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Old 09-14-2021, 11:27 AM   #21
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1974 25' Tradewind
1976 27' Overlander
Stillwater , Minnesota
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My 1976 Overlander doesn’t have a battery switch. When storing it I remove the battery. I still have the original monitor panel that is far from accurate on any of the gauges so I have had to learn from experience how full each of my tanks are and I immediately got a battery voltage monitor for tracking battery health. If you boondock at all, you want to know the health of your battery. With a single 100 watt solar panel I have been able to go an entire week on my single flooded battery being judicious with lights and water pump. Enjoy your Airstream!
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Old 09-14-2021, 01:13 PM   #22
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I loved out loud!

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Originally Posted by ITSNO60 View Post
Once plugged in your converter powers all the 12 volt stuff but you may have to keep the battery switch "ON" in some units for some functions, however the converter also keeps the batteries charged so no worries there. And you have a power cord. This is a Power Chord
When I saw that Power Chord.... I burst out laughing and almost sprayed my coffee across the kitchen. Now....THAT was funny.
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Old 09-14-2021, 05:05 PM   #23
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1978 31' Sovereign
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Thank u you oh A W Warn!
I値l look for that switch right now.

For an update: I bought a cigarette lighter bolt monitor, and it works great! When nothing is running, it is at 12.4. When I turn on the radio and lights, it goes down immediately to 12.18 and stays there, without any fluctuation. I知 connected into a 15 amp power cord from my 30 (in back).

Am I drawing from my battery or from the power cord?
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Old 09-14-2021, 05:15 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Steelhead78 View Post
Thank u you oh A W Warn!
I値l look for that switch right now.

For an update: I bought a cigarette lighter bolt monitor, and it works great! When nothing is running, it is at 12.4. When I turn on the radio and lights, it goes down immediately to 12.18 and stays there, without any fluctuation. I知 connected into a 15 amp power cord from my 30 (in back).

Am I drawing from my battery or from the power cord?
Hi

This is the gotcha with all plug in monitors. You are looking at the voltage drop of the wiring plus whatever the battery is doing. The only real answer is a monitor that wires straight to the battery posts.

Bob
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Old 09-14-2021, 05:48 PM   #25
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1978 31' Sovereign
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Got it, thanks Bob! Is it a good sign that it’s staying put at 12.2 at the moment? Should it ride a little over time, connected to shore power?

Can you recommend a battery monitor brand that I could pick up before dropping it off at the mechanic on Thursday?
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Old 09-14-2021, 05:59 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Steelhead78 View Post
Got it, thanks Bob! Is it a good sign that it痴 staying put at 12.2 at the moment? Should it ride a little over time, connected to shore power?

Can you recommend a battery monitor brand that I could pick up before dropping it off at the mechanic on Thursday?
Hi

The battery should slowly climb up from 12.2V (at the battery). The problem at the moment is that you really don't know what you are looking at. That said, I'd *guess* it should be reading higher.

The best of the best ( sort of ) is a Victron 712 battery monitor. Their "Smart Shunt" is similar, but you can only read it with your phone. The advantage is that it does *way* more than just monitor the voltage. It will give you a full read on your batteries.

Wiring up a simple monitor is a couple of small wires. Wiring up the 712 is a couple of big wires and moving a couple of wires from here to there.

Bob
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Old 09-14-2021, 06:08 PM   #27
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What many don't understand about a lead acid battery is that you cannot get an accurate state of charge with a volt meter while the battery is charging, while it is in use, or for an hour or two after you have finished using it or charging it. The charge must be removed and the battery allowed to rest before a true voltage reading can be measured. If you are charging and not using anything powered by the battery you should see over 13 volts but if you are using the battery that number will drop relative to the amount you are using. With a shunt based battery monitor you can get accurate SOC readings while charging and while in use, unfortunately the RV builders do not supply these and instead give us a simple volt meter which is pretty useless unless the conditions I described above are met each time the button is pushed.
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Old 09-14-2021, 07:16 PM   #28
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Thank you both, tons of invaluable info here.

I’ll check on voltage reading in a few hours (along with the fridge temp).
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Old 09-15-2021, 03:52 AM   #29
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For the last 10 years or so all I have used to monitor the battery is one of those plug in meters. It gives me all of the information I need. (approximate state of charge) If I need to check at the battery I can use my multi-meter tool. Most of the time I do not need to know the exact state of charge.
I know when, if the batteries are in good condition, the batteries should be about 12.6+/- volts when fully charged. The batteries should not be discharged below 12.0 volts, where damage occurs.
You said when "nothing was running" the battery is 12.4v. Was the fridge on? it uses 12v on the control circuit.
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Old 09-15-2021, 03:17 PM   #30
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Thanks All!

Update: been plugged in for 24 hours, and fridge/freezer is working great, and voltage is SLOWLY going up (my fractional amounts). So far, so good - thank you again!
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Old 09-16-2021, 08:41 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Steelhead78 View Post
Thanks All!

Update: been plugged in for 24 hours, and fridge/freezer is working great, and voltage is SLOWLY going up (my fractional amounts). So far, so good - thank you again!
Hi

If after 24 hours the voltage at the battery terminals are not up >= 13.2V, there's a problem somewhere. Your batteries may be past end of life, your converter might be in the same category, there could be other issues ....

Bob
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Old 09-16-2021, 10:51 AM   #32
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1978 31' Sovereign
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Thanks Bob!
Fridge and freezer are in great shape!

Update: at service now, and they are installing a new converter. All should be good to go within the next hour or two. All outlets are putting out a more than adequate reading and we’re on the right path now.

Thank you Bob!
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Old 09-16-2021, 11:31 AM   #33
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Thanks Bob!
Fridge and freezer are in great shape!

Update: at service now, and they are installing a new converter. All should be good to go within the next hour or two. All outlets are putting out a more than adequate reading and we池e on the right path now.

Thank you Bob!
Hi

Sounds like all is headed in the right direction.

While you are there, see if they can check the batteries.

Bob
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