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Beta Don

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Beta Don last won the day on October 9

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About Beta Don

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    Connect Enthusiat

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    U.S. Mississippi Valley
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  1. Beta Don

    interested in buying

    Transit Connects are based on the Ford Focus chassis and they don't have a lot of ground clearance - I don't see one as being a good choice for unimproved roads, especially if they're rocky and uneven. Guess you could maybe rent one and give it a try to see if it would negotiate the road you're talking about I would guess fewer than 5% of TC's will still be running at 250,000 miles. Ford advertised them as having a 'lifetime transmission' with no dipstick and no easy access to adding fluid. It's not at all uncommon to hear of transmission failures before or shortly after the warranty expires. Properly maintained (total fluid changes at least every 50K) you could have a trans last 250K I think, but beware of buying a high mileage used one, as very few of them have been maintained to that standard A full sized Transit with higher ground clearance and a more conventional drivetrain might be a better choice, but it won't be FWD if that's a priority for you Don
  2. Your solar panels, controller and house battery bank should be wired up as normal - Connected together all the time. The voltage sensing terminal of the relay would be attached to the van's starting battery, so when the alternator raises that battery's voltage up to 13 or so, the relay closes and adds alternator power to your solar controller. Engine not running, the solar works as normal, Engine running, it adds in the alternator power to charge your house batteries Don
  3. Battery isolators are definitely yesterdays technology - They use diodes which introduce a voltage drop so your aux battery never gets a full charge - The fact that they are mounted in a huge aluminum heat sink is a clue - The voltage drop creates lots of HEAT which must be dissipated somehow A voltage controlled relay is a much better choice. The relay senses the voltage at the input and when it rises above a certain level, indicating that a charge voltage is present, it closes the relay and connects the aux battery with no voltage drop . . . . and no heat. A Blue Sea Systems ACR (Automatic Charging Relay) is a good choice. Their model 7601 can handle 65 amps, so it should be good for the OP's installation. You can get one from Amazon for less than $60 Don
  4. How often any vehicle needs new brakes is 90% a function of the way it's being driven - Most people maintain their desired speed right up to a stop or corner and then use lots of brake to get slowed or stopped. Others take their foot off the gas 100 yards sooner and gradually slow and need to use much less brake. Braking hard while going uphill is a real waste of energy, but I follow people who do it every day - They never seem to figure that just letting off the gas sooner, the laws of physics will slow them down for free. Many times I catch up to them about the time the light turns green and I never had to touch my brakes at all Friction braking is the act of turning the kinetic energy you paid for getting up to speed into heat . . . . and poor gas mileage . . . . and frequent brake jobs. There are more efficient ways to slow down Don
  5. Beta Don

    14+ battery longevity

    That one looks like the same exact battery I bought at Sam's Club for $159.95 Don
  6. Adaptive cruise control requires a whole myriad of complicated electronics, none of which are installed on '14 thru '18 TC's and if you had a '19 which has the modules to support adaptive cruise, it would already be there for you to use . . . . so, for our purposes, ignore that option anytime you see it on Forscan I have Adaptive Cruise on my '17 Chevy Volt and I LOVE it . . . . I would never buy another new car without it, but I wouldn't even try to install it on any vehicle which didn't come with it. There are just too many modules required that didn't come with a car that doesn't have it from the factory Don
  7. Beta Don

    14+ battery longevity

    Tires, batteries, filters & such are all consumables and I never press any of those trying to get a few extra months or miles out of them, because . . . . they're a major pain when they fail unexpectedly and either leave you stranded somewhere, or they have you scrambling trying to find a replacement after hours or on a weekend, so you never get a good deal or you never find the best brand to buy when you need something in a hurry - Your procrastination has created a mini-emergency and the solution to it is seldom the 'right' one because you're in a hurry. I can't remember the last time I had to go buy a battery because my vehicle wouldn't start . . . . but I know I was much, much younger then and I honestly believed that trying to get the very last mile out of anything automotive was saving me money - It seemed like it was at the time, but in actuality, it wasn't. If I had bought the battery 6 months or a year sooner, I'd have ended up with a better replacement and for less money . . . . and I wouldn't have missed or been late for wherever it was I was headed when it wouldn't start . . . . and I wouldn't have had to change it out in the rain or freezing cold So . . . . can't hazard a guess as to how long an OEM battery might last - Mine was changed out long ago Don
  8. . . . . even if someone not related to you is towing it with a vehicle not on your insurance policy?? Don
  9. Beta Don

    2015 TC transmission fluid change

    Yes - With the van level and up to operating temperature, you pull the plug with the engine running (if you pull it with the engine NOT running, fluid will run out) and then you slowly add fluid until you see it just start to run out the hole and then put the plug back in Don
  10. Beta Don

    Fan becomes LOUD at 3 and 4

    I had a mouse nest in mine too - Must be a fairly common problem Don
  11. Beta Don

    Aftermarket Transmission Cooler

    As I said earlier . . . adding extra trans cooling to a modern vehicle is more complicated than it was in the old days . . . . Don
  12. Beta Don

    Aftermarket Transmission Cooler

    Well, our resident 'expert' has spoken!! - Modify away! Don
  13. Beta Don

    2014+ bigger, better battery

    Do a Google search for 'Absorbent Glass Mat Battery Transit Connect' and you'll find a link to the discussion here - You can't find a darned thing searching this forum Anyway, it's a Sam's Club Duracell Group 48 AGM battery - $159.99 when we bought them in 2017. Another Google search gives the dimensions as 10.9 X 6.9 X 7.5 inches. Theres a spacer in the battery box to keep the little Ford battery from moving around and you have to remove that to get it to fit. It's taller too and barely fits, height wise. I run an inverter I mounted in our TC to charge 2 Segways and I also use it to run an air compressor for filling tires. It's a great battery and has served me very well. I highly recommend it! Hope this helps you Don
  14. Beta Don

    2014+ bigger, better battery

    A few of us here have installed a Sam's Club AGM battery which is much larger (both in size and in amp hours) than the little Ford spec OEM battery. There's a thread on it here which gives all the details - I don't recall offhand the battery dimensions, but I can personally guarantee you that you won't find anything which fills up the stock battery box better than the one we used - It's a very tight fit . . . . but it does fit with no modifications to anything Don
  15. Beta Don

    Aftermarket Transmission Cooler

    I think adding extra trans cooling to a modern vehicle is more complicated than it was in the old days. The ECU wants to control the trans temp and too cool is probably almost as bad as too hot. If you add cooling in a way that the ECU can't warm up the trans quickly on a winter day, you'd probably be doing more harm than good . . . . at least in my opinion Don