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Old 04-18-2011, 04:37 AM   #1
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coach batteries

Hey everyone,
Ok, this weekend we went to Lake Lurleen. We plugged into the 30 amp service. On saturday night, i noticed the battery gauge on the monitor read the battery charge was really low. Pretty soon the carbon dioxide monitor was beeping and the fridge said low dc current fault. I went outside to see if maybe we came unplugged but we were still in good and the breaker was not tripped. The inverter was still humming at a steady pitch. I started the engine (not the generator) and it brought the charge on the monitor back to the top. After messing with lights and switches, i noticed that the light above the dinette would make the charge meter go down by itself. So the question is, bad battery, bad wiring, or bad inverter? The pair of coach batteries are exactly one year old. I thought being plugged in would charge them. Also, if the batteries completely die even while plugged or on the generator does that kill the entire system? Thanks for all the help in advance.
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:38 AM   #2
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It looks like your batteries are not gettich charged. Check the converter (inverter) and fuses/wiring.
If you are running on the inverter (using 12 volt to make 110) then your 110/120 does not work as advertized. (fuse in pedestall pushed in/switched to on????)
I keep refering to 110 volts for your current 120 volts like we moved here (europe) from 220 to 230 volts, just to use more energy (needlessly).
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:55 AM   #3
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I suspect you have a converter, not an inverter, unless you installed an inverter. I had the same problem right after I bought the coach. I had 110, but no 12v and my batteries would not stay charged unless the generator or coach was running. After checking all fuses and breakers, which were all OK, I called the manufacture of the converter. Their service tech had me check everything again, fuses and breakers, again all OK. Turned out the main board in the converter was bad. They sent me a new one, took about 30 minutes to remove the old one and install the new one. Problem solved.

Not sure this will help, but I hope so.

PS - you did put a volt meter on the batteries?
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:37 AM   #4
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bamabrian, it might help if you would give us more info about your coach (year, model, etc.). You can add this info to your signature by clicking "User CP" up near the top of the page. Then click "Edit Signature" under "Settings and Options" in the column that rund down the left side of the page.

One-year old batteries should not have gone bad unless they were overcharged and ran dry or if they weren't charged at all and went totally dead over the winter.
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:37 AM   #5
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Sounds like your AC system is OK and your DC system works but drains the batteries (isn't charging enough). As a quick fix, leave the light in question off; you might want to stop by an auto parts store or Wal-Mart and buy a 3 stage battery charger (and a volt meter).
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:13 PM   #6
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Check your panel to see if you are "inverting" (green light is usually on / flashing if you are?) - you may be running on batteries instead of shore power? Try running the generator and see if the batteries charge and you a/c works ... your transfer switch may be stuck, preventing the system from changing over to pedestal power? when you plug in? ( you said fridge "dc power" instead of ac?)
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Old 04-19-2011, 04:59 AM   #7
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ok, sorry, I have a 99 Tiffin Allegro 33wb. The green light is on and the generator did not seem to charge the battery. The converter box (inside the sewer bay?) was audibly humming like normal. If I started the coach, then it would run the battery meter all the way back up after just a couple minutes. I have not put a volt meter on the batteries to see if one has a bad cell, but they did last all season with no problems. And the fridge did give an A7 alert which on the panel says dc low voltage. Which fuses and breakers do I check?
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Old 04-20-2011, 09:34 AM   #8
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You may be getting closer ... it sounds like you're inverting from the 12v batteries instead of using 110 AC from either shore power or the generator. When you start the engine the alternator charges the batteries so you see a big spike on your meter. There is a transfer switch which is usually located in the area where the power cord enters the MH. This switch flips from shore power to generator power as needed. If you run your gen (after unplugging or flipping breaker at pedestal) you know you're getting AC power so you can test things. Wait a few minutes after starting the gen - does the microwave work? How about the fridge? If they're working and you're not "inverting" then you have AC. Shut the gennie off and try shore power again - if you have AC and charging then transfer switch is working, if you don't then transfer switch is broken or stuck. Try banging the transfer switch box in your coach a few times with the handle of a hammer or something then try the procedure again. Lots of problems with transfer switches and they do just plain wear out. DO NOT play inside the transfer switch box yourself unless you are unplugged from pedestal, gen is off, and all breakers are off. The most you should do is a visual inspection to see if any of the connections in there are fried. This fix is best left to Pro's!
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:51 PM   #9
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Ok, so i think i have found the problem. 2 30 amp fuses in the charger were burnt....but just barely. I had to study them because they were not blackened or even blown out, just barely split at the contact. When i changed the two fuses i plugged in and turned on all the lights, fridge, couple of fans etc...left them on for 20 or 30 minutes and then came back and checked the monitor and voila! still had a full charge! Hopefully, that solved the problem....Thanks again everyone for all your help, this forum is the best!
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