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Old 12-02-2011, 10:57 AM   #1
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1985 29' Sovereign
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Newbie Electrical Question

Just bought an '85 Sovereign mid-bath, 29 foot. I'm keeping it at work, plugged into shore power and stay in it 1-2 nights per week (my work is 80 miles from my home).

Late last night I noticed the 12V lights were getting dimmer and dimmer, and on the panel I got no indicator at all when I hit the "Battery Status" switch. 120V outlets work fine. Before I went to sleep I shut off the 12V entirely, and this morning the 12V lights are bright again.

Since I am but a civil engineer and nowhere near smart enough to be an electrical engineer, I put 2+2 together and assume the following:

1. The shore power is charging the batteries
2. The batteries are then powering the 12V circuits
3. (Drum roll please) - the 12V circuits are draining the batteries faster than the shore power can charge them.

Are the above assumptions correct? And (again out on a limb) I assume that this should not be happening, so what might be the culprit and where should I start troubleshooting?

FWIW I have no idea if the PO ever replaced the convertor or if it is OEM.

Thanks!
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Old 12-02-2011, 11:02 AM   #2
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My guess is that the converter is not doing the job. That and the possibility that your batteries are not up to snuff. I would check both.

Those with more knowledge will chime in soon.
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:19 PM   #3
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It really isn't possible to diagnose electrical problems over the internet. While there are many possible causes I would agree that the most likely one is that the converter is weak and should be replaced.
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:50 PM   #4
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Before you rip into it, check to make sure the inverter switch is on. On our '97 there is a house type light switch just aft of the curved front curbside window. Flip it one way, and the inverter charges the batter, flip it the other and the batteries drain down even when plugged into shore power.
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:53 PM   #5
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can you get a volt meter. the readings from that might help solve the mystery.

have you checked the water in the battery(s)?

what is the battery status when plugged in?

it you disconned the 120v plug, what is the battery status?

with everything working properly the converter should power almost everything unless you turn every light on.
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Old 12-02-2011, 01:18 PM   #6
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My guess is the converter is on the fritz. If you hear a humming sound from the converter it is probably the original Univolt. I replaced the Univolt in my Argosy 26' about a year ago with a modern 45 amp converter, which will power all of the 12 volt stuff with or without the battery. My trailer is connected to shore power when stored here at my home. I always remove the battery when the trailer is not in use. The converter works just fine without the battery.
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Old 12-03-2011, 01:02 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by TG Twinkie View Post
My guess is the converter is on the fritz. If you hear a humming sound from the converter it is probably the original Univolt. I replaced the Univolt in my Argosy 26' about a year ago with a modern 45 amp converter, which will power all of the 12 volt stuff with or without the battery. My trailer is connected to shore power when stored here at my home. I always remove the battery when the trailer is not in use. The converter works just fine without the battery.
What type of convertor did you get? Since I will by "semi-fulltiming" I'd like to get a convertor that I can use without the batteries being hooked up as I'd prefer to unhook the batteries and remove from the trailer. Is there any issue doing this on an '85? Can you hurt any of the components/systems by running without batteries?

Thanks!
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:03 PM   #8
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I installed a Progressive Dynamics Inteli-Power 9245 Converter. You can find them on eBay for very reasonable prices .
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:47 PM   #9
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http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ion-78743.html

Intelipower 9260 is what I used. Probably overkill (the last two numbers are Amps.) 45 is probably all you need. But someone at a rally told me it would be quieter if the fan ran last often so...
Check out the thread and do not let it scare you. Easy changeover, tricked me because I started tripping a GFCI breaker right after I installed the inverter. I figured it was the Intelipower unit, but nope, just an old breaker...
I have an 84 Sovereign, 27ft.
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Old 12-04-2011, 05:36 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by TG Twinkie View Post
I installed a Progressive Dynamics Inteli-Power 9245 Converter. You can find them on eBay for very reasonable prices .
Hi, when you mention the Progressive Dynamics Converter, is it also an Inverter?
Thanks, Derek
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Old 12-04-2011, 06:46 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazeevw

Hi, when you mention the Progressive Dynamics Converter, is it also an Inverter?
Thanks, Derek
No, these are 1-way units. Converter only.
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Old 12-04-2011, 07:00 AM   #12
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Intelli-Power PD9260C 60A Electronic RV Converter/Charger

Yep, converter only and I wrote Inverter above. My bad. See link above. It is a multi-stage charger so it is easy on the batteries and will not overheat them like the old univolts if you left them on too long. I leave mine on all the time. Extends the battery life.
And I just learned on this thread that I could pull the batteries out completely. Nice.
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