Hey there, caravan enthusiasts!
Let’s start the conversation about smart shunts! because if you’re all about keeping your 12V power system in check, these little devices are your best friends.
Now you might be thinking, “Smart what?” Well, a smart shunt is essentially a high-precision current sensor that allows you to monitor the status of your battery, telling you how much power you have left. It’s like a fuel gauge for your caravan’s battery system. And why do you need one? Well, running out of power in the middle of nowhere is about as much fun as a flat tyre, so it’s definitely a good idea to know where you stand power-wise. The only way to know how much energy has been used is with a shunt, shunts measure the current that flows through them. Example: If you have a 100ah battery, a good shunt will tell you how many Ah’s have been used & the state of charge of the battery. It’s also a great way of knowing if you are truly getting the rated capacity from that battery as advertised on the label!
The first “smart” shunt we’re going to talk about is the
‘Victron Energy SmartShunt’
Known for its reliability and accuracy, this one’s a hit among caravaners.
Victron Energy SmartShunt Solar Battery Monitor with Bluetooth is an all-in-one battery monitor, only without a display. Your phone acts as the display. A user named Mick says, “The SmartShunt keeps me updated on my battery status and it’s super easy to use.” This gem retails for about AUD $240. You can check it out here.
Second on our list is the ‘Renogy 500A Battery Monitor’
This little wonder not only gives you real-time battery status, but it also records historical data which can be handy. Rachel, a happy customer, reviews it as, “A lifesaver on our road trips. Keeps track of all the power we use. Absolutely recommend it.” The Renogy will set you back about AUD $90. You can purchase it here.
Last but not least, we’ve got the supercheap AUTENS Digital meter
This multimeter is an all-in-one solution to monitor your battery system, as it can track voltage, current, power and energy at the same time.
What’s brilliant about this AUTENS model is its large, clear LCD screen which allows you to keep an eye on all these parameters in one glance. No squinting, no guesswork - everything is right there in black and white. It’s designed to handle a wide voltage range from 6.5-100V, making it flexible for different caravan power setups.
One of our fellow caravaner, Max, had this to say about the AUTENS Digital Multimeter, “I was looking for a way to monitor my entire 12V system in one go, and this multimeter has been a game-changer. Super easy to install and even easier to read.”
Coming in at a super cheap $32, it’s an affordable option with basic features. If you’d like to take a closer look, go here;
Now, remember folks, your caravan is your home on the road. Just like you wouldn’t ignore your home’s electricity meter, don’t ignore your caravan’s battery system. A smart shunt will keep you powered up and ready to roll! Just a mater of deciding how many coins you want to throw at it.
Here is an in-depth video about the Victron shunt, my personal recommendation.