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Old 11-15-2010, 08:39 AM   #15
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Sorry cruiser,

An attempt at humor from a movie.
I think the unit you showed is way more than I needed. I rarely need an inverter except to charge a phone or ipod, etc. I have 12V chargers for those and on those rare occasions when I do need an inverter I have a portable 400W unit I use.
For, me, it's overkill and pricey.
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:13 AM   #16
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Hi all, (2007 Classic 30')

By the way, What is the black box mounted in the rear of the center, in the upper right of the photo? Ive never pulled the cover off.

Thanks for helping!
I don't know if you have figured out the black box yet.

It is where the umbilical cord going to the TV is terminated. If you remove the cover, you will find a terminal strip with the wires from the umbilical and the wires from the trailer attached to studs.

Inside this box was the cause of a total brake failure in my trailer. The nut on the terminal for the brake wire had loosened to the point that there was no longer continuity to the brakes.

See:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f439...eak-67609.html

Regards,

Ken
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:16 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by w7ts View Post
I don't know if you have figured out the black box yet.

It is where the umbilical cord going to the TV is terminated. If you remove the cover, you will find a terminal strip with the wires from the umbilical and the wires from the trailer attached to studs.

Inside this box was the cause of a total brake failure in my trailer. The nut on the terminal for the brake wire had loosened to the point that there was no longer continuity to the brakes.

See:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f439...eak-67609.html

Regards,

Ken
Thanks, Ken,

I did examine it while doing this upgrade. Appears to be not much more than a positive junction block.
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:32 AM   #18
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Oh, I think I get your point. The BatteryMINDer OBD-12 is not a charger...it is a desulfator.
Somewhere (probably in the IQ-4 manual) is says that when the convertor is plugged in to AC, it will enter a desulfation cycle every 7 days.

I replaced my converter with the same one about 6 months ago. I chose to get the basic converter with the external IQ-4. I mounted the IQ-4 on the front of the door to the converter box. That way I can see the green LED mounted on it by opening the under couch drawer. However, the information is somewhat redundant, because I can also tell what it is doing by reading the digital voltmeter on my solar control panel.

On advantage to having the IQ-4 accessible that sometimes I think my solar charger confuses the IQ-4 ( Haven't proved this yet). By pulling and reinserted the inter connecting cable on the IQ-4, I can cause it to reset. I am thinking about installing a relay that will disconnect the solar charger when I am plugged into shorepower.

Regards,

Ken
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:49 AM   #19
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Somewhere (probably in the IQ-4 manual) is says that when the convertor is plugged in to AC, it will enter a desulfation cycle every 7 days.

I replaced my converter with the same one about 6 months ago. I choose to get the basic converter with the external IQ-4. I mounted the IQ-4 on the front of the door to the converter box. That way I can see the green LED mounted on it by opening the under couch drawer. However, the information is somewhat redundant, because I can also tell what it is doing by reading the digital voltmeter on my solar control panel.

On advantage is that sometimes I think my solar charger confuses the IQ-4 ( Haven't proved this yet). By pulling and reinserted the inter connecting cable on the IQ-4, I can cause it to reset.
Well, not really, sorta....maybe. Talk to Randy. (68overlander on this forum) Here's the scoop, if I understand it correctly. IQ-4 will go into a true float voltage situation which, will minimize the creation of sulfate and they claim to "cycle" something.
The OBD-12 (as well as some of the other BatteryMINDer bench products), in addition to true float management, sends pulses through the battery at the vibration frequencies of sulfate crystals. This CLAIMS to break up crystals which may have formed as well as prevent the formation of new crystals. Supposedly These pulses MAY also stir up the battery fluid sufficiently to prevent stratification.

I found information online elsewhere which supported Randy's comments. OBD-12 wasn't that expensive, so I said "what the heck".

Note: None of these technologies prevent lead plate eventual breakdown, so your batteries won't last forever, but I have read in a lot of forums re. deep cycle batteries (boating, fishing, rving, etc.) folks who claim 50% to 75% longer battery life (5 - 8 years). We're talking wet cell lead acid batteries only here. Take it for what it's worth...I'll tell ya in 5 - 8.
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Old 11-17-2010, 06:25 AM   #20
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According to Iota

"Weekly Equalization For Longer Battery Life
If batteries have not received a "Smart Charge"during a seven-day period , the IQ Controller will switch the DSL charger into a pre-programmed equalization stage to top off the batteries , dissolving any sulfate layer on the battery's internal plates and avoiding stratification. "
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Old 11-18-2010, 10:21 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by ticki2 View Post
According to Iota

"Weekly Equalization For Longer Battery Life
If batteries have not received a "Smart Charge"during a seven-day period , the IQ Controller will switch the DSL charger into a pre-programmed equalization stage to top off the batteries , dissolving any sulfate layer on the battery's internal plates and avoiding stratification. "
I know. Again, you may want to talk to Randy. There are apparently 2 schools of thought (and marketing, perhaps ) relative to equalization methodology and effectiveness. I just kept googling it and googling it till I was sorta satisfied. Also, the manual for my IOTA with INTERNAL IQ-4 does not contain your quote noted above, and the charge cycle chart shows nothing in excess of 2.46V/cell or 14.76V charge rate.

I believe for equalization to be effective, voltage is elevated (must be over 15 volts???? on the external unit???) which provides a very active (boiling for lack of a better word) of the acid solution. This MECHANICALLY breaks up the sulfate which has accumulated on the plates and helps slow accumulation. There is some discussion online, by supposed experts, that this process simply dislodges the crystals and they fall to the bottom of the case. It also is very effective in "de-stratifyling" the acid concentrations within each cell.
There seems to be some controversy whether this short boiling and high voltage has a negative effect on the battery. I think most agree, though, that if this equalization charge has a negative effect, it is certainly less impactful to the battery life than allowing sulfate to accumulate.
As I recall the conversation, Randy didn't think the IQ-4 equalization cycle is as complete or, maybe aggressive as some of the "manual equalization" methodology that some battery "experts" find to be effective.

The other school of thought is BatteryMINDer's, I believe, patented process which does not elevate voltage, but rather, sends a pulse through the battery at the vibration frequencies of the sulfate crystals. This allegedly dissolves the crystal and returns the sulfur back into SOLUTION, rather than simply dislodging the crystal from the lead plate. However, I question whether this methodology is as effective in destratification as the high voltage method.

I don't have a stake in this game, other than looking for the best system to fall within the claims of many experts and marketers.

My thought process in choosing my setup was, IQ-4 for destratifying (in theory I won't have any sulfate crystls to mechanically dislodge, because of the OBD-12) and the OBD-12 to keep sulfate crystals from forming and the chemicals in solution on an ongoing basis.
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Old 11-18-2010, 10:39 AM   #22
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Copy_of_Marine_Battery_Charging_Scheme_only_(3).xls

Here is a spreadsheet provided to me from Interstate Battery relative to their recommendation on deep cycle Marine Battery charging (wet cell).

I was kind of suprised at their aggressive Equalization charge parameters.
2 - 4 volts at 16.0 - 16.3 volts for 3 - 6 hours.

That is higher than I read elsewhere.

I don't think the IOTA achieves those parameters. Are they necessary and is IOTA effective (or other rv converter/chargers)? I don't know.
Opionions all over the board on equalization.
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Old 11-18-2010, 10:52 AM   #23
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Sorry, that should be "2 - 4 AMPS at 16.0 - 16.3 volts for 3 - 6 hours"
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Old 11-18-2010, 12:21 PM   #24
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Hey guys, let me help clarify, or muddy the water perhaps.
Equalization as noted above IS a deliberate over charge in an attempt to equalize the cells and requires 15.5+ volts for a predetermined period of time based on the battery manufactures recommendation.
Iota and Progressive DON'T do that. The problem lies in the definition of equalization I guess. What Iota does is enter a charge cycle every 7 days and does raise the voltage to its max 14.78 for a "period of time" depending on the state of charge of the battery and then finishes the charge cycle IAW its normal voltage trip points and timers.
Progressive simply raises the voltage to 14.4 every 21 days for four hours and then drops right back down to 13.2 float.
Both brands only do this in the storage modes when the float voltage has not changed for several days. Every day use will prevent the trigger of their "equalization" modes because the timers are tripped or reset, so to speak.
In my opinion, neither brand is really equalizing the electrolyte. At best they are mixing the electrolyte and possibly preventing stratification. This can't hurt but its value is limited.
What I like about the Iota however is that it at least completes a full charge cycle every 7 days to keep the batteries fully charged. This is particularly helpful in colder climates.
One other note, both make reference to preventing desulfation and I can live with that since anything that mixes the electrolyte periodically can help to prevent stratification that can lead to sulfation (the number one cause of premature battery failure)
The batteryminders use a totally different technology but are actually more effective than either of the converters in my opinion. The rapid pulse mode technology really does work as well as equalizing except I consider it more of a preventative procedure instead of a repair. In time, a batteryminder may repair but it could take weeks or months depending on the degree of sulfation.
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Old 11-18-2010, 12:34 PM   #25
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The quote was not in my instructions either , it comes from the iota web site , click on IQ smart charger. I agree the information is vague , I have no idea what "equalization stage "means as far as numbers. I am not knowlegable enough nor have equipment enough to varify any of the claims made by anyone . I guess the proof is in the pudding as they say , if the battery performs well and lasts long you have a good system . The quote was given for informational purposes only .
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Old 11-18-2010, 12:54 PM   #26
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Wink Both ways are best

Thanks for the info Randy, that clarified a lot.

This is a paraphrase of what I read on one of the solar power sites.

Desulfation employing the method of raising the voltage is effective for recent sulfate deposits, but not very effective for removing older sulfate deposits. Desulfation using ultrasonic pulses (commonly 88KHz) to break up crystalline sulfate deposits is very effective in remover older deposits and restoring old batteries. This makes sense to me because the sulfates will initially form a soft deposit that will take some (I haven't research how much)time to crystallize. The most effective pulsed desulphaters sweep the frequency of the ultrasonic pulses through the resonant frequencies of the various types of crystallized sulfates.


So it only seems logical to me to have both systems active to fully extend the life a battery in a system such as a travel trailer where the use/charge cycle fluctuates greatly over time.

Regards,

Ken
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Old 11-18-2010, 01:00 PM   #27
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Hey guys, let me help clarify, or muddy the water perhaps.
Equalization as noted above IS a deliberate over charge in an attempt to equalize the cells and requires 15.5+ volts for a predetermined period of time based on the battery manufactures recommendation.
Iota and Progressive DON'T do that. The problem lies in the definition of equalization I guess. What Iota does is enter a charge cycle every 7 days and does raise the voltage to its max 14.78 for a "period of time" depending on the state of charge of the battery and then finishes the charge cycle IAW its normal voltage trip points and timers.
Progressive simply raises the voltage to 14.4 every 21 days for four hours and then drops right back down to 13.2 float.
Both brands only do this in the storage modes when the float voltage has not changed for several days. Every day use will prevent the trigger of their "equalization" modes because the timers are tripped or reset, so to speak.
In my opinion, neither brand is really equalizing the electrolyte. At best they are mixing the electrolyte and possibly preventing stratification. This can't hurt but its value is limited.
What I like about the Iota however is that it at least completes a full charge cycle every 7 days to keep the batteries fully charged. This is particularly helpful in colder climates.
One other note, both make reference to preventing desulfation and I can live with that since anything that mixes the electrolyte periodically can help to prevent stratification that can lead to sulfation (the number one cause of premature battery failure)
The batteryminders use a totally different technology but are actually more effective than either of the converters in my opinion. The rapid pulse mode technology really does work as well as equalizing except I consider it more of a preventative procedure instead of a repair. In time, a batteryminder may repair but it could take weeks or months depending on the degree of sulfation.
Thanks, Randy, that is exactly what you conveyed to me and I feebly tried to recreate it above.
From all my reading I have drawn the conclusion the the Iota, as well as the others do not raise voltage high enough for an effective "equalization". Also I just don't like the idea of the relatively high amperage at a really high voltage and "boiling" during a "maintenance cycle. I know it's better than allowing sulfation though.

I believe I read on a few websites that the rapid high voltage equalization can remove lead from the plates over time, and thus reduce their surface area and eventually contribute to cell shorting, due to the shed lead buildup at the bottom of the case.
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Old 11-18-2010, 01:01 PM   #28
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According to Iota

"Weekly Equalization For Longer Battery Life
If batteries have not received a "Smart Charge"during a seven-day period , the IQ Controller will switch the DSL charger into a pre-programmed equalization stage to top off the batteries , dissolving any sulfate layer on the battery's internal plates and avoiding stratification. "
Randy , thanks for adding the additional information , it helps the understanding .
Refering to the Iota quote , it says "..dissolving any sulfate layer...", not helps prevent sulfate . Perhaps Iota needs to revise their literature.
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