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Old 01-05-2018, 07:45 AM   #1
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Power inverter question

Does anyone know what voltage this inverter should read when on battery only power. The attached pic shows reading while plugged in to 30 amp power. Battery only power it shows 11.6 on new fully charged batteries. Maybe I canít tell battery condition with this inverter? Not real sure about thus inverter.

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Old 01-05-2018, 01:12 PM   #2
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Batteries should be around 12.8 volts depending on what converter/charger you have in your unit. Have you measured the voltage at the batteries with a voltmeter? 11.6 volts is a dead battery.
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Old 01-05-2018, 01:22 PM   #3
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check your batteries with a good multimeter, once hooked to shore power and again with shore power unplugged.
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Old 01-05-2018, 02:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boatdude62 View Post
Does anyone know what voltage this inverter should read when on battery only power. The attached pic shows reading while plugged in to 30 amp power. Battery only power it shows 11.6 on new fully charged batteries. Maybe I canít tell battery condition with this inverter? Not real sure about thus inverter.

Attachment 159607


That's what my inverter shows when plugged in to shore power
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Old 01-05-2018, 04:00 PM   #5
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Typically when plugged into shore power the converter is charging. 13.9 means batteries are being charged and likely are low.

Put a voltmeter on the battery bank when not connected to shore power.

Should be 12.6 Often voltmeters are off. CHeck your adult car battery to be sure. If it has been recently charged often they are higher than 12.6 but, they go down.

Around here dealers send trailers out with residential refrigerators and a single 27 size marine battery. I would assume they would die in months if used for travel.
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Old 01-05-2018, 04:02 PM   #6
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I would expect 13.4 on shore power as the battery charger (typically your converter) is doing it's thing.

11.6 without shore power indicates very depleted batteries:



My thinking is your batteries aren't charged like you think they are.
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Old 01-05-2018, 05:02 PM   #7
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Voltages will read low if something is on drawing from it too such as the furnace, vent fan, inverter for a residential fridge, ect....
I would disconnect the negative cable on the battery and test directly at the terminals with a meter. Fully charged healthy battery static should read 12.6 volt.
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Old 01-05-2018, 05:50 PM   #8
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These are 4 6 volts batteries I just purchased new and charged each battery full. Then connected them in series, just like they are wired in the camper. I put that on slow(5 amp) charge and let it charge all 4 batteries at once in attempt to fully charge all of them. The charger said full. I did not use a meter to check each battery, Although i will be getting a digital meter tomorrow.

Installed them yesterday, burrr cold here. Level system work fine. Turn on power to inverter and starts at 12 then slowly goes down to 11.3 volts then appears stable at that number. I turn power switch back off. Went inside to check battery level on camper control ledís. Get 3 out of 4 lights or 2/3 charge. I think that batteries are charged about 60 or 70 percent.

I going to check each battery with a meter. Thatís the only real way Iím going to know it appears. We do have a residential fridge, but itís turn off.

I did hear a sound like a fan, when I turn the power switch to the inverter on. Iím hoping the truck will top off the batteries as we pull it south. I just want to make sure the batteries are good before we leave.
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Old 01-05-2018, 06:00 PM   #9
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Are the four 6V batteries wired correctly? Each PAIR is in series, the two PAIRS in parallel? TOTAL voltage to trailer should be 12V.
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Old 01-05-2018, 06:13 PM   #10
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I am assuming the inverter pictured is used to power the fridge only? You can go to Harbor freight and buy a cheap digital volt meter for five bucks. It will work just as well as a three hundred dollar Fluke meter for what you need to test and monitor your battery voltage.
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Old 01-05-2018, 06:18 PM   #11
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Click image for larger version

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Like this.
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Old 01-05-2018, 08:17 PM   #12
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That is the wrong layout I believe. Here is the new layout. Click image for larger version

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Old 01-05-2018, 08:40 PM   #13
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That is the wrong layout I believe. Here is the new layout. Attachment 159634
His actual pic shows it's wired like yours.
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Old 01-05-2018, 09:28 PM   #14
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His actual pic shows it's wired like yours.


In this photo the cable that goes to the main panel is wired from the post that is farther away. The batteries are actually wired the same except the first picture shows the post is not the farthest away. Does this make sense? I have been told that the post farthest away is where you should have main cable at. Anyway what I think and I could be wrong is one of your batteries is bad. If you think your truck is going to put any kind of charge on your batteries is just wishful thinking. The small cable that runs from your alternator is not big enough to run much current through. I have four six volt Trojans batteries that I checked each battery before I left the store. I brought four from Samís and one was bad, I had to drive 120 miles round trip to get it exchanged. Samís was running a special on six volt batteries, I wasnít the only one that brought batteries back.
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Old 01-05-2018, 10:10 PM   #15
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In this photo the cable that goes to the main panel is wired from the post that is farther away. The batteries are actually wired the same except the first picture shows the post is not the farthest away. Does this make sense? I have been told that the post farthest away is where you should have main cable at. Anyway what I think and I could be wrong is one of your batteries is bad. If you think your truck is going to put any kind of charge on your batteries is just wishful thinking. The small cable that runs from your alternator is not big enough to run much current through. I have four six volt Trojans batteries that I checked each battery before I left the store. I brought four from Sam’s and one was bad, I had to drive 120 miles round trip to get it exchanged. Sam’s was running a special on six volt batteries, I wasn’t the only one that brought batteries back.
The intent of any series-parallel wiring is to a) keep all cables as short as possible, and b) to ensure that all cable lengths (and thus cable resistances) are the same for each parallel circuit. Other than that, do what you want. (Cable sizes should also be the same, but that should go without saying.)
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Old 01-05-2018, 10:19 PM   #16
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I looked at the 12 volt side of life part 1 and it had the batteries hooked up like the last photo from Cedar Creek
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Old 01-05-2018, 10:38 PM   #17
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Thatís what I used also, see pic.

All 4 batteries charged full on a automatic charger. I assumed that means there good. But the quick volt drop shown with the inverter, makes me suspicious of a bad battery.

Iíll test with a meter tomorrow.

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Old 01-05-2018, 11:04 PM   #18
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Thatís what I used also, see pic.

All 4 batteries charged full on a automatic charger. I assumed that means there good. But the quick volt drop shown with the inverter, makes me suspicious of a bad battery.

Iíll test with a meter tomorrow.

Attachment 159639
forget the voltmeters. Load test each battery individually.
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Old 01-05-2018, 11:51 PM   #19
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Here is another way of highlighting the difference in the right way and the wrong way of connecting the cables that some have made:

Of the cables entering the battery compartment, there are two POS and two NEG. Both POS go on the same battery POS post and both NEG go on the same battery NEG post. Parallel cables connect the two pairs of batteries.

The wrong way is to put one POS cable on one pair of batteries and the other POS on the other pair of batteries. Same for the NEG cables. The first diagram could look like this. This way only charges one pair of batteries, and the other pair powers the inverter (without getting charged when plugged in).

Was there a load on the inverter when it displayed 11.6V ? Without a load, 11.6V seems low. I would call Xantrex and ask.

Edit: I didn't notice the picture of the battery cables before. As best I can see, yours look right, except for where the two NEG cables are connected. Your way works, but the two pairs of batteries will be "balanced" better if the two NEG cables are on NEG battery post farthest from where the POS cables are connected.
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Old 01-06-2018, 01:22 AM   #20
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There was no load applied to the inverter to my knowledge, the frig was turned off, only power to energize inverter.

Iíll look to see if cables will reach the far neg terminals, I see your point, improved balance. This was how the dealer wired it when new.
Iím getting a volt meter and load tester. From what Iíve read, I will have to pull the batteries back out to make sure they are fully charged to test them.

I may also contact the inverter people for there opinion.

Itís been one big pain. But I want it right for our retirement trip next week.
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