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Old 09-21-2013, 02:29 PM   #1
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Do you have a Xantrex ECHO?

Did not get any feedback off another thread, so thoughtM I would ask question here. Got to be someone who has an Echo charger. I would like to know any pros/cons. I need to remedy chassis battery drainage so I am considering this device. I know there are other devices that will do same thing possibly cheaper, but to compliment my Xantrex Freedom 458 I am giving this unit thought. Any advice?
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Old 09-21-2013, 04:38 PM   #2
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I had Xantrex in my last coach. The ECHO charger was a bit finicky to get to work. I had to set the inverter to 2 stage.

Have you considered Magnum and full sine wave? They have better support, and for my money a better product line. I was told by Xantrex that my MS2000 was disposable when it cooked a set of AGMs because the temp sensor was not working correctly. The Lifeline battery rep told me that if I had a Magnum I would not have a problem.

Many folks are going to a battery tender for the chassis battery. Most coaches have a BIRD relay that, when working, switches between coach and house battery to keep charging up. But this often fails and leaves you flat. Here is a website with some options. You can read about them tere: Smart Marine Chargers & Battery Trickle Voltage Maintainers

As I understand ECHO charging, when the inverter is satisfied that the house batteries are charged to 13.6V, I think, at that time the ECHO charger is turned on to bring the coach battery up to charge with a small current applied.
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Old 09-21-2013, 04:46 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buck454 View Post
Did not get any feedback off another thread, so thoughtM I would ask question here. Got to be someone who has an Echo charger. I would like to know any pros/cons. I need to remedy chassis battery drainage so I am considering this device. I know there are other devices that will do same thing possibly cheaper, but to compliment my Xantrex Freedom 458 I am giving this unit thought. Any advice?

There is no relationship between the ECHO and your Inverter/Charger other than the name "Xantrex". Xantrex makes a ton of stuff .... not necessarily to work with each other.

Choose any similar device that meets your needs and budget.
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Old 09-21-2013, 04:57 PM   #4
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I have the Echo Charger and simply put have never had a problem. The charger works perfectly and keeps my starting batteries fully charged at all times.
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Old 09-21-2013, 05:37 PM   #5
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There is no relationship between the ECHO and your Inverter/Charger other than the name "Xantrex". Xantrex makes a ton of stuff .... not necessarily to work with each other.

Choose any similar device that meets your needs and budget.
Bruce,
This is what I am thinking and I really should not implied that there was an actual electrical connection to the two componets. As you say, the connection is only in the brand name, but since the Xantrex names seems to have high regards in the RV industry I thought perhaps it would be a sound investment as for as Chassis "battery tender". Trik-L-Start or Amp-L-Start could be better....and there are probably a couple of more. Just asking because I need something and I felt the method of taking from the Charger/Inverter through house battery bank, rather than a floatercharger needing AC, would be the best move. I am open for suggestions.

I am concerned with Rick's mention of possibly poor customer/tech communication and warranty with Xantrex.

Thanks for reply.
Bill
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Old 09-21-2013, 08:30 PM   #6
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I also have an Echo charger on my horizon and has workekd without a hitch now for 8 years.
Echo Charger provides quicker charging as it provides 15 amps of charging vs 5 amps of charging for the Trik-L-start.

Never heard of anyone having a problem with an Echo charger on this forum.
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Old 09-21-2013, 10:52 PM   #7
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Harry B has the main difference. Had echo charge on my boat using alternator to charge a 1100 amp hour house bank, falling over to charge the 100amp starting battery through the echo charge. It is indeed better to bubble things up a bit with a heavy charge now and then on wet cells to keep the sulfation down.
The echo charge is bullet proof and pricey and I think Xantrex sucks otherwise...but it is the one product I would still buy from them!
That said, for the standard Single or Dual House bank of 2-300 amp hours...and a starting battery...I would not hesitate to buy a Trick L Start as a decent solution if not the best for around a third of the price.
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Old 09-21-2013, 11:33 PM   #8
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Bruce,
This is what I am thinking and I really should not implied that there was an actual electrical connection to the two componets. As you say, the connection is only in the brand name, but since the Xantrex names seems to have high regards in the RV industry I thought perhaps it would be a sound investment as for as Chassis "battery tender". Trik-L-Start or Amp-L-Start could be better....and there are probably a couple of more. Just asking because I need something and I felt the method of taking from the Charger/Inverter through house battery bank, rather than a floatercharger needing AC, would be the best move. I am open for suggestions.

I am concerned with Rick's mention of possibly poor customer/tech communication and warranty with Xantrex.

Thanks for reply.
Bill
Hey Bill, frankly you'll probably be perfectly happy with the Amp-L-Start (15amp) and save a few bucks. It does not require 120vac ... it's a DC unit like the Echo. I don't have any of these because my older Endeavor has almost no parasitic draw on the Chassis (I can go months and still start right up) and I have solar and a controller on the House so it's always charged.

Can't really comment on tech support/warranty since I've never used it. My inverter is a Heart Freedom 20D ... Heart was acquired by Xantex quite a few years ago.

BTW, if I remember correctly, you haven't actually determined if you have a BIRD (or the variation, an IRD). You may want to hold off until your Isolator Solenoid is replaced and see if it actually starts charging the Chassis bat. If you aren't absolutely sure, and you install an Echo type device, you could wind up with 2 devices (ECHO and BIRD) trying to charge batteries.

Have you replaced the Solenoid yet?
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Old 09-21-2013, 11:55 PM   #9
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Hey Bill, frankly you'll probably be perfectly happy with the Amp-L-Start (15amp) and save a few bucks. It does not require 120vac ... it's a DC unit like the Echo. I don't have any of these because my older Endeavor has almost no parasitic draw on the Chassis (I can go months and still start right up) and I have solar and a controller on the House so it's always charged.

Can't really comment on tech support/warranty since I've never used it. My inverter is a Heart Freedom 20D ... Heart was acquired by Xantex quite a few years ago.

BTW, if I remember correctly, you haven't actually determined if you have a BIRD (or the variation, an IRD). You may want to hold off until your Isolator Solenoid is replaced and see if it actually starts charging the Chassis bat. If you aren't absolutely sure, and you install an Echo type device, you could wind up with 2 devices (ECHO and BIRD) trying to charge batteries.

Have you replaced the Solenoid yet?
Have the solenoid on my Amazon list, probably order tomorrow. Was waiting on result in survey about charger. I have looked for a BIRD device and have not found one. Think I will to as you suggest and get the Trombetta replaced then worry about charger. Thanks. bill

I am starting to lean towards the Amp-L-Start the more I read and price is attractive too. b
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Old 09-22-2013, 12:11 AM   #10
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Have the solenoid on my Amazon list, probably order tomorrow. Was waiting on result in survey about charger. I have looked for a BIRD device and have not found one. Think I will to as you suggest and get the Trombetta replaced then worry about charger. Thanks. bill

I am starting to lean towards the Amp-L-Start the more I read and price is attractive too. b

Yup .... a BIRD can be hidden anywhere ... sometimes it's integrated into another board. Not much to it really ... with today's chip sizes it could easily be the size of a half dollar. It's only purpose is to monitor battery voltages, look at the lock-out signals, and pick a solenoid when conditions are met.

Here's a decent write up of a BIRD function and also shows a schematic of the typical solenoid connections. The disconnect solenoids are not actually a part of a BIRD system but are shown on the page because Intellitec also makes a Battery Disconnect assembly.

http://www.dodgenmobiletech.com/site...ay%20Delay.pdf
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:07 AM   #11
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I had an ECHO Charger from Xantrax. It failed after about 16 months. I just ordered a replacement Amp-L-Start, which to me looks like a better unit. The ECHO unit is an open board which had corrosion, dirt, and lots of spiders all over the circuits, whereas the Amp-L-Start unit has the electronics totally encapsulated and protected from the elements. Not to mention the fact that it's less expensive.
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:04 AM   #12
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I had an ECHO Charger from Xantrax. It failed after about 16 months. I just ordered a replacement Amp-L-Start, which to me looks like a better unit. The ECHO unit is an open board which had corrosion, dirt, and lots of spiders all over the circuits, whereas the Amp-L-Start unit has the electronics totally encapsulated and protected from the elements. Not to mention the fact that it's less expensive.
Chet,
I am definetely beginning to agree. I think I will replace ESR solenoid first (as Bruce suggest) then probably get a AALS if still have the drain.
Bill
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:19 PM   #13
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My Echo has been installed since Aug '01 and no problems
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:55 PM   #14
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I have an echo charger that has been working perfectly since Sept 2001. It is installed inside my fuel filter and air connection compartment so it is always out of the elements.
I looked and I paid $41.00 for it in 2001. Looks like the ones they sell today for a lot more.
Good luck with whatever you choose.
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