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Old 09-19-2014, 06:27 PM   #1
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No 12volt in coach

I went to pick up the coach and have no 12v in coach. Coach started normal, went to raise 12v windshield, nothing. Turned batts on and off again nothing. Is there a switch or breaker for 12v that might have tripped. Panel in front has no power to start gen, inverter etc. driver fans work dash ac work. Gen wont start. I turn batts off when stored at batt bay. What starts the genny. THought 12v would run when engine is running must be a fuse? Where is it. I have 2 inverter 6 batts residential fridge Thanks.
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:15 PM   #2
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Most folks have 2 separate 12V systems. One is the chassis system used for starting and running the vehicle side of things. The other is the house system used for running the house side of things. The on/off switch usually only switches the house system so the batteries stay charged longer in storage.

Given that it is normally possible for either system to be discharged while the other is charged. It sounds like that is the case with your MH.

All the generators I have seen worked off the house battery pack.

The Battery Boost switch connects the two battery systems together.

Inverters generally run off the House battery pack. They would be the first thing I would turn off if I had a low battery charge problem.

The chassis system will usually charge the house if the chassis is close to the normal charged battery level. Depending on how low your house batteries are you may be able to run the engine for a few minutes, hold down the Battery Boost Switch and start the generator. That will then charge the House batteries but may not charge the chassis battery. If the generator does not start idle the engine for another 10-15 minutes or the engine might not start next time. One the generator is running you will not need the inverter for AC but it may also be the charger for the batteries so turn it back on. That will charge the batteries from the Generator AC high power capacity system. If you cannot start the generator you are left with either plug it in or go for a long drive and hope.

Some charging systems will not run if the battery voltage is too low. That is done to prevent drawing excess charging current and as a short circuit protection. The only answers are a cheap charger that does not care or using the Boost switch which overloads the Engine battery system. Be careful with either setup. You will be playing with a lot of current.

It really pays to get a reasonable voltmeter and learn how to use it.
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:32 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nothermark View Post
Most folks have 2 separate 12V systems. One is the chassis system used for starting and running the vehicle side of things. The other is the house system used for running the house side of things. The on/off switch usually only switches the house system so the batteries stay charged longer in storage.

Given that it is normally possible for either system to be discharged while the other is charged. It sounds like that is the case with your MH.

All the generators I have seen worked off the house battery pack.

The Battery Boost switch connects the two battery systems together.

Inverters generally run off the House battery pack. They would be the first thing I would turn off if I had a low battery charge problem.

The chassis system will usually charge the house if the chassis is close to the normal charged battery level. Depending on how low your house batteries are you may be able to run the engine for a few minutes, hold down the Battery Boost Switch and start the generator. That will then charge the House batteries but may not charge the chassis battery. If the generator does not start idle the engine for another 10-15 minutes or the engine might not start next time. One the generator is running you will not need the inverter for AC but it may also be the charger for the batteries so turn it back on. That will charge the batteries from the Generator AC high power capacity system. If you cannot start the generator you are left with either plug it in or go for a long drive and hope.

Some charging systems will not run if the battery voltage is too low. That is done to prevent drawing excess charging current and as a short circuit protection. The only answers are a cheap charger that does not care or using the Boost switch which overloads the Engine battery system. Be careful with either setup. You will be playing with a lot of current.

It really pays to get a reasonable voltmeter and learn how to use it.
Notermark, thanks for the reply. I can't drive the coach because I can'
t raise the windshield blinds. I have a volt meter. What do I check? If the engine is running and charging all batteries shouldn't I be able to turn on a 12v light. Is there a fuse or breaker that controls the house 12v. If the batts are low can i run jumper cables from chassis to coach just to raise the front blinds. I ran the engine at high idle for 10+ minutes. Thanks again, I am new at this JD
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:07 PM   #4
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You have a switch for the 12v. It is sometimes referred to as a salesmans switch. It can be by your entrance, or if you have a power management system it could be near there. If this is off you won't have 12v to the house. It is separate from the chassis (engine) batteries. If you can't find it call Fleetwood and ask their customer service. Perhaps a Fleetwood owner in here can help you.

Good luck and Happy Trails!!
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:14 PM   #5
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It may also be the solenoid for the salesman switch, if so, you can bypass it with a jumper wire…..Bruce
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:22 PM   #6
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I have two salesman switch. I guess one for the res fridge and one for coach. I have never used them. This is the first time the coach set for two weeks. One switch has a red light that cycles when you operate it. the other does not. It is labeled battery disconnect. It has on and off mode. Since it is a disconnect switch, if it is on are the batteries disconnected or on. Taking a volt meter back in the morning. If the batteries are dead can I run jumper cables from fridge or chassis bank to house bank to start genny? the solenoid that needs to be jumped is in the battery compartment? Thanks to all This is driving me crazy. JD
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:26 PM   #7
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You'll need to test voltage on all batteries, then trace that voltage through the systems. One key point would be the battery isolation solenoids. You can usually track them down by having someone click the switches on and off and follow the sound. They should look like one of these:


If you measure across the two large terminals, when ON you should find 12 v (+) at both. If not, the contacts aren't closing. Also look for circuit breakers on the converter/charger 'box' that when tripped won't pass electricity through.
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:45 PM   #8
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BFlinn181 I have bottom left in your pictures in batt bay. If batts are good, jump that to get 12v to coach? I always turn off switches in the batt bay when we store the coach. Am I just turning off the inverters? Do I also need to turn off the salesman switches? Can I start the genny by jumping from good batts? I am new at this, can't you tell? Thanks so much for the help!!!! JD
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:02 PM   #9
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When storing, I have knife switches on the battery terminals themselves. There are many styles of cut off switches.


The battery disconnect is not 100%, after all power must come from somewhere to trigger the solenoids. In addition, CO and LP detector, radio presents, ECU for the engine, your electric steps, all add up to a parasitic load that can flatten batteries.

If you find that electricity doesn't flow past the solenoid, you can take one large wire off one side and put it together on the post on the opposite side, bypassing the solenoid.

On your dashboard do you have a battery boost switch? It will tie both battery banks together while holding it down. It works either way, if chassis battery is dead, it jumps the house to the chassis for engine start. If the house batteries are dead, the boost will help start the generator.

Inverters are real battery drains, shut them down when not using the RV or on shore power.

You may wish to read this website:

The 12volt Side of Life (Part 1)
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:52 PM   #10
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could not stand it. The DW took me to the coach with my volt meter and portable battery pack. Hooked up the volt meter ----nothing. Hooked up the battery pack---lights! ran up the front shades--all is goood! Going back in AM to pick her up. A few adult beverages prohibit bringing her home tonite. Thanks to everyone. So turn off the salesman switch when you leave? The switches in the batt bay turn of the invertors only? JD
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Old 09-20-2014, 10:20 AM   #11
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The general idea is to turn off all loads when not using the RV. The separate switch on the refrigerator is probably there to turn it off when you are using the inverter/charger to charge the house batteries but do not need the refrigerator.

The disconnects keep parasitic loads from draining the batteries as fast in storage. All batteries self discharge but some chemistries take a lot longer than others. Given what your problem was I would put a disconnect in the House Battery hot side in a heartbeat. I'm a little slower cutting off the chassis battery because the engine computers seem to be designed to stay powered on. It may run funny for a while if you shut them down. Not sure as it is partly hardware specific.

I would not have power blinds blocking driving the MH as I would call it a major safety hazard. Next best bet would be to re wire them to source from the chassis battery. If the vehicle starts you will have power to the blinds. Start it first and run the blinds up with the engine running. That should not be too hard to do.

It sounds like you need to spend some time with your Voltmeter and the chassis in a campground or wherever you can plug in and figure out how your electrical system works. You do not need to know it all but you do need to know what switches turn off what parts. You should also have a fuse panel or two and breakers. It's easier to find them when not in a panic because things are not working and you need them NOW. ;-)
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