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Old 12-23-2018, 06:26 AM   #21
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Over charge ?

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Originally Posted by Mrjkq View Post
I think you're referring to the single stage converter/charger that will over charge your batteries when connected to shore power. A multi stage converter eliminates that.
Hey, reading your reply, so if I keep my battery hooked to the converter, which is connected to shore power, it will over charge my AGM ? I thought the converter would only go up to 13.7 volts? Thanks for clarification. Mike
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Old 12-23-2018, 09:34 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by gypsydad View Post
Well, frankly, Frank; you should count your blessings! I am on AS #4; first 2 were a few years old and no battery issues; but previous owners had replaced theirs. Then I got a new 25', 2014 model; batteries went after 3 months and I was also using it and leaving it plugged in while at my cabin in MT over the summer...Interstate replaced with a credit and I upgraded to AGM's. No additional problems for 2 years. Then the new 2017' 28; batteries went bad first few weeks...again, Interstate replaced, and those went bad 5 months later...Friend got a new 23'D same year; his went bad in 2 months while visiting us in MT....Interstate replaced and those went bad after another month...AS service in Fairfield, CA replaced his converter; he upgraded to a Progressive Dynamics model and also upgraded to Trojan 6V's. I did the same but installed the Boondocker 4 stage and the 6v Trojans with mechanical disconnect switch last summer..no issues since.
I don't have that kind of luck. I believe the stock Parallax converters are not as bad as they are made out to be. Do they go bad sure, what doesn't from time to time.
The one in our 2017 Classic quit working after two months. It was replaced with the identical unit and that has been working fine.
At the time I asked the dealer if I should upgrade, willing to pay the difference but the service manager advised that they rarely see the stock converters go so don't waste your money. Which has been my experience.
With that said I don't disagree with anyone desiring to upgrade their electrical system.
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Old 12-23-2018, 10:47 AM   #23
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"Hey, reading your reply, so if I keep my battery hooked to the converter, which is connected to shore power, it will over charge my AGM ? I thought the converter would only go up to 13.7 volts? Thanks for clarification. Mike"

I do not know what converter you actually have. Is it the original converter in the 1960 tradewind in your signature?

In any case, my experience with the fixed voltage Univolt that puts out 13.7 is that yes, it will boil out the batteries. And no, it will not fully charge the batteries.

I was stubborn for a long time. But my Boodocker converter I installed last spring was a wonderful addtion and the batteries stay charged better and use less water. I will probably switch to AGM's now.
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Old 12-23-2018, 04:40 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill M. View Post
"Hey, reading your reply, so if I keep my battery hooked to the converter, which is connected to shore power, it will over charge my AGM ? I thought the converter would only go up to 13.7 volts? Thanks for clarification. Mike"

I do not know what converter you actually have. Is it the original converter in the 1960 tradewind in your signature?

In any case, my experience with the fixed voltage Univolt that puts out 13.7 is that yes, it will boil out the batteries. And no, it will not fully charge the batteries.

I was stubborn for a long time. But my Boodocker converter I installed last spring was a wonderful addtion and the batteries stay charged better and use less water. I will probably switch to AGM's now.
Hey, my converter is a WFCO, 9845, as far as I can see it does not have any switches for varrying the output, ie 12, 2 amp etc... however, specs indicate it is a three stage converter? Does that mean it would not have fried my AGM? any help appreciated again. M.
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Old 12-23-2018, 06:30 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KZGoodchild View Post
Hey, my converter is a WFCO, 9845, as far as I can see it does not have any switches for varrying the output, ie 12, 2 amp etc... however, specs indicate it is a three stage converter? Does that mean it would not have fried my AGM? any help appreciated again. M.
If you have the WFCO 9845 it has been installed after 2004 when they first came out. It does not have any switches.
The WFCO is supposed to be 3 stage but they are not reliable in changing voltage modes so for that reason I would not recommend them for AGM.
If you have a battery monitor you can see what I mean. Same with the newer 8955 and 9855 that Airstream changed to in 2018. We have not noticed any change to the WFCO charging algorithm over the years. Some have been able to 'trick' them into changing modes and I can force it on our test set by intentionally overloading it and then removing that load. It will sometimes trigger a bulk/boost cycle.
As for whether or not it it fried your AGMs, I can't say for sure but if you were plugged in to shore power continuously, something did.
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Old 12-23-2018, 07:19 PM   #26
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Hi

Good grief !!!

If this or that is a three stage converter charger - what are the stages it goes through?

If you have a "single stage" converter charger - which of the stages on that list is the *only* one it stays in always?

If you go back into the data sheets, you will find that AS has been putting in converter chargers that are set up to be three stage for quite a while (like more than a decade). That's not to say they are great chargers, only that they are very much not single stage.

Bob
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Old 12-23-2018, 07:57 PM   #27
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^
YEP
....they have been using 3 stages of junk for years, at least since 2003, when our Classic left JC.

Bob
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Old 12-23-2018, 08:37 PM   #28
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Hi

Good grief !!!

If this or that is a three stage converter charger - what are the stages it goes through?

If you have a "single stage" converter charger - which of the stages on that list is the *only* one it stays in always?

If you go back into the data sheets, you will find that AS has been putting in converter chargers that are set up to be three stage for quite a while (like more than a decade). That's not to say they are great chargers, only that they are very much not single stage.

Bob
Bulk, Absorption, float and desulfation. Wait that's 4!
I suppose you could argue which mode single voltage type converters like the Parallax and all previous "Univolts" were "in" I would go with...they stay between bulk and absorbtion at their 13.8 VDC. Parallax did have a T model that has a long 12 or 14 hour (I forget which) timer that it stayed on bulk at 14.X VDC but don't think Airstream used them. Somebody can correct me if they had one. I didn't care for them.
Which data sheets Bob? Airstream used Parallax exclusively in the trailers for over a decade except the trip-lite in the Interstate models maybe? Might be others I'm not aware of.
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Old 12-23-2018, 09:14 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by 68 Overlander View Post
Bulk, Absorption, float and desulfation. Wait that's 4!
I suppose you could argue which mode single voltage type converters like the Parallax and all previous "Univolts" were "in" I would go with...they stay between bulk and absorbtion at their 13.8 VDC. Parallax did have a T model that has a long 12 or 14 hour (I forget which) timer that it stayed on bulk at 14.X VDC but don't think Airstream used them. Somebody can correct me if they had one. I didn't care for them.
Which data sheets Bob? Airstream used Parallax exclusively in the trailers for over a decade except the trip-lite in the Interstate models maybe? Might be others I'm not aware of.
Hi

Ok quick translation to what each means:

1) bulk = constant current / current limited charge

2) Absorption = constant voltage charge once a set voltage is reached.

3). Float = drop back voltage once you hit a preset point.

4). Desulf = boost voltage to move things around

The first two are what *every* converter has been doing for a long long time. If
you get to three or four total, the first two *have* to count !!!

The gotcha with float is that magic term "preset point". Maybe it's a 48 hour timer. Maybe it's a 0.25 A current drain. Maybe it's a combination of the two. There is no single definition of what that point is or should be. How well it matches this or that ..... who knows .... AS converters have had float for quite a while .... How well it works is a different point ....

Bob
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Old 12-23-2018, 10:49 PM   #30
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Actually AS has been using a two stage converter ever since they started using converters.
Stage one...they work.
Stage two...they don't.
The stages can reverse at any time. 🥴

Bob
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Old 12-23-2018, 11:27 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Actually AS has been using a two stage converter ever since they started using converters.
Stage one...they work.
Stage two...they don't.
The stages can reverse at any time. ��

Bob
����

Hi, after thirteen years, my converter is still on stage one.
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Old 12-24-2018, 01:27 PM   #32
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Here we go again! UB; you might call AS and tell them they have been supplying multi-stage converters all these years, and did not need to change to the new 3 stage converters recently! Because....when you talk with AS service in Ohio, or the dealers service departments in CA, TX, and MT, they also are not aware...they all say it was a single stage unit...maybe their just ignorant...but that's what they say. No comparison to the 4 stage unit from Boondocker or Progressive D!ynamics 4 stage units...sorry, but this argument is getting old.... I agree with RCross above...Stage one they work; stage 2 they don't!
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Old 12-24-2018, 02:38 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by uncle_bob View Post

The gotcha with float is that magic term "preset point". Maybe it's a 48 hour timer. Maybe it's a 0.25 A current drain. Maybe it's a combination of the two. There is no single definition of what that point is or should be. How well it matches this or that ..... who knows .... AS converters have had float for quite a while .... How well it works is a different point ....

Bob
Hi Bob,
There is really no magic to the point when the converters drops to float. The 4 stage units drop to float after a 30 hour time out of virtually no voltage change. People call all the time and say its been 36, 48, 3 days or a week and my converter still has not dropped back so there must be something wrong with it. What they miss is the part of no significant voltage change. Can't stress this enough as the most misunderstood part of the float on these units.
If you are "using" your RV, you will not see float ever unless you manually force it. The automatic setting is watching for no voltage change. PD is set at ~.3 VDC so if you are using the unit, you will constantly be re-setting the timer.
If you store the unit with shore power and forget a week later you left a 6 pack in the fridge and go retrieve it, open the door, turn on a couple lights, open the fridge, glance at the battery monitor or charge wizard LED thinking is should be in float, well it probably was about a minute ago before you woke it up and it's back to normal/absorption and the timer starts over.
Sometimes the LP and CO detectors can affect the voltage enough as well.

Another thing worth noting is the desulfation cycle only works in the float mode so it's sometimes hard to catch it unless you have a battery monitor that logs the history.

It's pretty cut and dry how they work and thanks for bringing it up. Hopefully this helps somebody.
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Old 12-25-2018, 07:48 AM   #34
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Hi

There's no need to call AS and tell them, they have shown that's they put in multistage converters in the manuals for the chargers for a long time. It's not at all news to them. If you talked to them over the years, they were quite happy to point that out. There are posts to that effect.

=====

There is indeed magic in terms of going to float. You don't want to drop back before the charge is done. Some do it one way, others do it another way. The idea is to get as close to full charge as you can. Some use a current cutoff. Others use time plus current.

Much of what is seen on the "stock" chargers is related to their funky approach to float. Their current limit is set at a point that it is easy to stay above. There are a *lot* of chargers out there with the same problem. For whatever reason, they also have a pretty long timer on them. That super long timer is not as common. The combo of the two is weird.

Feel free to call them weird or stupid. That's pretty accurate. Calling them "single stage" is not correct.

Bob
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