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Old 02-28-2016, 07:55 PM   #1
Punks385RLS's Avatar
National RV Owners Club
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Colorado Springs, CO.
Posts: 77
Windshield wipers cycling without chassis batteries?!?!

I pulled out my two 12-volt chassis batteries about a week ago to take them to my home and charge them as I don't have ac power at my storage location (the coach is not on shore power). The four house batteries remain in the coach as they are charged by a 100 watt solar system. The main disconnect for the house batteries is off.

Today my tenant called (my RV is at my rental home) and he stated that he has witnessed the windshield wipers cycle on several occasions. I don't see how this could be possible with the chassis batteries physically removed from the coach.

The coach is a 2006 National Tradewinds 40D on a Freightliner XC chassis with a 400 Cummins Diesel. Any ideas on what the issue could be or where to start on troubleshooting this would be greatly appreciated. Maybe my coach is haunted!!!

Paul Brizal
2006 National Tradewinds 40D
Colorado Springs, CO.
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Old 02-28-2016, 08:36 PM   #2
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Windshield wipers cycling without chassis batteries?!?!

Boost switch on? Creepy feeling after dark? Maybe 👻. Has to be getting juice from either solar or house batteries. Was switch on delay for the wipers or was it off also?

Bruce & Teresa
2000 Foretravel U320 4010
Cummins ISM 450hp
Allison HD4060R 6 Spd W/Retarder

Bruce & Teresa
2000 Foretravel
U320 4010
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Old 02-29-2016, 05:09 AM   #3
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Windshield wipers cycling without chassis batteries?!?!

My first thought is not about batteries, but rather keys.

I can't recall ever seeing a coach (or any other vehicle) that the wipers worked without the ignition or accessories on.

If the wipers are going it suggests power in circuit that should be dead, check your ignition cylinder or somebody rewired something and it's back-feeding some stuff.
Ted 'n' Laurie, plus Jackson (aka Deputy Dog, the Parson Russell Terrier 'fur kid') and, Rylie (who crossed the Rainbow Bridge June 14, 2012).
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Old 03-01-2016, 10:25 AM   #4
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National RV Owners Club
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Location: Colorado Springs, CO.
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I did a bit more investigating and I'm still stumped. The chassis batteries are still out of the coach and I put my volt meter across the two battery leads to see if I could detect stray voltage on the chassis main circuit. Only showing 2.5mV.

I also checked the harness under the hood for potential rodent damage from chewed wires and found everything to be ok.

My coach does have an emergency boost switch but its a spring toggle switch that returns to the off position when you release it. It could be possible the relay is stuck though. I need to locate the relay though.

My coach is equipped with a monitor panel with a two way toggle switch and digital readout that shows the status of either the chassis or house batteries depending on which way the switch is depressed. As I expected it reads 14.5V on the house batteries but I was surprised to see 14.4V on the chassis batteries since they are physically not in the coach. This seems to indicate there is power getting to the chassis battery circuit. Another interesting note is that before I replaced the chassis batteries last year (due to age) I had noted that my entry step would not work with dead chassis batteries. With the chassis batteries out of the coach the entry step is operating each time I open the door! This is with the main disconnect switch off.

My wiper controls are integrated into the Freightliner Chassis Smart Steering wheel. I don't believe there is any way to leave the switch in the on or intermittent position as its push button controlled and re-initializes each time the ignition is cycled.

My chassis batteries are now fully charged and I'm going to try and re-install them and start the coach. I'll also try and locate the emergency boost relay and pull it to troubleshoot.

Thank you all for chiming in on this problem and I'll keep you posted - Paul
Paul Brizal
2006 National Tradewinds 40D
Colorado Springs, CO.
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Old 03-01-2016, 10:48 AM   #5
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Location: Shooting Creek, NC... for now
Posts: 1,236
I believe you may find that the power is coming from the house batteries, rather than the chassis batteries. Since these items are installed at the motorhome factory they may be tied into the house batteries instead. They are also controlled by a fuse board installed by the motorhome factory, not the chassis builder.
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batteries, chassis

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