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Old 08-13-2011, 12:28 PM   #1
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Newbie - 2 Questions

Hi and thanks for whomever can provide a bit of guidance...

I have 2 questions - both related to the electrical systems -

1 - Generator to Shore Power or vice-versa - I realize you should shut off the AC prior to making this move. Should you shut everything off and disconnect shore power prior to stating the generator or can you start the generator and then disconnect from shore power? ...and vice-versa?

2 - Repair/Troubleshooting question - we have a new to us coach which is having trouble holding a charge - vehicle and coach batteries. The mechanic is noting a 5 amp drain that is going on when everything obvious is turned off. Any clues as to what could be drawing on the battery. He's looking but saying if nothing else just use the disconnect...which I understand but woud prefer to know what's draining the battery...any ideas?

Thanks so very much -
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Old 08-13-2011, 12:50 PM   #2
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On question one: There was a thread recently about this very subject. Apparently you run the risk of damaging your transfer switch if you do not disconnect one before connecting the other.

Question two: Do you have a 12V TV antenna amplifier? This is often the culprit.

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Old 08-13-2011, 01:00 PM   #3
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If you shut off the big loads, AC, water heater, dryer, etc. before starting or stopping your generator, you'll be OK.

There is no need to disconnect from shore power. Most of us do not.
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Old 08-13-2011, 02:51 PM   #4
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Re #1, all rigs are wired differently. On mine, I don't have to unplug anything, but the generator has priority...if the coach is running on AC and the gen comes on, it switches to the gen.

Re #2, if I turn the master 12v power switch off, the only things left on are very small draws such as the propane detector...you'll have to look around.
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Old 08-13-2011, 03:29 PM   #5
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With just battery power the chassis and coach batteries should not be connected. The 5 amp drain is probably on the coach batteries, yes ?
Do both charge when the engine is running ? After is has sat for a few hours what is the voltage on each. If they have sat, totally discharged, they may be past bringing back. Anytime you let a battery sit for more than a couple of days in a partially discharged state you shorten its life and capacity.
What year, make and model?
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Old 08-13-2011, 04:03 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firstpoet View Post
Hi and thanks for whomever can provide a bit of guidance...

I have 2 questions - both related to the electrical systems -

1 - Generator to Shore Power or vice-versa - I realize you should shut off the AC prior to making this move. Should you shut everything off and disconnect shore power prior to stating the generator or can you start the generator and then disconnect from shore power? ...and vice-versa?

2 - Repair/Troubleshooting question - we have a new to us coach which is having trouble holding a charge - vehicle and coach batteries. The mechanic is noting a 5 amp drain that is going on when everything obvious is turned off. Any clues as to what could be drawing on the battery. He's looking but saying if nothing else just use the disconnect...which I understand but would prefer to know what's draining the battery...any ideas?

Thanks so very much -
#1 Here is the discussion mentioned above. Great stuff. Automatic Transfer Switches-Caution

#2 I'd be really suspicious that your batteries might need replacing but to find the phantom draw you might want to turn off all of your 12v breakers and then turn them back on one at a time while watching the draw to see which breaker will cause the draw to return.

It is really helpful for those who reply if you include your make, model and year of your rig in your signature line.

good luck...

rick
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