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Old 06-29-2009, 09:27 AM   #1
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6v House battery conversion

Hello Everyone!
I am hoping that someone has experienced what I have going on here.

In our '04 Scottsdale (F53) I finally got around to replacing the two Interstate GP24 batteries wired in parallel as they were no longer holding a charge for more that 5 mins. After much research, I decided to go with a two 6v Golf cart batteries wired in a series over the 2 12v setup. Easy enough, right?

I connected both positive (one to genset and one to converter I'm assuming) wires to the positive post on the battery closest to the RV. Then then jumpered the neg terminal on the battery to the positive terminal on the far battery. Then the connected the ground to the neg terminal on the far battery.

Unfortunately I did not take a photo of the setup with the two 12v batteries so I'm not 100% sure how they were setup. Now, the issue, when the generator is running, or I'm just on battery power, none of the 110v items seem to work (A/C, TVs, 110v outlets, etc). So I'm thinking that I wired something incorrectly or need to change something on the converter (IOTA 55).

Unless I've gone off the deep end, this should work, right?

I have attached a photo of the new batteries and how they are wired up.

Any help on this would be much appreciated!

Thank you!

Mac
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:06 AM   #2
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I think you are wrong in your setup. Consider your two new batteries as two 6 volt cells. To get 12VDC you need to connect then together first. Pos to Neg. Then the neg from battery two will go to ground connection and the pos from battery one is connected to the load. dont believe me, using a volt meter check your current setup. you shoudl be reading 6VDC. connecting like I descrived you should read 12VDC, which is what you want.
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:12 AM   #3
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It appears from your photo that you have the batteries wired correctly - in series. I don't understand your question, however. You state "none of the 110V items work when on generator or battery power." Your batteries will not power 110V items unless you have an inverter and if your generator does not power 110V items, that is a separate issue that would have nothing to do with the batteries.

I think you need to clarify the situation a little further for any help.
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:31 AM   #4
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Thanks for the quick response!
donn0128:
When I test the individual batteries, battery 1 pos and neg, I get a 6v reading. If I test pos on battery 1 and neg on battery 2 at the same time, then I get a 12v reading, which is the way it is supposed to be as I understand it.

DandS:
Thanks for explaining that! So the Iota 55 will not allow me to power 110 devices, I need an inverter for that, correct? Forgive my ignorance, but what does the converter do? Also, could the generator not powering my 110 devices be a tripped breaker related to the generator?

Thank you,
Mac
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:43 AM   #5
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The converter does AC to DC (reverse of inverter). It powers the DC items in the coach, and it charges the batteries.

Yes, the generator should power the AC devices. Check the breaker on the genset and make sure it's not tripped. Happened to me a week or so ago.

joe
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:45 AM   #6
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A converter converts 120VAC to 12VDC to charge the batteries and power all 12VDC lights, fridge, etc. The converter is powered by either the generator or shore power.

An inverter inverts 12VDC to 120VAC. It is powered by the batteries. It may also charge the batteries if equipped with that option.

Your 120V items should work off the generator, but not the converter.

Check the circuit breaker on the generator and also in your breaker panel.

Your batteries appear to be wired correctly.
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:58 AM   #7
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Ok, Starting to understand more now.

To summarize, the converter converts 120VAC to DC to charge the battery and operate any 12V devices in the RV and an inverter changes DC to 120VAC to operate common 120VAC items (such as TV, VCR, Hair dryer, etc).

So it sounds like I need an inverter in order to run the household appliances I am looking to run. Make sense.

Any recommendations on brands of inverters? And, I presume that the inverter would replace the converter, correct?

Thanks in advance for patience and assistance. I'm just learning!


Mac
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Old 06-29-2009, 11:53 AM   #8
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http://www.ccis.com/home/mnemeth/12volt/12volt.htm

Suggest you review attached: "12 volt side of life" - Very informative and part II addresses inverter operation and usage.
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Old 06-29-2009, 11:56 AM   #9
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Thanks everyone for the quick replies!

Mac
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Old 06-29-2009, 12:57 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DandS View Post
http://www.ccis.com/home/mnemeth/12volt/12volt.htm

Suggest you review attached: "12 volt side of life" - Very informative and part II addresses inverter operation and usage.
Thanks much for posting this link, it really is excellent. I'm saving it for future reference.
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Old 06-29-2009, 02:13 PM   #11
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You said none of your 120 volt stuff works

This is not normally a battery issue, unless you have a system that monitors your 120 volt use and has the ability to cut off those systems not working, and IT runs on 12 volts.
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Old 07-04-2009, 08:39 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McDanie1 View Post
<snip>

Any recommendations on brands of inverters? And, I presume that the inverter would replace the converter, correct? <snip>

Mac
The inverter was an option on your Scottsdale. If you had one, it would be located in the compartment to the right of the house batteries. Look in the back of that compartment... do you see an AC plug plugged into an AC outlet? If you do, that's where you need to interpose the inverter to power the TVs and entertainment electronics. The circuit also provides power to the outlet under the dash in front of the passenger's seat.

Another clue that you don't have an inverter is, if you did, there would be another set of cables connected to the batteries.

Your strategy of replacing the 12V-parallel batteries with 6V-series is a good one; I've done the same.

As you have figured out, the DLS-55 is just a battery charger (but a very good one).

You need an inverter with a built-in transfer switch so that, when AC is available, the inverter is simply a pass-through. One that comes to mind is the Xantrex XS 400
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Old 07-05-2009, 11:10 AM   #13
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I would like to know if you have solved it.. Let me see if I understand the problem

All the 12 volt stuff works
ON shore power all the 120 volt stuff works
On generator power none of the 120 volt stuff works

This suggests:
1: Generator, breaker tripped
2: Automatic Transfer Switch Failed

NOTE: if, you started the generator, and the batteries were low, (Those batteries can suck a lot of power when low) and your converter is big enough (mine is) and you had the AC on, you may well have tripped the breaker on the generator (I have)

Check the breakers
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Old 07-05-2009, 12:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post
I would like to know if you have solved it.. Let me see if I understand the problem

All the 12 volt stuff works
ON shore power all the 120 volt stuff works
On generator power none of the 120 volt stuff works

This suggests:
1: Generator, breaker tripped
2: Automatic Transfer Switch Failed

NOTE: if, you started the generator, and the batteries were low, (Those batteries can suck a lot of power when low) and your converter is big enough (mine is) and you had the AC on, you may well have tripped the breaker on the generator (I have)

Check the breakers
Oh yeah, he DID say: "when the generator is running," I shoulda read his msg more carefully. He obviously doesn't have an inverter; if he did, he couldn't (or at least shouldn't) load the compartment next to the batteries with stuff like the pic shows.
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