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Inverter charger malfunction?


PAylor

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Hi all,

 

We have transferred our electrical components from our old fifth wheel to the new one. We had to wait for a year so as not to void the warranty on the new fifth. The components we transferred are an inverter, a battery meter and a electrical management system. The only change we have from our previous set up is we have replaced the 3 12 volt batteries with 4 6 volt batteries (and thanks to all my escapees pals for the original install!).

 

So here is our dilemma - the inverter has a light to indicate the charge on the battery. Of course the battery meter it a much better indicator. When the dual living room slide outs are used the light on the inverter immediately indicates there is less than 40% charge left. The battery meter indicates that the slides are pulling up to 30 AH but of course it takes less than a minute to take the slides in or out. And the battery meter does indicate a slight drop in the battery. It takes a while for the inverter to show the battery has recharged.

 

So should I not worry about it since the battery meter says all is well? Is there a problem with the inverter? With the batteries? Are the slides drawing too much power?

 

Thanks in advance!

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Your best bet is to put a decent multimeter on the batteries and watch the voltages, you can pick one up about anywhere for around $25 for a digital that shows 1/100 of a volt. The one on the battery meter is nice but only shows the voltages at the spot it is connected to.

 

Check the resting voltage of the batteries with no charger or loads and it should be above 12.6 volts. As you run your slides out that voltage will drop due to internal resistance in the battery but once the slides are out it should recover to near 12.6 within 10 minutes. If it does then the batteries are working normally.

 

The inverter/charger may be switching into bulk mode due to the voltage drop, if it does not switch back to absorption or float mode in a few minutes you might want to check the settings on it to make sure they match your new batteries.

 

Another possibility is that your wiring is a bit light and the slides are causing a larger than wanted voltage drop due to wiring resistance. You can check that by watching the voltage at the battery posts as compared to the voltages at the inverter terminals and slide motors as you move the slides.

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Guest ticat900

Hi all,

 

We have transferred our electrical components from our old fifth wheel to the new one. We had to wait for a year so as not to void the warranty on the new fifth. The components we transferred are an inverter, a battery meter and a electrical management system. The only change we have from our previous set up is we have replaced the 3 12 volt batteries with 4 6 volt batteries (and thanks to all my escapees pals for the original install!).

 

So here is our dilemma - the inverter has a light to indicate the charge on the battery. Of course the battery meter it a much better indicator. When the dual living room slide outs are used the light on the inverter immediately indicates there is less than 40% charge left. The battery meter indicates that the slides are pulling up to 30 AH but of course it takes less than a minute to take the slides in or out. And the battery meter does indicate a slight drop in the battery. It takes a while for the inverter to show the battery has recharged.

 

So should I not worry about it since the battery meter says all is well? Is there a problem with the inverter? With the batteries? Are the slides drawing too much power?

 

Thanks in advance!

why did you go from the 3 twelve volt batterys to 4 6 volt as now you have 2 twelve volts? or did u have 3 mid amp 12,s and went to 4 high amp 6 volters?

The heavy draw from the slide motor will make the gauges show goofy if the charger is running while you run the slide and the charger will take a bit of time before it shows full batt charge gain.It all sounds normal to me. works same as mine.Being a brand new trailer one has to assume the factory installed the correct gauge wire for the slide 30 amps sound high but depends on how heavy the slide is and the amount of stuff stored in it.I know my very large hydraulic kitchen slide with fridge daws 27 amps.

On edit I see where you said dual slides? were you running both out at the same time?

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Guest ticat900

Wiggle your battery cables where the end is crimped on. I had one fall out. Would not even work the hyd jacks. I now carry a crimped from harbor freight

I don't see where he,s saying the slides are not working? he,s just asking about the current draw and amount of charge being put out after useage

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You're right. The slides work fine. And our dual slides have one switch so they both work together so I guess 30 AH wouldn't be unusual.

 

We have used the multi meter to but never while the slides are working. We'll try it next time.

 

The idea of the bulk charge sounds like something we need to investigate. We'll call the company and follow up.

 

Thanks!

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Guest ticat900

You're right. The slides work fine. And our dual slides have one switch so they both work together so I guess 30 AH wouldn't be unusual.

 

We have used the multi meter to but never while the slides are working. We'll try it next time.

 

The idea of the bulk charge sounds like something we need to investigate. We'll call the company and follow up.

 

Thanks!

thanks for the reply and yes your system is fine. On my system one has to set the charger side of the inverter to Battery type, amounts of total amps(mine is 440amps) from 4 6 volters

and amount of charger output.I can set it so it out puts 50% or 60 or 65 or 80% or leave it at 100%. If set at 100% when I use my slides etc and put a 2 minute heavy draw like your doing then my charge gauge shows high charge voltage and amps goes very high also for the first 15 minutes or so

I leave my system at 80% when sitting at the resort for the winter as its just a straight flow through as batterys cant get run low because the charger will put out more than one can draw on normal 12 volt useage(EG) fridge,lites, furnace etc

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Everything on mine worked until the cable fell out of the end. Noticed batteries were below 50% after running fridge for 1 hr. Using slides would use a lot of juice. Jacks would stop die to low voltage. All that went away after crimping on net end

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Guest ticat900

Everything on mine worked until the cable fell out of the end. Noticed batteries were below 50% after running fridge for 1 hr. Using slides would use a lot of juice. Jacks would stop die to low voltage. All that went away after crimping on net end

I understand except the OP is not having any dead batterys. he was just asking about the high charge rate for the first 15-30 minutes and then the batterys were fully charged

your talking about a entirely different senerio(situation)

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Iamhopeful,

 

Are you saying that the lack of power to the awning occurred when the inverter was installed, or are the two issues unrelated? If unrelated, I would check fuses and then for power at the switch. Do you have a meter and know how to use it?

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Yes I did all those readings. Nothing makes that awning move or gives me power

Have you used a meter to trace back from the awning to the 12V source to see where it is lost? If not a fuse it could be that something done in the inverter installation disturbed the connections to the awning. It should be fused so I would go there first to see if any voltage is getting to the battery side of the fuse. If not, move farther back to see just where it was lost. It may not have any connection at all to the installation of the inverter, but since the inverter does get power from the batteries there could be some common factor.

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There won't be just one wire going from the awning to the inverter. In fact the power should come from the batteries to the fuse panel to the awning - the inverter wouldn't be involved at all unless the charger function wasn't work and all of the 12 volt system isn't working.

 

Barb

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In fact the power should come from the batteries to the fuse panel to the awning - the inverter wouldn't be involved at all unless the charger function wasn't work and all of the 12 volt system isn't working.

You might be right if you changed "wouldn't" to the word "shouldn't" since you can't know exactly what may have been disturbed by the tech who installed the new inverter. With many years in the service business, I have had to repair far too many problems from shoddy work. It is assuming that you know which makes finding the actual problem difficult. Unless you were there, you just do not know what might have been done. The only way to know is to trace the circuit.

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On the inverter question I would first have an amp meter on the positive wire to the slides and see how many amps they use. At the same time I would have a volt meter on the same wire and watch the volts. Are they within spec.

Next would be to put the amp meter and the volt meter on the charge line to the batteries. And see what is happening. with using the separate meters you see what is happening independent to the system. There could be a battery problem. Yes it could be a bad battery. Or a connection. Resulting in the charging system malfunctioning. The connection problem could be internal to the charger portion on the inverter.

last summer I had and inverter/charger that would work fine for a week or two then not charge the batteries correctly. Did a reset on the inverter several times along with tech help from the manufacturer. Hooked a battery charger to the system with the inverter/charger not charging and it worked fine. Finally came to the conclusion that the inverter was bad.

You will need two meters to do this. One that will test DC amps and one that will show DC volts.

 

On the power awning you might want to find the power wires on the awning at the motor. There should be a connection that you can separate and test for power. They are probably not easy to do with the awning in but that will separate a motor problem or power problem.

 

 

Vern

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Guest ticat900

Wrknrvr ?? the op is not having any charging/inverter-charger problems. all he said was the two slide operating at the same time show up to 30 amp draw and then his batterys show low on the gauge and the converter goes to high charge mode for (guess as he never said) 20 minutes and then shows full charge

the inverter has a light to indicate the charge on the battery. Of course the battery meter it a much better indicator. When the dual living room slide outs are used the light on the inverter immediately indicates there is less than 40% charge left. The battery meter indicates that the slides are pulling up to 30 AH but of course it takes less than a minute to take the slides in or out. And the battery meter does indicate a slight drop in the battery. It takes a while for the inverter to show the battery has recharged.

 

I simply from reading this post do not see ANY so called charging issues?

Like what you said quote: Resulting in the charging system malfunctioning

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Kirk,

 

How would an inverter be connected to a 12 v circuit? I think that Harold had a problem appear after work was done on something else and is assuming that there is a connection.

 

Harold,

 

It would help if you would tell us if there are any other 12v problems like lights that don't work, etc. Also what size inverter you had installed and what it powers, the whole rig or just a couple of 120v circuits. If we knew what kind of rig you had then the answers could be more focused.

 

Pat & Ed

 

I takes a fair bit of power to put the slides out/in - and if they go at the same time I'm not surprised you see a drop and then the recharge kicks in. Is this while you are doing your normal setup and maybe have just plugged into shore power and the batteries are being recharged after travel? If ours haven't gone to float when I start leveling, putting out slides, then I can see a real dip as it finishes charging and goes to float.

 

Barb

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Talked to the inverter tech folks. They suggested there might be a problem with the fuse. Currently we have a 50 amp fuse between the battery and the inverter. They suggested that the fuse rating was too low and.should be increased to higher than 72 amps as listed on the inverter charger. Now the challenge is where to find them.....

 

Thanks again

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I am confused as to what converter, inverter charger or just an inverter in this post. This will help as to what is happening. Makes and model would help figuring this thing out.

Converter 120 vac to 12 vdc

inverter 12vdc to 120vac

inverter/charger will change 120 vac to 12 vdc and 12 vdc to 120 vac

The 50 amp fuse tells that you may just be talking a converter.

 

 

Vern

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Guest ticat900

Talked to the inverter tech folks. They suggested there might be a problem with the fuse. Currently we have a 50 amp fuse between the battery and the inverter. They suggested that the fuse rating was too low and.should be increased to higher than 72 amps as listed on the inverter charger. Now the challenge is where to find them.....

 

Thanks again

that could be but what does that have to do with your batterys seeming to be reading low after you run the slides? Iam wondering if the converter is not charging the batterys to total full and all your reading is the surface charge which would be why your batterys seem to go low after a simple slide out/in work out. the high charge rate as I said after you run the slides is normal

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