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Old 05-07-2011, 08:43 AM   #1
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Coach Battery Drain

I have a 2010 Itasca Impulse class c motor home. The coach battery drains in just 2 weeks when not in use as well as when being used at a rv park.
Can the battery be disconnected during these times? Will this cause any problems?


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Old 05-07-2011, 09:21 AM   #2
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Hi John,

If you are saying that when pluged into a/c power, the auxilliary battery discharges then I'd have the charging system checked by dealer, and hopefully, under warranty. Check for any items that may stay on while coach is not in use; LP/smoke alarms, storage lights, radio travel on/off mode switch, storage electrical on/off switches etc.
I'm sure you have read your chasis and owner's manuals.
If all fails then you can install a blade switch on your coach battery like these Knife-Blade Switches - Wirthco Engineering, Inc.


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Old 05-07-2011, 12:22 PM   #3
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Self discharge rate is 8% to 40% per month so even completely disconnected the batteries can go flat and even the partial discharge of shorter periods is not good for the batteries.

Residual loads like alarms and control boards can pull 10 to 20 watts and that will run down a typical RV battery in a week or so.

Disconnect and keeping batteries cool can help to extend storage minimizing battery life impact, but

It would be best for your batteries to apply a maintenance charger on then when they are not in use. This is a device that will not only keep a full charge on the batteries but also apply a technique to inhibit sulfation.
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Old 05-07-2011, 07:06 PM   #4
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Winnebago installs a Trick-L-Start on some of there higher end Motorhomes I installed one in my 06 Itasca Cambria about 3 years and no problem since. It must be hooked up to shore power to work.
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Old 05-08-2011, 07:57 AM   #5
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There should be a battery disconnect switch somewhere. Mine is located on a panel to the left of the steps as you go in the coach. Of course if the battery is draining even when you are hooked up to shore power, it sounds like your converter is not charging the battery, or the disconnect switch is on.

If the battery disconnect switch is on, then the converter can't charge the battery. Do your 12 volt lights work? My brother in law thought his converter was bad, but after we checked the circuit panel we found a breaker thrown, flipped it back on and he was good to go.

Can you hear your converter come on when hooked to shore power and a few lights are on? If not and you have checked everything else, the converter's main board may be bad.

A lot of possibilities for your problem, but I would check the easy things first.
1. Breaker
2. battery disconnect
3. fuses

One last thought if you think it might be the converter get the manufactures name and the model of your converter and call the manufactures customer service. They should be able to help you if indeed it is the converter.
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Old 05-09-2011, 03:26 AM   #6
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Sorry I guess I'm wrong the Trik-L-Start only charges the Chassis Battery when hooked up to shore power.If your Coach battery is not charging it is your convertor or switch near you enterence door not turned on. Jerry
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Old 05-13-2011, 08:04 AM   #7
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Check your converter with a voltage meter. It should be putting out a minimum of 13.2 volts for the float/trickle charge to the house battery when connected to shore power. Multistage chargers will vary the output, but not below 13.2.
Most class C 's have basic chargers. I have known many of them to fail. Myself included. I opted to upgrade when my failed to a multistage converter.
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Old 05-13-2011, 08:31 AM   #8
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If your talking about your coach batteries, using the battery disconnect separates all DC electrical loads except the LP detector. It's possible the LP detector can drain your batteries. To disconnect the LP detector just pull the 1 amp fuse.
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Old 05-20-2011, 03:06 PM   #9
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John, when not in use we just turn the 2 coach (house) batteries off using the switch at the entrance door. For the chassis battery I installed a disconnect switch on the battery post ($7 at Harbor Freight) and we disconnect the chassis battery when it is in storage (over the winter we didn't fire up the engine once in Florida and the charge in April when we left after over 5 months the multimeter said 12.7V still). When you are connected to shore power the house batteries will charge but not the chassis battery.


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Old 05-20-2011, 03:53 PM   #10
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In our shop, we always started with the battery first. Check the water level. Check the wires. Make sure no wires were left 0ff the post. Plug in the power cord. Move to the converter. Check the plug for 110V. Check the 12V output. It should read 13.6 volts. Next go back to the battery. Read the charge rate. It should read between 13.2 and 13.8 . It will vary according to the charge on the battery. Never disconnect the batteries while the converter or inverter is plugged in. The batteries act as a sink for the chargers.

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battery disconnect, battery drain

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