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Old 08-11-2017, 09:04 PM   #1
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Possible answer: Inverters that won't stay "on"

In reading my inverter manual (a Magnum in a Winnebago Ellipse) I see a menu option for "Power On". It says that there are two settings "Power On Norm" and "Power On Always". It says to make the inverter act like a UPS (always on) you should set it as "Power On Always". The factory default is "Norm".

I'm hoping this changes the behavior of the inverter so that I don't have to keep turning on the inverter or keep checking it.
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Old 08-11-2017, 09:48 PM   #2
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I'd think a lot has to do with what you're powering with it. An inverter uses battery power even when no 120v appliances are on.
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:00 PM   #3
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Yep Bob ( I assume this is you and if not then Donna ) I think I got that. Several people on here have had issues like I have where the inverter will need turned on again and again when it's "left on its own for a while". In my case I'm wanting it to perform like a UPS and keep my microwave oven clock accurate. LOL

There hasn't been a good understanding of why the repeated turning on is necessary. Myself I wondered if the "seek" capability that checks for loads is not seeing enough of a draw but that doesn't really make sense. This setting I referred to may help with that since I assume the Magnum guys are just leaving the unit on continuously or maybe more correctly it does not go into some standby mode on occasions.

Since the manual actually makes reference to a UPS like capability then I think this might actually be the setting we need.
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:08 PM   #4
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p.s. for others that read this I'm not fully explaining all of this in detail. For example "Norm" and "Always ON" are referring to a specific mode of operation....not to whether the unit is actually inverting or not. So since I think it affects just a subset of members here and they've talked about this problem I haven't elaborated. If it needs more explanation let me know.
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:29 PM   #5
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Yes, this is Bob. I thought maybe you were powering a residential refrigerator or a DVR that needed to have 24/7 power.

To replace the microwave clock, you might consider this, which also gives a calendar display.

Or for $10 more you can get an outside/inside remote thermometer. We use two in the RV, one remote is placed in the freezer to monitor the refrigerator, the other is outside to report the outside temp. We also have a clock like this on the wall.

Beats using the inverter just to power the microwave clock.
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:43 PM   #6
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Hi Bob
Yes those are some good thoughts. We use the remote thermometer idea too.

Your point on the inverter is right if it were a little different situation. Yes it is 24/7. So yes, in this case the inverter is built-in and works full time to power the fridge. It then also powers several other things since it's an "all-electric" MH.

So bottom line yes you are right that using the inverter just to run a clock is kind of mindless except it runs all of the time AC is off the coach. The issue is just that for some reason they shut off when they shouldn't. The issue there of course is that the fridge is unpowered and doesn't have a propane backup like most do. So when I say I want it to run the clock what I mean is, like a UPS, it needs to switch fast and not make me have to go hit a switch.

Make sense?

Bill
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:04 AM   #7
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I doubled checked all of my inverter settings against the manual and they seem Ok. The result was the same. After about an hour the AC power cuts out when traveling on inverter power as the Low Battery Cut Off condition is met. Turning on the generator brings everything back on line.

One question I have. Would bad/week house batteries cause this? My rig is a 2012 with the original batteries. If the batteries are bad my thinking is the inverter may be putting out enough power but the batteries cannot hold it.

How do you check if the batteries need to be replaced?
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:13 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nova 42qd View Post
I doubled checked all of my inverter settings against the manual and they seem Ok. The result was the same. After about an hour the AC power cuts out when traveling on inverter power as the Low Battery Cut Off condition is met. Turning on the generator brings everything back on line.

One question I have. Would bad/week house batteries cause this? My rig is a 2012 with the original batteries. If the batteries are bad my thinking is the inverter may be putting out enough power but the batteries cannot hold it.

How do you check if the batteries need to be replaced?
Or your engine charging system is not supplying enough current (or not charging the house batteries at all) to keep up with inverter loads.
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:55 AM   #9
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Slowly charge your batteries until voltage reaches 12.7v. I'd use a separate battery charger that can be adjusted to 2-5 amps so you eliminate the possibility of the on board charger as the problem. Take the batteries to an auto parts store or battery shop and have them load tested. You could also perform a specific gravity test on each cell. These tests will reveal the condition of batteries.
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Old 08-14-2017, 12:42 PM   #10
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I leave mine totally off unless I'm going to use it. Magnum says it makes no difference whether it's kept on or off.
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Old 08-15-2017, 04:25 AM   #11
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This is may be a situation that may only occur with certain models and setups. I've read enough on what WGO says to know that there are different configurations so I can only speak for how the 2016 Ellipse 42HD model that I own is set up. An example is that the inverter on mine is wired "more directly to the battery than some" according to the print.

I think the idea that the battery interferes is possible but as I see what takes place (for this "random shut off" seems to be with the house batteries fully charged. I've read others complaining and that's how I read their situation. I don't have enough info from those people to be conclusive.

When you say you've double checked against the manual have you looked at the setting I mentioned?

"In reading my inverter manual (a Magnum in a Winnebago Ellipse) I see a menu option for "Power On". It says that there are two settings "Power On Norm" and "Power On Always". It says to make the inverter act like a UPS (always on) you should set it as "Power On Always". The factory default is "Norm"."


What you describe of inverter quitting when LBCO occurs sounds normal and not like what I'm referring to. The reason the situation described here is frustrating is that no one has said they know what occurs to cause the inverter to turn off. I think we all just find the fridge unpowered.

What I offered as a possible setting change to help isn't a proven idea yet since I've not done much traveling or use of the MH to find out if I have another one of these occurrences. I'm hoping others that have talked about the problem will read this and give some input.
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Old 08-15-2017, 09:40 AM   #12
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Perhaps one of these, plugged in behind the fridge will warn when the power is off.

Another version of this type alarm had a 102 dB alarm!. It's $98.

https://www.amazon.com/Power-Failure.../dp/B005VDPE3O
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Old 08-16-2017, 12:32 AM   #13
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Bob
You have some good ideas and some useful tools. What I believe to be the case is that our inverters just aren't operating correctly. Having an alarm would help identify if there's a problem and prevent loosing food in the fridge - that's a good thing.

I really hope that some of those who have the problem try out my suggestion on the setting. Since we can't seem to get a handle on what causes the shutdown (or when) we are left with trying some things and getting people to see if that solves the problem. I assume that's going to take some time and/or several people checking. I'm not seeing very many people notice this discussion yet so maybe others have come up with a solution or are living with the problem.

The more sophisticated we make our controls (and yes I have some responsibility) the more we will have to work at diagnosing problems.
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