Converter problems - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-13-2008, 10:03 PM   #15
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This converter was only installed one month ago and what really concerns me is that the first attempt to install one failled now the second one is kaput.I worry that it is the person installing these converters not the converter itself.However he insists that he has installed many converters and this is the first time anything like this has happened.Now if he installs another converter the trailer will be stored until spring so it will be months before I know if we will have the same problem crop up when we use it.I have had two trilliums,neither one had a converter just 110.Worked perfectly for us as we usually have full hookup when we camp.Only problem we would not be able to keep our fantastic vent if we had no twelve volt.
I would say that you could keep your fantastic fan by merely using a regulated power supply (basically an A/C adapter that will handle the load) to power just the fan, and running the rest of the trailer on A/C.

If you decide to install another converter, then just run it for the weekend, or even a week before putting the trailer into storage.

The more posts I read about bad converters, the more I want to do the "smart charger" mod.


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Old 10-14-2008, 08:30 AM   #16
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Should the DC side of the converter be connected backward to the battery, what effect would that have to the 12VDC?
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Old 10-14-2008, 11:17 AM   #17
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I took my converter out this evening, and took it apart to get at the circuit board. The only thing that looks bad is a 25 volt 2500 uF capacitor that is across the output leads of the converter. I'll find a suitable replacement and intstall it - but I have some trouble believeing that this is the problem. This may take some time to find parts, so don't look for an update before the weekend.

-- Dan Meyer
Dan,

Capacitors sometimes fail by becoming “leaky” if you will. They no longer are just a capacitive reaction in a circuit, but develop an internal resistance. The capacitor then leaks current from supply to ground, reducing the overall potential of the supply voltage. If this is the case, it could be causing your power loss. Capacitors also fail by opening up and providing no capacitance in a circuit. Both of these conditions can easily be tested with a meter. You could simply remove it and test your converter without it or better, check the internal resistance of the capacitor after it is removed with a voltmeter.

Pat, You might want to consider spending a little more and get a Xantrex converter with 3 stage charging. I would have to assume they are replacing your failed converters under warranty.

Dean
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Old 10-14-2008, 11:21 AM   #18
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Should the DC side of the converter be connected backward to the battery, what effect would that have to the 12VDC?

[b]Poof !
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Old 10-14-2008, 01:47 PM   #19
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Should the DC side of the converter be connected backward to the battery, what effect would that have to the 12VDC?
I'm assuming you mean a reverse polarity connection to the battery. Batteries get very mad if you mix up their +s and -s.

The converters I have seen have a fuse in the line to the battery and a reverse polarity protection diode. If you connect the battery backwards it will open the fuse and disconnect the battery. Depending on the level of sophistication of your converter's protection circuits it could also damage the converter. Unfortunately many converters are very unsophisticated.

Also, unsophisticated converters don't work well when there is no battery connected to buffer the converter output. Without the battery the output voltage rises quite a bit. This could be the reason your lights got so bright and melted the covers.

If it was me I would find another RV repair place, even if means a long drive. I really doubt the competency of the facility doing the work.

Someone recently posted a link on this forum to a web page entitled "The 12Volt Side of Life" that had a lot of good information on 12V RV systems. I think it could answer a lot of your questions. If I remember right it was about 20 pages long and very detailed. Sorry I don't have the time now to do a search.

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Old 10-14-2008, 02:57 PM   #20
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on a lighter note the parallaxpower 7300 (newer casitas) can be run on shore power with the battery removed or isolated, this is from their tech support


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Old 10-14-2008, 04:54 PM   #21
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This sounds like a converter overheating problem and burning out the voltage regulator.
I suggest that you check for proper ventilation around the converter. The fan needs to be able to pull air through the converter to keep it from overheating. Some need lots of air.

Byron

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Old 10-14-2008, 05:34 PM   #22
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This sounds like a converter overheating problem and burning out the voltage regulator.
I suggest that you check for proper ventilation around the converter. The fan needs to be able to pull air through the converter to keep it from overheating. Some need lots of air.

Byron
The Parallax Power 6730 (and the Scamp OEM MagnaTek 6700) is a switching power supply that creates very low heat. During periods of high current load there is a thermostatically controlled fan the will circulate air through the converter.

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Old 10-14-2008, 05:39 PM   #23
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Capacitors sometimes fail by becoming “leaky” if you will. They no longer are just a capacitive reaction in a circuit, but develop an internal resistance. >snip<
This capacitor doesn't need to be tested. One end of the cap has been 'blown out', and it now physically has a problem, in addition to the obvious electrical problem.

-- Dan Meyer
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Old 10-15-2008, 10:26 AM   #24
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I'm assuming you mean a reverse polarity connection to the battery. Batteries get very mad if you mix up their +s and -s.

The converters I have seen have a fuse in the line to the battery and a reverse polarity protection diode. If you connect the battery backwards it will open the fuse and disconnect the battery. Depending on the level of sophistication of your converter's protection circuits it could also damage the converter. Unfortunately many converters are very unsophisticated.

Also, unsophisticated converters don't work well when there is no battery connected to buffer the converter output. Without the battery the output voltage rises quite a bit. This could be the reason your lightsAlso, unsophisticated converters don't work well when there is no battery connected to buffer the converter output. Without the battery the output voltage rises quite a bit. This could be the reason your lights got so bright and melted the covers got so bright and melted the covers.

If it was me I would find another RV repair place, even if means a long drive. I really doubt the competency of the facility doing the work.

Someone recently posted a link on this forum to a web page entitled "The 12Volt Side of Life" that had a lot of good information on 12V RV systems. I think it could answer a lot of your questions. If I remember right it was about 20 pages long and very detailed. Sorry I don't have the time now to do a search.
Also, unsophisticated converters don't work well when there is no battery connected to buffer the converter output. Without the battery the output voltage rises quite a bit. This could be the reason your lights got so bright and melted the covers.

I think this is what the RV tech is telling me.He says there was a fuse holder that was diconnected.Apparently this was a fuse that had been installed when the wiring was done whenthe new TT to tug wiring was installed.It was done months before the converter installation.It somehow became disconnected and this caused the battery to be disconected from the converter,causing the output voltage to rise?It still sounds like an excuse to remove responsibility from them for not hooking it up properely. I would think a wire should run from the converter to the battery that would keep the connection until the fuse from the converter to the battery failed......They are requesting the converter be replaced under warrenty...Still waiting for an answer.It had better be because it cost us over $6oo.oo to have it put in less than a month ago.We also have to replace the Fantastic Fan that was cooked because of the power surge....I feel i am a little better prepared to question what happened because of the feedback from this fourm...Thanks so much to everyone who contributed.I will post updates....Pat.
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:59 AM   #25
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One end of the cap has been 'blown out', and it now physically has a problem, in addition to the obvious electrical problem.
Electrolytic capacitors will sometimes blow the aluminum casing apart when they fail. They can sound like a mini firecracker when this happens. It does make it easier to locate the problem area of a circuit. The failed capacitor can be a symptom or cause of a problem. This type of failure unusually results when the applied voltage exceeds the capacitor’s rating.

[b]Converters: I would agree with the comments that the voltage may rise from a converter when the battery is disconnected, but not to a point that would cause a motor to burn up, light covers to melt and the eventual failure of the converter. That converter company would be out of business soon and would have to have warning labels posted. Warning: In the event of the battery fuse opening, or disconnecting the battery - the converter voltage will rise to a level that will burn up all attached equipment then self destruct. This just isn’t the case. The voltage may rise to a level that would cause problems with some LED type lighting and that would be about it. Good luck Pat

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Old 10-19-2008, 04:53 PM   #26
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Over the weekend I decided to save some time and replace the 120 vac - 12 vdc secion of my converter with a 10 amp battery charger. I bought a NAPA #85-323A 10 amp battery charger for $50 and wired it in place of the electronics package in the converter.

So far, so good. We will see how this works long-term.

-- Dan Meyer
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Old 07-29-2015, 04:46 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Dan Meyer View Post
Over the weekend I decided to save some time and replace the 120 vac - 12 vdc secion of my converter with a 10 amp battery charger. I bought a NAPA #85-323A 10 amp battery charger for $50 and wired it in place of the electronics package in the converter.

So far, so good. We will see how this works long-term.

-- Dan Meyer
If this is the case then.....the problem was your converter itself, period. Because...a battery charger is IN FACT a specific converter( specific as....12VDC and...10Amps). One more thing: a capacitor across outputs of a converter has 2 functions. First, if it is rated at microfara( 1k, 2K +) it is there for FILTERING the...residual AC after rectified. Secondly, if it is rated at....picofara, it is there for filtering high frequency current, such as...noise, surge...Depend on your converter circuitry/diagram, if a battery is connected to converter IN SERIES-AND WITH WRONG POLARITY- all your loads will be supplied with...DOUBLE VOLTAGE, let's say 24VDC. The same this particular diagram, if the battery is connected PARALLEL AND WITH WRONG POLARITY, either your converter will be blown, your battery bown ..OR BOTH. Just a share.,,,
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