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Old 05-04-2020, 07:47 AM   #1
3 Rivet Member
 
2016 23' Flying Cloud
Fanwood , New Jersey
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 173
Batteries not being charged

Hi,


We have 2016FC23D. Just came back from 3 weeks of moochdocking at a relative's house (We had 20 amp shorepower--regular 20 amp outlet-- for the whole time).


When we came home, I connected to the home shorepower (regular 20 amp outlet), like I normally do. Usually the voltage meter that came with the trailer shows 13.something or sometimes 14 volts depending on the state of charge (we have two 6V golf cart batteries in series).


But this time, it says 12.3V as if the batteries are not being charged.


I checked the battery water level, and it looks good.


The voltage directly at the batteries is 12.3, according to my multi-meter. So the trailer's reading is good too.


Now I'm looking at the converter/charger. Shortly after we bought the trailer in 2017, I replaced paralex converter with Power Dynamics 4600 series:


https://www.progressivedyn.com/rv/po...r-4600-series/


I've been happy with it until this episode.


Come to think of it, when we connect to shorepower, I used to hear a short "p" sound coming from somewhere (I assumed it was the converter/charger), but now I don't hear the same sound when I connect shorepower.


The cable is fine because I could run appliances in the trailer. Clearly, the trailer is getting electricity.


Use/Store switch is in set to Use. With the shorepower, I turned Use/Store switch to Store, which turned off everything, except propane detector. Turned the Use/Store switch back to Use, everything comes back on.



Another thing I noticed: the converter/charger fan does not come on at all.


(Maybe unrelated, but another observation: our microwave stopped working. It turned on but its magnetron doesn't turn on. So the food doesn't get heated.)


I removed the two 30amp fuse from the converter (according to converter's troubleshooting instruction) and measured its output voltage. The result was unexpected (to me). I thought that the I would get the output voltage quickly, but I didn't.The voltage SLOWLY rose from 0 volts to 12.05V (that's not a typo). It took about a minute. Not sure if this is normal or not.


But because converter/charger is not outputting 13.something V, I think the batteries are not being charged.


I've turned the breaker off, waited a minute and turned it back on. Measured the output voltage and got the same result.


Another retrospect thought: At the relative's house, I used extension cord to get shorepower from an outlet. Then used the regular 30 amp cable with a dogbone adapter. The adapter and the end of the 30 amp cable were on the ground. A couple of times, it rained heavily. Maybe it created a surge?



Anyway, do you think the converter/charger is the problem?


Is there anything else I could/should check?



If the converter/charger is the problem, should I replace it? Or is there anything I can check inside, like fuse, etc.?



Thanks in advance,


Atsushi
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Old 05-04-2020, 07:59 AM   #2
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Melbourne Beach , Florida
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1. Disconnect cables from the batteries at the converter (tape the positive) and measure the converter output. You may have been measuring the batteries.

2. Check the power feed to the converter. Both of mine (2001 Safari and 2002 Classic) just plug into an outlet. A contact in the outlet in the Safari had failed and power was intermittent.

3. Power cord on the ground would not have created a surge but contacts might be corroded resulting in low voltage. Also something due to the storm might have created a surge. The magnetron in the microwave not coming on is a clue. Check your incoming line voltage at an outlet.

4. The fuses on the converter are part of the reverse polarity protection. I don’t see how they can be in series with the converter output. My 60A converter has 30A fuses.

Good luck!

Al
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Old 05-04-2020, 08:06 AM   #3
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2017 23' Flying Cloud
Hiawassee , Georgia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atsushi View Post
Hi,


We have 2016FC23D. Just came back from 3 weeks of moochdocking at a relative's house (We had 20 amp shorepower--regular 20 amp outlet-- for the whole time).


When we came home, I connected to the home shorepower (regular 20 amp outlet), like I normally do. Usually the voltage meter that came with the trailer shows 13.something or sometimes 14 volts depending on the state of charge (we have two 6V golf cart batteries in series).


But this time, it says 12.3V as if the batteries are not being charged.


I checked the battery water level, and it looks good.


The voltage directly at the batteries is 12.3, according to my multi-meter. So the trailer's reading is good too.


Now I'm looking at the converter/charger. Shortly after we bought the trailer in 2017, I replaced paralex converter with Power Dynamics 4600 series:


https://www.progressivedyn.com/rv/po...r-4600-series/


I've been happy with it until this episode.


Come to think of it, when we connect to shorepower, I used to hear a short "p" sound coming from somewhere (I assumed it was the converter/charger), but now I don't hear the same sound when I connect shorepower.


The cable is fine because I could run appliances in the trailer. Clearly, the trailer is getting electricity.


Use/Store switch is in set to Use. With the shorepower, I turned Use/Store switch to Store, which turned off everything, except propane detector. Turned the Use/Store switch back to Use, everything comes back on.



Another thing I noticed: the converter/charger fan does not come on at all.


(Maybe unrelated, but another observation: our microwave stopped working. It turned on but its magnetron doesn't turn on. So the food doesn't get heated.)


I removed the two 30amp fuse from the converter (according to converter's troubleshooting instruction) and measured its output voltage. The result was unexpected (to me). I thought that the I would get the output voltage quickly, but I didn't.The voltage SLOWLY rose from 0 volts to 12.05V (that's not a typo). It took about a minute. Not sure if this is normal or not.


But because converter/charger is not outputting 13.something V, I think the batteries are not being charged.


I've turned the breaker off, waited a minute and turned it back on. Measured the output voltage and got the same result.


Another retrospect thought: At the relative's house, I used extension cord to get shorepower from an outlet. Then used the regular 30 amp cable with a dogbone adapter. The adapter and the end of the 30 amp cable were on the ground. A couple of times, it rained heavily. Maybe it created a surge?



Anyway, do you think the converter/charger is the problem?


Is there anything else I could/should check?



If the converter/charger is the problem, should I replace it? Or is there anything I can check inside, like fuse, etc.?



Thanks in advance,


Atsushi
Everything you said seems to point to the converter, with one exception: the microwave not working. Maybe itís a coincidence; maybe not.

Not being familiar with your converter manual, I assume the two 30 amp fuses are on the converter output so itís completely isolated from any load? If thatís the case, it really sounds like the converter. Just for fun you might want to check the AC input to the converter as well.
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Old 05-04-2020, 08:26 AM   #4
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2016 23' Flying Cloud
Fanwood , New Jersey
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 173

Thanks for your input, guys. I haven't tested what Al and Missy have suggested, but here is the troubleshooting instruction that I referenced.


I needed to remove these two 30 amp fuses to get an output voltage of the converter/charger. I put my multimeter with and without these fuses. And the instruction is correct; I need to remove these fuses to get a reading.
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Old 05-04-2020, 09:20 AM   #5
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2019 23' Flying Cloud
Gray Court , South Carolina
Join Date: Oct 2019
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I have a 2019 23CB and I was out camping last year . On Saturday the Microwave was not cooking but the clock would come on and I tried to trip the breaker a couple times , I got a slight popping noise and still no Microwave but the clock cam on . Airstream seemed to think it was a bad Microwave.
Than on Sunday my batteries continued to get lower and lower , I finally went home early afraid that I would kill my batteries .
When I got home I checked the power to my converter and it was 0 Volts and not 120 volts. The converter was on the same breaker as the Microwave .
THE BREAKER FAILED INTERNALLY , I GOT ONE ON AMAZON , SAME EXACT BRAND NAME $22 bucks .
If I was thinking clearly and tested in the field , I could have moved the converter wire from the breaker to the hot water heater breaker ( and used gas for hot water ) this would have powered my converter for the rest of my trip. Oh well , live and learn . Hope this helps . The breaker looks fine but no power is going thru it , ck at the converter circuit board for 120 v AC . Good Luck
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Old 05-04-2020, 09:27 AM   #6
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Long Island , New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atsushi View Post
. . .
Thanks in advance,
. . .
Are you using Firefox by any chance? FYI all the extra blank lines in your post can be solved if you want:

https://www.airforums.com/forums/f48...ts-182555.html

Peter
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Old 05-04-2020, 10:49 AM   #7
3 Rivet Member
 
2016 23' Flying Cloud
Fanwood , New Jersey
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 173
Hi,
It had a simple explanation: the outlet had failed. This outlet is on a light post, and the light was working, so I assumed the outlet was working too.

Note to myself: NEVER assume anything.
So the converter/charger outlet voltage that I was reading was indeed of the batteries.
I ran an extension cord from another outlet and connected the 30amp cable with the same dogbone adapter. The familiar "p" sound rang and the trailer's voltage meter says 14.something, like it should.
So this problem has been solved; thanks for everyone's input.
I think I'm going to remove the microwave and see what happens next.
Atsushi
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Old 05-05-2020, 02:39 AM   #8
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
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Thanks for the update . . . never assume . . . good one!

Peter
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Old 05-05-2020, 06:36 AM   #9
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2018 27' Globetrotter
Mooresville , North Carolina
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Glad you found the issue. One other possibility in the future could be that the circuit breaker for the converter may have tripped off and cut power to the converter. This happened to me a couple of times on the road.
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