ESS start/stop not working properly!!!!!!!!!!!!

JimLee

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I'll admit up-front, I'm the odd-ball here.

While most people want to rip ESS the hell out of their rig altogether, trample on the Aux battery, wrap the entire feature around a stick of dynamite and create a crater somewhere on their local FCA dealership showroom floor, I on the other hand actually like it. But not for how it came about. Still, I sort of miss it when it misbehaves.

Don't get me wrong, I totally despise the entire design of the Aux battery, and the way it was implemented. However, being a former Powertrain Software Engineer (at Chrysler), I also comprehend a few things about it that some may not realize:

A. This feature would (never) have been implemented, if it wasn't for the VERY heavy hand of Uncle Sam.

B. The pretty extreme and aggressive policies of the EPA bureaucracy has mandated the corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards such that nearly all internal combustion engine (ICE) power plants would (by intent) now fail. Not all but the vast majority, especially everything larger than four cylinders, would no longer be able to pass these stricter standards without some radical help.

C. Some of this help comes in the form of a system called electronic stop start (ESS) which shuts itself off at every opportunity it can do so, independent of anyone's opinion about it. It does this in order to accomplish a decrease in overall fuel consumption and a decrease in emitted pollutants, in order to even marginally comply with these so called deceptively named "carbon footprint" standards but I digress.

D. So don't blame FCA for the reason why it [ESS] is in your rig, blame the voters for electing the progressive politicians who made these overly strict standards mandatory.

E. The Aux battery sort of proves FCA's reluctance to go along with the program. It is nothing more than the lowest possible cost, 'bolt on' solution to satisfy these latest environmental (green / olive drab) policies.

F. However, failure to comply would mean one of two things:
1. The cost of your Jeep would be way higher still (if that's even imaginable), because the carbon tax liability would, (as always) be passed down to the consumer.
2. You would not have a Jeep to purchase at all. Maybe some 4xe variant that will probably leave you stranded in the middle of some forest with no way to plug in.

G. Be very thankful that FCA found some wiggle room (loophole perhaps) within the EPA rules to at least give the end user the ability to disable it (even temporarily). This system could very well have been engineered to be way more tamper resistant. Don't think for a minute there may not be new laws preventing any ESS disable (period) in the future. Unfortunately for all you ESS haters, we're clearly heading in that direction. The more ways you come up with in which to permanently defeat it will mean even more environmentalist pushback on the politicians to remove all of the EPA loopholes completely. Elections do indeed have consequences.

So I clearly hate how ESS came about (undemocratic or rather Democrat, nanny-state bureaucrats, depending on your political bent) toward forcing (by law) its implementation. On this issue call me anti-liberal for having the opinion of NOT allowing each driver to determine exactly how to configure their own Jeep.

Clearly, the vast majority of ESS hatred here could give a rats ass about the greater good idea. Otherwise they would totally love and embrace ESS for what it actually is. The kum-by-ahh of all possible vehicle features. It should make everybody feel good in helping Mother Nature?

It's unfortunately just another little erosion of personal freedom in the guise of protecting the planet. I just wish sometimes that people would vote the way that would truly make them happy. But alas, everything worthwhile is generally cloaked to appear as something different. Save the planet, save the whales, seals, polar-bears but don't you dare save my ability to live without ESS.

I however (independent of the politics) really admire the technology of pulling ESS off. The physics behind starting a modern ICE power plant is not trivial. Sure some will say given a proper amount of angular crankshaft momentum, the correct amount of fuel to air (stoichiometric) ratio and a properly timed ignition source (spark), and everything is automatic. Maybe with old carburators and analog spark advance, but that is now the folly of your grandfathers age. However, that generation of low sophistication created the absolute worst combustion chamber thus creating the absolute worst possible pollutants.

Engineering is the art of compromise. In this case simplicity is sacrificed for lower emissions, and fuel consumption. ESS is just another twist to this new complexity.

Starting the engine today requires the application of some pretty high level math algorithms with units in milliseconds of pulse width fuel injected and tenths of degrees of firing the ignition for each cylinder around its top-dead-center position. For ESS start, all within a single revolution of the crankshaft. Granted with a controlled stop (engine shutdown), the computer can place the crankshaft in the most optimal location to start everything back up efficiently. Still pretty damn impressive nonetheless.

Lastly, I too am seriously leaning towards the Genisys Dual Battery solution. Just about every time I come off the trail and air up using a portable compressor with the engine running, I too later experience the "ESS Not Ready - Battery Protection Mode" warning. So the Aux battery is likely way too small for just about any off-road operation.

I have also found that this condition will only clear, 'by itself' by turning the ignition off for a long period of time. Typically in the span of many hours, like overnight. I believe the intelligent battery sensor (IBS) builds up parasitic capacitance under extended high stress engine operation (low RPM) and requires time to bleed away when all charging has stopped (really counter-intuitive). Or it can immediately be cleared by a full reset of the engine controller itself, which likely also resets the IBS. Either procedure sucks. So I just deal without having ESS on the drive home.

Furthermore I do disable ESS on the trail, or anytime I'm in 4WD for safety reasons, otherwise I do really enjoy it. Playing with engaging it (via brake pedal pressure) in various red-light scenarios. I found it helps keeps me engaged and more alert to traffic flow when both approaching and anticipating leaving the intersection. It [ESS] makes it such that it's no longer mind numbingly painful just waiting and wasting time at red-lights.

This does likely make metruly an odd-ball. Especially since I really despise how this all came to be.

Admittedly software geeks tend to be odd by definition.

Jay
Nice write up Jay. Keep in mind that once you go to the Genesis system the Jeeps charging system can't maintain two full size batts unless you do ALOT of driving, even with the high amp alternator, especially if you go with the Odyssey monsters they recommend (I did). You probably already know all this, but some extra battery love will be needed. I use a solar panel on my hood which keeps my batts topped off at all times, like a never ending trickle charger (well, except at night I guess), and every 2-4 weeks I hook up a Odyssey charger which also runs a recondition cycle to maximize my battery life. I disabled ESS, though I do understand why they had to do it as you pointed out above.

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jeepoch

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Nice write up Jay. Keep in mind that once you go to the Genesis system the Jeeps charging system can't maintain two full size batts unless you do ALOT of driving, even with the high amp alternator, especially if you go with the Odyssey monsters they recommend (I did). You probably already know all this, but some extra battery love will be needed. I use a solar panel on my hood which keeps my batts topped off at all times, like a never ending trickle charger (well, except at night I guess), and every 2-4 weeks I hook up a Odyssey charger which also runs a recondition cycle to maximize my battery life. I disabled ESS, though I do understand why they had to do it as you pointed out above.

20200614_140416.jpg
Jim,

It's my understanding that the Genesis Dual Battery tray relies on an isolator that either allows trickle charging on both batteries when both are adequately charged, but then isolates the batteries independently when either needs to be charged deeper with a bias towards the main battery first (for starter priority).

According to their website:

  • When both your batteries are fully charged at 13.2 volts, they are automatically connected and are charged at the same time.
  • When you park and turn off the engine, but continue to use accessories such as lights or the stereo or a CB, both batteries begin to drain down.
  • your main cranking battery reaches 12.7 volts, the smart isolator separates the batteries, so that your cranking battery will have enough power to start the engine. The second battery continues to power your accessories for as long as it will last.
  • After you crank the vehicle, your main cranking battery will be charged up to 13.2 volts first, and then the isolator will allow the charging of your accessory battery. By only charging one battery at a time, your alternator is protected from excessive strain.
Are you saying these statements are false?

I've not invested in their kit yet, so I have no personal experience. I'll need to decide on this solution based on feedback like yours.

More research is likely required in exactly how the ESS treats the Genesis Dual Battery setup. My anticipation is that as long as there is sufficient charge to engage the Power Control Relay, independent of which battery supplies the energy, the starter motor can be engaged.

My current issue is that I'm always dealing with a "Battery Protection Mode" problem after four wheeling for awhile. Clearly the system is providing insufficient power to charge both batteries simultaneously or the monitoring of it is preventing the ESS from removing the recharging energy altogether.

As you suggest, perhaps the size of the batteries ARE NOT THE ISSUE, rather the amount (or rate) of energy and/or the way it's applied.

Jay
 

JimLee

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Jay,
No, i'm not saying the statements are false, but there are some caveats that are more induced by the Jeep and IBS, and the Genesys system has a small parasitic draw (while connected) that you need to be aware of. The Odyssey batts are special purpose batts that have specific charging/ maintenance requirements. Alot of people think i'll just throw a generic battery tender at it every now and then but they are just shortening the life of their batts. I'm at work right now, I'll throw out some more details when I have some time. FWIW I love my Genesis dual batt system and it has never let me down, I just don't see it as maintenance free if you maintain your $700 batts for maximum life.
 

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Jay,
No, i'm not saying the statements are false, but there are some caveats that are more induced by the Jeep and IBS, and the Genesys system has a small parasitic draw (while connected) that you need to be aware of. The Odyssey batts are special purpose batts that have specific charging/ maintenance requirements. Alot of people think i'll just throw a generic battery tender at it every now and then but they are just shortening the life of their batts. I'm at work right now, I'll throw out some more details when I have some time. FWIW I love my Genesis dual batt system and it has never let me down, I just don't see it as maintenance free if you maintain your $700 batts for maximum life.
Jim,

Thanks for the info. However, I just discovered a deal breaker for me. I know you (like almost everybody else on this forum), disable ESS routinely, if not permanently, but I do not. Weird, but I really like it. Recall I am the true oddball.

It looks like the Genesis Dual Battery Kit has a pretty severe issue. It will only provide 6 ESS events per ignition on.

I stop way more than six times per trip for my commute. I hate red lights so much that I've counted them. Thirty two (32) each way taking the most direct route, twenty (20) taking the further (both in time and distance) a back country route.

While statistics (standard bell curve) plot of the probabilities of randomly hitting the red lights should average out to around 50% (in theory). Yet my real world experience is something extraordinarily but maybe not surprisingly different. I typically and routinely hit on average around 70% of them on the direct route and just under that at 62% on the back-country route.

Why the discrepancies is the stuff of PhD thesis material. I suspect driving the speed limit, designed light timings, traffic patterns, rush hour dynamics and a plethora of other factors like season, weather, gravitational forces due to the position of the moon, hell maybe even the coriolis effect. They all seem to work against me at hitting 50% or less of the total number of red lights on any given commute cycle.

So I stop a lot. On average about 22.5 times on the direct route and only 12.5 on the other. I'll bet you can guess which route I typically take?

As a side note, the direct route involves a four lane highway (US 287) that is a very unpleasant stretch of road. Not due to its scenery (living along Colorado's front range that's actually quite nice with the snow capped Indian Peaks range on the west) or all the traffic lights. Rather it's due to it's large accident rate. Looking over to the other vehicles driving on this road, the vast majority of drivers are on their phones. Not exaggerating. It's amazing. It's like this stretch of road must be so boring, that people have to do something, (anything) except drive.

However, I see nearly none of that trend on the two-lane back-country excursion. So yes I gladly and willingly invest in the extra 8.5 additional miles (one way) each commute cycle. The reduction of ten stops per trip is just the overall 'bonus'.

However, the back-country route also has an almost three mile 25mph stretch that goes right past a police station and is a notorious speed trap. Good thing I drive the speed limit. The longer route does have it's disadvantages as well.

Still, you can see that stopping and starting factors heavily into my daily driving activities.

ESS means a lot (to me). Maybe it's just the conservationist nature of my personality. I like the very pleasant sound of quiet from under my hood when I'm stopped at red-lights. There is one light in fact that is literally 2.5 minutes long. I don't make this light almost 100% of the time. But it makes me a little less frazzled while waiting there with the engine off.

I swear if I ever drive a non-ESS vehicle again (not likely, I think my Jeep is it for the long haul), I'd actually turn the ignition off at that particular red light.

So, The Genesis solution is off the table until I can find yet another alternative. I'll keep researching. Maybe determine what's really behind the physics of this six cycle limit. As you suggest, perhaps built up capacitance from the IBS with the now missing Aux battery. Nothing is ever as simple as it first seems.

Jay
 

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This is all great information and very formative, but what impact does the start/stop have on your starter?
 

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Yea, it doesn't have IBS
Jim,

Thanks for the info. However, I just discovered a deal breaker for me. I know you (like almost everybody else on this forum), disable ESS routinely, if not permanently, but I do not. Weird, but I really like it. Recall I am the true oddball.

It looks like the Genesis Dual Battery Kit has a pretty severe issue. It will only provide 6 ESS events per ignition on.

I stop way more than six times per trip for my commute. I hate red lights so much that I've counted them. Thirty two (32) each way taking the most direct route, twenty (20) taking the further (both in time and distance) a back country route.

While statistics (standard bell curve) plot of the probabilities of randomly hitting the red lights should average out to around 50% (in theory). Yet my real world experience is something extraordinarily but maybe not surprisingly different. I typically and routinely hit on average around 70% of them on the direct route and just under that at 62% on the back-country route.

Why the discrepancies is the stuff of PhD thesis material. I suspect driving the speed limit, designed light timings, traffic patterns, rush hour dynamics and a plethora of other factors like season, weather, gravitational forces due to the position of the moon, hell maybe even the coriolis effect. They all seem to work against me at hitting 50% or less of the total number of red lights on any given commute cycle.

So I stop a lot. On average about 22.5 times on the direct route and only 12.5 on the other. I'll bet you can guess which route I typically take?

As a side note, the direct route involves a four lane highway (US 287) that is a very unpleasant stretch of road. Not due to its scenery (living along Colorado's front range that's actually quite nice with the snow capped Indian Peaks range on the west) or all the traffic lights. Rather it's due to it's large accident rate. Looking over to the other vehicles driving on this road, the vast majority of drivers are on their phones. Not exaggerating. It's amazing. It's like this stretch of road must be so boring, that people have to do something, (anything) except drive.

However, I see nearly none of that trend on the two-lane back-country excursion. So yes I gladly and willingly invest in the extra 8.5 additional miles (one way) each commute cycle. The reduction of ten stops per trip is just the overall 'bonus'.

However, the back-country route also has an almost three mile 25mph stretch that goes right past a police station and is a notorious speed trap. Good thing I drive the speed limit. The longer route does have it's disadvantages as well.

Still, you can see that stopping and starting factors heavily into my daily driving activities.

ESS means a lot (to me). Maybe it's just the conservationist nature of my personality. I like the very pleasant sound of quiet from under my hood when I'm stopped at red-lights. There is one light in fact that is literally 2.5 minutes long. I don't make this light almost 100% of the time. But it makes me a little less frazzled while waiting there with the engine off.

I swear if I ever drive a non-ESS vehicle again (not likely, I think my Jeep is it for the long haul), I'd actually turn the ignition off at that particular red light.

So, The Genesis solution is off the table until I can find yet another alternative. I'll keep researching. Maybe determine what's really behind the physics of this six cycle limit. As you suggest, perhaps built up capacitance from the IBS with the now missing Aux battery. Nothing is ever as simple as it first seems.

Jay
I get it, my commute consists of numerous stop signs and 2 traffic lights (almost always green in my travel direction) in a small rural community. I would actually have to sit at a green light(s) to get any kind of fuel savings out of ESS. So my situation is almost the polar opposite of yours, plus I installed the system with the intent of having a power source for off grid camping. I actually wouldn't recommend the Genesis dual battery kit with Odyssey batteries as just an ESS fix. Now, if I was an ESS user I might consider getting just the Genesis dual battery tray and using two full size car batts keeping all the cabling exactly the same as factory, that way you have a full size batt for ESS and they are both up top and easy to maintain. But, if your charging system isn't properly charging up the ESS batt you'd eventually be right back to square one. Another possibility is transferring all the ESS duties to the main batt, my understanding is that the GC has the same ESS design but only uses one battery. I would think that a single high quality (possibly a little oversized) battery should be able to handle the duties of both a starter batt and an ESS batt, it would also be much easier to jump in the case of a dead batt. Good luck in your search, stay safe out there.
 

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Yea, it doesn't have IBS

I get it, my commute consists of numerous stop signs and 2 traffic lights (almost always green in my travel direction) in a small rural community. I would actually have to sit at a green light(s) to get any kind of fuel savings out of ESS. So my situation is almost the polar opposite of yours, plus I installed the system with the intent of having a power source for off grid camping. I actually wouldn't recommend the Genesis dual battery kit with Odyssey batteries as just an ESS fix. Now, if I was an ESS user I might consider getting just the Genesis dual battery tray and using two full size car batts keeping all the cabling exactly the same as factory, that way you have a full size batt for ESS and they are both up top and easy to maintain. But, if your charging system isn't properly charging up the ESS batt you'd eventually be right back to square one. Another possibility is transferring all the ESS duties to the main batt, my understanding is that the GC has the same ESS design but only uses one battery. I would think that a single high quality (possibly a little oversized) battery should be able to handle the duties of both a starter batt and an ESS batt, it would also be much easier to jump in the case of a dead batt. Good luck in your search, stay safe out there.
The Cherokee has only had one battery for at least the past 5 model years. After almost 5.5 years it is about time for me to replace my battery as I am constantly getting the ess not ready charging message.
 

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I have a manual and I just have started having this issue. The dash warning light comes on saying the auto start/stop system needs to be serviced after I drive it for 30-45 min. The system works fine up until that point. When this happens the backup camera also stops working, which I find to be a super strange combo of issues., but it is a jeep. Haha. I just examined the two grounds on the passenger side of the engine bay and they are not touching/shorting. I had read that this could be causing the issue. I also popped the cover off the fuse bank and almost all of the fuses and relays were barely seated. The wired connections to the fuse box were also not touching each other as others have experienced. Jury is still out on whether seating the fuses has helped or not, but will report back after I drive the jeep for an extended period of time again.
Have you changed your tire size? Use a tazer? I have these exact issues, and if the above are true, you need to perform the top gear relearn procedure. Theres information in the tazer thread, but also you can just Google it. For me, seconds after I put it in 5th gear, I get the error, and backup cam no longer works. Programming for correct tire size, and doing the relearn procedure solve it. (Until I remove my tazer, and the issue returns)
 

jeepoch

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This is all great information and very formative, but what impact does the start/stop have on your starter?
@ToPar9,

My reasoning, right or wrong, is that I'll value my $6K 3.6L engine over a few hundred dollar starter any day of the week and 27 different ways on Sunday. ESS has been factored into the usage that I'm quite certain that the FCA engineers have spec'd for the starter components for this added duty cycle. The starter is now heavy duty enough in order to stand up to these additional ESS start cycles.

Furthermore, ESS is not a cold start where the starter needs to overcome the friction of a cold engine and needing to spin the engine several or more revolutions. Likely a dozen or more piston combustion events.

During ESS the engine controller stops the crankshaft in a position where a warm lubricated engine starts within a single rev. Maybe just two to four piston combustions. Pretty impressive stuff. So the power demand of the starter is much (much) lower than a cold start. Without doing the math, I'd suspect that the starter effort is only 1/4 to 1/3 of the total (maybe even less) of that on a cold start.

Nope, starter mean time until failure is such a low concern (for me). I'll gladly replace a starter knowing that the lifetime endurance of the engine is benefiting from it.

Integrate the entire zero friction wear on the engine over the added starter effort during ESS events and I'll take the additional life of the engine without any concern to the starter any different way you want to measure it.

Jay
 

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@ToPar9,

My reasoning, right or wrong, is that I'll value my $6K 3.6L engine over a few hundred dollar starter any day of the week and 27 different ways on Sunday. ESS has been factored into the usage that I'm quite certain that the FCA engineers have spec'd for the starter components for this added duty cycle. The starter is now heavy duty enough in order to stand up to these additional ESS start cycles.

Jay
Awesome! I appreciate the in-depth reply.
I don't know much about engines/starters/alternators, so this explanation is excellent! The most work I've done on an engine was helping my step-dad work on my 5hp Briggs and Straton go-cart engine 30 years ago. :like:
 

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Have you changed your tire size? Use a tazer? I have these exact issues, and if the above are true, you need to perform the top gear relearn procedure. Theres information in the tazer thread, but also you can just Google it. For me, seconds after I put it in 5th gear, I get the error, and backup cam no longer works. Programming for correct tire size, and doing the relearn procedure solve it. (Until I remove my tazer, and the issue returns)
This is a way late response, but yes I have changed my tire size. I didn't use a Taser, but did use another brand to adjust the computers tire size. I had thought the issue was occurring when the Jeep was hot after driving a while and never made a connection to 5th gear, but that is likely the trigger. I appreciate the information and will do some research on the top gear relearn procedure. If all else fails, I'm just going to turn the tpms off permanently and see if that solves it.
 

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Jim,

Thanks for the info. However, I just discovered a deal breaker for me. I know you (like almost everybody else on this forum), disable ESS routinely, if not permanently, but I do not. Weird, but I really like it. Recall I am the true oddball.

It looks like the Genesis Dual Battery Kit has a pretty severe issue. It will only provide 6 ESS events per ignition on.

I stop way more than six times per trip for my commute. I hate red lights so much that I've counted them. Thirty two (32) each way taking the most direct route, twenty (20) taking the further (both in time and distance) a back country route.

While statistics (standard bell curve) plot of the probabilities of randomly hitting the red lights should average out to around 50% (in theory). Yet my real world experience is something extraordinarily but maybe not surprisingly different. I typically and routinely hit on average around 70% of them on the direct route and just under that at 62% on the back-country route.

Why the discrepancies is the stuff of PhD thesis material. I suspect driving the speed limit, designed light timings, traffic patterns, rush hour dynamics and a plethora of other factors like season, weather, gravitational forces due to the position of the moon, hell maybe even the coriolis effect. They all seem to work against me at hitting 50% or less of the total number of red lights on any given commute cycle.

So I stop a lot. On average about 22.5 times on the direct route and only 12.5 on the other. I'll bet you can guess which route I typically take?

As a side note, the direct route involves a four lane highway (US 287) that is a very unpleasant stretch of road. Not due to its scenery (living along Colorado's front range that's actually quite nice with the snow capped Indian Peaks range on the west) or all the traffic lights. Rather it's due to it's large accident rate. Looking over to the other vehicles driving on this road, the vast majority of drivers are on their phones. Not exaggerating. It's amazing. It's like this stretch of road must be so boring, that people have to do something, (anything) except drive.

However, I see nearly none of that trend on the two-lane back-country excursion. So yes I gladly and willingly invest in the extra 8.5 additional miles (one way) each commute cycle. The reduction of ten stops per trip is just the overall 'bonus'.

However, the back-country route also has an almost three mile 25mph stretch that goes right past a police station and is a notorious speed trap. Good thing I drive the speed limit. The longer route does have it's disadvantages as well.

Still, you can see that stopping and starting factors heavily into my daily driving activities.

ESS means a lot (to me). Maybe it's just the conservationist nature of my personality. I like the very pleasant sound of quiet from under my hood when I'm stopped at red-lights. There is one light in fact that is literally 2.5 minutes long. I don't make this light almost 100% of the time. But it makes me a little less frazzled while waiting there with the engine off.

I swear if I ever drive a non-ESS vehicle again (not likely, I think my Jeep is it for the long haul), I'd actually turn the ignition off at that particular red light.

So, The Genesis solution is off the table until I can find yet another alternative. I'll keep researching. Maybe determine what's really behind the physics of this six cycle limit. As you suggest, perhaps built up capacitance from the IBS with the now missing Aux battery. Nothing is ever as simple as it first seems.

Jay

Jay,

Thanks for your feedback, I love hearing from customers about their decision making process, so this is very helpful.
We have had a few customers who REALLY loved the ESS system like yourself and were torn about running our dual battery kit. I'll throw out 2 points for you to consider. First, there is one simple workaround for the 6 cycle limit. You're obviously going through a whole lot of red lights during your commute, much more than average it sounds. For this situation, if you want to run our dual battery kit, you could drive through the first 6 cycles, and the next red light that you come to and the engine DOESN'T turn off, while you are sitting there, you could manually cycle the ignition yourself to reset the counter. I think it should go without saying that you'd want to use some common sense here and only do that when you feel it is safe to do so since it would take a few seconds extra to shift to park or neutral, hit the ignition button, then hit it again to start up, then shift back to Drive. Then it would reset the ESS counter to work another 6 times. However, if you love ESS that much, I understand it may be a pain in the butt to do that.

My second point is simply that you have to weight the benefits of our dual battery kit against the benefits of the ESS. Do you want to be able to run your accessories with the engine off without killing your cranking battery, or do you want the functionality of the ESS at the red lights with no interruptions? Any time we modify our vehicles, there's always trade-offs to consider. We hope the additional benefits that our kit offers outweighs the occasional limitation with the ESS system, but that's your decision to make.

I hope these points help you make a well informed decision, but if you have any questions please let us know!
 
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