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Old 03-17-2020, 07:29 AM   #1
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2020 Wolfpup 16BHS - Battery Issues

Im having issues with the batteries charging while plugged into shore power. I took it in thinking I had a bad inverter but the dealership said I had all the breakers off. So I get dumb and brought it back home. I immediately plugged it in and in a matter of hours the battery are as dead as a door nail. I have two series 27 batteries wired in parallel. I have around 5vdc at the battery. My garage outlet is on a 20a circuit. I confirmed there is power at the outlet. Confirmed I have power at the 30a to 20a adapter. Confirmed I have power on the camper umbilical cord. My camper circuit breakers are all in the on position. The battery disconnect switch is switched to the green position which I assume is where it should be. What exactly am I doing wrong. Any help will be greatly appreciated as Iím pulling out the remaining hair in my head.
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Old 03-17-2020, 07:57 AM   #2
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since you said you have 5vdc that implies that you know how to use a multimeter. obviously you are not getting recharge power from the converter to the batteries. i would check that power path.

first and simplest thing to test would be to move the disconnect switch to the other position to see if that helps.

if not, check that you have voltage actually coming out of the converter. they have reverse polarity fuses in them that can get blown. if not voltage coming out check the fuses. verify that the converter is actually getting 120 vac.

there is normally a resettable circuit breaker in the 12 volt battery cable. it will be very near the batteries. check this to see if it has tripped.

the path from the converter to the battery is:
converter output
disconnect switch
resettable circuit breaker
battery

you can have a problem at any of these locations.
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Old 03-17-2020, 08:22 AM   #3
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Dumouc56,

We would be happy to assist you with this question regarding your Wolf Pup's battery. Please contact Sabrina Shannon in our Customer service department through the following personalized and direct link: https://www.forestriverinc.com/Direc...00333626363212.

This direct link is provided for your convenience in order that we may resolve your concerns as quickly as possible. We will strive to respond to you within 24 hours of receiving your correspondence.

Respectfully,
Forest River
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Old 03-17-2020, 10:42 AM   #4
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since you said you have 5vdc that implies that you know how to use a multimeter. obviously you are not getting recharge power from the converter to the batteries. i would check that power path.

first and simplest thing to test would be to move the disconnect switch to the other position to see if that helps.

if not, check that you have voltage actually coming out of the converter. they have reverse polarity fuses in them that can get blown. if not voltage coming out check the fuses. verify that the converter is actually getting 120 vac.

there is normally a resettable circuit breaker in the 12 volt battery cable. it will be very near the batteries. check this to see if it has tripped.

the path from the converter to the battery is:
converter output
disconnect switch
resettable circuit breaker
battery

you can have a problem at any of these locations.


Great pointers. Before taking my camper back I had checked all that you had suggested. Yes I found the fuse on the battery feed to the breaker box and that fuse is good. I previously looked at the fuses in panel and everything looked fine. I disconnected the existing batteries and I connected an old car battery laying around and it powered up the lights just fine. This leads me to believe that my batteries have either lost a cell or gone bad. Iím going to be taking them to autozone(or the like) to have them test them.

Would a bad battery cause the shore power to not power up my outlets(ie the 120v outlets)?
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Old 03-17-2020, 01:36 PM   #5
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Great pointers. Before taking my camper back I had checked all that you had suggested. Yes I found the fuse on the battery feed to the breaker box and that fuse is good. I previously looked at the fuses in panel and everything looked fine. I disconnected the existing batteries and I connected an old car battery laying around and it powered up the lights just fine. This leads me to believe that my batteries have either lost a cell or gone bad. Iím going to be taking them to autozone(or the like) to have them test them.

Would a bad battery cause the shore power to not power up my outlets(ie the 120v outlets)?
Make sure they use a hydrometer to test the cells.
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Old 03-17-2020, 01:37 PM   #6
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No way a battery would affect 120 vac outlets. Are you having problems with the 120 vac system? Are you 30 amp or 50 amp? Does any 120 vac stuff work? If 50 amp you could have lost the be leg which would cause some 120 vac stuff to lose power while those on the other leg still had power. This is just a guess.

Putting that spare battery in and getting the 12 vdc stuff to work says the disconnect switch and resettable circuit breaker are good. Do you have 12 vdc coming out of the converter?
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Old 03-17-2020, 01:55 PM   #7
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How to tell

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No way a battery would affect 120 vac outlets. Are you having problems with the 120 vac system? Are you 30 amp or 50 amp? Does any 120 vac stuff work? If 50 amp you could have lost the be leg which would cause some 120 vac stuff to lose power while those on the other leg still had power. This is just a guess.

Putting that spare battery in and getting the 12 vdc stuff to work says the disconnect switch and resettable circuit breaker are good. Do you have 12 vdc coming out of the converter?
To check that there is 12 vdc coming from the converter, disconnect the batteries (either lead will be sufficient) and see if the lights still work.
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Old 03-17-2020, 03:17 PM   #8
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Make sure they use a hydrometer to test the cells.


I took it to Autozone and they took it out back to test it. They werenít able to put a load on it. Due to that I took it back to the RV dealer for them to do their tests. Crosses fingers. First camping trip scheduled for April 3rd.
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Old 03-18-2020, 08:32 AM   #9
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have somebody test the voltage from the converter to verify that it is getting to the batteries. have the dealer put a spare battery in and verify that the converter is actually supplying a charge voltage. if it is, then it sure sounds like you have some bad batteries. you've tested almost everything else. either bad batteries or converter not recharging. please let us know what happens.
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Old 03-18-2020, 01:41 PM   #10
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have somebody test the voltage from the converter to verify that it is getting to the batteries. have the dealer put a spare battery in and verify that the converter is actually supplying a charge voltage. if it is, then it sure sounds like you have some bad batteries. you've tested almost everything else. either bad batteries or converter not recharging. please let us know what happens.


Yeah, I plugged in an old car battery and the lights turned on. The RV dealer says it takes 72 hours to charge these batteries. Which is comical.
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Old 03-18-2020, 01:54 PM   #11
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Not really comical, maybe misleading

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Yeah, I plugged in an old car battery and the lights turned on. The RV dealer says it takes 72 hours to charge these batteries. Which is comical.
Flooded Lead-Acid batteries don't charge at a constant rate, e.g., 50% in two hours, 100% in four hours.

They charge at an increasingly slower rate. You can probably get from 50% to 70% in four hours, but you might only get from 70% to 75% or 80% in another four hours. It really could take 72 hours to get from 50% to 100%.

But that's completely beside the point. If you get to 75-80% that's fine for testing that everything works. So after, say, 4 hours of charging, you can turn on the lights and fans and see what works.

Maybe try these tests after charging:
  • Unplugged, batteries connected: If you have lights, the batteries are connected, hidden fuses and breakers are okay and batteries are at least somewhat good.
  • Plugged in, batteries disconnected: If you have lights, the converter is working okay, the power cord and main breaker and breaker to the converter are okay, and the two 30-40 amp "reverse polarity fuses" on the converter are okay.
  • Plugged in, batteries connected: Final state when you are done testing.
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Old 03-18-2020, 03:49 PM   #12
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if i go back to original post the problem was that the batteries were dead. and this is while plugged into a garage outlet. it was stated that power was getting into the power cord.

since then it has been stated that the circuit breakers are all on. further if a spare auto battery were substituted for the original batteries the 12 volt systems worked. for this to work the battery disconnect switch has to be in the correct position and the resettable fuse is ok.

for the batteries to go bad while connected to shore power it pretty much be one of the following:
- converter not getting 120 vac input power
- converter reverse polarity fuses blown
- converter not working
- batteries not working

i would ignore the statement the dealer made about the time it takes to recharge the batteries (at least for now). it would take all of 5 minutes to put a meter on the battery terminals and measure the voltage both while the converter is off (unplugged or circuit breaker to off) and while the converter is on (plugged in with circuit breaker on). you should be seeing something like 13.6 vdc if the converter is supplying a recharge voltage. prove that the converter is actually providing a recharge voltage first. then once it is go ahead and recharge the batteries for the 48 hours and see if they will accept the charge and hold it. another load test might be appropriate at this point.
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Old 03-18-2020, 04:49 PM   #13
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i would ignore the statement the dealer made about the time it takes to recharge the batteries (at least for now). it would take all of 5 minutes to put a meter on the battery terminals and measure the voltage both while the converter is off (unplugged or circuit breaker to off) and while the converter is on (plugged in with circuit breaker on). you should be seeing something like 13.6 vdc if the converter is supplying a recharge voltage. prove that the converter is actually providing a recharge voltage first. then once it is go ahead and recharge the batteries for the 48 hours and see if they will accept the charge and hold it. another load test might be appropriate at this point.
Agreed.

And the easiest way to prove that the converter is working is to disconnect the batteries, plug in the power cord, and see if the lights and fan work. Don't even need a voltmeter.
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Old 03-18-2020, 04:56 PM   #14
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Thank you all for helping me get to the root cause. Iím just frustrated because with our pop up camper it was essentially plug and play. But we will get thru it.

So I have checked some of the suggested items. The 40a fuse are both in good shape. With the camper plugged in and the battery unplugged, I am not getting any voltage at camper battery leads(the wires connecting the camper to the battery). Shouldnít I be getting a voltage at this connecting point?

Thanks again for listening to my stupidity.

Regards,
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Old 03-18-2020, 05:31 PM   #15
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yes you should. obviously with no power to the batteries they will not get recharged. we need to figure out why no recharge power. let's try to narrow it down a bit.

you say you are plugged in to shore power, even if it it the garage. do the other 120 vac devices work? look at the microwave and see if it has power. does it? the a/c may not work due to lack of reliable 12 vdc power for the thermostat. plug a light or fan into a 120 vac receptacle to see if it works. let's prove that the 120 vac side is working and not the problem.

at this point disconnet the batteries from the battery cables.

now assuming you have 120 vac power go flip the circuit breaker for the converter all the way off and then back on. i know you said you did this but make one more try? did that give you 12 vdc power on the battery cables?

do you have a set of battery capacity lights in you control panel? are all of them on? this would indicate that they are receiving a charge voltage from the converter? do any of the other 12 vdc devices work such as lights or vent fans? the converter should br able to power them without the battery connected. we're trying to prove whether the converter is actually providing power.
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Old 03-18-2020, 05:49 PM   #16
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Making progress

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Thank you all for helping me get to the root cause. Iím just frustrated because with our pop up camper it was essentially plug and play. But we will get thru it.

So I have checked some of the suggested items. The 40a fuse are both in good shape. With the camper plugged in and the battery unplugged, I am not getting any voltage at camper battery leads(the wires connecting the camper to the battery). Shouldnít I be getting a voltage at this connecting point?

Thanks again for listening to my stupidity.

Regards,
Martin
Okay, you are making progress.

You have lights, but no voltage at the battery.
This means that the converter is providing 12v to the fuse board, but not to the battery.

The two 12v wires (red and black) go from the converter to the fuse board and then red and black cables are routed as follows:

The red cable goes from the fuse board to the resettable fuse on the trailer frame. Another red cable goes from the resettable fuse to the battery.

There could be a disconnect switch in either the red or black cable.

The black cable (usually) goes from the fuse board to the trailer frame. Another black cable goes from the battery to the trailer frame at a different point. Current flows through the trailer frame between the two cables. These cables should have crimped on "lugs" (eyelets) where they connect to the frame. There should be an external-tooth lockwasher between the lug and the frame at each point. Can you remove the bolts holding the cables to the frame and use sandpaper or steel wool or even an emery board nail file to clean the rust from the frame and lug? Then re-tighten the bolts tight enough that the star washers cut into the lug and frame.

I'm guessing you don't have a test light or voltmeter. If you have a pliers, you can try these tests. You could use an automotive jumper cable, instead.
  • Use the pliers to span the two terminals of the resettable fuse. You should see nothing or maybe a tiny spark. If you see a big spark, either the fuse is not reset or it's defective.

    One unlikely possibility is that the red cable is "shorted" to the frame someplace and triggers the resettable fuse. When you push the resettable fuse it resets and instantly opens again. If you see a real big spark, you need to look for this condition.
  • Use the pliers to span the two terminals of the disconnect switch. You should see nothing. If you see a big spark, either the switch is in the wrong position or it's defective.
  • If you have a jumper cable, clamp one end onto one frame ground lug and the other end onto the other lug. If you get a big spark, the electrical connections to the frame must be cleaned and tightened.
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Old 03-22-2020, 02:27 PM   #17
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Thank you all for the comments and suggestions. I havenít tried the newest suggestions but had an ah ha moment where I started the generator and plugged the camper in. Whenever I would move the cable connection at the camper the generator would come on full tilt and then would idle down. Tried it a couple more times same result. I took apart the connection at the camper and one of the connection points of the 30a plug came off. Anybody have any idea how to remove the wire from this connection point? I know Iím not making sense so hopefully the attached pictures will explain it more. The collar unscrews to a point but then stops because the wire is so taught. Any help/guidance greatly appreciated. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-22-2020, 03:00 PM   #18
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Unscrew the four Phillips-head screws holding the fixture to the trailer and work on it from the outside. Once the screws have been removed, you will probably find that the fixture flange is held to the trailer by gummy, sticky butyl tape, If you don't have any handy, try to leave it in place as you make the repair and re-assemble.

Once you are able to get some you can unscrew the outlet, add four strips to the residue, and re-tighten it. Wipe up excess with mineral spirits on a rag.

Butyl tape tends to remain sticky, to attract dirt, and to bleed out from where it's used. You can put a bead of white caulk around the edge to keep edge clean. Most RV folks would use Dicor Non-Sag (not Self-Leveling) but any latex or acrylic caulk (not silicone) you have around would work.
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Old 03-22-2020, 03:16 PM   #19
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Thank you all for the comments and suggestions. I havenít tried the newest suggestions but had an ah ha moment where I started the generator and plugged the camper in. Whenever I would move the cable connection at the camper the generator would come on full tilt and then would idle down. Tried it a couple more times same result. I took apart the connection at the camper and one of the connection points of the 30a plug came off. Anybody have any idea how to remove the wire from this connection point? I know Iím not making sense so hopefully the attached pictures will explain it more. The collar unscrews to a point but then stops because the wire is so taught. Any help/guidance greatly appreciated. Attachment 225548Attachment 225549Attachment 225550
Proof positive that the newly designed attachment plug is junk. They need to go back to a real twist lock outlet. If under warranty and close by make the dealer fix it. If you do it put some lok tight on it.
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Old 03-22-2020, 05:36 PM   #20
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So that was my problem. I plugged it in and miraculously got 13.2 volts at my battery. I ended up making the hole much bigger to be able to access the plug. I didnít want to break the seal at the exterior of the camper. Iím not sure if they will be able to cover it under warranty. I added eyelets to the wire ends to make it better. Iíll call them tomorrow to see if they can fix it. Iím Flabbergasted that they couldnít figure this out and said my breakers were off. GrrrClick image for larger version

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