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Old 05-31-2008, 02:40 PM   #1
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Electrical Upgrade

Just purchased a 1973 International 29'. Plugged everything up and all is in operating condition. My question is: Why do the interior lights only run off the battery. Is there an upgrade to be able to switch the interior light power from battery to the elctrical line?
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Old 05-31-2008, 02:44 PM   #2
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On my 75 the interior lights run from the battery or from the converter. The converter transforms 120 AC into 12 DC. It also charges the battery. Since they are both tied together (battery and converter) there are no switches, upgrades or magic involved.
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Old 05-31-2008, 02:46 PM   #3
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Something's missing. You should have a built converter (Univlt or eqv.) that changes 110VAC to 12DC. It has a circuit breaker so that may be turned off. Normally, when you plug into shore poweer the converter takes over to run the 12V equipment and charge the batteries. You'll have to look around and find the converter and its 12V distribution panel (fuses). It may gone or disconnected (you might have gotten PO'd {previous ownered}).
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Old 05-31-2008, 02:54 PM   #4
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In the bathroom closet there a little blue box (univolt) is this the converter you speak of. I sent my wife after a new battery. I know this wont solve my problems but its something else I can mark off the list.
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Old 05-31-2008, 02:56 PM   #5
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Yes, that is the converter. You should hear it hum when it is working.
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:00 PM   #6
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When the converter working you should be able to hear or feel it vibrating. If it is working you will see an increase in voltage over battery alone indicating that excess for charging is available. It should measure @ 13.6-15 V. If it's higher, the univolt may be shot (its OK to shoot them).
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:08 PM   #7
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Last night the univolt was humming. Yet the lights were very dim. Could the battery being dead cause dim lights? I figured if the univolt was humming it should keep the lights running by its self? Assuming the battery is completely gone would the lights still be dim?
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:24 PM   #8
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You can run the univolt without the battery and the lights should be normal. It sounds like your univolt could be toast. Have you measured the voltage being produced by the converter?
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:32 PM   #9
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do you have a way to first charge the battery outside of the trailer? i guess you shortly see what happens with a new, fully charged battery.
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:44 PM   #10
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The univolt is probably dead. If you need to replace it go with post midieval technology like Intelli Power. Many threads on this.
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Old 05-31-2008, 04:02 PM   #11
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How much should I expect to pay for a replacment?
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Old 05-31-2008, 04:21 PM   #12
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I just replaced my ancient univolt with a 60 amp intellipower unit. Cost was about $200. Couldn't believe the difference -- the Intellipower so quiet and the battery is happy, happy, happy.

Good source: BestConverter - Converters, Inverters, Electrical Supplies, Electronics

mike
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Old 05-31-2008, 05:04 PM   #13
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Last question: Were should I start looking for one of these units?
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Old 05-31-2008, 05:27 PM   #14
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Thanks 4 everyones help
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