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Old 07-25-2011, 01:04 PM   #1
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batteries/charger/converter problems

I have an 85 Southwind 27' MH with 454. My problem is that house batteries run down when I am plugged into shore power. I do not have an owners manual and am not the "sharpest tool..." on elect. problems. Any ideas what to do?

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Old 07-25-2011, 01:14 PM   #2
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I always thought that all RV's would charge the house batteries when connected to shore power and that starting batteries would be left to drain .

In those cases the installation of a Trik-L-Start would solve this problem. Your problem might be different since it is your house batteries that are not charging while on shore power .

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Old 07-25-2011, 03:53 PM   #3
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Is your converter charging the batteries? If you are plugged in and the batteries are not charging (assuming the batteries are okay and all ciruit breakers are in, etc), that's the first thing I'd check.
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Old 07-25-2011, 04:02 PM   #4
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It sounds as though your converter/charger isn't working. That's what charges the house batteries while on shore power. But also check the batteries themselves and make sure there is water in the cells (not applicable if a maintenance free battery). The charger can't charge a battery that is dry.
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Old 07-25-2011, 10:53 PM   #5
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I had the same issue. If everything checks out, the stock converter/charger is crap. Upgrade to a parallax 9200 series. Ive got a 9260 and it works perfect. Keeps the batteries toped off. Unless I forget to shut off the electric water heater element. Thats another story though.
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:15 AM   #6
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batteries/converter/not charging

First, thanks for all your suggestions. I had that same thought (the converter not charging) and will pursue this by checking if it is in fact bad - then replace it. Once again thanks all.
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:39 AM   #7
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I have an 08 Tiffin. There is no built in mechanism for maintaining or charging the Starting batteries when the coach is not running. Tiffin added a small 2 Amp maintainer that is plugged into the 120V outlet - thus it is only maintaining the batteries while the 120V is lit up. I would add some kind of maintainer but also add a disconnect switch. Make sure that the maintainer is attached to the battery and not downstream from the switch.
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Old 07-26-2011, 11:34 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by 85swmh View Post
First, thanks for all your suggestions. I had that same thought (the converter not charging) and will pursue this by checking if it is in fact bad - then replace it. Once again thanks all.
In case you don't know how to check the converter, there are a couple ways to do it. Use a digital volt/ohm meter and check voltage at the house batteries with the converter off (or unplug coach) If batteries are okay you should get somewhere between 12.0V to 12.7V depending on state of charge. Note your reading. Then turn on converter (plug in coach) again note reading. If the converter is working you should see appx .8 to 1.5 volt higher reading when converter is on.
If the batteries are questionable another way to test the converter is to disconnect the Positive and Negative leads going to the house. Then turn on the converter and check voltage. Depending on the age and type of converter you have you should see somewhere between 13 to 14 volts.
If checking this way it may be easier to have the batteries checked while they are disconnected from coach.
If the converter does not work and you have checked all the fuses (usually located in the house circuit breaker box) it would be a good time to consider upgrading to a modern 3 stage converter. As mentioned in another post the PD9245 or PD9260 would be a good choice. I recently upgraded my older Magnetek 7345 to a PD9260 with pendant remote and love it. So do my new batteries.

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