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Old 12-25-2008, 02:04 PM   #1
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Chassis Battery?

I was told recently that a friend of mine uses the boost switch on the dash of his motorhome to charge his chasis battery. He wedges the boost switch to on and leaves it that way for a couple of days a month while plugged into shore power. Anyone have thoughts pro or con on this?
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Old 12-25-2008, 02:37 PM   #2
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Hi TTT1953,
The answer would depend on the coach and the components installed in that circuit. I know for my coach it is not recommended. The relay is not made to be engaged for long periods of time and will fail. I have known others with my brand of coach and this has happened to them. Because you have a 2008, consider calling Monaco and see what they say.
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Old 12-25-2008, 05:38 PM   #3
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Tom and Carol

Are you sure that your convertor doesnt charge your chassis battery? I have a 2006 and both batteries are charged while on shore power.
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Old 12-25-2008, 08:29 PM   #4
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My manual says it charges both. I keep the motorhome plugged in to shore power all the time. I check the battery water levels once a month and I take it for about a 20 mile ride once a month, provided it's not snowed in. Last week I went out to start it after 3 weeks and the chasis battery was to weak to turn the engine over. I used the boost and got it running. I'm wondering if something isn't connected?
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Old 12-25-2008, 09:10 PM   #5
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When you're connected to shore power, use a voltmeter and check the voltage at the batteries, it should be 13+ volts if the converter is working properly.
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Old 12-26-2008, 10:10 AM   #6
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With the MH plugged in,I just read the voltages with a digital voltmeter. The house batteries read 13.1 volts, that's good. The chasis battery read 11.1 volts, not so good. The chasis battery disconnect switch is on. The owners manual has conflicting statements. It says the converter (IntelliPower 60 amp), charges the house batteries (2 6 volts), but does not mention the chasis battery at all. Under the chasis battery section it says "to prevent a dead battery leave the chasis battery disconnect switch turned on."

My next step is to call the dealer and get his input. They have been very helpful with the few problems I've had so far. They are closed until next week.
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Old 12-26-2008, 05:46 PM   #7
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On my 06 Winnebago Journey, I believe that the converter only charges the house batteries. Holding or wedging the Momentary Switch will cross connect them and allow the converter to charge both batteries.

However, you are continuously powering the Mom. relay. You may overheat and burn out the relay coil. You have to check with your motorhome manufacturer to see if that may be the case. The amount of current that you'd draw through the relay contacts shouldn't be an issue, but I'd check to see if the relay is rated for continuous duty.

W8RLM - Bob
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Old 12-26-2008, 06:17 PM   #8
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Tom, go to the power house and get some !!!


That's what happens when you leave the dark side --

You gonna travel to FL and see Vetman? If you do, let us know -- we can meet up and find a place to eat.
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Old 12-26-2008, 07:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by W8RLM - Bob:
Holding or wedging the Momentary Switch will cross connect them and allow the converter to charge both batteries.
Since your coach batteries are kept topped off by the converter they are mostly fully charged. When you use the switch to connect the dead chassis battery and the fully charged coach batteries, for the purpose of charging the dead chassis battery, you will inadvertently over charge the fully charged coach batteries.

-Tom
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Old 12-27-2008, 03:46 AM   #10
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You might want to try an Echo charger or something similar.
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Old 12-27-2008, 06:06 AM   #11
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Thanks for all the input. I had been thinking about an Echo but wasn't sure if I'd need one. Now that I know I do, I'll order it today.

Mike, we probably won't be coming to Florida. It would probably be easier to get Capt. Bud to root for Army than to get Carol on a plane.
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:24 AM   #12
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On my 2003 Winnebago Brave I traced the input wire from the solar panel to the relay switch. I then ran the wire to a switch and then to both sides of the relay. Now I can flip a switch and send the solar panel boost to the chassis battery while I am plugged in. Or I can just leave it charge the chassis all the time...
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Old 02-25-2009, 03:36 PM   #13
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You can also get a small solar charger and plug it into the cigaret lighter to keep the chassis battery charged.
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Old 02-25-2009, 05:50 PM   #14
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my 1996 charges the house batteries at the same time as the chassis batteries. all of them read the same volts, 13.2. you may need to check the bird to see if it is connecting the relay so both sets will get charged.
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