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Old 10-16-2012, 01:45 AM   #1
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brand new battery drains after 10 hour drive

ok, let me start by saying hello, my name is Larry, and i am new to your forums. If i started this post wrong, i do apologise. its really late and i just got done unpacking for the night and im at my wits end.
ill start from the beginning. as i normally do, i bought my pop up home, plugged it into to house current to cool down th fridge while im packing everything up. raised the roof on battery before plugging into house current. everythign worked fine. fridge got cold over night, all packed up, get in and go. get from indy to other side of atlanta at a state park and the roof will not go up. it started and then stopped after a brief second of motion. yanked the battery out, quick run down to the parts store and got a new battery thinking the old one went bad. put it in,roof went up, all 12 volt works. thinking somethign was wrong, i started looking at fuses, and found one in the panel marked "battery, slide out" was blown. i went to replace the fuse and big spark, no pop though. i disconnect the battery and 110, put fuse in, hook all back up, and all is working just fine. if i throw the breakers in fuse panel, you can see lights dim as if it were only running on 12 volt, and get brighter when i turn breakers back on. thinking i solved the issue, we get up next morning and pack everythign up, drive into florida and battery is dead again. fuse is not blown this time. after having camper plugged in for 2 hours, i go out, and turn the lights on, kick the breaker and loose power to everything. one thing that was not going on before tonight, there is a red light on, next to the fuse that was blown previously.
what im really wanting to know is how does all this work. my thought process tells me that everythign runs on 12 volt, and as im plugged in the battery is constantly being charged to replace whatever may be being used. im assuming this though. what i know is that the battery is not charging, its discharging at a rapid rate as we travel with the fridge set to 12 volt and plugged into vehicle. im not sure if power supply is bad, somethign in wiring, or what. im at an absoulte loss. im not afraid to get my hands dirty, just not sure where to begin. biggest problem is that im 1100 miles from home with no tools. the pop up is a 2012 rockwood 2318g, and my tow vehicle is a 2012 f150. any help in saving my vacation and possibly convincing the wife to keep the camper by fixing this issue would be so greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:41 AM   #2
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The fridge is draining the 12v faster than it can be recharged if you have a 7 pin style trailer hookup. If you wan to use it this way.....you'll need to have an alternator that has a higher output then what is on your vehicle.
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Old 10-16-2012, 09:45 AM   #3
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ok, i went out to check it this morning, and the one fuse was indeed blown again and battery did not charge over night. i checked this by turning on a light, and shutting off the breakers and the lights go out as well. i put a new, bigger fuse. the fan on the converter then came on, red light went out. i let it sit for half hour or so and then went back out and checked by shutting down the breakers and the lights stayed on, so i know the battery is charging again. just not sure why this fuse keeps blowing and was hopign someone else may have had a similer issue.
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Old 10-17-2012, 07:30 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by INDYhollow View Post
ok, i went out to check it this morning, and the one fuse was indeed blown again and battery did not charge over night. i checked this by turning on a light, and shutting off the breakers and the lights go out as well. i put a new, bigger fuse. the fan on the converter then came on, red light went out. i let it sit for half hour or so and then went back out and checked by shutting down the breakers and the lights stayed on, so i know the battery is charging again. just not sure why this fuse keeps blowing and was hoping someone else may have had a similar issue.
A new bigger fuse is not the answer. It will make the situation dangerous instead of irritating. You have a pinched wire somewhere that is blowing the fuse. There is also a good chance the safety fuse between the tow vehicle and the camper's battery has also failed open due to that short circuit.

Some of these fuses are auto resetting types and some are manual so look for a tiny button on the side to push in (see photos).

Unfortunately some detective work is required to trace the short. Increasing fuse size will eliminate the detective work by potentially burning your camper to the ground and not recommended.
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Old 10-17-2012, 08:04 AM   #5
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I have to ask one or 2 questions--

IS YOUR REFRIGERATOR 3 WAY POWER???

IS YOUR REFRIGERATOR SET TO DC POWER??

If your fridge is set to LP or AC, never mind.....

If your fridge is set to DC power it will run down your battery in
10 hours. A totally dead battery can sometimes blow the fuse when
you plug in because it's such a load on the charger.

Just a thought........
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Old 10-17-2012, 09:22 AM   #6
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the bigger fuse was not put in to keep from blowing, although i do appreciate the concern. it was put in as that was the only one i had on hand. it was only 5 amps bigger. i have gone and picked up a fresh pack of 20 amp fuses for the replacement. the fridge is a 3 way. i switch it to 12 volt as i am driving down the road with it, but use 110 when camping. i have never ran it on propane though. the camper has been plugged in for 2 days now, with the fuse replaced and all seems to be working fine. with in 20 minutes i could kick the breakers off and the lights would stay on although dim. now after a few days there is no change in light. i will be packing up today and moving to a campground for a day and i will have to see if the new 20 amp fuse will blow again. i did manage to make my way to a uhaul and have them check my plug and i have power coming out of the truck to the camper, so i believe it is somewhere between the plug in and the distribution box. hopefully if the fuse doesnt blow on way to camp ground i can just leave the fridge off on the way home and not worry about draining the battery. i do appreciate allt he replies, and im glad i found this forum. i will continue to come back frequently and i will update as i figure out what is wrong with the camper.
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Old 10-17-2012, 10:24 AM   #7
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As I understand it - your system is draining while towing because you are running the fridge on 12v. Then when the battery is dead, you get lots of problems with blown fuses etc. That sounds normal, if certainly aggravating.

First thing I would check, go to your TV with multi-meter and see if you are getting 12v through to the PUP. I am not sure which pin it is, but google the wiring diagram for a 7 wire setup. It certainly sounds like you have a problem where you are not getting power back to the PUP from your TV. This could be for one of three reasons: 1) your TV was never setup to provide 12v power to a trailer, surprisingly common; 2) your 12 power feed has blown a fuse in your TV or 3) your TV simply does not make enough juice to power itself and the fridge in your PUP. I am betting on number 1 or 2.

Once you have ruled out the TV as your problem, you can norrow down to the PUP. The fact that the battery charges of shore power makes me think your problems wre with the TV.
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Old 10-17-2012, 11:28 AM   #8
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Put your fridge on LP when on the road and AC when plugged in to
shore power and your problem will likely go away....


Also you need to check if you have a heater for anti-condensation
in your fridge. If you do, you need to shut it off if you can.
Some have the heater with a switch and some have the
heater with no switch and some don't have the heater at all.

It would help us if you told us what make and model fridge you have.
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Old 10-20-2012, 11:23 PM   #9
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well i packed up, and turned the fridge off for the trip home. got back and the battery was still charged enough to lift the roof and power some lights long enough to unpack. went and had my truck wiring shecked with a voltmeter and could not find any power coming out of the plug, so im thinking that the truck just isnt charging as were going down the road so that is where i am going to start looking., i wanted to thank everyone for the possible solutions and as i figure out what is wrong i will repost. in the mean time i will be going through the forums checking everythign out to see if i can learn anythign else. again, thank you all
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Old 10-21-2012, 12:23 AM   #10
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I seem to recall others mentioning having to add a fuse in the fuse panel to have power on the #4 pin (black wire) which would be the 12V power to the camper's battery. Perhaps your owner's manual covers it.

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