Battery Discharging While On Shore Power - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-19-2012, 06:36 PM   #1
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Battery Discharging While On Shore Power

Can't figure where I went wrong in hooking up the new PD 4045 converter, as the battery discharges while on shore power when my interior lights are on. I just noticed this when I was installing the LED lights, but it could have happened before, as the converter and LED lights were installed about the same time.

Can anyone help. Thanks, Jim
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:51 PM   #2
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Well, a simple thing to do would be to disconnect the battery while you're on shore power. If the lights go out then there's a problem with the converter. While you have the battery disconnected and you're still on shore power, check the battery charging output from the converter with a volt meter. It should be in the 13 or 14V range. If you find there's a problem, immediately turn off power and check that you have everything wired up in accordance with the installation manual. Then start checking fuses. You should be able to pull them out and see if they're blown or not. If all that doesn't help, it's not out of the range of possibility that you got a bad converter. Call the factory.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:52 PM   #3
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Jim any time you run a 12v light the power for it is coming from the battery so you will see the drain on the battery. But what should be happening when plugged in is that the converter if set up to do so, should be charging the battery back up at the same time so you shouldn't be seeing a net loss in battery charge.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:15 PM   #4
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I have a PD4045 but haven't used it enough to really try it out. It's supposed to have a 3 stage charger I believe. There isn't very much to the installation directions, you really have to study the drawings. As I recall the wires to the charging side have to be connected, I think to one of the 110 breakers, not the main one. And there is a connector piece that has to be removed if you are using a battery disconnect switch like I am. I'm thinking you may not have something wired correctly, I know it was a little confusing, and I recall another member having some difficulty figuring it out. I found a couple of the wires for the 12 volt circuits were numbered wrong too.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:13 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jimmied View Post
Can't figure where I went wrong in hooking up the new PD 4045 converter, as the battery discharges while on shore power when my interior lights are on. I just noticed this when I was installing the LED lights, but it could have happened before, as the converter and LED lights were installed about the same time.

Can anyone help. Thanks, Jim
Jim, Under the battery or around it should be a inline fuse. If it is blown the battery will not get charged from the converter.
Chuck
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:24 AM   #6
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I was always under the impression that when hooked up that the converter supplies all 12v power to the unit while charging the battery. One can remove the battery and the converter will still supply 12v to the unit, without the battery.
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Old 11-20-2012, 11:37 AM   #7
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I was always under the impression that when hooked up that the converter supplies all 12v power to the unit while charging the battery. One can remove the battery and the converter will still supply 12v to the unit, without the battery.
That's my impression also, but the paperwork that came with my PD4045 had very little information and small drawings. I haven't taken the time to check it all out. There may be more info available online. My original Uhaul converter would somehow discharge the battery, that's why I replaced it with the PD4045.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:47 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I was always under the impression that when hooked up that the converter supplies all 12v power to the unit while charging the battery. One can remove the battery and the converter will still supply 12v to the unit, without the battery.
Jim I think it has a lot to do with the age/type of converter and how its all wired up.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:48 PM   #9
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Call Randy @ Best Converter, he is the guru of converters and very helpful.
BestConverter - Converters, Inverters, Electrical Supplies, Electronics
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:51 PM   #10
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Jim I think it has a lot to do with the age/type of converter and how its all wired up.
It should not be wired any differently than the correct way. A converter converts 120v to 12v simply and every trailer I have owned (6) operated the same way, it provides the 12v power while hooked up to electric. While unhooked, it does nothing, your battery supplies the power.
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:09 PM   #11
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I think I should also point out that that the symptoms described by the OP could also be indicative of a battery that's not holding a charge. A battery with a short between the plates might appear to be completely charged then begin to self-discharge as soon as it's off the charger. A friend of mine just had a brand new Interstate AGM battery that wouldn't last more than a couple hours when he was camping. And when he took it to one of the auto parts stores and had them check it with their quickie tester, they told him it was was good. Batteries can do all sort of tricky things and it's not always obvious what's wrong with them.
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:10 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
It should not be wired any differently than the correct way. A converter converts 120v to 12v simply and every trailer I have owned (6) operated the same way, it provides the 12v power while hooked up to electric. While unhooked, it does nothing, your battery supplies the power.
Jim some might say your a lucky guy. All I can say is that we have had more than a few folks here discover that when they discounted their battery & plug in they dont have any 12V that works - only dedicated 110 items. May be the dreaded PO factor
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:51 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
I have a PD4045 but haven't used it enough to really try it out. It's supposed to have a 3 stage charger I believe. There isn't very much to the installation directions, you really have to study the drawings. As I recall the wires to the charging side have to be connected, I think to one of the 110 breakers, not the main one. And there is a connector piece that has to be removed if you are using a battery disconnect switch like I am. I'm thinking you may not have something wired correctly, I know it was a little confusing, and I recall another member having some difficulty figuring it out. I found a couple of the wires for the 12 volt circuits were numbered wrong too.
Probably solved and thanks to everyone for their input.
I followed the troubleshooting guide and found that there was 110 power coming in, but the converter section did not have any power once the 30 amp blown reverse battery protection fuses were removed. (this was the suggested way to check if the converter module is at fault.)
This meant that the converter module is at fault according to their troubshooting guide. WRONG.
I made a few calls to Progressive Dynamics (Larry) and found them to be very helpful. Apparently the problem was the way the converter was wired at the factory. The black wire from the converter was wired to the 120 Volt hot on the AC side, BUT should have been wired to a 110 volt sub breaker. They said that some of the coach manufactures prefer to have it wired to the 120 volt ac, rather than to a sub breaker.
All is well, and the converter is doing what it is supposed to do, and the battery is staying charged. I am sure learning a lot about electrical work now.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:13 PM   #14
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happy days are ahead of us now...........
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:07 AM   #15
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Now I wonder how mine is wired. I think I wired it to a breaker.
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Old 11-21-2012, 10:52 AM   #16
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Bob, If you did not wire the black converter wire to a sub breaker, you would know pretty soon, as the battery would deplete in under an hour with your interior lights on, at least this is what happened to me....it is very easy to see, if you just open the front and look at the black wire coming from the converter and it has to go to a sub breaker, not the hot 110 small connector at the extreme right bottom side of the converter. Jim
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:31 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Terry G View Post
Well, a simple thing to do would be to disconnect the battery while you're on shore power. If the lights go out then there's a problem with the converter. While you have the battery disconnected and you're still on shore power, check the battery charging output from the converter with a volt meter. It should be in the 13 or 14V range. If you find there's a problem, immediately turn off power and check that you have everything wired up in accordance with the installation manual. Then start checking fuses. You should be able to pull them out and see if they're blown or not. If all that doesn't help, it's not out of the range of possibility that you got a bad converter. Call the factory.
Terry, You mentioned that when the battery is disconnected and I am on shore power I will still get power to the DC lights. You are correct, and I was not getting power, but now everything works OK
I was wondering why this works. I thought that when the battery was disconnected I would not have any lights in the trailer....is it because the converter is taking over from the battery...I am assuming the converter is actually replacing the battery as power to the lights. After all these years I am learning something new every day, thanks to this forum. Jim
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:43 PM   #18
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Terry, You mentioned that when the battery is disconnected and I am on shore power I will still get power to the DC lights. You are correct, and I was not getting power, but now everything works OK
I was wondering why this works. I thought that when the battery was disconnected I would not have any lights in the trailer....is it because the converter is taking over from the battery...I am assuming the converter is actually replacing the battery as power to the lights. After all these years I am learning something new every day, thanks to this forum. Jim
Jim, As someone noted in one of the previous posts, your assumption is correct. The converter is providing 12V to the trailer and charging the battery at the same time when you are on shore power. And I agree--any time you have an older trailer, it is bound to be one learning experience after another. I guess it keeps us from being bored.

Terry
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