Has anyone tried the Maxwell Ultracapacitor?
Battery replacement options
Is this a good question?
I've had mine for a year now and what a POS this thing has turned out to be!
It works great in everyday operation except for when I take a vacation. If the truck sits for a week, or longer, it will be dead and so will be the batteries - since it drains them to get recharged.
Have had problems with the + terminal being slightly loose and wouldn't turn the truck over at all so I have to pull off the side steps and fairing off to get to the battery box to "tighten" the terminal - not even a 1/4th of a turn!
Right after the FASS (which was costing me injectors) this is the most expensive mistake among all my truck upgrades.
One more thing - it sucks sitting in a shop for extra half hour, after a fuel filter change, because the thing has to recharge after cranking to get the prime back (pre-filled fuel filter, no manual primer pump on N14).
Next truck will not have it on and instead I'll get a much cheaper set of jumper cables.
I just put one in this last weekend.
I got it at Kenworth in Saskatoon for only $799.00
It weighs 21 lbs. I replaced one of the existing batteries and put this in it's place.
I had to disconnect the alternator wire off the starter and extend it directly to the batteries.
The starter wire pretty much lined right up, just had to move it over two inches to line up with the start terminal on the Maxwell.
Waited about 30 minutes for it to charge up the first time, got the solid green light and zoom. The engine wound over like it was 100 degrees out side, but it was only 2C (35F).
I have a 2013 WesternStar with a DD15, with Webasto cab and engine heaters. I wanted something so I could start the truck at -34. These new engines don't like to Idle very long.
Last winter I only ran the truck two nights when it was that cold, but I had to get up at 4:00 am to do regens as the alarms were going off. The Webasto's work great but it's hard to trust the batteries when it's that cold.
This morning it was -12C (10F) and the Maxwell worked fantastic.
Up date on cold weather starting.
This morning it is -29C (-20F) at Camrose, Alberta.
I shut the truck off at 11:30 pm, had my Webasto bunk heater running all night.
The engine heater timer fired up at 05:30 this a.m.
At 07:20 I fired up the engine.
It wound over like it was kind of cold outside, but I didn't realize it was this cold out.
So far I'm very please with my purchase of the Maxwell ESM.
Still haven't been convinced it is that good of an investment. The Yamaha EF2000is portable generator that resides on the frame rail in it's own box with removable panels so that it can run in the enclosed box out of weather and secure from sticky fingers is a better return on my investment. I plug it into the shore power connection to the Xantrex inverter/charger and keep traditional batteries fully charged. I can also remove it from the box and use it for portable power around the home and property. Total weight of box and generator is maybe 75 lb. 1 gallon of gas powers it for 8-10 hrs. Total cost less than the Maxwell. As it is hooked up to the shore power connection on the truck, it is also powering the engine oil pan warmer at the same time, while still only using 1 gallon of gas for 8-10 hrs. It has started reliably at -25F. That is about as cold as anything I deal with.
I sent of an email to Maxwell asking for more info on the start module, this is what I got back a very informative reply. hope it is of some use to anybody thinking about getting the ESM. I priced it from Beaver trucks in Winnipeg they are quoting $2000 so I will be phoning Kenworth in Sask in the morning!!
Thank you for your interest our Ultracapacitor Engine Start Module (ESM). Maxwell Technologies, Inc., is the designer and manufacturer of the ESM. It is distributed through all the Truck OEM parts programs and is available through any OEM truck dealer. Although it is available through all dealerships, not all may be stocking it yet it is new to some of the programs. I’ve attached some additional product information for additional review.
Pricing is all over the board between the dealerships ranging from as low of $950US to $1149US. The lower pricing has been offered by some dealers who took advantage of an earlier price special and have stock at a lower acquisition. We encourage all fleets and owner operators to contact all the dealers in your area to get them to bid for your business. No matter whom you buy it from, you will be getting the 4 year warranty, so it pays to get the best price.
If when contacting your local dealerships for the Maxwell ESM … Freightliner, Kenworth, Peterbilt, International, Western Star and Volvo/MACK dealers… please provide the part # ESM12300031 and the parts salesperson should be able to look it up in their system and provide a quote. Pana-Pacific is handling the distribution for Maxwell to the truck dealers so it falls under the Pana Electronics program which also will be helpful to mention to the parts people.
I’m not sure which part of Canada you reside in, but I can say quite a few Canadian Owner Operators have been purchasing the Maxwell ESM through Idaho dealers.
Just installed one in a 98 Sterling, 12.7 for my friend. Purchased it from my local Peterbilt dealer, $750.00. Very easy to install, just ran a new wire for the trucks electronics. 13 degrees out yesterday morning and it started better than if it had new batteries and was plugged in. I'm going to install them in both of my Pete's.
Are you talking about the Engine Start Module? I heard about it a couple days ago from Alex Deborski on the Freewheelin' show. I am very interested in it, but it is such a new product I can't find much about it. I called the phone number on Maxwell Technologies website for Pana-Pacific in Fresno,CA (the closest location to me) and talked to them a little. I asked how much it cost, they could not give me a price, said I had to call my local Freightliner dealer. I asked how much it weighed, is it lighter than a battery, they did not know how much it weighed. That is all I know for know.
Just don't fully deplete the ESM while the batteries are in a low voltage condition because the ESM can only recharge back up the same level as the batteries are after you fully deplete the ESM with several start up cycles.
It is a great option to having 2 battery banks with 7 AGM deep cycles for truck hotel loads as 1 bank and the Maxwell ESM as the isolated 2 bank for truck starting.
I bought mine thru the CIT kenworth network of IL they do not stock them, but had mine in a week, $830. If you run more than 50% interstate you do not pay sales tax. I love the unit, I have let my truck sit for a week with fridge, and freezer both on and truck fired better than before I installed the ESM worth the money if you want peace of mind.
My company installed 2 on 2 international s with Cummings engines and with 9 and 10 months melted and burned up the starter has any body heard of that happening. I heard the esm was going to be a good thing but now our company is gun shy about trying them ever again please advise I have a email into maxwell with no response as of yet
The Russians first developed this technology several years ago so they could start their T-64 tanks in the winter at -40 without any other aids. It's a sound concept. A Canadian distributor in Calgary was selling these a couple of years ago, they were a little over $4,000 at that time. Heard the Maxwell is closer to $1,000.
I think installing an ESM in a truck is a great idea but whats the difference between what Maxwell makes and say... a super capacitor for a large competition class car audio set up and a relay or something to make the power only go one way?
A quick update on my ESM I have had it in the truck for around 6 weeks. Its starts the truck extremely well. First morning after fitting it I had fuel issues the ESM had enough power to turn over the truck 5-8 times with at least 5 second bursts before running out of charge. Once that happened it was very easy and quick to reconect the cable coming of the starter on to a battery+ terminal bearing in mind it was minus 44 at the time. Fuel issues fixed batteries wouldnt start the truck hooked up to the ESM which was fully charged by this time and whoomph away she went as if it was a summers day. Next issue I have had, truck sitting plugged in at the depot, turned off, temp dropped to minus 49. The plug in stopped working during the night (fuse tripped) and engine heater didnt start either!! nope no power to start the truck, the starter turned over for 5 seconds with very little power, tried a second time nothing ESM out of charge. batteries were dead although there was enough power in the battery to charge the ESM in about 5mins,even though when I tried starting the truck with the batteries, there wasnt enough power to turn over the starter at all, then tried jump starting with a heavy duty truck starter no joy either. Not surprising at that low temp that the truck wouldnt start especially with the block heater ultimately having no power going to it. Electrical plug in was fixed, pluged in the truck left it for 7 hrs and at minus 43 the truck fired up no problem at all. I like the way my truck starts so well in such low temps, even as low as minus 37 truck starts very easily. Yes its an expensive upgrade but at the temperatures we are seeing this winter well worth it.
Amazing. It's been installed for a year. Starter never hesitates, even in cold weather. The "Frankentruck" in our fleet (the oldest truck, it's the one we experiment with) has a DOC '03 original build ISX - DOC's are a little harder to crank usually, more resistance (the newer ISX's, & the rebuild kits, are all Single Overhead Cam - better fuel efficiency, less weight, easier starting). This truck acts as a bit of a spare &, when left for a few weeks without a start, the thing still starts INSTANTLY & effortlessly.
Worth EVERY penny. For real.
I had Pittsburgh Power install one in September. It's December, I've been sitting home 3 days, with single digit temps. My truck won't start. I've charged the batteries and the ESM light was solid green. After 5 seconds of slooooowly cranking it's dead. contiued charging till solid green and still slooooowly turned over for a few seconds then dead.
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