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Old 11-29-2017, 06:03 PM   #1
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No power to chassis and coach batteries

Hello all,

Well I have my 1997 Fleetwood Southwind 32V F53 Chassis and 460 Ford ready for the road exept for one thing, I HOPE!!!.

Recently I had a new Intellitech power converter 9160A installed in my motorhome and then I added a charge wizard.

I am getting 13.6, 13.2 and 14.2 volts at the converter 12 volt terminals as the charge wizards is run through its outputs, however, I am not seeing the same output at the batteries. My chassis and coach batteries are sitting at 12.73 volts after charging and removing the charger about 3 hours ago. My batteries ran down two days ago, not completly but enough that the engine won't start.

Either I have a phantom component that is sucking power, or I have a component or components that are not working correctly. Before taking it to a repair facility I thought I would throw this out to my RV family and see if you have any suggestions.

Battery Isolator?
Transfer Switch?
The battery main and coach battery switches? They are currently both on.


Anything, Anything Bueller, Bueller ???

My thanks to any of you who have fought this battle and won. Let me hear from you.
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:16 PM   #2
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12.7v is a fully charged 12v battery. Clean all ground connections, also I'd remove and clean all (+) cables too.

The disconnect solenoids have two large terminals that should both be showing 12v against a ground. If not, then put both large wires on one of the terminals to bypass the solenoid.

The battery isolator should only connect the chassis and house batteries together when a charging voltage (>13.2v) is present or when you hold down the dashboard battery boost switch.

The transfer switch only connects 120v and if it was faulty, you'd have no power to the converter/charger.
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:39 PM   #3
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Thanks much Bob, will check all grounds again. I have serviced all grounds, I think, and have used dielectric grease at all ground points and battery terminals which are all new. Again thanks.

Tom
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Old 11-30-2017, 09:53 AM   #4
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No power to chassis and coach batteries

Anyone else out there have any suggestion's ?
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Old 11-30-2017, 10:27 AM   #5
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The readings you are seeing are normal; charging voltage of 13+, followed by the voltage dropping a bit to 12.6-12.7 after the charger is disconnected and the surface charge dissipates. 12.6V is fully charged. Depending on how long you let the rig sit, if they continue to drop below that, then yes, you may have a problem; could be a draw or even a battery going bad.

But if your battery switches are on, there are indeed current drains, although how much depends on your coach. For example; the chassis battery obviously has a few small parasitic drains, as do all vehicles; things like the radio (presets/clock), ECM, etc. My steps are also wired to my chassis battery, although that doesn't draw any current unless used. As for coach batteries; my parasites includes the exterior radio (presets/clock), LPG detector, thermostat display, USB port LEDs, fridge control board (if on), built-in 2-way radio charging station... to stop them, I must turn the main switch OFF.

You didn't say how long it took for your chassis batteries to run down. It could be that your isolator is not separating the 2 banks, and so your coach parasites are also drawing off your chassis bank. Also not sure of what type of isolation system you have; a simple relay, or a more "intelligent" unit.

First step would be to check actual current at each bank with a multimeter with everything turned off, both with the disconnect switches turned ON and OFF. That'll help direct you to what may (or may not) be an issue.
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Old 11-30-2017, 10:54 AM   #6
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Using a jumper wire to bypass possible bad connections can help identify if the connection is bad or working properly is a basic step in my troubleshooting. I keep a small bin with various jumper wires of various lengths with alligator clips with a test light and multimeter. It's my go-to box when tracing electrical problems.

Disconnect a battery terminal and bridge the gap with a test light or ammeter to see the actual phantom drain. By pulling fuses one by one you can narrow down the source.
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Old 12-01-2017, 09:11 PM   #7
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My thanks to you all for some great trouble-shooting information. I will give it a go Monday and see what I can find and hopefully "FIX" Have a great weekend all.

Tom
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Old 12-17-2017, 09:19 AM   #8
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Finally found the problem. One of my disconnect solenoids had an open in it. Replaced it with new and now all batteries are charging from my new converter with the Charge Wizard. Thanks all. Also found that my new chassis battery was no good so changed it out under warranty for a bigger battery with 800 CCA.
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Old 12-17-2017, 10:15 AM   #9
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Glad to hear you resolved the problem. Happy travels!
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Old 12-17-2017, 10:49 AM   #10
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I'm about to put the intellipower 9100 and charge wizard plus 4 new 6v into my coach......hope it goes well!!
Already have 6 month old engine battery and everything else worked fine with coach plugged in to house. Hadn't ever gotten to plug random things in here and there to see how long the 2 batteries it came with would have lasted but I am hearing not long, LOL
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Old 12-17-2017, 05:29 PM   #11
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Once you have the converter and charge wizard installed just check the voltages at the batteries with the MH plugged into a 120 v source. My charge wizard starts the charging at 13.8 volts to the 12 volt chassis battery that starts the engine then drops to 13.2 volts as a maintenance charge. Every 21 hours the Charge Wizard steps up the voltage to 14.2 for a short time to exercise the battery cells to help prevent sulfation. The six volt batteries measure 6.7 volts at beginning and taper off to 6.3. or 6.4 volts. I knew that my new intellitech was showing voltages at the converter 12 volt wires but it was not getting to the batteries. I finally found the disconnect solenoid in the power distribution center just behind the grill on my rig.
I changed it out and it works normally now. I hope everything drops in and works well for you. Best Regards
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