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Old 12-14-2010, 08:02 PM   #1
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Battery Tender for house battery, any experience with this?

My 1986 Bounder's converter charger, is not working. The converter's rectifier side of the converter is working fine, so I have picked up a Battery Tender Plus to hard wire in to use, to charge the house batteries, instead of buying a new converter. Has any one else did this? If so will it work with out any problems? I intend to hook the output side of the Tender, to the wire, where the output from the converter ran directly back to the house battery!
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Old 12-14-2010, 09:00 PM   #2
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I use a dual battery tender...hard wired to house and engine batteries with their fused cords..I switch off both banks too!
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Old 12-14-2010, 09:25 PM   #3
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Hi troedw44,

It will work as long as the battery charger is sized large enough.
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Old 12-14-2010, 09:43 PM   #4
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the one problem with just using only a Battery Tender is you won't have 12vdc from the converter when plugged into 120vac. You will be running off your batteries when plugged in and the charger may not be able to keep up with the demand.

just reread your post. The battery tender won't charge in amps as much as a charger will. Your charger/converter is either 45 amp or 60 amp I would think. A battery tender will not put out any where near that many amps.
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Old 12-23-2010, 01:11 PM   #5
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Check fuses, switch, connections and battery

The OP stated the rectifier was working but battery not being charged.

Stupid questions...
Does the 12 volt devices work when on battry and not shore power?
If the battery is not connected is there a voltage measured on the batteyr cable while shore line is in?

If the rectifiers are working then there should be 12 volts available to charge the battries, there usually is not a seperate charger.

There may be a fuse or other connection that may provide a current limit in charge but I am not aware of this.

If there is a voltage at the wae going to the battery, and it is more than 12 volts the batteries are not taking or holding the charge and need to be replaced.

You could verify charge current with an ammeter to see if the batteries take a charge.

If voltage present and no or very litle current then battery is toast!
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Old 01-02-2011, 12:11 AM   #6
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Update

My son installed the Battery Tender and it worked for only about 4 hours, before it quit working! He returned it but he exchanged it for a digital read out computer controlled 20/10/2 amp. battery charger/maintainer. It is working fine.
He had guests stay in it, over the week of Christmas, and it did a great job. Thanks for your help.
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Old 01-02-2011, 12:52 AM   #7
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To TQ60;757980

Quote:
Originally Posted by TQ60 View Post
The OP stated the rectifier was working but battery not being charged.

Stupid questions...
Does the 12 volt devices work when on battry and not shore power?
If the battery is not connected is there a voltage measured on the batteyr cable while shore line is in?

If the rectifiers are working then there should be 12 volts available to charge the battries, there usually is not a seperate charger.

There may be a fuse or other connection that may provide a current limit in charge but I am not aware of this.

If there is a voltage at the wae going to the battery, and it is more than 12 volts the batteries are not taking or holding the charge and need to be replaced.

You could verify charge current with an ammeter to see if the batteries take a charge.

If voltage present and no or very litle current then battery is toast!
Only part of the DC circuits (5) worked when plugged in to shore power. The converter has 8 DC circuits, 5 are fed from a common copper bar and 3 are fed from a smaller copper bar. (My son found the large wire from the house battery to the converter has shorted to ground, and burned this wire completely in two. and the house battery had been replaced with a new d8 deep cycle,) The 3 circuits did not work, unless jumped from the five circuit bar. Not sure why but everything appears to be working with the new charger.
thanks Ed
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Old 01-02-2011, 03:18 PM   #8
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The battery tender is designed to MAINTAIN the batteries.. Not to charge them up when they need charging.

Think of this, Battery Tenders are usually less than five amps

House batteries often hold over 200 amp hours

That's like 3 DAYS (To 10 days if you have a smaller tender) to charge if there are no other loads on the battery... Or 20 days if you have bigger batteries. or.. Well you get the idea.
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Old 01-03-2011, 06:10 PM   #9
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Where there is smoke...

If the wire was burned in two then it was NOT installed properly, there shou dhave been a fuse of some sort, and it should have been routed in such a manner as to not short out.

Many installations do NOT have a disconnect or fuse at the battery, but then is is critical that the wire be fully supported from end to end, and no sharp edges are crossed unless grommets or other protection is between the wire and the edge.

Since it is blown in two the devices between the short and source of power, most likely the battery via the converter, are likely damaged.

A modern 8D battery has upwards of 1000 to 1500 CCA, dead short amps are much higher as the CCA must be at a voltage above a certian point, dead short does not.

You state the small bar only works when shorted to the large one, I suspect there is a relay or fuse between the two that should be checked.

It is safe to assume that troubles have friends, so if you have one shorted wire then there is a good chance there are other places that could be problematic, I would suggest spare time be invested in inspecting any and all wiring that you can to insure the rest is installed in such a manner to not get shorted to ground.

The maintainer is only designed to MAINTAIN the battery, the other term is FLOAT the battery.

The device should not put out more than about 1% of the battery capacity, so if you have an 8D battery then the charge should not exceed 2 amps or so.

If you are running devices then the battery will discharge as if it was not connected, but over a period of time the maintainer may bring it back up, but it could take days to weeks, this is why the converter has the higher output so it can provide the primary power for the 12 volt devices instead of the battery.

Many older converters are not well regulated, and with the ability to output a constant 30 to 70 amps they can boil a battery in short order, this is why many folks add a maintainer and switch off the converter when driveway storing, easier and cheaper than replacing or updating the converter to a well regulated version.
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