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Old 09-23-2014, 08:20 PM   #1
RKR
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Quick Question

I'm loaded up and ready to head out for a trip Thursday. I just noticed that my battery isn't charging. I don't have time to dig into it right now.
I went and bought a new battery to take with me. I'm also taking my battery charger. It has a 2 amp slow charge and a 12 amp fast.
Here's the question. Can I or has anybody ever hooked a battery charger up to the battery on slow charge while the battery was running the trailer ? I'm pretty sure I can't or shouldn't but it never hurts to ask I guess.
Don't really feel like having to keep swapping batteries throughout the trip but it's only 3 days so I'll do what I have to do. Can't miss this trip.


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Old 09-24-2014, 05:44 AM   #2
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It shouldn't hurt anything if the converter is off. But at 2 amps, you'll likely be losing AHr faster than you can charge. Your charger should be ok on the 12 amp setting. It should only put out up to 12 amps if needed, but drop down when not needed.
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Old 09-24-2014, 07:30 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RKR View Post
Here's the question. Can I or has anybody ever hooked a battery charger up to the battery on slow charge while the battery was running the trailer ? I'm pretty sure I can't or shouldn't but it never hurts to ask I guess.
Don't really feel like having to keep swapping batteries throughout the trip but it's only 3 days so I'll do what I have to do.
RKR, I'm kinda confused here. It sounds like you are going to be camping at a place without electrical hookups, since you stated the battery is running the trailer.

If this is so, what are you going to plug a battery charger into?

For safety reasons, if the battery in your trailer is dead (or won't charge) before you leave on your trip, then should the worse case scenario happen of your trailer becoming disconnected from your truck.........be mindful that the emergency breakaway will not work then, as the battery in the trailer is what powers the electric brakes to stop it in a runaway situation. This is highly unlikely to happen though.
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Old 09-24-2014, 07:31 AM   #4
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Thanks bud, that's what I'll do. I did a little on line homework last night also and read it'll be fine.



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Old 09-24-2014, 07:53 AM   #5
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RKR, I'm kinda confused here. It sounds like you are going to be camping at a place without electrical hookups, since you stated the battery is running the trailer.

If this is so, what are you going to plug a battery charger into?

For safety reasons, if the battery in your trailer is dead (or won't charge) before you leave on your trip, then should the worse case scenario happen of your trailer becoming disconnected from your truck.........be mindful that the emergency breakaway will not work then, as the battery in the trailer is what powers the electric brakes to stop it in a runaway situation. This is highly unlikely to happen though.

WM, I'm staying at a place with power. The 12 volt (lights etc) part of the electrical system is putting a drain on the battery. It's not a severe drain. Today will be the third day I left the 5r plugged in while parked in the driveway. It shows being low on charge. The power converter/inverter isn't kicking in. I check the fuse and connections and all is good. I have the new battery charged and ready to put in tonight. I'll put the low battery on the charger overnight so it will be full when we leave tomorrow am. I'll have to make it work.
The trip is only about a 2 hr drive. My son starts his Firefighter/Paramedic training Monday. It's expected to last 2 years. No vacations for him. Monday through Friday with holidays off. This is his so called last hurrah for awhile. Out of 750+ applicants they only took 18. We're pretty proud of him. 👍
Thanks for the reply bud.


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Old 09-24-2014, 08:15 AM   #6
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Today will be the third day I left the 5r plugged in while parked in the driveway. It shows being low on charge. The power converter/inverter isn't kicking in.
It very well could be the converter and I understand you don't have time to replace/troubleshoot it.

I guess I am hoping it is something simpler than a faulty converter, for your sake. Since you have it plugged into your house.....is there any chance that there is a problem there (ie extension cords, gfci outlet, faulty adapter) thus the converter not being powered with 120 volts... which it converts to 12 volts to charge the battery?

I guess a simple way to test for incoming 120 volts, would be to see if your television, or outlets inside the trailer work while you have it plugged in at your house. You might can just glance to see if the microwave display lights are on too. This would confirm that there is 120 volts going INTO the trailer, and thus to your converter.

If you had a problem getting 120 volts into the trailer, then the converter wouldn't work to recharge the battery.

I know it sounds simplistic, but like I stated, I'm hoping it is something simple for your sake and you haven't overlooked the obvious..
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Old 09-24-2014, 08:39 AM   #7
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WM , my outlets, AC, TV and microwave all work. When I first sensed the inverter wasn't working I pulled down the basement wall and checked the inverter fuse and connections. I then checked the main panel and no fuses are blown.
I'll do a more thorough check after I get back before I order a new one.
Thanks bud


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Old 09-24-2014, 09:11 AM   #8
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WM , my outlets, AC, TV and microwave all work. When I first sensed the inverter wasn't working I pulled down the basement wall and checked the inverter fuse and connections. I then checked the main panel and no fuses are blown.
I'll do a more thorough check after I get back before I order a new one.
Thanks bud


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Did you also check the 120V Circuit Breaker for the converter? It might be tripped but not visible. Just switch it off and on to be sure.

Alternatively, I've read on these forums that some of the converters have their own fuses that you can't see unless you pull the panel. Don't know which models, but might be worth checking once you're setup.
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Old 09-24-2014, 09:18 AM   #9
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WM , my outlets, AC, TV and microwave all work. When I first sensed the inverter wasn't working I pulled down the basement wall and checked the inverter fuse and connections. I then checked the main panel and no fuses are blown.
I'll do a more thorough check after I get back before I order a new one.
Thanks bud


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Well crud, I was hoping it was something real simple. We tried.

Just for terminology clarification:

Converter: takes 120 volt AC and "converts" it to 12 volt DC.... which most all RV's have a converter.

Inverter: takes 12 volt DC and "inverts" it to 120 volt AC.....which you usually need a large battery bank, more common in motorhomes and such.

It's very easy (and common) to confuse the two terms, as well as autocorrect on smartphones changing them too when using the FR app.
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Old 09-24-2014, 10:06 AM   #10
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I did this same exact thing on our last trip. I knew the converter was inop, camper had been hit by lightning, so I brought a charger with me and it ran the entire time at about 15A/Hr.
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