waterproof
circuit breaker is available for $12.95 (free shipping) - Click HERE to order it separately, or click HERE to order it along with a TRIK-L-START™.
THE INSTALLATION INSTRUCTIONS DESCRIBE HOW TO PERMANENTLY WIRE TRIK-L-START™
TO MY MOTOR HOME'S "BATTERY ISOLATOR" OR "EMERGENCY START" RELAY.
HOWEVER, IS THERE A PROBLEM WITH CONNECTING TRIK-L-START™ DIRECTLY TO THE BATTERY POSTS INSTEAD? Either
approach is fine. There are several advantages to connecting to the
relay or isolator: (1.) The connections aren't exposed to battery acid, and (2.) it
avoids the need for long wire runs between TRIK-L-START™ and
widely-separated battery compartments. However, in situations where the
relay or isolator can't be located (or is difficult to access), connections
directly to the battery posts will work just fine.
ENGINE STARTING BATTERIES RUN DOWN WHENEVER I HAVEN'T DRIVEN THE COACH
RECENTLY, BUT I JUST USE THE "EMERGENCY START" SWITCH TO GET THE ENGINE
STARTED. IS THERE ANYTHING WRONG WITH THIS APPROACH? Unlike house batteries, engine starting batteries are typically NOT
of a deep-cycle design, and thus don't tolerate repeated deep
discharges - Even a few deep discharges can permanently reduce their
capacity and shorten their lifespan. So, in order to get acceptable
service life out of your starting batteries, it is essential that they
not be allowed to run down beyond the point where they can start the
engine without assistance from the house batteries. TRIK-L-START™ helps accomplish this, by keeping the starting batteries in a fully-charged state. RESULT: No need to use the "Emergency Start" swich, and MUCH longer starting battery life.
IN THE ABSENCE OF ANY AC HOOKUPS, WILL TRIK-L-START™ KEEP MY STARTING BATTERIES
CHARGED IF I RUN MY GENERATOR FOR A FEW HOURS EVERY WEEK? TRIK-L-START's
maximum charging current is 5 amps, which means that it will supply up
to 5 amp-hours of charge to your starting battery(s) for every hour of
generator operation. Unfortunately, the parastic loads in some
motorhomes are large enough to drain 20 to 100 amp-hours over a week's
time! Obviously, it would take many hours of generator operation to
replenish this many amp-hours at TRIK-L-START's 5 amp maximum rate. For
this reason, occasionally running the generator to recharge your
starting battery(s) may be too time-consuming and wasteful of fuel to
be practical. A much better solution is to either leave the motorhome
connected to AC shore power, or install a solar panel - with either of
these charging sources present, TRIK-L-START™ will do a VERY efficient job of keeping your starting battery(s) charged.
CAN TRIK-L-START™ BE USED WITH GELL OR AGM BATTERIES? Yes - TRIK-L-START is compatible with all lead-acid battery chemistries - Gell, Absorbed Glass Mat, and Flooded-Cell.
DOES TRIK-L-START™ HAVE A DESULFATOR FEATURE? No
- Although plate desulfation is sometimes useful on deep-cycle house
batteres, it serves little purpose on batteries that are not routinely
deep-cycled (i.e., engine starting batteries).
WHEN THE ENGINE IS RUNNING? TRIK-L-START™
is effectively disconnected from both sets of batteries whenever
the engine is running, and will not affect your alternator's normal
MY COACH HAS BATTERY DISCONNECT SWITCHES - HOW SHOULD THEY BE SET? Whenever TRIK-L-START™is
in operation, we recommend that your house and/or chassis battery
switches be left in their CONNECTED positions. This ensures that
is effectively connected to both battery banks, and to your house
battery charger. When the RV is in storage (i.e., no house battery
charging source or solar panels are operating), you might want to move
them to their DISCONNECTED positions, in order to minimize the battery
drain from various parasitic loads in your motor home.
I HAVE SOLAR
PANELS CONNECTED TO MY HOUSE BATTERIES, BUT THEY DON'T KEEP MY
STARTING BATTERY(S) CHARGED. WILL TRIK-L-START™ FIX THIS? Yes, TRIK-L-START™ will divert
part of the current produced by your solar panels to keep your
starting battery(s) charged. This makes it perfect
for long-term storage applications in areas where shore power
INTO SHORE POWER MOST OF THE TIME, IN ORDER TO KEEP MY HOUSE BATTERIES
CHARGED. WILL TRIK-L-START™ STILL WORK THIS WAY? Absolutely! As long as something is
supplying a charge to your house batteries (regardless of whether
it happens to be your DC converter, an AC inverter with built-in
battery charger, a set of solar panels, or even a wind charger), TRIK-L-START™ will divert some of that current to keep your
starting battery(s) charged.
I USE 6-VOLT
GOLF CART BATTERIES FOR MY HOUSE BATTERY BANK. CAN TRIK-L-START™
STILL BE USED WITH THIS CONFIGURATION?
Yes, since these batteries
are series-connected in pairs to obtain 12 volts, they work
no differently with TRIK-L-START™ than ordinary 12-volt batteries (see connection diagrams above).
HOW DO I KNOW THAT TRIK-L-START IS WORKING PROPERLY?
Here's a handy test: After plugging your motorhome into AC shore power
and turning on your DC power converter or inverter/charger, turn on
your motorhome's headlights for a few minutes. The headlights should
drain enough current from the starting battery(s) to activate
TRIK-L-START™, resulting in either its CHARGING or MAINTAINING
lights being lit. If either of these lights is lit, the unit is working
properly. Note that during this test, your house batteries MUST be
receiving a charge (from either your DC power converter or
inverter/charger) - In the absence of any house battery charging
source, TRIK-L-START™ will not maintain your starting battery(s).
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TRIK-L-START™ AND OTHER BATTERY MAINTENANCE
CHARGERS ON THE MARKET?
1. DC-POWERED: Most other battery maintenance chargers are designed to operate on AC power. Consequently, they only
work when AC power is available, and they don't work with solar
they aren't designed to be wired permanently into the motorcoach (i.e,
they require connection to an extension cord). However, since TRIK-L-START™ is DC powered, it doesn't require a separate
connection to AC power, thereby avoiding the electrical shock and fire
hazards associated with running an extension cord into the engine or
battery compartment. Furthermore, TRIK-L-START™
works when solar panels are the only charging source for your house
batteries. This makes it perfect for situations where the RV is stored
where AC power isn't available.
2. FULLY SEALED: Unlike most other maintenance chargers, TRIK-L-START™
is totally sealed - waterproof, dustproof and shockproof. It doesn't
need to be mounted in a dry location, and is small enough (about the
size of a bar of soap) to fit in the tightest spots.
3. BETTER PRICE, QUALITY AND SUPPORT: TRIK-L-START™ costs less than most
other maintenance chargers. It's made in America, and backed by
toll-free technical support - One phone call puts you in touch with the
Last Updated 5/11/2015