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Old 12-04-2008, 11:08 AM   #1
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Went to Indio last Thursday a.m. to spend the long weekend. I'm always hooked up to 50a service there. I typically turn off the house switch in the stairwell and the master switch in the battery compartment when I leave. When I arrived I turned on both switches, everything worked fine and continued to do so until I prepared to leave Sunday morning. I turned the ignition switch to the accessory position to power up to close the slides. Zippo! Nada! No Power! Tried to start the Generator...nothing! Tried the 30 second boost to start the engine- nothing. Went and check the batteries and the house batteries were at full charge and the 6 month old maintenance free chassis batteries were dead. I put a charger on them for about two hours and the engine fired up, I closed the slides, buttoned up and had to leave. Had a friend check the power later that afternoon and again the coach was dead. Why would the house batteries stay fully charged from the 50a tether and the chassis batteries not? Presuming the batteries are still good, what could be draining them?
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:08 AM   #2
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Went to Indio last Thursday a.m. to spend the long weekend. I'm always hooked up to 50a service there. I typically turn off the house switch in the stairwell and the master switch in the battery compartment when I leave. When I arrived I turned on both switches, everything worked fine and continued to do so until I prepared to leave Sunday morning. I turned the ignition switch to the accessory position to power up to close the slides. Zippo! Nada! No Power! Tried to start the Generator...nothing! Tried the 30 second boost to start the engine- nothing. Went and check the batteries and the house batteries were at full charge and the 6 month old maintenance free chassis batteries were dead. I put a charger on them for about two hours and the engine fired up, I closed the slides, buttoned up and had to leave. Had a friend check the power later that afternoon and again the coach was dead. Why would the house batteries stay fully charged from the 50a tether and the chassis batteries not? Presuming the batteries are still good, what could be draining them?
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:58 AM   #3
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Check the solenoid. It has to engage to charge the chassis batteries when hooked to shore power. The Vansco sends the signal to the solenoid when the house batteries are at full charge.
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Old 12-04-2008, 03:25 PM   #4
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I have changed the solenoid three times and all three have failed even though I purchased more robust units. I finally solved my problem by installing an echo charger which switches the charge voltage from house to chassis when the house batteries are fully charged. Cost $100.00 and took 30 minutes to install.
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Old 12-04-2008, 04:58 PM   #5
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Jerry,
How do you charge your house batteries while traveling down the road if the solenoid is bad? Or is the echo charger just a fail safe? Oddly my solenoid has not failed yet and I use my coach full time.
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Old 12-04-2008, 08:01 PM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I'm always hooked up to 50a service there. I typically turn <span class="ev_code_RED">off</span> the house switch in the stairwell and the master switch in the battery compartment when I leave. When I arrived I turned on both switches, </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
If yours is wired the same as ours, the engine batteries are only charged while the engine alternator is running, meaning engine is running. Jerry Davis did the same thing I did and installed an echo~charge unit. And when you are traveling down the road, the battery switches need to be on or your engine alternator is actually doing nothing.
Wayne, the echo~charge charges the chassis batteries <span class="ev_code_RED">after the house batteries reach a full charge </span> while hooked to shore power.
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Old 12-06-2008, 07:47 PM   #7
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Yet another nod to the pre-Vansco units. The Echo-Charger works (unless, of course, it blows a fuse, was wired backwards, etc.)! LOL!

Sometimes simpler is better. Had WRV used better parts, I'm sure the Vansco directed solenoid set-up would have been fine. Another good in theory, bad in practice.
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Old 12-07-2008, 10:05 AM   #8
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Rick,

It sounds like, as posted by others, that your Solenoid might be bad and I would guess that the chassis batteries need replacing. One bad cell in either battery can drain both. The 30 sec boost switch will not work if the solenoid is totally bad or if the chassis batteries are totally dead. See this thread about the solenoid, Vansco and 30 sec booster switch.

Chassis batteries

To all of those with Vansco systems: As long as your solenoid is in good shape, your system actually works slightly better than the older systems. The pre-Vansco systems use a solid state battery isolator for charging both battery banks while driving. There is always a slight lose in voltage thru a diode, which is used in a solid state isolator. If you are having trouble with solenoids failing, look for a problem with the solenoid cycling off and on, this will kill them very fast. I had this problem on ours, caused by the lower solar input in the afternoon and morning when not plugged in.
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Old 12-07-2008, 05:39 PM   #9
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I hope to have the answer by Tuesday. I sure hope that the 5-month old batteries aren't bad.
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:02 PM   #10
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Answer- The solenoid is shot! Thank you all for your suggestions.
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Old 12-09-2008, 03:07 PM   #11
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Rick,

If you continue to have a problem with the solenoid as I did, you might try the echo charger.

Best price I found was from this site:

http://www.davesmarineelectron...VIEWPROD&ProdID=7834
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Old 12-11-2008, 12:50 PM   #12
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Jerry & Rick, We all have the same year coaches and yet I only had the one original solenoid go bad. It was replaced by WRV and I installed it. Never had a problem since. I did buy a spare and then the fat boy arrived on the scene which is better than the one I have. It does make you wonder what different things they did when the built these coaches. Undoubtedly we will never know.
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Old 12-11-2008, 04:20 PM   #13
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Ted- I changed out my good original solenoid with a fat boy within 6 months of buying the coach just because of the bad press the original solenoid got on our forum, so I'll never know how long the original would have survived.
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Old 12-11-2008, 04:33 PM   #14
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Would one of you guys tell me which solenoid you replaced? I bought a Fat Boy, removed the panel in the back of the battery compartment and gave up. If I remember right there was two or three solenoids in there.
Brad
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