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Old 05-27-2018, 10:39 AM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 12
Monaco Windsor 1997 house power shuts off when ignition turned on

I am sophisticated with electricals but need some help from somebody who knows 1997 Monaco Windsor Diesel or similar RV. There are two issues apparently related:

1. The house power turns off (including interior lights, radio etc) when the ignition is turned on.
2. The engine battery is not being charged on shore power but is charged when engine is running
3. It is 38 foot with diesel engine under the rear bed. Various relays and power equipment are mounted on the front wall of the engine compartment.
4. The RV has a 2000w heart inverter and AC power transfer switch that appears to be working fine.

Here is what I see:
1. The fuses panel is behind a pullout at center of dash at floor level. There is a black 8 guage wire going to a house power fuse barrier strip at upper right. All fuses test good. The black wire on this barrier strip appears to go to a battery disconnect relay in the engine compartment (which I replaced to no avail).
2. When I turn the ignition on, a battery disconnect relay at upper right of the fuse backplate connects power to the running equipment fuse block barrier strip. That is working fine.
3. The 8 guage house battery fuse terminal block black wire appears to go to the engine compartment to a battery disconnect relay lug which has another 8 guage black wire going somewhere else (see engine compartment new relay lower right). I do not know where the other black wire goes. Where does it go? That relay is not getting power to the coil under any circumstances. That relay has 12v on the on one contact that comes from a large rectangular device that has fins on it. I think that is a bridge rectifier.
4. The house lights come on if I jumper across the relay. I think this relay is supposed to turn on when the ignition is on. I replaced the relay today but that did not fix the problem (see photo with new relay).
5. POSSIBILITY: whatever controls the coil of the battery disconnect relay (which I replaced) might not be working. There is a purple wire going to the coil. But what pulls it down?
6. When somebody toggles the ignition key switch, there are about 8 smaller control relays mounted high in the engine compartment, some of which click. One is labeled "ignition" but its wires are yellow/white and do not appear to go to the battery relay. I tapped the relays to see if that power up the battery disconnect. That did nothing.
7. There is another old battery disconnect relay at upper left of engine compartment (see photo) but it has small wires and does not appear to go to the new relay I put in. I do not know what it does.
8. I looked for more hidden relays such as under stove in slideout. i do not see any hidden equipment
9. (Related?) problem: Engine Battery Not Charging: I'm not sure where 12v comes from to charge the engine battery. The House batteries are getting 13.73v charge current on shore power and when the engine is running. The House battery There is a big blue CH battery isolator with huge wires at right of front of engine compartment and a green Lambert LE-514 battery maintainer/protector. I have not look into that equipment yet. If you have any tips as to why that might not be charging the battery please advise.

Conclusion so far:
1. Whatever powers the purple wire on the coil of the new battery disconnect relay may the key. I do not know where that wire goes (hiding in loom). That wire does switch to ground ... the other side of the coil always has 12v . The house lights do go on when I jumper the contacts.
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Old 05-27-2018, 11:10 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Silver Springs, FL. USA
Posts: 19,295
That's bizarre! Is this a new problem and the system worked before, or something that existed and you are just now trying to troubleshoot? If an existing problem, something may have been miswired by a previous owner... If a new problem, then something that was working has recently failed.

The only thing I can think of is that the ignition-on closes a relay (in the isolator, maybe?) and that new circuit causes a short that shuts down the house converter/charger somehow. Do you have to manually reset anything after this, or does power restore itself as soon as the ignition is turned off.

If something is miswired, the number of possibilities opens up dramatically.

Gary Brinck
Former owner of 2004 American Tradition
Home is in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
Summers in Black Mountain, NC
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Old 05-27-2018, 01:33 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 14,246
I posted in your other post that the new solenoid may be mis-wired. The small black wire should go to a mounting bolt as ground and not the large post on the solenoid.

It may be finding ground thru the purple wire, until it goes hot with the key.
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ignition, monaco, power

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