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Old 04-10-2015, 02:27 PM   #1
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Changing the converter

Hello,

My new AS has 50 Amp service. Based on what I have read, one of the first mods should be a new battery converter. Has anyone with this configuration changed out the converter yet? If so, what kind did you get?

Thanks,

Scott
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:38 PM   #2
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I may be in the minority on this site, but I say go camp and enjoy. Just know the limitations of the stock converter. You can't just leave it in the use position with the trailer plugged in 24/7. If you are plugged in, leave it in store once the batteries are charged. In a few years when you need new batteries consider a change.
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:48 PM   #3
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It all depends on what you want to do.

If you spend 95% or more of your time in campgrounds with electrical hook ups then what you have is fine. Just remember to put the charger into "store mode" whenever you are plugged in and the battery is charged. I realize that putting the battery into "store mode" when you are using the trailer may be counter-intuitive, but by not charging the battery the whole time you are plugged in it will last longer. Make sure that you switch the battery to "use mode" when you tow so that the electronics in your fridge work (in recommending this, I am assuming that you will be towing with the fridge running off of propane and it will need some power from the batteries to run the control board.) And of course, put the battery in "use mode" whenever you are camping without electrical hookups.

On the other hand, if you plan to do a lot of camping without electrical hookups (i.e., boondocking) you will want solar and quickly become dissatisfied with the amount of battery capacity in your stock Airstream. If and when you decide this is the style of camping you want to do, then it makes perfect sense to change out the charger/inverter and batteries. Use the search function on this Forum and look for terms such as "solar charging," "Magnum Inverter," and "electricity while boondocking" and you'll learn more than you ever thought possible about this.

The short answer is do nothing now regarding your charger, go out and camp and figure out what you want to do in the long run. Oh, and don't forget to have fun!!!
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:53 PM   #4
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There is No Reason to change the convertor on a new trailer unless Airstream is using Chinese junk, WFCO convertors.

The AC service, 50 amps, has nothing to do with the batteries and the convertor other than supply the current to charge the batteries. That current is minimal and does not enter into the equation.

When you convert you house from a 60 amp service to ta 200 amp service you did not buy new appliances.

You can save yourself some money while camping. Many campgrounds are charging extra for 50 amp hookups. Buy yourself a 50 to 30 adapter and tell them you only use 30 amps unless you are camped in Texas in mid summer and using 2 Air Conditioning units.
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Old 04-10-2015, 08:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skee75 View Post
Hello,

My new AS has 50 Amp service. Based on what I have read, one of the first mods should be a new battery converter. Has anyone with this configuration changed out the converter yet? If so, what kind did you get?

Thanks,

Scott
I tend to agree with the other posters, go enjoy your trailer. Having said that, I did upgrade mine since I was moving the batteries to the rear of the trailer to reduce tongue weight and investing in some pretty expensive 6V AGM's and wanted to ensure they got the appropriate level of TLC. I also leave my AS plugged all the time when she is parked at home. You can just move the battery isolate switch to Store as indicated and move it back to Use periodically to protect your batteries that way. If you still have an interest in a modification, take a look at the thread below. I'm assuming you have the same converter I had in my 50A 27FB.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...-a-130662.html

After the mod, you can see the charging voltage jump up to 14.6 directly after hooking up to power after a significant discharge, then work its way back to 13.2 to keep things topped off. Seems to work well. Install is pretty easy if you have done some basic electrical DIY and are a bit handy. Cost is about $200. Allow a half day for the install.
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Old 04-11-2015, 12:43 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCOTTinNJ View Post
I may be in the minority on this site, but I say go camp and enjoy. Just know the limitations of the stock converter. You can't just leave it in the use position with the trailer plugged in 24/7. If you are plugged in, leave it in store once the batteries are charged. In a few years when you need new batteries consider a change.
How do you know when the batteries are really charged? This gets you into a whole new question.



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Old 04-11-2015, 01:32 AM   #7
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Personally I use the on board system. If I am feeling particularly engineerish I may even pop the battery lid and throw a multimeter on the batteries (make sure it is not while you are charging or results will be skewed). And I don't think you have to be too crazy about this. Yiu won't bake the batteries in a day.
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Old 04-11-2015, 01:50 AM   #8
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Changing the converter

I changed mine. Check out the beginning of this thread.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449/installing-a-4-stage-converter-charger-in-your-new-airstream-126429.html

And the primary reason is that my trailer sits in a garage plugged in full time. A four stage converter/charger saves the batteries from over charging.


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Old 04-11-2015, 04:52 AM   #9
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I haven't had to tear into one yet, but I think the stock converter is a Parallax.
For now, just go enjoy your new trailer. If you leave it plugged in at home all the time, you can hit the "STORE" button. Everything will still work, but the converter will not be constantly pumping juice into the batteries. Switch to "USE" one day a month, or even every couple of weeks, to make sure they are fully charged, just don't forget to switch back in a day or so.
After you've owned and used your new trailer for a while, you will know better how you are going to use it, and make a decision about the converter then. A converter upgrade is a good idea, but if 95%+ of the time you will be camping while plugged in, getting a converter that would be able to power the starship Enterprise would be a waste of resources.
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