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Old 08-30-2011, 09:57 PM   #1
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Weird low voltage problem

Just getting ready to leave tomorrow morning for a 3 day trip and of course, a little problem shows up. I have a 2009 27' FB Flying Cloud. The interior lights are all dim and the status panel flashes a problem with the battery. The batteries are both freshly charged and reading 13.7 volts. When I plug into AC, everything looks good. I haven't had a chance to dig in with my meter yet, but any thoughts out there would be appreciated. Thanks, in advance. Hal
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:06 PM   #2
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If the batts truly read 13.7V after a few minutes of being disconnected from shore power, I'd be surprised. Sounds like a reading while hooked to the inverter. (shore power). Most likely 12.7V or so, if the batts are healthy. Unplug with your voltmeter hooked to the batts and watch for an hour or so with a smallish load on them. I'd bet you'll see the voltage drop to below 12V rather quickly, indicating a battery problem.
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:34 PM   #3
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I second the previous post--13.7 V sounds like the voltage while charging. If your lights are dim the 12 V bus voltage is low, period.

This problem could be caused by a poor (loose or corroded) battery connection. Charger would think the battery is charged because charging voltage would be in the right range, but when you try to draw current out of the battery the bus voltage drops because of the resistance of the battery connection.
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuvite-F View Post
I second the previous post--13.7 V sounds like the voltage while charging. If your lights are dim the 12 V bus voltage is low, period.

This problem could be caused by a poor (loose or corroded) battery connection. Charger would think the battery is charged because charging voltage would be in the right range, but when you try to draw current out of the battery the bus voltage drops because of the resistance of the battery connection.
.
Yup, that too. In addition to checking the battery post connections, put a screw driver on all the connections at the positive buss and the negative buss. I found some rather loose from the factory.
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:35 AM   #5
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Hi, My batteries last about three years and have been replaced twice now. looks like your trailer could be about three years old. [depending on production date, not sale date]
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Old 08-31-2011, 07:19 AM   #6
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Get a hydrometer and check each cell in each battery. I have found voltage checks, as well as load testing to be useless in attempting to determine the charge state of the deep cycle batteries most commonly used in travel trailers.
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:20 AM   #7
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Thanks for all your input. I've been working on cars all my adult life and I should have figured this out sooner. The Interstate batteries that came with the AS were dated June of 2009. I just didn't expect deep cycle batteries to go bad so soon. The two batteries would take the charge and looked good when I tested the voltage. When I left the cabin lights on, they went tango union very quickly. Two new DieHards are now in place and it's a beautiful day in Prosser Washington. Thanks, again
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