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Old 08-24-2014, 10:02 AM   #253
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That negative feature of no thermostat in LP gas mode does not apply to all 2014 Dometic models.

Our 2014 Classic has Dometic model RM3962 (9 cu ft) and that "feature" is not mentioned in the owners manual.
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Old 08-24-2014, 11:11 AM   #254
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Originally Posted by switz View Post
That negative feature of no thermostat in LP gas mode does not apply to all 2014 Dometic models.

Our 2014 Classic has Dometic model RM3962 (9 cu ft) and that "feature" is not mentioned in the owners manual.
Ah,that is good to know information. Mine is a smaller unit, 4 cu ft, and both the dealer and the manual told me about the "feature" of no thermostat on the gas setting. I hope Dometic does not extend it to other models.
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Old 08-24-2014, 05:28 PM   #255
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Factory installed solar charging system failed

I have a 2008 25'FB Safari SE with the factory installed solar option. The solar charging system has worked great for the last 6 years. On our last trip, the batteries got down to 75%, but the charge controller display read 0 solar charge amps, and battery voltage was 11.9 volts in good sunlight. I found the charge controller location, under the front bed. Its the Atkinson Electronics PVCM25D. I checked the inline 10A fuse between controller and battery bus: it's good. I removed the yellow wire from the solar panels at the input to the controller and measured 17.45VDC, so I'm assuming the panels are OK. It seems to point to the controller failing. The controller manual suggests that a bad cell in the battery may cause the charge contoller to shut off when charging.

Has anyone else experienced this problem? What was your solution?

How long should I expect my AGM batteries to last?

Any help will be appreciated!
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Old 08-24-2014, 06:06 PM   #256
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Battery life depends on how they are used, but it sounds like these are long in tooth.
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Old 08-24-2014, 06:15 PM   #257
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A six year life is very good for any battery, even AGMs.
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Old 08-24-2014, 07:15 PM   #258
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A six year life is very good for any battery, even AGMs.
Actually, I have several large Lifeline AGM battery banks in the field approaching 10 years and are still above 95% capacity. It depends a lot on how you use them and proper charging, which includes battery-specific charge points and the use of temperature compensation to adjust the charging voltages according to the ambient temperature of the batteries. A very important feature that many neglect.
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Old 08-24-2014, 08:25 PM   #259
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Thank you for your replies.

I have 2 lifeline GPL-24T batteries, and a Parallax 7355 converter/charger, along with the factory installed solar charge package. The airstream is normally at the house on shore power, but is taken out 8 to 10 times per year for 2-10 nights each trip. Sometimes we have shore power at the destination, but usually not. The lowest I've seen is 65% on battery after a cold night running the furnace. In my mind, this usage constitutes modest stress on the battery. I'm suspecting a faulty solar charge controller, but I'll look into determining my battery health first.
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Old 08-24-2014, 10:18 PM   #260
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If you are leaving it on shore power while parked that could explain the somewhat short battery life. Being you have factory solar, and if it is in the sun, the solar system will keep the batteries up without shore power.

If you need shore power for another reason, put the battery disconnect switch in the "STORE" position to isolate the batteries from overcharging by the Parallax 7355 converter/charger, which it will do. The solar system will still keep the batteries up.
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Old 08-24-2014, 10:31 PM   #261
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If you have been leaving your trailer connected to shore power wit the Parallax converter on, you probably have damaged the charge retention capacity of the Lifelines.

All lead acid batteries require automatic 3 stage charging to be properly and completely charged, Nd once full, to be maintained in float stage.

You single voltage converter runs at a constant 13.6 VDC. This voltage is not sufficient to fully charge a Lifeline AGM which wants to see 14.2-14.4VDC for a full charge and then 13.2-13.4 VDC for a float charge to maintain them once full.

Your P/lax has either under or over charged your Lifelines, depending on the state of the battery. This condition results in sulfation of the plates, which decreases the charge retention of the batteries and severely shortens their useful life.

I would immediately JUNK your present battery burner for a Progessive Dynamics PD 4655 which has automatic 3 stage charging. You would also benefit from new batteries.


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Old 08-24-2014, 11:13 PM   #262
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Decreased 2 battery system performance

I have a 2012 28ft FC with factory installed solar. At the 27 month point I experienced the same thing as Ray Eklands previous post. My batteries where becoming difficult to charge beyond 70%. I took the Lifeline AGM batteries out and had them load tested. They tested fine. When I was taking batteries out I noticed one of the post clamp bolts was loose. Since reinstalling the batteries I have not had the chance to test the system to see if the loose bolt might have been the cause although I am doubtful. Since the symptom is present with both solar and generator so I am beginning to think about the converter output. The installed Parallax does not have a good reputation! The saga and the investigation continue.
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Old 08-24-2014, 11:54 PM   #263
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Originally Posted by lewster View Post
If you have been leaving your trailer connected to shore power wit the Parallax converter on, you probably have damaged the charge retention capacity of the Lifelines.

All lead acid batteries require automatic 3 stage charging to be properly and completely charged, Nd once full, to be maintained in float stage.

You single voltage converter runs at a constant 13.6 VDC. This voltage is not sufficient to fully charge a Lifeline AGM which wants to see 14.2-14.4VDC for a full charge and then 13.2-13.4 VDC for a float charge to maintain them once full.

Your P/lax has either under or over charged your Lifelines, depending on the state of the battery. This condition results in sulfation of the plates, which decreases the charge retention of the batteries and severely shortens their useful life.

I would immediately JUNK your present battery burner for a Progessive Dynamics PD 4655 which has automatic 3 stage charging. You would also benefit from new batteries.


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CanyonCrazy, I agree with Lew. The problem is probably not with your factory installed solar power charging system. I became aware of the need to replace our two AGM Lifeline batteries when they became 5.5 years old and began having difficulty holding onto a charge. I also agree with Lew that you need to ditch that Parallax converter and get at least a 3-stage converter to best serve your AGM batteries. More notes on how I changed my converter and AGM batteries are seen here.

BTW, if you have not changed your tires by now, I would suggest changing them.

From my experience, I plan on changing tires and AGM batteries every 5 years until I retire from RVing!
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Old 08-25-2014, 06:36 AM   #264
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Amen to the above!
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Old 08-25-2014, 09:13 AM   #265
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AGM Charging

I understand the point and physics of sulfating by over charging but in my case I took the batteries out and took them to the distributor (interstate in this case) and they were able to get them to full charge where I was not. Neither my generator nor solar system would charge them over 70%.
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Old 08-25-2014, 10:31 AM   #266
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I understand the point and physics of sulfating by over charging but in my case I took the batteries out and took them to the distributor (interstate in this case) and they were able to get them to full charge where I was not. Neither my generator nor solar system would charge them over 70%.
Just because the batteries showed 'full charge' which is a rather ambiguous term without actual voltage readings, it does not speak to the overall condition of the batteries. I have had many folks with batteries at 'full charge' when connected to a charging system, only to have significant and rapid voltage drop in the battery (indicating lack of charge retention) soon after the disconnect.

Your batteries will never receive a 'full charge' from a Parallax converter with it's 13.6VDC output as Lifelines need 14.2-14.4VDC. I can't address the capabilities of your solar charger, but if your batteries have sulfated, it is highly unlikely that the solar charge controller and a 50-100 watt solar panel will have the amperage capacity to fully charge the battery.
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