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Michelleynn

Battery/Electricity issue

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Hoping to find some real help!  We have a 2013 Dutchmen Coleman 28 ft pull behind camper and are in dire need of some advice.  Went the first two months traveling with no real issues.  Are now at my parent's property behind their house for a month or so and have had nothing but trouble.  Battery (we have replaced and this is new) was fine for two days at a campsite (for the weekend) hooked up and everything worked perfect.  Got back to the house with it and plugged it into the barn (my father "fixed" the fuse to hook us up) this is day two (day four of brand new battery) and battery is showing dead on panel and lights are dimming when the fridge is open or if fan in bathroom is running.  I am utterly at a loss for what to do and honestly ready to give up!  I work from home so we are "living" in our camper so we can travel and visit family but this wonderful experience has turned into a money pit!  We already had a cylanoid  (sp) changed out at 85$ and bought a new battery $80. The guy who changed out the cylanoid said the converter was fine and even now the air conditioner runs fine just the battery is drained and not charging as it should when plugged in.  Any and all help/advice would be appreciated as right now I am literally at my wit's end!  

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IMO the battery charger is not working. Borrow an auto battery charger, hook it up your battery and read voltage. If this voltage is not above 14V on the charger it's not being charged.You don't need a large battery charger, a 10A is fine, just observe charging time limits for the charger.

If this does not solve the problem, begin checking for a poor/missing ground to the battery.

Edited by Ray,IN

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well,  until it gets figured out, why don't you find a small battery charger (car battery charger) & put it on your battery.  For some reason your onboard converter is not charging your battery.   Don't fret,  just put a small (6-10 amps is fine) charger on your battery & enjoy the evening. 

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What exactly did your father do to "fix" the fuse?    The plug on the end of your cord "looks" like a 220 volt dryer plug but it IS NOT. it is 120 only.  If your father rigged a dryer type 240 plug for you chances are several things got fried including your converter.  Check the voltage on the plug your plugged into and make sure your connected to 120.  Read across the two flat connectors. 

Image result for rv 30 amp plug wiring

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Welcome to the Escapee forums. We will do all that we can to help you so feel free to ask as many questions as you may wish.

In reading your post it is very apparent that you have no understanding of the electrical systems in your RV. Before you do much more I strongly suggest that you read both parts of The 12V Side of Life. Your RV has two very different electrical systems and one working may not be related to the other not working. 

7 hours ago, Michelleynn said:

We already had a cylanoid  (sp) changed out at 85$ and bought a new battery $80.

This really doesn't tell us much since what solenoid was changed? What was the problem that you had before that part replacement which it resolved? Since the original problem went away when the solenoid was replaced, it must be that it was a problem and is now repaired.

7 hours ago, Michelleynn said:

Battery (we have replaced and this is new) was fine for two days at a campsite (for the weekend) hooked up and everything worked perfect.  Got back to the house with it and plugged it into the barn (my father "fixed" the fuse to hook us up) this is day two (day four of brand new battery) and battery is showing dead on panel and lights are dimming when the fridge is open or if fan in bathroom is running.

1

Since everything worked at the campground but stopped when you got home, it would seem to indicate that the problem came with the connection to your "fixed fuse."  Is your dad an electrician? Do you or he have an electrical meter and understand how to use it? Some voltage readings would be a good place to start as you could then find out where you have power and if it is the proper power to operate things. I agree with others here that you clearly do not have the proper direct current voltage from your converter (the device that changes your 120V alternating current from the barn) into 12V direct current to recharge the battery and supply the lights, refrigerator controls, bathroom exhaust fan, your water pump, and most all appliances except the microwave and TV.  Since the air conditioner is running it would seem that you do have 120V alternating current available to it but like Lemp, I am concerned about the fixed fuse as it could be that it is not wired properly or if he fixed it by putting in a larger one the load from your RV may be too large for the supply and so the 120V is dropping under load too low for what it should be and if that is the case it will damage your air conditioner in time, if that excessive load does not cause a fire, which is a real danger. 

You need help from a qualified electrician soon! Based on what you have posted thus far, I believe that you are at least going to have other appliances stop working very soon due to the lack of proper 12V direct current power and could destroy the motor in your air conditioner due to low voltage and even cause a fire. Without some useful meter readings, it is not possible for any of us who do electrical work to diagnose what is happening but we can only guess. Your problem could be any of a very long list of possibilities that range from minor to life-threatening.

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Kirk raises many good questions. Let me add another question. Exactly what kind of battery did you buy? Can you tell us the brand and ratings. It may help if you took so,e pictures of your battery and the outlet where you are plugged in. Don't give up. These things are frustrating in the moment and we all go through them. It does take a willingness to learn however. Keep asking questions and read as suggested by Kirk. 

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Michelle, from what you posted I'm assuming its a 30 amp RV with one rooftop AC unit correct ???

If so and the AC and ALL other 120 VAC appliances (coffee, hair dryer, microwave, all outlets etc) are working right, I'ma thinking your 120 VAC supply is wired correct and adequate but cant say for sure not being there. Any GFCI receptacles that need reset?????

Ifffffffffffff ??? all above is working correct and its ONLY your battery isn't being charged, a few concerns are as follows:

 1) Is the converter/charger getting its 120 VAC input ??? Check to see if a 15 or 20 amp circuit breaker (powering converter/charger)  in your 120 VAC distribution panel is tripped?? See if there's any blown fuses or resets near the charger that may be open/blown???

2) There needs to be a good solid connection FROM the Converter/Charger DC output TO your battery. MAYBE A WRE CAME LOOSE OR BROKE ??

3) Insure there's no DC output circuit breaker (maybe a reset button) on the Converter/Charger that's tripped?? Are there any ON pilot lamps on the Charger showing ?? Any red push button looking resets??

4) I have seen in line glass or blade type automotive fuses in the wire from charger to battery be blown so look for any blown fuses near the battery or the chargers DC output.

5) Battery voltage at rest and stabilized if charged should be near 12.6 volts but if hooked to a good working connected charger it should rise to the 13 to 14 volt or so range, if not shes NOT charging but DUH you already know that lol...........

 

Keep it simple, insure 120 VAC to RV and charger INPUT,,,,,,,,,,check for tripped 15 or 20 amp circuit breaker in your AC distribution panel,,,,,,,,,,,,,,check for blown fuses or tripped breakers on or near charger or near battery and for bad wiring connections

 

 John T 

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