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Old 11-30-2022, 07:19 PM   #1
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Help with coach batteries not charging while driving

My coach batteries are not charging while driving. I tried researching everything I could but could not find an answer.

I have a 2016 coachman orion B+ on a Dodge pro-master chassie.

Here is what I did so far. While plugged into shore power I disconnected the positive lead to the coach batteries and test the lead for voltage with a multimeter. I got over 13 volts. Next, I disconnected the shore power and started the motorhome but got no voltage.

I could not find any fuse near the chassis battery plus, I could not find any Isolator or solenoid that matched what I found online.

Here is what I found:

The wire on the right is he lead to the coach batteries. That black part is labeled a coil. It that the item that controls where the batteries get their charge?

I and having trouble uploading a picture. can anyone help?
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Old 11-30-2022, 07:42 PM   #2
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Probably doesn't apply to you but...

We found a fuse on the top of our Ram Promaster battery had blown. Ram dealer had to order the fuse and we had them install it.
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Old 11-30-2022, 07:54 PM   #3
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I have a Ford F250 2018 I had the same issue. I confirmed this by not having power to by 7 way plug. So I found a blown fuse, it was a 30 amp in truck fuse box. This resolved my issue of not charging 5th wheel battery
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Old 11-30-2022, 08:04 PM   #4
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I would nice if it were a fuse issue. How do I find the fuse?
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Old 11-30-2022, 08:17 PM   #5
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Truck manual told me size of fuse for the 7 way plug. On the under side of fuse box cover I could figure out fuse placement. I pulled that fuse it was visible it was blown. I replace, also put a spare in my truck at thus point in time I still have the spare.
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Old 11-30-2022, 08:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
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I would nice if it were a fuse issue. How do I find the fuse?
Your Coachmen Motorhome should have a separate chassis owners manual from Dodge.
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Old 11-30-2022, 09:37 PM   #7
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On ours class C there is a 6awg wire from the positive side of the battery that goes to an anl fuse by the solenoid. When you turn the key on you should be able to hear the solenoid click on. While doing my lifepo4 upgrade I found a few poorly crimped connectors. So make sure you check connections as well.
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Old 11-30-2022, 09:46 PM   #8
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I would nice if it were a fuse issue. How do I find the fuse?
Our fuse was (and still is ) sitting on top of the battery. They found it by testing the battery cables. It was just enclosed in plastic.
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Old 12-01-2022, 07:39 AM   #9
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INspectorMark, While I don't know your exact camper, there is a device between the Chassis and Coach battery so you don't run down your chassis battery while camping and get stuck with no start condition. Most Forest River MH's use a device by Precision Circuits. for this job. this device will see that the engine is running and charging battery, then if your coach voltage is below a pre set number this device will "kick in" and connect the coach to chassis battery. I read that this device will also disconnect around 80% charged voltage. This device will also work the opposite direction and charge the chassis battery from the coach if your plugged into AC and the chassis battery is below a preset voltage. Not sure which device your camper uses.
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Old 12-01-2022, 03:11 PM   #10
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Here is what I found. The red wire on the left goes directly to the coach batteries. Is this the solenoid that controls how the batteries are charged?

Could it be Bad? I opened up the chassis battery which is under the floor in front of the divers seat and could not find a fuse. Also, I do have a owners manual for the chassis that lists the fuses but none are labeled for anything that looks like a power feed to an extra battery 7 pin connector.
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Old 12-01-2022, 03:40 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Markmo View Post
I have a Ford F250 2018 I had the same issue. I confirmed this by not having power to by 7 way plug. So I found a blown fuse, it was a 30 amp in truck fuse box. This resolved my issue of not charging 5th wheel battery
I think the OP is talking about a Motorhome and you are talking about a Trailer.
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Old 12-01-2022, 04:32 PM   #12
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removed it was a duplicate submitted before finished
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Old 12-01-2022, 04:56 PM   #13
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looks like a solenoid

If the top ... running to left is going to the coach battery
the bottom post will be the one from the chassis battery

to test....
Disconnect any solar panels , Shore power and the coach positive from the battery terminal

Motor OFF...
measure voltage at the disconnected coach battery cable to ground.... 0v


read the voltage at the solenoid
1) bottom BIG post to a ground. should be same as chassis battery 12.6v
2) Black wire with blue terminal 0v
3) TOP post going to coach battery 0v (disconnected from battery)


NOW with motor ON
You should get voltage in number 3) Top post .......13.6v or more

The small black wire (2) will either get constant voltage
OR a short momentary pulse of Voltage may be hard to read.

With engine running
measure the disconnected coach battery positive cable to ground confirm it is NOW getting the 13.6v
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Old 12-01-2022, 05:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussieguy View Post
looks like a solenoid

If the top ... running to left is going to the coach battery
the bottom post will be the one from the chassis battery

to test....
Disconnect any solar panels , Shore power and the coach positive from the battery terminal

Motor OFF...
measure voltage at the disconnected coach battery cable to ground.... 0v


read the voltage at the solenoid
1) bottom BIG post to a ground. should be same as chassis battery 12.6v
2) Black wire with blue terminal 0v
3) TOP post going to coach battery 0v (disconnected from battery)


NOW with motor ON
You should get voltage in number 3) Top post .......13.6v or more

The small black wire (2) will either get constant voltage
OR a short momentary pulse of Voltage may be hard to read.

With engine running
measure the disconnected coach battery positive cable to ground confirm it is NOW getting the 13.6v
I believe the same solenoid is used for charging between batteries for each scenario. Coach (converter) to chassis and chassis (alternator) to coach. I think the OP should check that there is the 13Vdc at the chassis battery (ignition OFF) when shore power is applied. That would verify whether or not the solenoid is energizing. Just a thought.
Additionally, if the OP's coach has an AUX (emergency) start switch and if actuated the solenoid (the same charging solenoid) could possibly be heard energizing if good.

I am not familiar with the OP's unit, but this is typically how the cross charging takes place for a motorhome.
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Old 12-01-2022, 06:28 PM   #15
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Here is a new picture.
The top wire the heads left is going to the coach batteries. The second wire on that terminal is attached to the left side of the buss bar. The buss bar is getting power from my converter when plugged into shore power.

The wire on the lower thermal is connected to the far end of the buss bar but is not electricaly connected to the rest of the buss bar. It is in fact is getting 13 volts from the chassis battery or alternator when the engine is running no volts when I turn off the engine so the chassis is not the problem.

I disconnected the positive battery cable from the coach batteries and when plugged into shore power it is getting 12.9 volts. Nothing when the engine is running and off shore power.

The small black wire always had 13 volts

So would you assume that solenoid is bad? I guess I should try to find a replacement and swap it out.
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Old 12-01-2022, 06:59 PM   #16
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If that small Yellow/black wire has 13Vdc on it the solenoid should be energized. The small white wire attached to the flange is the ground side of the solenoid. When energized the voltage on both top (large) terminals should be the same (from each terminal to ground).

Looks like maybe an Emerson solenoid?
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Old 12-01-2022, 08:05 PM   #17
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Don't that red wire on top of solenoid look like its going to the same buss bar as the bottom wire?


and that yellow wire with black marker on it should be the power that turns the solenoid on.


also I would expect both sides of that solenoid will have a circuit breaker on it somewhere more towards the batteries. on the MBS motorhome it was under the seat. Manual breaker you could reset, something like 50a.


Edit: and remember seeing that Curt box, someday when your back lights stop working you will need to look at that curt box.
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Old 12-01-2022, 08:16 PM   #18
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Don't that red wire on top of solenoid look like its going to the same buss bar as the bottom wire?
No, as said, isolated from bus bar. Bus bar = coach battery, isolated terminal = from chassis. And each is powered correctly.
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Old 12-02-2022, 10:34 AM   #19
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The two wires do look like they are on the same buss bar but that far right terminal is not connected to the copper bus bar.

I may have to do some more testing.

If I disconnect the two wires from the top thermal ( shore power side) and run the engine, plus I get 13 volt at the small thermal but no voltage are the top thermal would that prove the solenoid is defective.

I already know for sure the the bottom wire is getting power with the engine is running so the solenoid is getting power but it not getting through to the coach batteries. There is no fuse between the solenoid and the coach batteries because power gets to the batteries under shore power.
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Old 12-02-2022, 12:02 PM   #20
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did you disconnect the solar , coach battery positive and shore power

if NOT it can confuse the multi meter readings by feeding voltage back to the solenoid


measure the voltage at the disconnected coach battery CABLE to a ground
CONFIRM it read 0v (zero)

on the solenoid .......
one of the BIG post should always be live.... 12v this will be chassis battery

the other should be 0v the feed to coach battery.


have someone jump the two BIG posts on the solenoid with a screw driver
or attach a temporary wire across the posts


measure the voltage again at the disconnected coach battery cable to a ground
it should NOW read 12v while the jumper is connected

IF it does.... you have confirmed you are working with the correct solenoid

-------------------------------------------------------------

to check if solenoid works .

put a jumper wire from the post that connects to chassis battery 12v to the bolt holding the black wire with blue terminal at end..

you should hear or feel a click

measure the voltage on the solenoid post that goes to coach battery should read 12v while you hold that jumper to the black wire with blue terminal

if you hear NO click or not getting 12v on the coach post..
check the ground / negative wire to the solenoid bracket..


Very hard still to see the posts and where the red wires are going...
It looks weird to me almost as if the solenoid has been bypassed
better picture required!
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