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Old 08-05-2007, 03:33 PM   #1
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Well, finally got time to get everyone together and take a real weekend trip. Boys and I did a one night shot at a close by park with full hookups, but this was to be two nights, maybe elec hookup, and about 100 miles away. Get out of Phoenix and up on the rim.

Between work and a previously planned trip it had been a good month since I had gotten the motorhome out. I do remember a previous post about the slow drain on the house batteries from CO monitors, etc. but of course didn't think of this. I left work early, showed up at the storage facility, and....click. Dead. Emergency boost button...dead. Not even a light on the dash. Now, with coaches lined up there is no way to jump it with normal cables from the car. So after running to the local store for some wrenches (tools were at home waiting to go in coach), I removed the battery from my trunk (thanks Chrysler, not easy) and carried it over to coach steps.

After propping open step with the fire extinguisher (thanks National) I hooked the battery to the chassis battery and waited for enough charge to transfer...and waited. Hmmm. After a few tries I figured I'd be smart and use the battery to start the gen, had to draw less cranking amps. Waited a bit for enough juice to transfer and after a few tries the gen fired up. Now to put car battery back in trunk while batteries charge.

Piece of cake, I'm proud of my ingenuity and knowledge of the systems even though I have owned it for about 6 weeks. I throw the boost button and turn the key. The sound of my gen slowly lugging to a stop made me re-think my smartness. Maybe it needed more charge time. Back to the trunk for the chore of removing battery (knuckles bleeding in numerous spots now). Started process over but this time after getting gen running, I hooked the battery to the chassis battery. Finally started! Now please don't die. Totally soaked in sweat in work clothes, knuckles bleeding, back sore from lifting battery out of trunk, BUT, I'm going camping!

Left the gen running for the drive home and while loading gear and seemed to have enough charge to restart if needed.



Well, we made it. Went up through Payson and then east on top of the Mogollon Rim. Monsoon season is upon us and both Phoenix and the rim were wet, but the rim was 20 degrees cooler. I was amazed at how many people were there given the weather, especially since the majority were in tents. Many had trailers or pop-ups with them. Ah, I remember those days of wet tents. I still do the occasional back packing trip with the boys, but for a quick weekend away I think we have all agreed the motorhome is the way to go.

Now, for two questions:

-why does the chassis battery die? I can understand if the CO monitors are connected to the full bank and even the disconnect switch doesn't cut them off. Just seems strange.

-Real chassis battery question occurred during weekend. First night we had a site with electric, but had to move to no-hookup site on second night. Frig. on propane, no A/C needed, limited light usage and water pump. Kids watched a movie for 1.5 hours with inverter switched on. Got up the next morning and house batteries were reading 12.6 volts, and chassis was a bit over 10. Turn the key and it's dead. Started generator, hit the boost button and engine started. Why would chassis battery be drained overnight and house batteries barely be dented? (PS all batteries are new. House is two 6 volts in series).

All in all a great weekend, just a few things that seem unusual on the battery side.

PS CO monitor decided to start going off with nothing running (frig on AC), windows open, and door open. After it went through this cyle a few times randomly I found my screw driver and removed them. I'll put them back, but that is annoying. At least a smoke detector has a reset button.
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Old 08-05-2007, 03:33 PM   #2
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Well, finally got time to get everyone together and take a real weekend trip. Boys and I did a one night shot at a close by park with full hookups, but this was to be two nights, maybe elec hookup, and about 100 miles away. Get out of Phoenix and up on the rim.

Between work and a previously planned trip it had been a good month since I had gotten the motorhome out. I do remember a previous post about the slow drain on the house batteries from CO monitors, etc. but of course didn't think of this. I left work early, showed up at the storage facility, and....click. Dead. Emergency boost button...dead. Not even a light on the dash. Now, with coaches lined up there is no way to jump it with normal cables from the car. So after running to the local store for some wrenches (tools were at home waiting to go in coach), I removed the battery from my trunk (thanks Chrysler, not easy) and carried it over to coach steps.

After propping open step with the fire extinguisher (thanks National) I hooked the battery to the chassis battery and waited for enough charge to transfer...and waited. Hmmm. After a few tries I figured I'd be smart and use the battery to start the gen, had to draw less cranking amps. Waited a bit for enough juice to transfer and after a few tries the gen fired up. Now to put car battery back in trunk while batteries charge.

Piece of cake, I'm proud of my ingenuity and knowledge of the systems even though I have owned it for about 6 weeks. I throw the boost button and turn the key. The sound of my gen slowly lugging to a stop made me re-think my smartness. Maybe it needed more charge time. Back to the trunk for the chore of removing battery (knuckles bleeding in numerous spots now). Started process over but this time after getting gen running, I hooked the battery to the chassis battery. Finally started! Now please don't die. Totally soaked in sweat in work clothes, knuckles bleeding, back sore from lifting battery out of trunk, BUT, I'm going camping!

Left the gen running for the drive home and while loading gear and seemed to have enough charge to restart if needed.



Well, we made it. Went up through Payson and then east on top of the Mogollon Rim. Monsoon season is upon us and both Phoenix and the rim were wet, but the rim was 20 degrees cooler. I was amazed at how many people were there given the weather, especially since the majority were in tents. Many had trailers or pop-ups with them. Ah, I remember those days of wet tents. I still do the occasional back packing trip with the boys, but for a quick weekend away I think we have all agreed the motorhome is the way to go.

Now, for two questions:

-why does the chassis battery die? I can understand if the CO monitors are connected to the full bank and even the disconnect switch doesn't cut them off. Just seems strange.

-Real chassis battery question occurred during weekend. First night we had a site with electric, but had to move to no-hookup site on second night. Frig. on propane, no A/C needed, limited light usage and water pump. Kids watched a movie for 1.5 hours with inverter switched on. Got up the next morning and house batteries were reading 12.6 volts, and chassis was a bit over 10. Turn the key and it's dead. Started generator, hit the boost button and engine started. Why would chassis battery be drained overnight and house batteries barely be dented? (PS all batteries are new. House is two 6 volts in series).

All in all a great weekend, just a few things that seem unusual on the battery side.

PS CO monitor decided to start going off with nothing running (frig on AC), windows open, and door open. After it went through this cyle a few times randomly I found my screw driver and removed them. I'll put them back, but that is annoying. At least a smoke detector has a reset button.
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Old 08-05-2007, 03:54 PM   #3
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Your chassis battery is being pulled down by Parasitic Drain, you can do a search on this subject and get all kinds of information and opinions.

Your coach is an 04 your chassis battery may be an 03 or even an 02. The older starter battery get the quicker they discharge. LINK BELOW

http://irv2.infopop.cc/eve/forums?a=search&reqWords=battery+drain
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Old 08-05-2007, 07:11 PM   #4
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Jeff, I have found that the alarm is a warning that the battery is about dead. Happened to me while still in the dealers overnight hookup area. They had to replace the house batteries.

On my 01 there is a stereo/TV switch on the dash. It is a three position switch. When left in the Stereo or TV position it will drain the chassis battery.

Good luck
H.
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Old 08-06-2007, 11:06 AM   #5
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I installed a trikl-start and no mo problems, only cost $50, now when plugged in or generating chassis batts charge i
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Old 08-07-2007, 06:23 PM   #6
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thanks for replies.

Chassis and house batteries are brand new. Both (all three)were fully charged before the dry camping night. Chassis died first with no chassis systems running.

Alarm started going off randomly while plugged into 30 amp shore power. First time it went off we were stopped at check in booth and idling with driver window open. I thought this was reasonable as I might have some exhaust coming in. Later it went off after we were parked a number of hours with frig on AC and many windows open.

My '04 has a "radio" switch on the dash that cuts power to the CD/radio in the dash, and it was off.

Not sure what a Trikl-Start is, but interested. Doesn't chassis battery charge when plugged in or gen running through the converter already?

Still can't figure out why chassis battery would die first in only 16 hours when house battery bank is still putting out 12.6 volts.

Thanks again for the input.
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Old 08-09-2007, 11:44 AM   #7
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Welcome to my world. That d#*(!~ monitor started going off on our first trip last week at 11pm. I unscrewed it from the wall mount, opened my leatherman and snip/snip. Haven't heard a peep out of it since.

I haven't fixed my problem yet but I think I know what it is. After I replace my I/C this weekend, I'll let you know. Maybe/Maybe not might help you.
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Old 08-11-2007, 04:20 PM   #8
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Thanks Kernel. I have been following your electrical question post with interest.

Still can't figure out why the chassis battery died over night, and before the house batteries were even close to low. Time to pull out my electrical multi-tester and following circuits.
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Old 08-12-2007, 09:37 AM   #9
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by JKCTAZ:
Still can't figure out why the chassis battery died over night, and before the house batteries were even close to low. Time to pull out my electrical multi-tester and following circuits. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Jeff, even though you have new batteries, your chassis (engine) battery may be bad. Get someone with a BATTERY LOAD TESTER to load test your chassis battery before you start chaseing down parasitic loads. Here is a link that I keep to refer to battery questions. It is a good read and a little long, but well worth your time:

All About Batteries

Good Luck - Glenn
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