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Old 05-28-2018, 02:46 PM   #1
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Converter confusion

We have a 25’ flying cloud fb 2016 twin.
Converter runs for hours whenever we start stove/oven. Monitor reads 13.6 while on shore power and 12.6 when off shorepower. We think this means the batteries are fully charged and the 13.6 is telling us the converter charge is working correctly.
We are drawing only 3 amps as shown on the surge protector at shorepower power post. No other DC pull being done.
Converter fan will stop if we unplug from shorepower and then replug in again.
But soon as we start the oven or stovetop the converter runs for hours.
Thought the fan may be trying to cool off the components so we blocked off bedroom area when converter is and it got super cool from the air conditioning.
Made breakfast on stove and oven and the converter fan noise kicked in again and has been running for 3 hours again.
Does the converter think something needs to be cooled somewhere or what? The batteries don’t need it to be charging them so why is it running ? any ideas?
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Old 05-28-2018, 02:59 PM   #2
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You have a regular propane stove w/ oven, right? twist-for-spark piezo igniter for the stovetop and use a long lighter for the oven pilot? I can't imagine what the gas range would have to do with a converter that wasn't right next to it (and taking heat.)

Is it possible that you always turn on the light and/or fan in the vent hood above the range when you're cooking? Both of those are decent 12v draws, since those are the only incandescent bulbs in your trailer and that fan doesn't seem to be very efficient. Those 2 lights pull nearly as much wattage as all the LEDs on the interior combined (I think the LED pucks and reading lights are ~1W each at full brightness, and those 2 halogens in the vent hood are 10W each.)
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Old 05-28-2018, 04:31 PM   #3
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I suspect the converter fan is on a thermostat to turn it on when the heat sink in the converter reaches a certain temperature. Then it probably has the heat sink and the mass of the unit to cool and a deadband to get it below to keep it from cycling on and off. So once it is triggered I would expect it to run a while.
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Old 05-28-2018, 04:53 PM   #4
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We have the same Airstream and after a few months I replaced the original converter/charger with the PD4655. One of the reasons was because the fan kept running and it was noisy at night. Now we no longer have that problem. I also wanted a multi-stage unit for better battery management.
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Old 05-28-2018, 06:53 PM   #5
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Thanks all good information! Yes that is the stove and oven we have.
We turned on the overhead vent and the light and then checked the amp reading on the Progressive surge protector and it only showed Amp increase from 5 amps to 6?
It’s been running now for over six hours so I am going to shut off shorepower breaker and turn back on again. This makes the converter fan stop. May have to consider different model. I think ours is model 8355 “series 8300”...
Which I think is a three stage already which makes this even more hard to understand the constant running. It is in the 90s and humid here this weekend ,
Would that affect it?
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Old 05-28-2018, 07:42 PM   #6
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The converter is "running" all the time. The cooling fan for the converter is just turning on and off. Since it is bothering you so much maybe you need to replace it with a different unit that might be quieter. There is really nothing wrong with the fan running except maybe the noise. Ask about quiet converters.

I am not familiar with the converters the newer Airstreams use. But the numbers you quote make it sound like it is not one of the new 3 or 4 stage converters. I think the voltage should go over 14 at startup or with a depleted battery and go down below 13.6 when the battery is fully charged. At least that is the way my new Boondocker converter works.
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Old 05-28-2018, 08:52 PM   #7
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Remember that +1 amp on your 120V shore-power input is +10 amp on the 12v converter's output (assuming the entire AC amp is due to the DC output of your converter.) That's about what I'd expect from the fan+light of the Baraldi vent hood, and it's a 25% increase in the converter's output so it's not surprising that it causes the fan to start.
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Old 05-30-2018, 09:55 AM   #8
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Thanks David! You nailed it. No stove vent /fan or light while cooking today and the converter fan did not kick in.
One last question...are we harming anything by forcing the converter fan to stop by unplugging shore power? We replug in shorepower and converter fan stays off. Wondering if we are interrupting it from doing what it is suppose to do?
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Old 05-30-2018, 10:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucybear View Post
Thanks David! You nailed it. No stove vent /fan or light while cooking today and the converter fan did not kick in.
One last question...are we harming anything by forcing the converter fan to stop by unplugging shore power? We replug in shorepower and converter fan stays off. Wondering if we are interrupting it from doing what it is suppose to do?
My first guess would be "not really." It sounds like the fan is kicking on due to either load or temperature, but is running well past the point at which high load/high temp is a real issue. I don't know if it's running on a timed cycle or if whatever's supposed to stop it when the temp or load decreases isn't adjusted property, etc. You described the converter's case as being cool after the fan has been running a while so it sounds like the run time on the fan may just be more than actually needed.

If you buy LED replacement lamps for that range hood you may improve your boondocking setup, reduce the heat generated when those lights are on AND avoid triggering the fan events in the first place. I bought a pair of replacement lamps for it but haven't gotten around to installing them (along with the filtering gels for the cold-white ceiling lights.)
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