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Old 02-21-2016, 10:27 PM   #1
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My converter died (right?)

Our new-to-us 2013 261bhxl had a fully charged battery when we picked it up, and all systems were a go. After our first weekend, then a week in storage, we turned on the fridge to cool overnight. Sometime later it shut off. And then we also noticed the furnace wouldn't turn over. And come to think of it the lights are dim.

Basically all 12v systems are non functional. Plugged in, our outlets and microwave work normally. Everything else is offline. I suspect out first success was due to a fully charged battery made with a external battery charger.

I swapped the 40amp fuses just to be sure, and checked the breakers-- no difference.

My research online leads me to think its a bad converter. So I tested the voltage.

Power into the converter is 125v ac. Power out of the converter was 8.2v when on shore power, and about the same when shore power was unplugged too.

I unhooked the battery and found it read 8.36v on its own. The output coming out of the converter was 0.4v when the battery was unhooked but shore power was plugged in. Also, the converter fan isn't running at all. And, there is some discoloration on the board of the converter itself.

I should note here that the battery itself is in bad shape and I'll need to replace it. But if I'm not mistaken, the converter should output 12v regardless? And the battery is at least capable of holding a charge as it demonstrated just a week ago.

Before I order a new converter- have I diagnosed this correctly? Any chance that a crummy battery could somehow foul up the converter's function?

The converter is a WFCO 8955PEC (so it's 55 amps, right?). Any recommendations for a good replacement that will fit into the same 4.5" high opening?
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:33 PM   #2
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My converter died (right?)

A bad battery may cause converter to not function properly.
Get a new battery and retest


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Old 02-21-2016, 10:37 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TURBS View Post
A bad battery may cause converter to not function properly.
Get a new battery and retest


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X2, Your converter includes a "smart charger" therefore, it may not put out any current until it senses a battery connected. BTW, the new battery should be fully charged when you install it. Then re-test. Converter should the show around 13.2 volts.
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:39 PM   #4
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Interesting- but how would I know if it worked? All systems would be working off the fully charged battery... So do I just have to wait for the battery to either run down and die or not die?
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:43 PM   #5
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If converter is functioning properly after a good new battery is installed you should be able to read good voltage.
Try taking the battery out out of the system by disconnecting it and see what happens.


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Old 02-21-2016, 10:47 PM   #6
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Interesting- but how would I know if it worked? All systems would be working off the fully charged battery... So do I just have to wait for the battery to either run down and die or not die?
Read through this post; Did our converter die? HERK has some good info/diagnostics on converters and how they work.

BTW, My voltage reads 13.2 volts all the time when plugged into shore power and hardly anything in the trailer running other that fridge electronics, CO detector and thermostat power.
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:47 PM   #7
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It is not correct that the converter won't work without a battery in the circuit. It will and is the correct way to troubleshoot the converter. Remove the battery and test for 13.2 volts.

The converter will not allow you to connect a SHORTED (or excessively depleted) battery in order to protect itself.

Having said that, WFCO and others do not recommend continued operation without a battery to cushion the shock of high amperage loads (like slides and the furnace).

Here is a troubleshooting guide for the converter (the 9800 deck mount is the same converter as the 8900 internal converter).
Attached Files
File Type: pdf WFCO 8900 Troubleshooting guide.pdf (4.69 MB, 99 views)
File Type: pdf New-Flow-Chart-for-WF-9800-Series.pdf (826.1 KB, 62 views)
File Type: pdf TEST FOR LOAD.pdf (24.1 KB, 58 views)
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:49 PM   #8
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There you go EAZY, HERK found you.
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Old 02-21-2016, 11:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eazy View Post
Interesting- but how would I know if it worked? All systems would be working off the fully charged battery... So do I just have to wait for the battery to either run down and die or not die?
If you only have the battery, and the converter isn't doing anything, the battery voltage will read no more than say 12.6-12.8V or so, and if run down will be 12 or even in the mid 11s (or worse if it's in bad shape).

If your converter is working, the battery (and anywhere in the 12V circuit) should read 14.4, 13.6 or 13.2V depending on what charging phase the converter has the battery in. Even at steady state fully charged with the converter on, battery voltage will show 13.2 which is a float charge level. It will periodically spike up to 14.4V to help prevent sulfation, but typically will be at 13.2V. (If you have a different manufacturer's model, the numbers may be slightly different but the concept will be the same.)

You can get very good advice here, but since you are trying to figure out if your power converter is working, you will find it really helpful to read the operation manual. This may be the right one depending on your model:

http://www.progressivedyn.com/pdfs/1...ish%20Only.pdf
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Old 02-22-2016, 12:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
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I unhooked the battery and found it read 8.36v on its own. The output coming out of the converter was 0.4v when the battery was unhooked but shore power was plugged in.
Yes. Your converter is shot. Replace it.

You followed the correct testing procedure according to the WFCO users manual (here:
http://wfcoelectronics.com/wp-conten...ion-Manual.pdf ). See bottom of page 5 where is says:
"If the converter output voltage at the battery reads in the 0.0 Vdc range,
or the battery is not charging, check for:
- an open inline fuse in the battery wire (if installed by OEM)
- an open wire between the converter and the RV battery
- loose ground connection
- improper torques
If the converter fuses and AC voltage are good, but the converter output still
reads zero volts, the converter is not functioning properly."

I had the same converter and had the exact same problems. AC circuits worked fine but DC circuits were dead, and upon testing, the DC output at the battery was - - guess what - - 0.4v - - same as you.

Before I did the testing I figured it was just a dead battery, but a new, fully charged battery was dead one week after installation. Also interesting, I had been fighting a propone detector that had been going off intermittently, even when propane was shut off at the tanks. A new charger/converter solved ALL those problems.

WFCO ... is ... junk ... in my opinion. Replace with a good brand like Progressive Dynamics. I got mine from bestconverter.com. Great service, great price, great product. I got the drop-in replacement unit and it only took around 30 minutes to make the swap.
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