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Batteries won't charge.


chief916
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I had a group24 12volt on my 2019 Grand Design Imagine 2800BH that I replaced with 2 6-volt golf cart batteries which I have wired in series. Did this several months ago before we took off for St.Louis down the Mississippi River to New Orleans over to Savannah and finally back home. Gone for 3 weeks total. A lot of nice we would dry camp at truck stops or cracker barrel's and then into a campground with hook ups to recharge and refresh. Now that we've been home several weeks I noticed that the slide and the awning were getting really slow to extend and retract. I keep it hooked to shore power here at the house. I noticed that the living room A/C stopped running and the microwave and radio would not come on. Flipped all the breakers a couple of times but nothing. The other A/C in the bedroom is working fine. I trouble shot from the main power supply in the house into the shore power box, down and out to the connection plug in with the cord. Showed that everything was good. So I ched voltage on my 2 batteries and they were like 11.8 so I separated the series connection and charged up both of them individually till fully charged. Hooked everything back up and everything came back on and I left everything,A/C, frig, all the stuff you usually have running when in a campground. I checked the voltage in the batteries and they were starting to drop voltage. Same thing the next 2 days. So I'm charging the batteries back up. 

All that to say this....I believe my converter is malfunctioning. I believe its behind my electrical box on the TT. Can I go back with a better more powerful converter. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I run my power pedestal through my progress Industries box. Can I replace my converter with a converter by progressive industries. If so, how would I know which one to get? Thanks in advance for any info on this.

Ben, chief916.

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Yes you can change your converter.  Some travel trailers have the converter as an integral part of the RV power panel.  If this is the case, you will have to disconnect the integral wiring and ad a plug somewhere near where you install your new stand alone converter.  You will also obviously have to move the 12 volt wire leads from the old converter to the new converter.  If your OEM converter is already a stand alone converter, then it is a simple swap.  Unplug the old converter from where it is plugged in, disconnect the 12 volt wire leads, install the new converter, connect it to the 12 volt leads and plug it in.  There may also be a chassis ground wire connected to the converter box and the RV frame.  Simple disconnect this from the old converter and reconnect it to the new one as well.

As to what size converter you need, I would stick with one the same or close in amperage rating to your OEM converter.  This is what the existing wiring will support.  If you go too much bigger than the OEM converter, you may have to replace both the AC wiring (15 amp to possible 20 amp) and the DC wiring (proper gauge to support the amperage output) .

Edit to add:  You can use any manufacturers converter.  Some are of better quality than others though.  I would stick with a name brand.

Edited by Chad Heiser
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10 hours ago, chief916 said:

I noticed that the living room A/C stopped running and the microwave and radio would not come on. Flipped all the breakers a couple of times but nothing. The other A/C in the bedroom is working fine.

While your slides are powered by 12V-dc electricity from the batteries or converter, the air conditioner and microwave are not.  The radio may 120V but probably is 12V-dc. Your converter gets power from 120V-ac power and then converts that to 12V-dc. If your bedroom air conditioner was working you did have at least some 120V-ac power. 

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14 hours ago, Chad Heiser said:

 

 

Yes you can change your converter.  Some travel trailers have the converter as an integral part of the RV power panel.  If this is the case, you will have to disconnect the integral wiring and ad a plug somewhere near where you install your new stand alone converter.  You will also obviously have to move the 12 volt wire leads from the old converter to the new converter.  If your OEM converter is already a stand alone converter, then it is a simple swap.  Unplug the old converter from where it is plugged in, disconnect the 12 volt wire leads, install the new converter, connect it to the 12 volt leads and plug it in.  There may also be a chassis ground wire connected to the converter box and the RV frame.  Simple disconnect this from the old converter and reconnect it to the new one as well.

As to what size converter you need, I would stick with one the same or close in amperage rating to your OEM converter.  This is what the existing wiring will support.  If you go too much bigger than the OEM converter, you may have to replace both the AC wiring (15 amp to possible 20 amp) and the DC wiring (proper gauge to support the amperage output) .

Edit to add:  You can use any manufacturers converter.  Some are of better quality than others though.  I would stick with a name brand.

Thank you Chad, i appreciate your input.

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7 hours ago, Kirk W said:

While your slides are powered by 12V-dc electricity from the batteries or converter, the air conditioner and microwave are not.  The radio may 120V but probably is 12V-dc. Your converter gets power from 120V-ac power and then converts that to 12V-dc. If your bedroom air conditioner was working you did have at least some 120V-ac power. 

Thank you Kirk. From what I can tell, I may have a bad main circuit breaker in my panel. 

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1 hour ago, chief916 said:

I may have a bad main circuit breaker in my panel. 

If that was the case you should loose all 120V power but since it is a double breaker it is possible that only one side of it is and you only had one leg. The supply has L1 & L2, each with 120V-50A and while it isn't common, it does occasionally happen that only 1 side fails to make contact. In most 50a RVs with 2 air conditioners, there is 1 air conditioner on each leg of the power so that could cause only 1 to be operable. It isn't that difficult to replace that pair of breakers if you are careful and move 1 wire at a time. 

Edited by Kirk W
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  • 1 month later...

Apply the KISS principle! Do the free things first. Disconnect 120V power. Go through your main breaker panel and transfer switch and tighten all screws holding wires/connections. If you notice anything warmer than you think it should be, check it out.

You're driving/towing a rolling earthquake and stuff shakes loose. That is part of my annual maintenance procedure, insuring all electrical connections are clean and tight.

Edited by Ray,IN
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