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Old 07-27-2010, 09:30 AM   #15
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Might be on to something!

Thought I'd update you guys on my situation in case it might be helpful to others. After doing a little more detective work I discovered that my coach has a TRC 40250 Surge Guard/transfer switch hard wired into the coach. Got to work learning a little about that and here are my thoughts now.

The 30 amp problem occurred when I pulled into a packed KOA campground on a hot day. I had been running my roof airs for 12-14 hours off the generator. That TRC surge guard has a 2-1/2 minute delay that kicks in when you change power source in case the AC's need to bleed off head pressure. I was pretty quick to plug in that day so it may be that I beat the clock and that's why I didn't get power. By the time I kicked the generator back in the delay had expired. Another possibility, since the campground was packed and it was hot then there was a lot of juice being used and maybe the voltage wasn't what it should be and the surge guard was doing it's job. TRC has a digital monitor available for that thing so you can see exactly what's going on so I'm going to get one of those so I can see what's up for now on.

When I had the generator problem on the trip back the flashing light showed a code 27 error. I looked that up and it covers a variety of problems, one of which is the voltage regulator. Once again maybe it was a voltage issue. I spoke to the Onan people at The Rally and they told me that if the generator is running then it's putting out power. I was able to get it running but didn't get any power. I'm thinking that the surge protector was doing it's thing. I'm going to take it into Cummins and have them check the generator out.

I have read where the Xantrex RS2000 can also cause you not to get power from shore or generator too and that you need to reset it on occasion. Since I've had that worked on recently I'm still not confident that it's working right, particularly since the battery's are overheating. That one I can control though by just turning off the charger. The only brilliant idea I have on this one is to replace it with a Magnum.

Then again, what do I know?
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Old 07-27-2010, 01:39 PM   #16
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Radams,
There is on glaring problem that I can see and that's the size batteries you have your inverter set for charging. You mentioned you have 4-210 amp hour batteries. I assume you have 4 - 6 volt batteries, so you would have a 420 amp hour battery bank. It could be that your batteries weren't being fully charged and the voltage got below the threshold voltage where the inverter shuts down. Also if the battery voltage drops below 10.5 volts for 3 seconds trying to feed a load the inverter will shut off.

Please let me know if I am wrong in assuming your battery bank size.
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Old 07-27-2010, 02:09 PM   #17
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I had a similar incident several weeks ago going through Phoenix (I-10) down to Tucson. Battery charge off...batteries overheated. It was 113 degrees in Phoenix and only 104 in Tucson. First time I had ever seen the warnings. The shutoff and overheating warning made me re-read the manual . This was a normal warning ffor the very hot conditions.
Before we we arrived at the campground, shut down the basement AC and then generator. By the time we got to our parking spot (on dash air) the warnings were still on.
However, when we plugged in the 50amp receptacle everything worked fine.
I would respectfully suggest you get a can of electrical cleaner and spray ALL of your cord connections. That should be done many times a year anyway.
We have 3 12vdc batteries and they survived the overheating. The FMCA rally in Oregon next month will tell the tale as we will be boondocking two nights at relatives.

Keep us posted and good luck.

Kerry
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Old 07-29-2010, 08:37 AM   #18
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Wow! I didn't know that

There is on glaring problem that I can see and that's the size batteries you have your inverter set for charging. You mentioned you have 4-210 amp hour batteries. I assume you have 4 - 6 volt batteries, so you would have a 420 amp hour battery bank. It could be that your batteries weren't being fully charged and the voltage got below the threshold voltage where the inverter shuts down. Also if the battery voltage drops below 10.5 volts for 3 seconds trying to feed a load the inverter will shut off.

Please let me know if I am wrong in assuming your battery bank size.[/QUOTE]


You are absolutely right on the configuration of the batteries. My system panel had a setting for "Battery size" so that's what I did. I checked the manual after reading your note and in there it states "Battery bank" so you are dead on right. I also went to the default settings for the inverter from the factory and it said 440ah so that further verifies what you've said. Didn't know about how to calculate the battery bank using 6 volt batteries to make 12 volt power either.

So much to learn, I'll tell ya'. This leads me to think that the overheated batteries probably weren't caused by overcharging and now I'm back to the ambient temperature theory. I see where the inverter shutting down would explain not having power at the microwave when I plugged into the 30 amp service, but if that were the case then I would expect the same result when I fired the generators back up. Am I thinking straight on that?

Thanks so much for the info. This really helps!!!
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Old 07-29-2010, 08:50 AM   #19
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Hallelujah!

Quote:
Originally Posted by two-niner View Post
I had a similar incident several weeks ago going through Phoenix (I-10) down to Tucson. Battery charge off...batteries overheated. It was 113 degrees in Phoenix and only 104 in Tucson. First time I had ever seen the warnings. The shutoff and overheating warning made me re-read the manual . This was a normal warning ffor the very hot conditions.
Before we we arrived at the campground, shut down the basement AC and then generator. By the time we got to our parking spot (on dash air) the warnings were still on.
However, when we plugged in the 50amp receptacle everything worked fine.
I would respectfully suggest you get a can of electrical cleaner and spray ALL of your cord connections. That should be done many times a year anyway.
We have 3 12vdc batteries and they survived the overheating. The FMCA rally in Oregon next month will tell the tale as we will be boondocking two nights at relatives.

Keep us posted and good luck.

Kerry


Well, alrighty then! Don't call me Kimosabe cuz' I ain't the lone ranger anymore!! I'm going to take this as verification that the battery overheating was an ambient issue exacerbated by charging the batteries over an extended period. My battery tray sits right next to the engine exhaust, it was a hot day, and we were running for a long time.

Thanks for the heads up on the electrical cleaner too. That's an excellent idea and I'm going to round some up. Thanks for the help.
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Old 07-29-2010, 09:50 AM   #20
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Bob,
As you know your motorhome operates on a 12 volts DC battery system. You have 4 6 volt batteries with each battery having 210 amp/hours of capacity. When batteries are connected in series their VOLTAGES add and when batteries are connected in parallel their CAPACITIES add, so here is how you determine the total amp/hour capacity of your battery bank.

2 6 volt batteries wired in series makes a 12 volt battery bank with 210 amp/hours capacity. When you combine the 2 sets of 12 volt batteries (remember, a set is 2 6 volt batteries wired in series) by wiring them in parallel you still have a 12 volt battery bank but since the CAPACITIES add you now have a capacity of 420 amp/hours.

If your particular battery bank capacity is not listed as a choice in your inverter I would set your inverter for the next higher bank capacity which is 440 amp/hours.
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Old 07-29-2010, 03:29 PM   #21
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Thanks RJay! The clouds are starting to clear a bit for me now. I was starting to think my ex boss might have been right when he said "Bob, there are damn few of us good ones left, and I'm starting to have my doubts about you".
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:51 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radams View Post

My thinking on the ATS was that if it worked with 50 amp service then it should be okay for 30 amp. Assumed the 50/30 adapter was okay since when I turned the breaker on at the pedestal I could hear the ATS clunk.
\
Couldn't get either AC lit but that could have been that I didn't wait long before I fired the Ginny back up and maybe the high head pressures were leading to a delay and I wasn't waiting around. They fired up on 50 amp service.

Yes, I did shut off AC before shutting off Ginny.
I clipped a lot of that:

IT worked on 50 amps.. It worked on Generator.. The ATS (Or Something) Clunked when you turned on the 30 amp breaker.. That leaves one thing not working,, The Energy management system.. I'm guessing you have one.

Actually it leaves two things.. the 30 amp adapter might still be bad.

How, you ask, can that be when you heard the CLUNK.. Well, two ways

One.. Very high resistance... This would allow the ATS to Clunk, but not pass enough power to actually do anything.

Two: The 30 amp adapter splits the incoming power to both the L-1 and L-2, or rather it should split it.. It might be doing only one of the legs, which the EMS detects as FAULT and refuses to pass power.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:42 AM   #23
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Thanks wa8yxm! I've bought another adapter but haven't had a chance to try it out yet. I figured it's relatively cheap so why not give it a shot. I wondered whether that switch could change positions but not pass amps so with your help now I know. My theory goes that the switches normal position (no power) is on the generator side and only changes when I have AC in and no genset power. Hope that's right anyway.
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Old 07-30-2010, 09:01 AM   #24
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Good morning, boys!

I know you're all eagerly anticipating my morning post, so here goes!

Went over to the barn last night and cranked the generator on the MH up. Fired up the Aladdin system and checked the electrical status and it showed 120VAC on L1 and L2. Also showed a 17 amp draw on L1 so I checked the RS2000 system panel and it showed the batteries being charged with 16+ amps being used for that. Then I lit up the front AC and waited for it to fire up and when it did L1 showed 29 amps being used. L1 and L2 VAC seemed to bounce around a little, plus or minus 1 volt or so. Checked the system panel and batteries are still being charged but at a reduced rate of amps, I think it was about 12. So far so good.

No power to the microwave so checked the RS2000 system panel and the inverter is enabled. Checked the breakers on the main and sub electrical panel and they're all good. Went to the basement and the inverter button is disabled (no light) so I enabled and now I've got power to the microwave. Now I'm at the system panel and I disable the inverter from that panel and I've still got power to the microwave (genset running). I shut off the genset and have power to the microwave from the inverter now.

Apparently, unless the inverter is enabled in the basement, I get no power (genset or shore) through it, or from it, for the devices it supplies power to. With no AC in I need to enable the inverter at the system panel along with it being enabled in the basement for for it to supply AC from the batteries.

So is that the way this inverter is supposed to work? I didn't think the inverter needed to be enabled in the basement for genset or shore power to get through. I know there is a transfer switch but isn't it just supposed to switch between AC and battery? If so, isn't it normally in the AC position?

I can work with this now that I see what's going on but I'm not sure the inverter is right and it's still under warranty. BTW, I have no idea how that inverter was disabled in the basement.
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Old 07-30-2010, 01:18 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radams View Post
Thanks wa8yxm! I've bought another adapter but haven't had a chance to try it out yet. I figured it's relatively cheap so why not give it a shot. I wondered whether that switch could change positions but not pass amps so with your help now I know. My theory goes that the switches normal position (no power) is on the generator side and only changes when I have AC in and no genset power. Hope that's right anyway.

There are basically two types of auto transfer switches

one the "No Power" position is "Not Connected" then it connects whatever source it sees... First (On some of these the generator may override)

The other, which I have the "No power" position is shore power.

The Generator overrides


Now... As to the inverter needing to be enabled in the basement

MY Xantrex Prosine is like that.. I turn it off below decks,,, it is OFF, no power passes in any direction.
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Old 07-30-2010, 02:47 PM   #26
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Great! Then it's working like it should and I understand what's going on. Twice now that inverter in the basement has figured out how to turn itself off without any human intervention. I don't think it was low batteries either. I can live with it though and now I know where to look first.
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Old 07-31-2010, 04:17 AM   #27
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Bob, your inverter is not operating properly with the last information you have given us. When using the generator or shore power, voltage is to be "passed through" the inverter. The inverter itself has a built in transfer switch that apparently is not working. You might turn off the inverter, be connected to shore or generator power and give it a good rap; it may just be stuck, then check power to microwave.
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Old 07-31-2010, 07:57 AM   #28
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We had a similiar issue with our Magnum. The wire from our remote panel came loose from the modular plug and the plug remained in the Magnum. I turned it off to get the plug out. When I turned it back on I got NO power through Magnum. I checked the 30 amp breaker on the side on the Magnum and it was nit tripped. I did a hard reset on the Magnum and everything went backing to work like it should
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