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Old 02-23-2011, 06:20 PM   #1
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another battery question

I think I know this one but here goes. Today, I took in my coach to have the Workhorse recall brake stuff done. The shop got it at 8 a.m. and I picked it up about 4:45 p.m. They bring it around for me and leave it running, I get in and off I go. All is good. I get home and back onto the parking pad. I open the door and the stairs don't come down. So, I open the control panel door and everything is dead. Ok, so I push the battery disconnect switch to "use"--nothing. I turn on the ignition, try the switch again and everything fires up. I level the coach, go to the door and it is dead again. I plug in the coach (I keep it plugged in) and everything is on again. We have owned this coach for 19 months and first time anything like this happened.

My theory: It sat in the service bay for about 7 hours. LP detector and fridge were running. It has never set that long without the engine running or being on shore power which hid the problem: the house batteries are dead or pretty close. These may be original equipment (rig is a 2003).

Does this sound reasonable? I can wire a house but 12v drives me crazy.
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Old 02-23-2011, 06:25 PM   #2
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It does sound like the house batteries were drained. It may be a good time to atleast have the batteries tested. If they are orig 8 years is good. On mine if the batteries are a bit low, the steps will not operate properly, can't start the gen etc.
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Old 02-23-2011, 06:38 PM   #3
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On my coach, the steps are powered off the coach battery not the house batteries.

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Old 02-23-2011, 07:17 PM   #4
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Give the batteries a load test. You will need to test each battery independent of the other. If the batteries are 03, then you have done well, or you don't dry camp. In any event, get ready to replace them. I am betting that they will fail the test. Good luck.
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Old 02-23-2011, 07:39 PM   #5
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A friend of mine had this problem continuously with a pusher when not connected to shore power. Finally figured out that with the refrigerator setting on automatic, it will choose 120-volt power, even if that power is coming from the inverter. As long as he remembered to change the refrigerator setting to gas when not connected to shore power, he never had that problem again. Hope this helps.
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Old 02-24-2011, 02:40 AM   #6
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A good bank of batteries, (even if you only have about 200 Ah available) should not be drained by a ref. and safety detectors in an 8 hour run. Do as suggested and find out the condition of the battery bank and go from there.
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Old 02-25-2011, 12:23 PM   #7
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I have to say that if you got 8 years out of your batteries, especially if the were original from manufacturer, you should consider yourself lucky. I've never gotten more than a couple of years from house batteries and I keep on a shore line when home. Batteries, no matter what kind or who they were made by, aren't made to last forever.
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Old 02-25-2011, 02:14 PM   #8
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OK, I went out this am to get the batteries for a load test and found what I think is my problem. One of the positive cable connectors is gone, dissolved I think. Just a bunch of blue-green fuzz at the end of the cable. I have a photo but I haven't used photobucket for so long..... Thanks for your posts.
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Old 02-25-2011, 02:22 PM   #9
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The Fuzz works on the highway, stops law breakers if caught.

But the kind you mention, just won't make the grade.

Those 8 year old batteries "just might" last a bit longer.

Flipping my quarter now to see how you come out.
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Old 02-25-2011, 04:10 PM   #10
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Hi richvkansas,
Once you get the cable replaced and all connections cleaned, consider having the chassis and house batteries tested. Many coaches have the door steps powered from the chassis battery(s).
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