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Old 09-14-2013, 05:29 AM   #1
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Need Charging Opinion

Hi All:

We have a 2000 Monaco Dynasty. I just replaced the 4 6 volt house batteries with 4 US-2200. We have a residential Samsung Fridge.

We left TN and drove to MN. Yesterday we drove 10 hours to get to our destination. Upon arriving I noticed that the Trace Battery Monitoring System showed our house batteries at 74% charge.

So....Question......If our 200 amp alternator was charging both the house and chassis batteries, could the house batteries get that low?

Is it possible that I have a charging problem? Or one of my new batteries is bad?

Yup, feeling a little paranoid this morning. Any opinion is appreciated.
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Old 09-14-2013, 05:35 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patmsp View Post
Hi All:

We have a 2000 Monaco Dynasty. I just replaced the 4 6 volt house batteries with 4 US-2200. We have a residential Samsung Fridge.

We left TN and drove to MN. Yesterday we drove 10 hours to get to our destination. Upon arriving I noticed that the Trace Battery Monitoring System showed our house batteries at 74% charge.

So....Question......If our 200 amp alternator was charging both the house and chassis batteries, could the house batteries get that low?

Is it possible that I have a charging problem? Or one of my new batteries is bad?

Yup, feeling a little paranoid this morning. Any opinion is appreciated.
Jim,

I suspect you are not charging the house batteries from the alternator for some reason. Do you know if the coach was designed to charge the house batteries from the alternator? Some do and some don't. You could have the B.I.R.D. and it has a problem. There is a large solenoid that is used to connect the chassis and house batteries together for a boast start. That same solenoid is used by the B.I.R.D. to connect the house batteries to the chassis battery system after the chassis batteries are charged. It then lets the alternator charge the house batteries. Quite often that solenoid goes bad and does not connect the two systems.

Bob
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Old 09-14-2013, 05:50 AM   #3
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Hi Bob:

I figured that I might hear back from you. Thanks again for all your help and gift of your molding for my refrigerator installation.

I thought that there might be a problem and I'm glad you confirmed it. My background is computers/electrical and I'll start troubleshooting the problem today. I'll post my results when I find and fix the problem.

Pat
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Old 09-14-2013, 06:10 AM   #4
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What truck are you towing with? The Chevy does not come from the factory with the fuse for the trailer charging circuit. You may just have to add the fuse.

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Old 09-14-2013, 07:26 AM   #5
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J Birder,

I pray Pat doesn't tow his R/V with anything. It's a motorhome.
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Old 09-14-2013, 12:04 PM   #6
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I believe I found the problem. I searched for a BIRD and did not find anything. But I did notice that I have a battery isolator. The definition of the battery isolator is to allow the alternator to charge 2 sets of batteries at the same time. Middle connection is alternator, one connection is chassis battery, one connection is house battery. Took off connectors and measured resistance. 0 resistance to chassis battery, high resistance to house battery. Therefore it seems shot. Have ordered a new one for about $100, will post again once I have verified that it solved my problem.

Thanks all for your help and advice.
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Old 09-15-2013, 05:25 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by patmsp View Post
I believe I found the problem. I searched for a BIRD and did not find anything. But I did notice that I have a battery isolator. The definition of the battery isolator is to allow the alternator to charge 2 sets of batteries at the same time. Middle connection is alternator, one connection is chassis battery, one connection is house battery. Took off connectors and measured resistance. 0 resistance to chassis battery, high resistance to house battery. Therefore it seems shot. Have ordered a new one for about $100, will post again once I have verified that it solved my problem.

Thanks all for your help and advice.
Pat,

Sounds like you have found your problem. The isolator is just large diodes that allow current to flow to each battery bank from the alternator but blocks current from flowing from one battery bank to the other battery bank.

Bob
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Old 09-15-2013, 07:05 AM   #8
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Hi Bob

The IRD Isn't really a diode. When the ignition is turned on, the IRD then starts looking at the chassis battery voltage. When the chassis battery voltage is above 13.3 volts, this means the engine is running and the alternator is charging.
There is a 2 minute delay, then the IRD closes the big boy relay contacts and connects the house batteries to the chassis batteries.
If the load on the chassis batteries ever gets big enough to bring the voltage below 13.1 volts then the IRD opens the relay so the house batteries don't discharge.
A common problem is the relay contacts. When replacing this relay make sure you get the silver contacts on the relay, not the copper contacts.
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:05 AM   #9
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Bob, I think on the higher end coaches like the Dynasty Monaco did not use the battery boost solenoid and a IRD like our Diplomats do. They use a battery isolator that the alternator charging wire goes to the center tap and then you have charging leads that run from each outer post to keep the house and chassis battery banks charged. The only problems with these battery isolators is the more current going thru them the hotter they get, and they have a voltage drop across them. That is why they have the cooling fins on them. George 2001 Diplomat PBD
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:15 AM   #10
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Hey PATMSP, We are considering Grand Marias for the Columbus Day weekend. Are there any goings on for that weekend. We wanted to go to the Apostle Islands but the campgrounds are all booked full.

Yes I know, hijacking a thread.
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Old 09-16-2013, 04:16 AM   #11
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Hi Bob

The IRD Isn't really a diode. When the ignition is turned on, the IRD then starts looking at the chassis battery voltage. When the chassis battery voltage is above 13.3 volts, this means the engine is running and the alternator is charging.
There is a 2 minute delay, then the IRD closes the big boy relay contacts and connects the house batteries to the chassis batteries.
If the load on the chassis batteries ever gets big enough to bring the voltage below 13.1 volts then the IRD opens the relay so the house batteries don't discharge.
A common problem is the relay contacts. When replacing this relay make sure you get the silver contacts on the relay, not the copper contacts.
Pat says he does not have the IRD but has a battery isolator. You can google battery isolator and you will see that it is a large three terminal device with cooling fins. Inside are large capacity diodes that allow the alternator to charge two different battery banks but keep the battery banks from discharging each other.

Bob
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Old 09-16-2013, 04:50 AM   #12
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Pat says he does not have the IRD but has a battery isolator. You can google battery isolator and you will see that it is a large three terminal device with cooling fins. Inside are large capacity diodes that allow the alternator to charge two different battery banks but keep the battery banks from discharging each other.

Bob
Yup ... lot's of variety out there including ... no device, manual connections, solid state isolator, IRD, and BIRD. Plenty of opportunities for something to go wrong
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Old 09-16-2013, 06:03 PM   #13
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Is it possible you have a charging problem.. Not likely.

What you have is a LOAD problem. that Sasmsung fridge is a fairly larg load. 200 amps, (The alternator's MAXIMUM output) is only 2,000 watts by the time you run it through the inverter.. Less the power for the headlights, the HEVAC, the engine, the transmission control comptuer and controls, the... Well you get the picture.

By the time you are done adding in all the loads... You don't have a whole lot left.
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Old 09-16-2013, 08:01 PM   #14
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Is it possible you have a charging problem.. Not likely.

What you have is a LOAD problem. that Sasmsung fridge is a fairly larg load. 200 amps, (The alternator's MAXIMUM output) is only 2,000 watts by the time you run it through the inverter.. Less the power for the headlights, the HEVAC, the engine, the transmission control comptuer and controls, the... Well you get the picture.

By the time you are done adding in all the loads... You don't have a whole lot left.
Wrong on the Samsung! The Samsungs average draw is on the order of 100 to 200 Watts, NOT amps. This equates to around 10 to 20 amps, when the compressor is running, I run mine all night dry camping and still have plenty of battery left in the morning.

Dennis
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