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Old 06-20-2014, 11:11 PM   #1
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Battery Control Center

I am having an issue with what I believe to be with the battery control center.

We purchased this new to us 1999 Bounder 34J with Ford Chassis last week in Arizona, we live in Kansas. It ran fine for three days while in Phoenix. On the way home the coach battery failed. When we stopped to get gas the engine would not crank at all. The display on the dash radio went blank. The chassis lost all power. Removed the battery terminals and cleaned and it started.

It ran fine until we gassed up again. Again the same problem. After working with the battery terminals I was able to get it started.

During our trip home the motor home ran fine while driving down the highway. When we stop at traffic lights while driving through town it would run rough, shift hard and sometimes stall. To keep the engine running i would start the generator as we would drive through the small towns and stop with traffic.

Got home and I determined it was a bad chassis battery. Replaced the battery drove it a few miles and it ran great. This was last Sunday.

Went to start the generator today and it would not turn over. I tried to start the engine, nothing. Display on the radio went blank again.

When I returned the key position from the start position the display on the radio returned. Tired it again and the truck started.

I am not sure which batteries start the generator. I checked the two coach batteries and both only had 5.7VDC each. I plugged it into shore power and measured the voltage again thinking it would charge the batteries but the voltage was the same. I left it plugged in for tonight and will see if it charges the coach batteries.

I have a troubleshooting guide if found on line for the battery charging center. I suspect it has a relay hanging up.

Not surer if I am on the right track or not.

Any input would be helpful.

Pat
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Old 06-20-2014, 11:56 PM   #2
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Hi Pat, you most likely have the intellitec battery control center unit. Behind the printed circuit board that contains several 12v fuses you have 3 solenoids. One is the coach (house) battery disconnect solenoid, one is the Chassis (engine) battery disconnect solenoid and the third is an Isolator solenoid. The Isolator solenoid prevents one set of batteries from draining the other set when there's no charging source available.

Whhen a charging source either from the converter or engine alternator reaches 13.6 vdc the Isolator solennoid activates and sends a charge to both the coach & chassis batteries.

Your generator starter power comes from your Coach batteries.

The problem you describe appears to be caused by an intermittant interruption of power from your chassis battery and may be difficult to find the cause.

It could be a faulty ignition switch or a malfunctioning chassis battery disconnect solenoid.

However you mention when you worked with the battery terminals it started so you may have some bad terminal connectors on your battery cable.

Good luck ferreting out your electrical problem and do keep us posted on your progress.
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Old 06-21-2014, 12:08 AM   #3
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What is the voltage of the chassis battery. That the battery that starts the engine. If you have a V10 engine anything less then 12 volts is a dead battery. If you can start the engine, check the voltage at the battery. With the engine running it should be greater then 13 volts. Less then 13 volts I would first for blown fuses and then check the voltage regulator. The coach batteries are not normally used to start the engine, mine does have a switch to connect all the batteries together.
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Old 06-21-2014, 12:13 AM   #4
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Almost forgot do you have the marine battery connections on your battery? They look like Mickey mouse ears used to tighten the cables. Mine came with these on, gave me nothing but trouble. Ever two hundred miles i would have to tighten them down. Got old quick and replaced with ones I got from autozone.
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Old 06-21-2014, 12:21 AM   #5
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Bad ground

Sounds to me like a bad ground. Trace the negative terminal wires back to where they connect to the chassis/frame.

Corrosion can cause all sorts of weird behavior.
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Old 06-21-2014, 12:58 AM   #6
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Pat,
Your problem could be a bad ground or a problem with the BCC. Another member with a 99 Bounder is have a problem with his BCC. Member loulong has been trying to help him, you can read about it here Disconnect circuit board The troubleshooting guide Lou posted has detailed instructions for testing BCC, it may be the same one you already have. If you have a volt ohm meter you should be able determine if the problem is the BCC. You may want to enlist Lou for some advise with your problem.

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Old 06-21-2014, 10:38 AM   #7
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Have you verified that the alternator is functional?
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Old 06-21-2014, 03:38 PM   #8
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First you need to monitor voltages, epically on the chassis system.. Generators USUALLY are house devices and thus start on house batteries but the key word in this sentence is USUALLY.. means not always.

Assuming your new chassis batteries have a good charge a bad connection is suspect #1, in fact there are but three suspects.. We will start at the battery.

In my case it was always the positive battery connection, I've re-done that and hope never to do it again, but the Ground lead (Both ends and the wire that connects them) are also on the suspect list, The ends are #1 and the wire (in all cases) #2 Inspect the wire, if anything looks ODD, it likely is ODD,, Example.. I had a wire that had a bulge in it, Right in the middle of a run, a big "Bubble" in the insulation.. Sure enough.. PROBLEM.

Then start on the positive wires,, Same process. Trace the wire, inspect the wire as you trace it, find the ends and make sure the connections are good and clean.. NOTE: Engine lead may or may not go to the BCC.

Inspect all connections, TIGHTEN IF NEEDED and clean if needed,

Suspect 3 is the starter but I seriously doubt it.
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Old 06-21-2014, 04:11 PM   #9
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LVJ58 I do have the intellitec system but the battery control center is manufactured by RV Custom Products. I cleaned and tightened the chassis battery terminals and the coach battery terminals. I now have a charger on the coach batteries.

mrt_1111 The voltage of the old chassis battery was 12.9VDC. The voltage on the coach batteries is only 5.8VDC at each battery. When I had the old battery in place with the engine running above an idle the alternator would charge the battery. I measured it with my DMM. Since the coach batteries are not fully charged they do not start the engine when I press the momentary switch. The coach batteries have a 1/2" nut that tightens down on the terminal. I cleaned the terminals and tighten the down again.

There is a 20AMP fuse on another wire on the + post that has runs to the chassis but I am not sure what that is for.

Chboone & Muddypaws I will check the wiring to the chassis ground.


deandec I did check the old battery when the engine was running above an idle. The alternator was charging the battery. The voltage was around 13.5VDC.


wa8yxm I disconnected the chassis batteries and read the voltage at each battery. Each one had only 5.8VDC. As you suggested I will check the wiring and inspect the terminals.

THanks all for your input.

I hope to resolve this issue soon as I would like to go camping.
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Old 06-21-2014, 06:50 PM   #10
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Golfpgb, are you leaving the battery switches (the switches on the end of the cabinet by the entry door) ON when you are plugged in to shore power? Press the tops of the switches and you should hear the solenoids in the BCC close.

The house batteries will not charge unless these switches are ON.

It also sounds like your house batteries were not charging from the engine alternator either. This is a separate problem and is probably due to the isolator solenoid not making internal contact.

The trouble shooting guide should help you find that problem. If you need further help, just post here again.
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Old 06-22-2014, 08:37 AM   #11
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loulong I plugged the motor home in over night and left the house power switches in "House" mode so the system is powered.

I first thought the 6VDC house batteries were not taking a charge but learned that 6 volt batteries take a lot of current to charge and take longer to charge.

My little 10AMP charger would put out 6AMPs to the battery. I should have left them charging overnight with my charger.

I may do that tonite.

Before the coach was purchased it had set for quite a while. I think I will take the batteries to get them load tested Monday.

I will also print out the troubleshooting pages and see if I can pinpoint any problems.

Thanks,
Pat
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Old 06-22-2014, 09:18 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golfpgb View Post
loulong I plugged the motor home in over night and left the house power switches in "House" mode so the system is powered.
I first thought the 6VDC house batteries were not taking a charge but learned that 6 volt batteries take a lot of current to charge and take longer to charge.
My little 10AMP charger would put out 6AMPs to the battery. I should have left them charging overnight with my charger.
I may do that tonite.
Before the coach was purchased it had set for quite a while. I think I will take the batteries to get them load tested Monday.
I will also print out the troubleshooting pages and see if I can pinpoint any problems.
Thanks,
Pat
golfpgb
Do you have an "on board 3 stage battery charger" which charges the house batteries when connected to shore power?
(Mine is built into my Inverter).
If you do, (and if the charging perimeters are set correctly) you shouldn't need your little 10AMP charger to charge the house batteries.
However you may need it to charge your chassis battery because it's quite common for the chassis battery in RVs to charge only with the alternator, (not via shore power).
BTW, having your batteries load tested is a good idea, (it's imposable to determine if the charging system is working correctly if even one battery is bad).
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Old 06-22-2014, 11:18 AM   #13
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I printed out the troubleshooting document for the BCC and found the first few paragraphs state that both batteries should be charged. The truck battery is charged but the coach batteries are not.

I am considering replacing both six volt with twelve volt deep cycle marine/rv batteries. They are less expensive and easier to find.
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Old 06-22-2014, 11:21 AM   #14
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golfpgb
Do you have an "on board 3 stage battery charger" which charges the house batteries when connected to shore power?
(Mine is built into my Inverter).
If you do, (and if the charging perimeters are set correctly) you shouldn't need your little 10AMP charger to charge the house batteries.
However you may need it to charge your chassis battery because it's quite common for the chassis battery in RVs to charge only with the alternator, (not via shore power).
BTW, having your batteries load tested is a good idea, (it's imposable to determine if the charging system is working correctly if even one battery is bad).
Mel
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This is a '99 Bounder. The Bounder is definitely designed to charge the chassis battery via the on board converter, which is a multistage Progressive Dynamics 91XX.
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