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Old 06-05-2013, 01:03 PM   #1
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Unhappy Battery not working in tent trailer:-(

Please help!!! We have a 2000 something model palomino tent trailer, and when it's plugged in to an outside electrical source everything(heat and lights) work just dandy. When plugged into our 12v trailer battery the heater makes noise and does nothing and the lights are very dim and fade out slowly. We have checked the amps in the battery and it reads at almost a full charge! Not sure where to look next:-( any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:17 PM   #2
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Welcome!

Lets see what we can do.

Just starting with the basics - what were the exact volts using a voltmeter?

It should be about 12.7 if its fully charged. Also, this is best measured several hours (preferably longer) after charging the battery to get rid of the surface charge, which can give you a falsely high reading.
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:31 PM   #3
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Hi!
Ok, so the first battery we tried read 11, so we bought a good used battery to try, but it did the same thing(heater making noise and dim lights) so that battery was thrown on the charger but immediately reads almost 100%. Now hubby has gone to buy a brand new battery to try. I'm pretty confident in saying its not the battery, but could it be the ground??
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:57 PM   #4
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If you measured a voltage of 11; than that battery was stone dead. See the chart below.

A battery's voltage should not be measured while on the charger. So, when that second battery read 100%, it was measuring the effect of the charger.

Tell DH to follow the instructions for charging the new battery he is buying. It might take a long time to fully charge depending on its state of charge from the store.

You asked if it could be the ground? Yes, that's the next thing to check after checking the health of your battery. You can remove the ground, clean with a wire brush and re-attach.

Try again with a fully charged good battery. If you still have a problem, then it gets more complicated.
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Old 06-05-2013, 02:48 PM   #5
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So hubby attached the brand new fully charged battery with the same dim lights result then he cleaned the ground and now there's no power at all!!!!! Aaarrrrggghhhhh! What's the next step??
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Old 06-05-2013, 02:56 PM   #6
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Slow down a bit. He just got the battery. Did hubby charge the battery or see it tested at the store?

What is the voltage? I'm curious.
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:00 PM   #7
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Circuit breaker terminals from positive lead are corroded.
And limiting current.

This is my quick over the internet diagnostical advice
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:03 PM   #8
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Good point Turbo. This is a 10+ year old trailer.
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triguy View Post
Good point Turbo. This is a 10+ year old trailer.
I'm thinking any load and the breaker limits current.

Let me see if I have a pic.
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:06 PM   #10
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:10 PM   #11
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With battery hooked up and lights on (dim) try hooking up another ground wire from battery to a good contact on the trailer frame. If your lights brighten yo then know you have a bad ground.


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Old 06-05-2013, 03:14 PM   #12
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My thinking assuming the new battery is fully charged .
the ground wire connection is bad.
Ok cleaned now.
The internal resistance is very high in ground wire.
Replace ground wire if so.
The positive lead circuit breaker is so corroded that its limiting current as amps go up voltage goes down.
Replace circuit breaker.
There's a loose connection in wiring box under hitch or camper.
Fix and repair loose connection.


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