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Old 04-29-2013, 07:43 PM   #1
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Bambi battery not charging from shore line

Tried to look through old posts to find an answer to this question but couldn't find it - if it exists in the archives, I would appreciate someone pointing me that way...

I recently bought a 2004 16' Bambi CCD International. A few months after purchasing it, I noticed the battery was dead and didn't seem to charge from the shore line. My owner's manual says that it should charge from the shore line when in "Use" mode, but not "Store" and so I tried that but still no luck. The battery was a couple of years old, so I took it to a battery store to have it tested and they said it was done. I bought a new battery and it seemed to work just fine - can't honestly say it charged from the shore line but I think it did. It certainly charged from the tow vehicle/trailer plug just fine.

Now, several months later, the Bambi has been sitting and the battery has run down completely - most likely related to intermittent use of lights, fan, etc. while it was being worked on. Tried to charge the battery using the shore line this past weekend and had no luck. When plugged in, the switch for "Store" and "Use" glows red (as it should when plugged in, I think) but doesn't "click" when you switch it back and forth. All of the lights, etc work, of course. When unplugged, the whole thing goes dead. I think charged the battery with a portable battery charger and it seemed to work just fine. The switch "clicks" back and forth between "Use" and "Store" and the battery charged up overnight to full charge.

Any ideas what might be going on? Bad solenoid? Inverter? Other?

Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:57 PM   #2
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I'm not familiar with the wiring in your Bambi, but if you have power when plugged in, and the battery still goes dead, you have an open circuit between the converter and the battery.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nbranco View Post
Tried to look through old posts to find an answer to this question but couldn't find it - if it exists in the archives, I would appreciate someone pointing me that way...

I recently bought a 2004 16' Bambi CCD International. A few months after purchasing it, I noticed the battery was dead and didn't seem to charge from the shore line. My owner's manual says that it should charge from the shore line when in "Use" mode, but not "Store" and so I tried that but still no luck. The battery was a couple of years old, so I took it to a battery store to have it tested and they said it was done. I bought a new battery and it seemed to work just fine - can't honestly say it charged from the shore line but I think it did. It certainly charged from the tow vehicle/trailer plug just fine.

Now, several months later, the Bambi has been sitting and the battery has run down completely - most likely related to intermittent use of lights, fan, etc. while it was being worked on. Tried to charge the battery using the shore line this past weekend and had no luck. When plugged in, the switch for "Store" and "Use" glows red (as it should when plugged in, I think) but doesn't "click" when you switch it back and forth. All of the lights, etc work, of course. When unplugged, the whole thing goes dead. I think charged the battery with a portable battery charger and it seemed to work just fine. The switch "clicks" back and forth between "Use" and "Store" and the battery charged up overnight to full charge.

Any ideas what might be going on? Bad solenoid? Inverter? Other?

Thanks in advance for any help.
Have you checked all connections at the battery & converter?

If the converter is a Parallax, it very well may need to be replaced.

Ours went south after two Seasons, opposite of your problem though, it fried the batteries after two daze of camping.

I would contact Randy at Best Converter, he won't steer you wrong.

Bob
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Old 04-29-2013, 08:11 PM   #4
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Converter probably needs to be replaced. See my story:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...tml#post613665
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:34 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
I'm not familiar with the wiring in your Bambi, but if you have power when plugged in, and the battery still goes dead, you have an open circuit between the converter and the battery.
Steve - thanks for the comment. I don't think it went dead while plugged in, since it wasn't plugged in for a while (>1month?). May have gone dead before being plugged in and just didn't charge once it was.

Nelson
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:42 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Have you checked all connections at the battery & converter?

If the converter is a Parallax, it very well may need to be replaced.

Ours went south after two Seasons, opposite of your problem though, it fried the batteries after two daze of camping.

I would contact Randy at Best Converter, he won't steer you wrong.

Bob
Robert and Bill -

Haven't checked all the connections yet, but now that I know what to look for (thanks to all the helpful folks in Bill's post) I'll check it out.

Really appreciate all the help and advice from this forum. Makes it a little less painful being a newbie.

Nelson
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Old 04-30-2013, 01:29 AM   #7
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Welcome to AirForums!

Quote:
Originally Posted by nbranco View Post
Robert and Bill -

Haven't checked all the connections yet, but now that I know what to look for (thanks to all the helpful folks in Bill's post) I'll check it out.

Really appreciate all the help and advice from this forum. Makes it a little less painful being a newbie.

Nelson
Hi Nelson,

Welcome to AirForums! Thank you for searching for the answer to your inquiry, and when not finding the answer, posting the question here.

I agree with Bob that the problem may be the converter and that Randy at Best Converter will be very helpful (I obtained my new converter from them and I continue to be very happy with it. See how I replaced my converter:"Parallax Converter Replacement with Xantrex").

Check with Randy to see what he recommends these days!

Thank you for checking my post "Battery at 45% even though connected to shore power" (which I think the moderators should designate as a "Sticky" because it contains a lot of diagnostic tests for troubleshooting a failing battery when connected to shore power).

And finally, thank you for saying "Thank you"! You would be surprised how many people post questions here and get responses but fail to say "Thank you" and what the outcome or resolution was!

Good luck with your situation... and please let us know how it turns out!

Bill
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:40 PM   #8
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Having converter issues myself right now. Disconnect the battery post wires. Connect shore power. If your converter is a Parallax drop down the access door. You'll see the battery posts to the right of all the DC circuit fuses. With a DC voltmeter measure the voltage. It should be 13.4v to 13.8v. If its lower, like mine, then get it replaced. My 7300 converter won't even supply enough DC power for the trailer.

Kelvin
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Old 07-22-2013, 01:34 AM   #9
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A belated update (because we were out adventuring in the Bambi!). I checked out the complete electrical system in the Bambi using the information and instructions you all provided. Everything checked out just fine, which was a pleasant surprise. On top of that, it all started working. I can't explain it, except that maybe when the battery was completely discharged it wouldn't charge?? Either way, all is well now - thanks very much to all of you for your help.
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Old 07-22-2013, 01:52 AM   #10
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I am new to the Use/Store system myself, having just got a 2014 20' FC. But I am thinking that I read somewhere that if the battery is completely dead, the Use/Store switch will not operate. As you said at one point your switch did not "click" but later after you charged the battery it started to work again, I think that may be the problem. You may need a certain amount of charge in the battery to allow the relay in the system to switch to "use", and allow the converter/charger (the Parallax) to connect to the battery.

Overall, be very careful not to let the battery discharge fully, as it will almost never recover, especially if it has sat discharged or partly discharged for any time at all. By recover, I mean have the original capacity it should have. It is common to be able to recharge a battery so it looks good, but it has little to no capacity for powering things in the rig.
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Old 07-22-2013, 02:03 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nbranco View Post
A belated update (because we were out adventuring in the Bambi!). I checked out the complete electrical system in the Bambi using the information and instructions you all provided. Everything checked out just fine, which was a pleasant surprise. On top of that, it all started working. I can't explain it, except that maybe when the battery was completely discharged it wouldn't charge?? Either way, all is well now - thanks very much to all of you for your help.
You're welcome... glad to know all is well now! (It's so nice when those who pose questions here provide feedback as to what the outcome was, and to say "Thanks" to those that took the time and effort to offer possible solutions!)
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Old 07-22-2013, 06:44 AM   #12
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On most models during the mid-2000s, if the battery was completely dead to begin with, the converter wouldn't charge it. Sooo, two work arounds are to either connect a battery charger to the trailer battery for a few minutes, or connect your tow vehicle to the umbilical. The latter is not guaranteed, depending on how it is wired, but would be easier than lugging a charger around to charge the battery enough so the onboard charger will charge the battery. And of course, most models of the same ages had to have the use/store button in the "use" position to charge the battery.
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Old 07-23-2013, 02:06 AM   #13
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Thanks again for the new info. Yes, I think the problem was that the battery was fully discharged and that prevented the use/store switch from functioning properly. I'm glad that it's all working well now, and I can explain it! Now on to the next puzzle to solve...screen door hinges! (if any of you have any suggestions on that...see my upcoming post!)
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Old 07-23-2013, 06:05 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nbranco View Post
Thanks again for the new info. Yes, I think the problem was that the battery was fully discharged and that prevented the use/store switch from functioning properly. I'm glad that it's all working well now, and I can explain it! Now on to the next puzzle to solve...screen door hinges! (if any of you have any suggestions on that...see my upcoming post!)

oop's...

Just saw your new thread....that is a problem.

I would call the factory, explain the problem and beg for new screen door hinge plates. Worth a try.


Bob
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