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Old 08-04-2020, 01:18 PM   #1
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Default Welding and batteries

I need to weld my frame on my 2001 Dodge Roadtrek Popular 190. The car battery will be removed.

I have a solar panel charging two AGM batteries. The vehicle will be in the shop for approximately 3 weeks. (I'm concerned about discharging the batteries)

Do I need to disconnect the house batteries and battery isolator while welding?

I have some options:

1. Leave batteries in vehicle with battery switch on and let the solar panel charge batteries?

2. Same as above but with battery switch off?

3. Remove batteries and connect them to a charger?

Thanks in advance
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Old 08-04-2020, 01:54 PM   #2
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For the batteries, three weeks is nothing, assuming that the batteries are truly disconnected from all parasitic loads. If the switch accomplishes this, it is fine. Or, just disconnect the negative terminal to be sure.

I am not certain about possible damage of electronics such as the solar controller from arc welding. Somebody out there will know...
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Old 08-04-2020, 02:17 PM   #3
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The safest thing to do is remove the grounds and plugs for all the electronic stuff, especially the van PCM, BCM, ABS, etc, but also any chargers or controllers you have in place. It is a huge job on a lot of vehicles.


The couple welders I have talked to have said the what kind of welder being used makes a big difference and also having the frame grounded to earth can help.


TIG is said to be the worst because of the high frequency AC start it uses on most decent setups, AC stick welding next, then DC stick and MIG wire welders.


I have seen a lot of shops using a wire welder on vehicles with no precautions, so it can't be a really big deal, but there probably always is some risk involved. I have used wire on a vehicle a couple of times without any problems, both with and without the earth ground. (fire risk scares me more as you never really know what is on the other side of frame tube or panel) If it were big stuff like a frame repair (I was welding moulding or panel repair pull holes) I think I would take more precautions, but I really don't know if the higher power needed is worse than pulses or not.
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Old 08-04-2020, 04:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
The safest thing to do is remove the grounds and plugs for all the electronic stuff, especially the van PCM, BCM, ABS, etc, but also any chargers or controllers you have in place. It is a huge job on a lot of vehicles.
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