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Old 10-26-2010, 07:07 PM   #15
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TQ60 I think you nailed it. Power for the battery charge circuit coes off the switched side of the power buss. When the key is turned off the break-away battery holds the switched side up. I should have thought of that in the first place. One of those things where if you are too close to the design you can't see the simple problems.

I need to re-think how I did that, because the intent was to run the 12V lighting off the coach when it's plugged in, and all my current arrangement will do is discharge the break-away battery. I probably need to run the trailer power off the unswitched buss.

That means my battery drain problem is a separate issue.


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Old 10-26-2010, 11:45 PM   #16
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Change the source for voltage

This could be real simple.

I am not sure what the normal connection for the trailer connector is, constant hot, or CONTROLLED hot.

So if you want it to be only hot when ign is on, then add a relay with a second wire to constant 12 volts, the existing wire is used to activate the relay, the new wire provides the power.

What lighting and what conditions are you talking about...?

Simple enough, determine the mode for the lighting and wire the hhot lead in the plug to be hot in this condition.

So if it needs to be active when engine is off, but you still want to control the power, then use a relay located near the plug, run a heavy wire from the coach battery to the relay "C" post and the "NO" connects to the power pin on the plug.

Next is the can be complicated part, since you still want to charge the braking battery, you need the pin to be hot whenever the engine is running.

Since you already have a wire controlled by the key you are 1/2 way there.

Get a toggle switch (or find one you can borrow already in your coach, borrowing would be to have the trailer plug activate same as whatever the switch is, say you use the indoor light switch, it then turns on trailer lights same time)

You will also need 2 diodes, simple 1 amp diodes from Radio shack will do.

The diode has a band marking one side, you take the 2 diodes and connect the banded ends together and then this pair is connected to the coil of the relay, make sure that if it matters they are connected to the positive post, some relays have internal suppressor diodes so they will be marked "+" & "-".

Connect other side of coil to ground.

Connect non-banded side of one diode to the existing wire from your ignition, the other dioide is connected to your new or borowed switch, of course the switch must provide 12 volts when activated.

Now the 2 diodes being back to back will isolate the 2 wires from each other, and will allow either one to activate the relay.

So if you have the switch turned off, and start your engine the relay will activate allowing the battery in your trailer to charge.

You will need to remember to turn off the lights in your trailer.

Another simpler option is to use a second connector for your trailer lighting, and install a diode or relay to isolate the braking battery, work it out on paper until you have a design that works and that you can install.

Your battery drain may be this if the trailer has been left plugged in.

Best thing here is to troubleshoot, you could simle disconnect the wires that you connected before and see if the problem goes away.

It could be aged batteries that felt lonely and wanted your attention.

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Old 07-10-2011, 01:36 PM   #17
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Cool odd electrical problems-beaver monterey

Was having the same odd electrical problem with the House Batteries discharging quickly on my '96 Monterey. This began after removing the cover from my rv after being covered all winter and the sun began shining brightly in our area. Traced the cause to the polarity being reversed by checking the polarity at the inline fuse. Disconnected the fuse and the discharging ceased and the charge on the house batteries have been good now for a couple of weeks. Suspect that the wires were switched sometime in the past before I bought the unit last fall.
Now I have a problem. I cannot find the charging controller for the solar panels and don't really want to remove the panels from the roof to check the connections at the panels as this will ruin the new roof sealing job I just had professionally done at the tune of $2k. Any good ideas on where the controller might be or how to get to the backside of the panels without removing the mounting brackets from the roof? captainbob
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Old 07-10-2011, 06:03 PM   #18
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On using the clamp on ammeter, it will have to be a "hall effect" type (which most are not) to read DC current. The standard clamp on meter will measure only AC current only. Sorry!
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Old 07-10-2011, 07:56 PM   #19
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Sears has about the best deal on a AC/DC Clamp multimeter.

Sears: Online department store featuring appliances, tools, fitness equipment and more

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Old 07-16-2011, 05:38 PM   #20
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A diode or relay in the trailer, battery charge circuit will work if you only want it as a charge circuit, for a load/charge circuit you may have to hook up direct to the chassis batteries with a circuit breaker, in line, close to the chassis batteries, to have the circuit work the way you want.
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Old 07-16-2011, 11:34 PM   #21
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Power diode in the charge line fixed the shutoff problem. Battery drain is the usual Allison/Cat ECU drain coupled with a sticking power solenoid.
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Old 07-18-2011, 01:51 PM   #22
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CaptainBob -- I found the power distribution and catastrophe fuses and the Solar controller in the left bay wall of the curb side basement (it's behind a carpeted plywood door). I'm not sure when Beaver moved over to SMC, so it may not be of help.
Kevin & Gail
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Old 07-18-2011, 03:09 PM   #23
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1. a picture of the battery compartment would be helpful
2. all wires and terminals must be clean and shiny and tight
3. voltage across the batteries must be measured with the shoreline plugged in, unplug and start the engine and measure, and measure again with just the solar running.
4. If voltages are ok, that is 13.5 or more when being charged then you need to measure the specific gravity of the batteries. Your batteries may be tired. Once you have verified the batteries are ok then chasing current draw becomes useful but not unti.

5. As mentioned, the toad is backfeeding voltage to your system. I believe you have the charge line connected incorrectly and that is a different issue. That charge line could get overloaded by the toad and blow a fuse that shouldn't be supplying voltage to that line. This should be a simple fix. There are many ways to skin that cat.

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