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Old 05-17-2016, 08:47 AM   #1
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Smarter Converter Charger (which one?)

Hey folks,

It appears my 99 Southwind may need a new Converter as I don't think it's ever been replaced and I'm only getting shore power and nothing from the genny. It used to kind of buzz on generator shutdown which has now stopped (leading me to believe this is my problem).

I've been reviewing some video on replacing the converter (thanks RV with Tito) and it looks pretty straight forward.

I'm set on getting the Smart Converter Charger to protect my new (pair of 6-volt batteries). I just don't know which one I should get?

Perhaps it's a dumb question, but do I get the 45, 60, 70 or 80 amp? I'm looking at Progressive Dynamics brand on Amazon. Is one more suited to my setup than the other?

I'll look in the manuals, perhaps it calls for one over the other? Maybe a call to PD wouldn't hurt either?

Thoughts?
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Old 05-17-2016, 09:19 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by BadBoy View Post
Hey folks,

....I just don't know which one I should get?....
The best one of course...... ( I suspect the 60 amp would be great for you )

BestConverter - Converters, Inverters, Electrical Supplies, Electronics


There is warning on their website concerning the purchase of some of the PD converters from different manufacturers.
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Old 05-17-2016, 10:07 AM   #3
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Great thank you!

I've been perusing the Electrical Systems sections of irv2 and I think I have learned abit more. It seems most everyone has deferred to the Best Converters shop to upgrade to a Smart Converter which should protect my battery bank investment.

I don't boondock often except maybe overnight at Walmart or Casino on longer road trips.

I DO however plug my shore power line into my inverter so my kids can watch some tv on long trips. I have never made it a practice to shut down my converter though which I have learned creates some sort of loop, which may be the reason why my old house batteries and now converter have suffered? I always just shut down my inverter when firing up my genny.

I'll look into the 60 amp for sure...thanks! 😎

Oh the joys of MH ownership lol.
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Old 05-17-2016, 10:15 AM   #4
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I'm a bit confused by your statement " I'm only getting shore power and nothing from the genny. "

The genny should power everything, just like the shore power.

A new 3 stage converter is a great investment but not a cure for it NOT working on generator power.

The "shore power/ generator power" issue is usually a problem with the automatic transfer switch, if you have one.
Some MHs simply plug the shore power cord into a generator outlet in the power cord bay.

On the inverter, yes you must disable the converter to keep it from trying to charge from the batteries that it is running on.

You may also want to force the fridge to run on gas or trip it's breaker when using your inverter.

Gas/electric fridges are power hogs on electric, to the tune of 35 or more amps DC, from your batteries. 4 hours of that and the 2, 6 Volt batteries are ready for recharge.

Hope this helps.
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Old 05-17-2016, 11:17 AM   #5
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What twinboat says. The problem you describe has nothing to do with the converter/charger, but a newer, 3-stage one would be a good investment once you fix the generator problem (which is almost surely the transfer switch).
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Old 05-17-2016, 11:32 AM   #6
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I'm only getting shore power and nothing from the genny.
Thoughts?
BadBoy
Have you checked the 120V output circuit breakers in the generator itself?
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Old 05-17-2016, 02:58 PM   #7
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Gotcha, thank you!

Yes, I checked the breakers and they are good. All fuses are good too. Someone had mentioned that perhaps the contact rings are dirty and to spray some contact cleaner as well which I did.

The genny up until this season would automatically turn on the power when unplugged from shore power. It seems it will click it on "very briefly" (seconds) then click it off again???

As per my inverter issue. I always switch fridge to gas etc beforehand as I realize it's a power hog.

Yes, I think I'm stumped between it being a transfer switch and/or a converter, yet still could be something else. Generator starts & sounds fantastic but isn't generating voltage now for some reason?

Electrical was never my strong point and I suspect a trip to a small engine repair shop may be in my future.
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Old 05-17-2016, 05:02 PM   #8
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So I have checked my voltage going to my converter and its reading 12.45 whether the genny is on OR off (does that seem weird?). I'm not connected to shore power but my battery bank is connected.Click image for larger version

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My converter is a Progressive Dynamics Intellipower 9155
Input: 105-130 vac 60 hz, 900 watt
Output: 13.6 vdc, 55 amps
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Old 05-17-2016, 05:28 PM   #9
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Your converter is a battery charger/ power supply. The wires you checked go to the battery and carry battery voltage. What you see is normal with the converter off.

If there is power going to the converter, you should see 13.5 or more volts.

If you plug the MH in, you should see 13.5 or more at that test point. Than start the generator, wait a minute, and test it again. You should once again see 13.5 volts

If not, you have a generator output problem or a transfer switch problem.

The auto transfer switch waits for power from the shore cord and the generator.

It normally stays connected to the shore cord.

If it senses generator power it automatically changes to that power, whether it is plugged in or not.

All the circuit breakers are after the transfer switch.
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Old 05-17-2016, 05:45 PM   #10
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Gotcha, thank you. I did not realize that was the output from the converter. Electronics was never my strong suit.

Lol, I feel like I'm fumbling around in the dark here with a ray of light thanks to irv2 friends.

So I will check that point while connected to shore power. I'll start the genny and wait a minute and see if I'm still getting 13.5 volts. I believe you indicated the transfer switch is "after" this point.

Thanks again!
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Old 05-17-2016, 06:04 PM   #11
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Gotcha, thank you. I did not realize that was the output from the converter. Electronics was never my strong suit.

Lol, I feel like I'm fumbling around in the dark here with a ray of light thanks to irv2 friends.

So I will check that point while connected to shore power. I'll start the genny and wait a minute and see if I'm still getting 13.5 volts. I believe you indicated the transfer switch is "after" this point.

Thanks again!
No, the transfer switch is the first thing that "120 volt AC" power goes to. Shore power or generator power.

From there it goes to the breakers. Than a breaker runs the converter, converting 120 volt AC power to 13.5 volt DC power.
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Old 05-19-2016, 10:04 PM   #12
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I'm chatting with a local electrician about my issues and he feels it's most likely my transfer switch as well, although he's not totally familiar with RV type stuff.

If I do need a new Transfer switch, would anyone have any recommendations. Do they change much from 99-2016? Is this found at your local Home Depot?
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Old 05-19-2016, 10:06 PM   #13
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Oops, sorry for last poor quality pics!
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Old 05-20-2016, 03:01 AM   #14
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BADBOY.
you may have dirty Genny slip rings.
I cleaned my slip rings with the inexpensive ''slick stick'' tool from
flightsystems.com
the tool worked well.
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