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Old 08-15-2015, 07:35 PM   #1
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 41
Converter help!

Hello all,

So I purchased my 2015 Rockwood Roo 21BD in April and ever since then I have had nothing but problems from the very start. First, the water heater would not work on shore power only. It would only work with propane. We took our trailer to the Grand Canyon, which was our first trip out on it. I realized during this trip it was not working. So once we got home I started troubleshooting the water heater. I first checked the electric element and thought I may have burned it out at some point by switching it on with no water. I tested the element with a meter and it turned out it was fine. I then checked the actual switch outside on the water heater itself to turn it on. The switch was fine. I then go check the back of the water heater, which is inside the wood compartment where the water filter and water pump is also located. I noticed the outlet that the water heater plugs in and did a test on that. This was where the problem was. There was no power going to the outlet itself. So my next step was following the wires that went into the outlet to see where they went and if they were connected or whatever. As I was following one of the wires with my fingers it starts to go towards the floor under the water pump. Once I get my fingers under there I get a nice shock to my hand. It turns out this wire was exposed and not installed into anything. It was just laying on the floor under the water pump and water filter, which of course current was going through it. At this point I was very upset considering this is a new trailer and the dealer constantly talked about the high quality workmanship and blah blah blah Forest River performs. Also, they bragged about how they go through these things when they get them on their lot to make sure everything works. So at this point I decided I needed to take it in so they can fix it and not me. So it turns out the outlet behind the water heater where it plugs into was over torqued, which was why there was no current going through it. Second, that live exposed wire just laying on the ground was suppose to go to another electrical outlet, which the manufacturer never installed. They forgot completely. That missing outlet is for plugging in the heated mattress. They also had to fix some loose trim as well. By the way, this took them one month to get this all done, which I feel is unacceptable. They also had to fix the speakers and TV because I wasn't getting any sound out and the color on TV was just black and white. Anyways, I got the trailer back and took it out for the second time two weekends ago. Now, the furnace wasn't working properly. The furnace would not ignite unless I was hooked up to shore power or my generators (inverters). It would only turn the fan on for 10-15 seconds and then switch off. If I was connected to shore power it would kick on the fan and later ignite as it should or it would work properly if my battery was completely full. This was odd to me considering my other friends trailers who we camped with would have their furnace working all night even with their battery being less than full (like 2/3's or less). So I took it back, but this time I took it to a different RV business since the place I originally bought it from drag their feet with service and it would probably be there for two months now that its summer. It turns out the battery the dealer installed was bad and therefore the sail switch in the furnace wouldn't get enough juice to close and ignite the burner since the fan kicked on first and would take away just enough juice to not complete the next step of igniting the burner. So I got the camper back today and of course with my luck they didn't put everything back together the way it was. My battery cables were loose, they didn't put the battery cover back on the battery box and strap it back in. The switch panel in the RV itself was never screwed back in. They left it hanging with screws all over the floor. Plus, once I paid for the service it took them 30 minutes to bring it around up front for me to hitch it up on my truck. So now I am home and got it all setup in my front yard to test everything since I have a negative experience with this place as far as how they gave me the trailer back. So I plugged the trailer into my house. Now, the converter fan will switch on and off every few seconds constantly when directly connected to shore power, which it never did this before prior to me handing my trailer over to this last dealer to troubleshoot the furnace. I cleaned the entire area thinking maybe that dust or dirt accumulated and wasn't getting enough circulation. That didn't work. The only thing that has worked is if I turn the quick disconnect key switch that is under the tongue of the trailer to "off." When I turn that disconnect battery key off the fan will stop running, but If I have the battery key turned to the on position and have it plugged into my house for shore power at the same time the converter fan will turn on and off constantly. My question for you all is if this is normal? I can't see why it is given the fact it never did this before it went into this shop. Any thoughts, opinions, or suggestions would help! Thanks.

Oh! By the way. The dealer I bought it from never fixed the speaker problem or the color on the tv!!! I had to fix it!

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Old 08-15-2015, 07:53 PM   #2
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If the battery is low, the converter will try charging it and get warm. The fan is temp controlled so that is normal with high current draw. Once the battery is charged and the 12Vdc draw decreases, the fan should not cycle. You might unplug the RV and charge the battery with an automotive charger to get it up to speed. Check to see that you did not get the old defective battery back.


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Old 08-15-2015, 08:14 PM   #3
Join Date: May 2015
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Thanks for the input. I will try that. I know for a fact it's a different battery. Originally there were two batteries on this trailer. They both were bad. This last dealer was suppose to take both out and put one new battery in. I got it today and they didn't take both out. They just swapped one out and hooked the new good battery in with the second bad battery, which makes no sense! I can't see why this new battery is drained already though? When I got home I took that other bad battery out and now the new battery is the only thing in there now. The panel says it's 2/3rd's full.
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Old 08-15-2015, 08:37 PM   #4
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So you bought the rig with two batteries and both were bad? And they replaced only one. Why not both? I would think two would be needed for a rig equipped as yours is. Also if the bad battery was in parallel with the good one the inverter will keep trying to charge it. I wonder if the dealer left the batteries unchanged in the cold winter. They will freeze if not charged.
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Old 08-15-2015, 11:56 PM   #5
Join Date: May 2015
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The trailer came originally with one battery. This battery was the one that was bad. After I purchased the trailer I immediately added a second battery as most people do and set it up parallel. The battery I purchased was good. However, I had no idea the original battery that came with trailer was bad. So of course, this likely caused the new battery I purchased to get drained by the original battery. When I took the camper in the second time for the furnace issue. I didn't take it to the dealer I purchased it from because they couldn't get me in until the end of August and it would probably sit there for a month on top of that, which I didn't want to do. So I took it to another dealer, which got me in quicker. This dealer said both batteries were bad. I asked them to only replace one battery and not both. I was going to take the battery I bought myself back to the store in order to exchange it since I just recently bought it and I had a receipt. I asked the dealer to take both bad batteries out and put one new one in. I didn't want spend the money on two new batteries when I can get one of them exchanged. It turns out the battery I had bought wasn't bad. It was just drained and they said they just have to trickle charge it and it will be good to go again. That will take a few days. Anyways, I don't know why the dealer didn't take out both batteries. Now, I just checked this new battery, which is causing my converter to switch on and stay on constantly. I just checked the voltage of the new battery with a load on it. It read on the multimeter 11.85 volts, which is where it should be at. However, the control panel reads the battery as being empty. So if the battery had no charge wouldn't it have read on the multimeter as less then 11 volts?
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Old 08-16-2015, 01:14 AM   #6
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Your story is so rambling and convoluted it's difficult to here are some facts. 11.85 volts indicates a practically dead battery. If you are to be using a two battery bank, then both batteries MUST be of the very same type and condition. Otherwise, you are doing damage.
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Old 08-16-2015, 05:01 AM   #7
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If you do need a new converter go with Progressive Dynamics
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Old 08-16-2015, 07:31 PM   #8
Join Date: May 2015
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Thanks all. I took the battery into Autozone. It's still good, but was very low. I believe it was at 29%. So they charged it back up for me in about two hours. I installed it and connected it to the trailer. I also plugged into my house at same time to see if the converter fan would turn on like it did before. The fan didn't kick in so problem solved. The dealer installed this new battery parallel with one of the old ones on Friday afternoon. I picked it up on Saturday morning. The old battery drained the new one pretty quick. I just don't know why they did that when they knew the original two were not holding a charge.
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Old 08-16-2015, 08:18 PM   #9
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A battery bank is only as good as it's weakest unit. It doesn't matter if you have six batteries in parallel if one is weak or dead.
Never, never, never rely on the panel reading for battery charge level. I've yet, through all the years, seen one that was accurate. None!
All batteries must be the same size [amp hrs] and at least close to the same age. Do not skimp on batteries. You get what you pay for.
Also, check your parasitic draws. Many times they will deplete your batteries pretty quick. A battery disconnect switch is a good investment and simple to install.

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