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Old 05-18-2014, 06:34 AM   #11
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3 days to a week and all three batteries are dead.
That's quite a drain! You have something more than a couple of detectors draining your batteries. I'm no motor home expert, but shouldn't the engine starting battery be isolated from the house battery bank? What is the age on the batteries? If you have a DMM with a 10 amp current measuring capability, I would hook it up in series between your batteries and the breaker/fuse panel and see what kind of current draw you have. Then, I would start pulling fuses until the load goes away. BTW, you don't have tank heaters turned on, do you?
If you were in SE Georgia, I'd have to run over there and help troubleshoot just because this has me very curious!
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Old 05-18-2014, 07:19 AM   #12
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If you had 120v outlets working you could have been nice and comfy
with a little space heater!
Many of us use them instead of expen$ive LP.

With rig un-plugged you can use a volt,ohm,amp meter to find the battery
drain. Unplug fuses one at a time and place meter in AMPS scale across
the empty fuse holder. The meter will tell you what that circuit is
using. Do this with nothing on. You're trying to find the mystery drain...
Take notes.
Good luck!
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Old 05-18-2014, 07:25 AM   #13
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My father had a almost the same problem. It took u a week to figure out the problem it turned out the power step control board on his a was going bad and sending a constant 3 volts to the step when not in use this was not enough to move the step but it was causing a 2 amp draw . Because the step on a class a is your only way in it is hooked to the starting battery and the once that goes dead the solenoid they install so you can start off your coach batteries no longer is energized and allows it to drain the coach batteries. At least that was our problem many late nights tracking that. Good luck
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Old 05-18-2014, 07:36 AM   #14
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We have had a few instances like this. There seems to be a problem when the camper (our camper) was initially wired. whenever we have to many things running off of one of the breakers and it seems to be the same one the GFCI outlet in the back bathroom of the camper will trip and we have no power to all things on that breaker. Check your outlets and reset and then try to reset the breaker. The dim lights which we have had was in our case the converter gone bad. If that is the case and you are out camping, a long way from home and not able to locate a new converter right away. We used a battery charger that we picked up at a Walmart or you can connect the cord to the truck and run it to charge it.
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Old 05-18-2014, 07:47 AM   #15
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Everything is working, don't know why, don't know what went wrong. Pulled fuses on the convertor and plugged back in, a couple of times. Turned all the breakers off and on multiple times, finally got the beaker to reset.
Some thing is wrong somewhere in the system. I can't leave the coach for two days without all batteries going dead. Installed a knife switch on the chassis battery, so when goes into storage, I throw the switch and the batteries are good the next time out.
Don't if that problem had anything to do with the current problem.
Bit of a converter "lesson."

1) The converter has internal circuitry to prevent it from working if there is a short in the output. It takes several minutes to reset itself after the short is removed.

2) The converter has internal circuitry to prevent it from charging a battery with an internal short in a cell (or a battery with a voltage less than about 10 volts). It will never reset unless the battery is removed from the converter's DC output.

3) In many installations, the converter is powered (AC side) by the SAME breaker that also powers other AC items (like the living room/entertainment wall sockets in my camper). A low battery coupled with the TV or coffee maker could easily overdraw the 15 amp circuit they used in my camper.

If you had an AC short while opening a slide (for example) that contained a wall outlet, or were using a high draw item plugged into a wall outlet while the converter was trying to charge the low battery, the breaker for that circuit could have opened. I am sure you know how to reset a tripped breaker (OFF; then ON), however the converter is still looking at a pretty high power requirement to charge the battery and coupled with the AC item maybe caused the breaker to re-open.

As the battery charged, the demand on the converter would lessen, and the amperage required may have fallen below the breakers limit and "all is good now" (until next time).

Could that have been your scenario? Did you have an AC item plugged in and on when the converter tripped?

Battery charging is done through the BCC (Battery Control Center) when the MH is running. If there is a problem in it, that is preventing charging current from your engine getting to the house batteries, they could be quite low by the time you got to camp and hooked up. THAT coupled with something innocuous like the TV could have flipped you over the edge too.

Just thinking about what the problem could have been.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Battery Control Center.pdf (400.2 KB, 14 views)
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Old 05-18-2014, 08:05 PM   #16
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Home. M/H back in storage, Need a course in Electronics 101, I'll be out looking for a few diagnostic tools. Thanks for all the tips, I'll print off this thread and next week will be in full testing mode. This is on my number one list for Goshen. I doubt I'll solve this on my own.
The eclectic heater will be in the M/H instead of in my basement and I'll have the portable power supply with me. Slow learner.

Again thanks for all the help. This forum is why I bought a Forest River.
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Old 05-27-2014, 12:56 PM   #17
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Update, M/H is in the driveway and sent a little time in it with a multimeter.

Can't duplicate the tripped breaker, turning everything on and off.

Had shore power on all night
This morning, Coach Batteries12.93V, Chassis Battery12.93V

Parasitic drain on coach batteries.06-.08 mA
With coach battery cut-off switch On or Off. No difference.
All coach fuses pulled. No difference
Parasitic drain on chassis battery .75-.80 mA
The only thing I notice is the chassis is using more amps than the coach.
Even cumulative, it doesn't seem enough to drag the batteries down in three days.
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Old 05-27-2014, 03:54 PM   #18
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The slide out's are connected straight to the batteries so there will be a "control board" drain, but as you can see it is slight.
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Old 05-28-2014, 10:25 PM   #19
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Not sure if this has anything to do with it, but I found this out in 20 degree when I lost all battery power. The converter for my 3051 Forester is located in the compartment with my electrical cord. It wasn't plugged in therefore not recharging the batteries. Once I plugged it in, all systems recharged. This is now on my check list. Good luck.
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Old 05-29-2014, 08:09 AM   #20
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Not sure if this has anything to do with it, but I found this out in 20 degree when I lost all battery power. The converter for my 3051 Forester is located in the compartment with my electrical cord. It wasn't plugged in therefore not recharging the batteries. Once I plugged it in, all systems recharged. This is now on my check list. Good luck.
This happened to a friend that has a 3051s. So that's the first thing I check.
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