4WD & Caravan Power System Buyer's Guide

What Is A Power System?

A power system is a pre-wired system designed to charge, monitor and manage the battery connected to the system. It can run and control a wide range of appliances and electronics, including lights, fridges, mobile phones and more. They come pre-wired on a board, which can then be easily installed into your 4WD or caravan.

 

Why Buy A Power System?

One of the major advantages of a power system is that it saves money and time. There are so many batteries, battery chargers and battery monitors on the market that it can be overwhelming to pick all the right parts. Let alone wire them and install them safely! With a power system, all the research and design work has already been done for you. No need to worry about wasting money on the wrong components.

The best part is all professional connections and sizing is done for you, so you can be confident your system is safe.

 

What Are The Installation Requirements?

You are able to install these systems yourself, however 240V hard wired appliances and inverters must be installed by a licensed electrician or electrical contractor. Consult the Australia electrical standards and guidelines to ensure any DC low voltage electrical work performed by an unlicensed individual complies.

 

 

How Do You Choose The Right Power System For Your Needs?

Here are the top questions to ask when choosing the right power system for your 4WD or caravan:
 

1.Do you need to power AC (240V) appliances? Or only DC?

If you need to power 240V AC appliances be sure to choose one of the power systems that includes a 240V inverter. Don’t stress if you already have an inverter or if you want a different size or to buy one at a later date, all of our power systems are design to work with inverters of various sizes.

 

2.Do you need a battery with your system? And what size should it be?

Think about whether you need a battery as part of your system. If so, how big does it need to be to run your gadgets and devices? The good news is the Enerdrive Canopy Systems come with a lithium battery add-on option if you need it. 

 

3.Do you have a 4WD, caravan or camper trailer?

Canopy systems by nature are designed more for 4WD vehicles than caravans or camper trailers. If you have a caravan or camper trailer, take a look at management boards, like the Enerdrive K-AGM-BOARD models.

These kits are all pre-wired by Enerdrive wherever possible to keep the kits quick and simple to install. All boards have a full wiring diagram showing each circuit and where to connect your loads, battery and inverter cabling. Plus, all components are mounted onto a 12mm black plastic board, which is water and rot resistant, for easy mounting into your vehicle. It couldn’t be easier!
 

Power Systems We Recommend:

Canopy Systems

When it comes to canopy power systems, you can’t go past Enerdrive’s 4WD options. In a market first, they have designed three different power systems to run all the electrical equipment in 4WD canopies, from your fridge and lights to a full power station. They all come pre-built in a compact box designed to mount on either the front or rear bulkheads of your 4WD canopy.

Choose from three models, depending on your power needs:

  • The Explorer: Minimum power option containing an Enerdrive ePOWER DC2DC40, Vehicle/Solar Charger, and battery monitor. It also features a battery reset button, 4 pre-wired circuit breakers for main power equipment and 4 Contura switches for lights and auxiliary loads, pre-wired battery and fridge Anderson plugs and twin USB 2.4A Hi Amp sockets to charge your mobile devices (or opt for a 12v Output Socket).

  • The Traveller: More power plus AC charging ability. Comes with everything in The Explorer kit, plus an ePOWER 12V 40A Battery Charger. This power system comes with a Simarine Battery Monitor as standard, or you can swap it out for an ePRO Plus battery monitor, or Simarine Battery Monitor and Quad Shunt Module.

  • The Adventurer: The ultimate 4WD canopy setup, this kit includes all of the components in The Traveller, plus an ePOWER 2000W 12V Pure Sine Wave Inverter with RCD & AC Transfer Switch, 4 additional circuits breakers for air/water pumps, and main system and inverter Hi-Amp circuit breakers.

 

 

Each of the models can be paired with any brand or model of battery, whether AGM, gel, wet sealed and lithium. Where possible, all systems are pre-wired by Enerdrive, so all you need to sort out is sorting out to the cabling for load outputs, battery connection, and vehicle, solar or tank inputs.

There’s also an additional model designed for tradies, called “The Lackey” power system. This plug and play unit is designed around Enerdrive’s proven workhorses, the DC2DC 40+ Charger and the 2000W AC Transfer Inverter, and built in a super tough aluminium powder coated box.

 

 

Management Boards & Installation Kits:

For caravans and camper trailers, check out the Enerdrive K-AGM Boards. Choose from a range of options to meet your power needs, including an Enerdrive 40A AC and DC DIY Installation Kit with ePRO Plus Battery Monitor or with a Simarine Battery Monitor.

You can also choose the Enerdrive 40A AC and DC DIY Installation Kit with ePRO Plus Battery Monitor and 2000W RCD & AC Transfer Switch Inverter, or the same kit with a Simarine Battery Monitor instead.

There is also a 60A kit with a Morningstar Tristar 45amp solar controller and ePRO Plus monitor. This one is specifically designed for caravans and motorhomes. The separate solar controller on the board means it can deliver 100% of the available solar charge at the same time as the DC2DC chargers via the vehicle, making it a super-fast charging system while you’re on the move.

For a budget option, the Enerdrive DIY 40A AC and 40A DC2DC Charging Board is a great pick. You get all the parts you need – including battery chargers, battery monitor, midi fuse assemblies, circuit breakers and Anderson connectors – ready to install yourself. It’s also available in 20A AC & 40A DC, and 40A AC & DC kits.

 

What Are The Pros & Cons Between Different Brands In The Range?

Right now, you can only get Enerdrive models in the range. In fact, the canopy systems are a market first! Sure, other brands have designed management boards, but there’s no question that Enerdrive boasts the most innovative and efficient technology.

 

Pro Tip: Comparing the kits can be confusing if you just go by the lists of features and inclusions. To make it easy, use this table to determine which installation kit or management board is best suited to your needs:

 Items Included                                     

K-AGM-Board-C

K-AGM-Board-D

K-AGM-Board-E

K-AGM-Board-F

K-AGM-Board-G

K-DIY-Board-01

 ePOWER AC 40Amp 230v Charger

*

*

*

*

*

*

 ePOWER DC2DC 40+ Charger  (Vehicle/Solar) 

*

*

 * 

 * 

*

 ePRO Plus 500A Battery Monitor with  Remote Display 

*

 

*

 

 

*

 Simarine Pico LCD WIFI Monitoring Screen

 

*

 

*

*

 

 Simarine SC301 300A Main Battery Shunt

 

*

 

*

*

 

 Simarine SCQ25T Individual Load/Charge Module

 

*

 

*

*

 

 3 Stud Main Negative Bus Bar

*

*

*

*

*

*

 40A Low Battery Cutout

*

*

*

*

*

*

 Main System Circuit Breaker 120A

*

*

*

*

*

*

 Inverter Circuit Breaker 200A

*

*

*

 *

*

*

 Solar Input Positive Circuit Breaker 40A

 

*

*

*

*

 

 ePOWER DC2DC 60A Output Fuse Connection

*

*

*

*

*

*

 ePOWER AC Charger 50A Output Fuse  Connection

*

*

*

*

*

*

 1 x 30A Load Output Fuse Connections

 

 

 

 

 

*

 2 x 30A Load Output Fuse Connections

 

 

 

*

*

 

 50A Load Output Fuse Connection

*

 

 

 

 

 

 24hr Critical Load 4 Circuit "Wedge" Fuse Block

 

*

 

*

*

 

 24hr Critical Load 8 Circuit "Wedge" Fuse Block

 

 

*

 

 

 

 Main 6 Circuit "Wedge" Fuse Block with  Negative Bus and Cover

 

 

 

 

 

*

 Main 12 Circuit "Wedge" Fuse Block with  Negative Bus and Cover

 

*

*

 

 

 

 ePOWER 2000W AC Transfer Inverter with RCD & AC Transfer Switch

*

 

 

*

 

 

 Battery Restart Switch (Lithium Batteries)

*

*

*

*

*

 

 12mm Black Plastic Mounting Board. Water &  Rot Resistance

*

*

*

*

*

*

 175A Anderson Plug (Inverter)

 

 

 

 

 

*

 50A Anderson Plug (Solar Input)

 

 

 

 

 

*

 50A Anderson Plug (Vehicle Input)

 

 

 

 

 

*

 Dimensions (L x W x D)

1185 x 380 x 130 mm

600 x 490 x 100 mm

600 x 490 x 100 mm

1185 x 380 x 130 mm

790 x 380 x 100 mm

580 x 580 x 100 mm

 Weight

 

 

 

 

 

 

 (*) Indicates Standard Fitment      

 

Are There Any Important Accessories You Need To Purchase?

You may need to consider buying additional cabling, fuses, circuit breakers, and solar panels or regulators.

Cabling:

To connect the pre-mounted Enerdrive 40A DC to DC charger, use one of the three cable kits with appropriately sized inline fuses:

  • Enerdrive 16mm Cable Kit with fuse, 5 metres (ENC-KIT-BATT-DCDC-16): This is suitable for a vehicle circuit from the start battery to DC to DC charger mounted in vehicle. Connect with the fuse close to start battery and run cable to the DC to DC charger mounted within vehicle.

  • Enerdrive Anderson 50A Connector to DC to DC charger cable kit 16mm2, including fuse and 5.5 metres (ENC-KIT-AP50-DCDC-16): This is suitable for caravan/trailer DC2DC charger installations. With the Anderson connector mounted at the tow hitch, the cable runs to the DC to DC charger in the trailer or van. Use it in conjunction with ENC-KIT-BATT-AP50-16.

  • Enerdrive 16mm Cable Kit with fuse, start battery to 50A Anderson connector mounted at tow hitch, 5 metres (ENC-KIT-BATT-AP50-16): This is suitable for a vehicle circuit from the start battery to Anderson plug connector, which is mounted at the tow hitch. Connect with a 70A fuse close to start battery and run the cable to the Anderson connector at the tow hitch. Use in conjunction with ENC-KIT-AP50-DCDC-16 for DC to DC charger mounted in caravan or trailer.

 

Running An Inverter?:

You need to purchase one of the four cable kits from the accessories list:
 

AGM Board Cable Kit 70mm2 – available in 1m and 1.5m lengths

  • For inverters up to 2500W

 

AGM Board Cable Kit 95mm2 – available in 1m and 1.5m lengths

  • For inverters up to 3000W

 

Solar:

With these power systems, you can’t go past the Enerdrive 180W Mono Crystalline Fixed Solar Panels. These panels are designed with the right dimensions to capture maximum solar yield for the space available. One panel fits perfectly on a 4WD canopy, or you can fit four on a large caravan. Generally connected in parallel, these panels can be seamlessly connected to the input on the Enerdrive 40A DC to DC charger which includes a Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) solar controller.

 

Battery:

Any deep cycle battery is suitable to run these power systems. However, these power systems allow you to charge very quickly at very high currents. This system is designed to allow you to travel off-grid for long periods of time.

AGM and other lead acid batteries will work, but to truly harness the power of the power system, you should be considering a good quality lithium battery.

Shop power systems in our store today!