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Old 06-07-2016, 01:56 PM   #1
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Help on House Batteries

Leaving on a big trip next week. I have a 2014 3010 and I had two Excide house batteries installed at the end of February. Something is draining them. I have a Carbon Monoxide alarm and a satilite dish. Nothing else is on. Any help for all you experts would be appreciated.
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Old 06-07-2016, 02:08 PM   #2
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If you did not have the unit plugged in or have the battery cut off switch off ( if you have one) the items listed will kill the batteries in that length of time. Your tv and stereo/DVD player probably also have a minimum current draw when sleeping. If you are going to leave the RV unplugged for more than a week or two, you need to disconnect the batteries ( by removing neg terminal connection or using a disconnect switch).
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Old 06-07-2016, 04:54 PM   #3
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My disconnect switch was off. Last week went out after five days and it was drained and last night it was fully charged and this morning it was also drained. I did unplug my receiver for the satilite. Nothing else is on.
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Old 06-07-2016, 08:49 PM   #4
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I've been trying to figure this out also. I have a 2016 3010DS and when the power cutoff is off there are definitely some power drains. I believe the auto leveling jack controller is always on if you have that. It also seemed that the Jenson entertainment center on the dashboard stays in standby. I plan to install a old style manual cutoff right on the battery terminals. Only problem with that is I don't think the jacks would alarm if they were down and I started the truck when the coach battery is disconnected. I haven't looked in to it yet. I did get a cutoff switch so I will be putting that in to use for long term storage.
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Old 06-07-2016, 09:23 PM   #5
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I do have automatic levelers but wasn't sure if it draws juice or not. So I have the Carbon Monoxide alarm, satilite dish, and possibly the levelers. I would think though that the house batteries would keep a charge more then five days which it did not.
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Old 06-07-2016, 09:48 PM   #6
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So I guess you are talking about the drain when the coach batteries are not disconnected in any way. If that's the case, then the double wide refridge draws some standby current even if off according the the Dometic manual. All the TV's have standby power, all the USB ports, the Antenna booster. Also if the heater switch is on that will leave the heater control board powered on. I have also had times when I stop driving that the levelers main power is on, not just standby. I have to manually power it off. Check for the "power on" led and retract all led. I don't know all the sources but that is typical of mine. If I leave the battery connect on and nothing intentionally on, it will last maybe a couple of days. I'm planning to buy an inductive current meter and play around a bit to discover what the various draws are. This took me by surprise a bit with the new RV as my old one was 1996 and didn't have any fancy electronics. When it was off it was off.
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Old 06-08-2016, 12:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bednarski1 View Post
My disconnect switch was off. Last week went out after five days and it was drained and last night it was fully charged and this morning it was also drained. I did unplug my receiver for the satilite. Nothing else is on.
Chances are pretty good it wasn't really "fully charged" - especially since it was drained last week. It can take days to get it fully charged again.

The "disconnect switch" mentioned above is not the one built into the unit. It is a physical battery disconnect switch that disconnects the ground wire from the battery, equivalent to your taking the ground terminal off the battery only more convenient. They look like this:

Amazon.com: Top Post Battery Master Disconnect Switch: Automotive

or this:

http://smile.amazon.com/WirthCo-2013...r_1_11&sr=8-11

Now if you truly have a drain that kills your battery overnight, you will need to trace it down. You will need to connect a multimeter in amp (ammeter) mode in line with the battery. Then you can see what the running load is. After that, you can disconnect fuses one by one until you find the one or more circuits that are draining and how much each so you will know which one or more are the culprits. Since you are checking battery drain, you only need to pull the 12V fuses and don't worry about the AC breakers.
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Old 06-08-2016, 06:37 AM   #8
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...Only problem with that is I don't think the jacks would alarm if they were down and I started the truck when the coach battery is disconnected...
Congratulations... I think that you are the first person who has discovered and posited why the levelers are still powered with the battery disconnect turned off!!! It makes total sense for safety reasons.
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Old 06-08-2016, 10:37 AM   #9
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Coach Battery Drain

2014 FR Georgetown. When we are at home I plug into 110 shore power to keep battery charged. However have found out that when I start up refrigerator a day or two prior to departure, it causes my coach batteries to drain even though we are plugged in. My only thought is that the 110 shore power is not adequate due to voltage drop?....distance??....whatever...from house. Rest of time it is adequate. Voltage regulator/protector in basement reads out 110 - 120v, 60 hrts, as it cycles. When refrigerator is turned on....read outs drop to 109 -112v ranges. This drain happens when the coach installed battery disconnect switch is in the OFF position. Like everyone else who have commented.....no idea why?
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Old 06-08-2016, 08:16 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by thomanddebbie View Post
2014 FR Georgetown. When we are at home I plug into 110 shore power to keep battery charged. However have found out that when I start up refrigerator a day or two prior to departure, it causes my coach batteries to drain even though we are plugged in. My only thought is that the 110 shore power is not adequate due to voltage drop?....distance??....whatever...from house. Rest of time it is adequate. Voltage regulator/protector in basement reads out 110 - 120v, 60 hrts, as it cycles. When refrigerator is turned on....read outs drop to 109 -112v ranges. This drain happens when the coach installed battery disconnect switch is in the OFF position. Like everyone else who have commented.....no idea why?
Suggest you get a clamp AC/DC meter and actually measure what is going on by clamping your positive battery wire when plugged in ONCE you are fully charged...which means plugging into the house for a couple of days.
1. 1st question is HOW do you know you are fully charged? Unless you have disconnected the battery negative wires for 24 HOURS after charging and not used them at all....a voltage reading DOES NOT indicate state of charge. IF you disconnect for 24 hours and THEN take a voltage reading...then you should see 12.6-12.7Volts.

2. ANY voltage reading you take with the fridge ON ...DOES NOT indicate the state of charge of your batteries. Any reading you take after turning the fridge off does NOT tell you the state of charge of your batteries. Again...you must disconnect the batt - wire and WAIT to see the true voltage.

This is one reason people buy true battery monitors...so they can know what is actually going on in real time. That's a $150 buck investment that can pay for itself. (Search TRimetric & Victron here for details)

First thing I would do once I knew I had a FULL battery in GOOD condition is to plug in and measure on the terminals & positive battery cable. You should be seeing 13.2-13.4V and measuring just a couple amps on the red wire which would be the charger on float stage. If you show LESS than 13.2V....you have a converter problem or wiring issue from the converter.

Assuming all is well...it is time to test the impact of the fridge. Again...turn the fridge on ....then measure the amps on the red wire. You should NOT see any major amp load on the battery wire since the ELECTRIC fridge heating element is powered by AC. You can measure the AC load with a clamp meter too but you need to get one of these splitters so you don't have to cut up your house wire to clamp it.


Since you can only get 15 AC amps out of the wall...any big number here (don't forget to switch to AC amps from DC on the meter!).... will explain why there is little left for the converter to work with to keep the batteries charged from their OTHER loads.

Hope this gives you some things to eliminate as causes. My GUT feel is that you have compromised batteries...but you have to go through the steps outlined above to figure that out.

One of these 20 buck load testers from Harbor Freight might be helpful to test how your batts can stand up to a load.
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