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Old 07-11-2005, 04:54 AM   #1
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"new to us" Winnie Chieftain and we have electrical gremlins. First the genset starter wore out, now there is no power from the house batteries. I have had them on a charger and when I plug into shore power, I see a 12 V reading on the meter. While I suspect that it is the master switch, is this just a switch or a more complicated mechanism? Thanks
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Old 07-11-2005, 04:54 AM   #2
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"new to us" Winnie Chieftain and we have electrical gremlins. First the genset starter wore out, now there is no power from the house batteries. I have had them on a charger and when I plug into shore power, I see a 12 V reading on the meter. While I suspect that it is the master switch, is this just a switch or a more complicated mechanism? Thanks
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Old 07-11-2005, 05:01 AM   #3
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The "master switch" is likely a relay, so the problem may be either the little switch that triggers the realy or the big relay located elsewhere, usually near the batteries. But if your "master" is a large switch, usually one that rotates rather than toggles or rocks, then it is probably a direct switch.


When plugged into shore power, you should see something like 13.3-13.7 volts, not just 12.0, so I'm wondering if the problem may be something else? A fully charged battery reads 12.6 volts and an active converter/chager (on shore power) should put out 13+ volts in normal operation.

What type of batteries do you have and what is their age? Assuming they are not sealed batteries, have you checked the water level to see if each cell is full?
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Old 07-11-2005, 06:02 AM   #4
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Gary, Thank you. The batteries are brand new and on a closer look they read 13.7V The switch is a 2 position one and the relay is deeper in the frame near the batteries because I can hear it.
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Old 07-11-2005, 07:37 AM   #5
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You may want to search for some posts with my name. I had a problem last year in which the 12v systems worked when plugged in to shore power, but not when unplugged. My problem was a solenoid switch that wore out. This prevented power from the house batteries reaching the power distribution panel in the back of the RV.
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Old 07-11-2005, 11:00 AM   #6
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Rob: I would be very interested in the problem you had and where the solenoid switch is and what it looks like in a Ford cutaway 350 van? I have the same problem you mentioned, however I have 4 six volt deep cycle batteries that are located in 2 banks and are independent of the original house battery under the hood.

If I switch off both of those extra banks I should still have 12.6 volts from the original under the hood house battery BUT I DON"T. When I switch off both banks and switch out my solar arrays and wind generator EVERYTHING INSIDE DIES!!! NO POWER AT ALL!!!

The original house battery under the hood stays charged from the alternator and the small battery maintaner panel I have for that battery and the starter battery.

I have been living with this situation for a year now. I would like to know how to get my orginal house battery under the hood back on line to the inside of the motorhome??

David/zetron
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