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Old 05-24-2013, 02:26 AM   #1
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rv power issue


We own a 2005 Forrest River Georgetown 342DS with 50 amp service main. Because we have experienced several severe thunderstorms while camping, last year we installed a hardwired 50 amp surge protector that has a 'monitoring' screen that shows post miss-wires, shows voltage and hz (on both lines), and can show 'error' codes. We've camped several time since installing the surge protector without problems. We did experience a bad storm on our last trip last year that caused several of us in the campground to lose power (at least 3 RV's lost power at the same time).

Last weekend when we got to our campsite we plugged the RV into a 50 amp post at a campground. The surge protector readings looked fine (110 @ 60 hz on both lines, and no error codes).

Everything (both 110 outlets & 12 volt lights) in the camper seemed fine; however after maybe 12-14 hours (of low electrical use) the house batteries drained (two pretty new 12 volt heavy duty auto style) ... indicating even though we have access to 110 power from the post we seem to be running off the 12 volt house batteries (& inverter) not the 110 from the post.

I hooked up a standard 110 volt automobile battery charger to the power post and was able to charge the house batteries. Fortunately by doing this (several times) we were able to survive the rest of our weekend trip.

It appears that the RV is running off the house batteries only and the 110 volt ac current doesn't seem to be being converted to 12 volt dc and sent to the batteries to re-charge them.

Looking back at the weekend, I should have tried unplugging from the post and running the generator, but ... hindsight!

How can I test whether the 'cutover' switch is working and/or whether the problem is in the device that converts 110 volts ac to 12 volts dc and/or should I be checking something else ???

Note: Something gives out a fairly loud 'click' when the RV is first connected to the power post (power post versus generator cutover or ac to dc converter or ???).

Any suggestions on what/how to test would be appreciated.
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Old 05-24-2013, 06:30 AM   #2
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When your plugged into the pedestal or running you generator your supplying 115 volts to your inverter to charge your batteries, put a volt meter on you batteries, your inverter should be charging at about 13.5 volts. your lights, water pump, maybe your stereo, etc. are 12 volts and run off just the batteries. Your TV, microwave are 115 volts and power from the generator or the pedestal. Refrigerators are mostly 12 volts, some have residential that are 115 volts. Check your inverter, it's 115 AC voltage input and 13.5 DC output, fuses etc.
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Old 05-24-2013, 06:38 AM   #3
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INVERT =
DC to AC

CONVERT =
AC to DC

Please help others to understand by using the correct terminology.
What comes standard with most RVs is a converter which has a charging circuit built in to it.



Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesroadking View Post
When your plugged into the pedestal or running you generator your supplying 115 volts to your inverter to charge your batteries, put a volt meter on you batteries, your inverter should be charging at about 13.5 volts. your lights, water pump, maybe your stereo, etc. are 12 volts and run off just the batteries. Your TV, microwave are 115 volts and power from the generator or the pedestal. Refrigerators are mostly 12 volts, some have residential that are 115 volts. Check your inverter, it's 115 AC voltage input and 13.5 DC output, fuses etc.
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Old 05-24-2013, 06:43 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesroadking View Post
...Refrigerators are mostly 12 volts, some have residential that are 115 volts...
I think the refer is controlled with 12v but the heating element is 120v or propane.
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Old 05-24-2013, 07:35 AM   #5
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Gas side of fridge is all 12 v
Electric side 12v controlled circuit board and heating element is 120v

Turbs
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:10 AM   #6
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I think the question is how can the OP check to see if the transfer switch is working and/or how can I check to see if the converter is working?

The above posting about checking the 12V DC at the battery is a way to see if the converter is charging the battery. Another quick test is to check the battery display on the hall monitor panel. If the display shows fewer than a full 4 lights while hooked to shore power or with the generator running, you are NOT charging

Starting the generator and checking the power at the AC outlets will show whether the transfer switch is working and then recheck the batteries for the 13.5V DC.

But, if you were plugged in to the power post and all of the AC stuff was working and the batteries ran low, you can be pretty sure the converter is not working.

Bill
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:25 AM   #7
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Maybe the surge protector is fried? It might be 'clicking' not allowing 110v into the coach. The display is registering 110v, but is it allowing that voltage thru the box? That's only a hunch but would explain the 'clicking'
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:45 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rattleNsmoke View Post
Maybe the surge protector is fried? It might be 'clicking' not allowing 110v into the coach. The display is registering 110v, but is it allowing that voltage thru the box? That's only a hunch but would explain the 'clicking'
X2 you need to verify that your power monitor box is getting power in and out before you start guessing what else can be wrong.
You always check at the source and work your way in.

I suspect the power monitor has a problem.
Blown surge protection that is not allowing it to energize.
Do you have a progressive Powe rmonitor hard wired?
If so you do have a bypass wire that will active it even with a surge protection blown.
See manual and or call manuf and they will talk you thru it.
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Old 05-24-2013, 06:56 PM   #9
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If he has 110 volts anywhere then it's not the surge protector. If he has 12 volts working but not maintaining charge then it's almost certainly the converter.

Find it and replace it with a PDI unit of appropriate size.

Simple
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Old 05-24-2013, 07:25 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by garbonz View Post
If he has 110 volts anywhere then it's not the surge protector. If he has 12 volts working but not maintaining charge then it's almost certainly the converter.

Find it and replace it with a PDI unit of appropriate size.

Simple
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