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Old 05-27-2020, 11:43 AM   #1
2 Rivet Member
 
2016 30' Classic
Livingston , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 66
Solar-Battery Setup Problem

Hi All,*

I am checking on our current wiring setup and looking for comfirmation of correctness in wiring. We have a 2019 33' Classic Twin with AGM batteries and Victron solar controller. I was hoping based on attached photos is the wiring correctly setup. Reason being our batteries are dead or getting there. The victron regardless of setup (shore or battery) is on float and always saying the batteries are at 13.8V. This we were unaware of until we made a trip with the camper and stayed at a HH for the overnight and woke up with only 10 v on the batteries with only draw being the frig., CO2, and czone running. The dealer we purchased from had done and PDI and said everythnng was good. Yup our fault in missing that one I guess, and yes no support from dealer.*

The manual provided from Victron is useless. The display is also useless. I have purchased and am awaiting deliver of the bluetooth dongle. I am hoping a better easier way of monitoring and actual maintenance on the controller setup. I guess even though I am a second owner of the camper with a transferred warranty I am out of luck also from Airstream on anything third party being under warranty. Something I didn't know would happen. So basically anything that is not Airstream there is no warranty on the item. I am stll in shock on the lack of support from Airstream. But I guess it is a buyer beware situation which to me isn't fair. But anyways that is that.

So I do know somehow my batteries were abused and are no good any longer. I just am not sure how. I want to make sure the wiring is correct and then I need to dig in to the solar controller to make sure it is doing its job correctly. I am looking to shell out another $600 on new lifeline batteries. But once I get them and hook them up and match the current connection sequence can anyone verify the correctness of current correction? Victron mentions to verify the wiring correctly. Can anyone verify this from my photos of the controller and battery box. My other question is on the victron to battery is green-yellow. Does anyone know where the wires change to red-black to battery? In my 30' Classic this was under the couch. I do see a grey box in the front strorage. Does the wire change up there somewhere?

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Old 05-28-2020, 12:43 PM   #2
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2015 28' Flying Cloud
Newtown , Pennsylvania
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Everything looks good to me. Use your VOM to take some voltage measurements while charging. You will probably find a voltage drop somewhere in the wiring, or a malfunctioning component.

Bruce
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Old 05-29-2020, 02:07 PM   #3
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2016 30' Classic
Livingston , Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AstroBruce View Post
Everything looks good to me. Use your VOM to take some voltage measurements while charging. You will probably find a voltage drop somewhere in the wiring, or a malfunctioning component.

Bruce
Many thanks I will. I do think that we need two new batteries because of this. Sad less than two years old.
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Old 05-29-2020, 02:49 PM   #4
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2018 27' Globetrotter
Apollo Beach , Florida
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All that I see that is solar wiring related is yellow and green prewire. Yellow is connected correctly to positive and green is connected correctly to negative. The yellow output wire from the solar controller should have a 40 amp fuse or circuit breaker and then be connected to the positive busbar. The green output wire should be connected directly to the negative busbar. These busbars are located inside the grey box labeled “Caution 12VDC Panel.

How many Watts of solar is on the roof? If it’s factory, it’s probably not enough Watts to run everything you listed without drawing down the batteries quickly. Also the Lifeline batteries do not have many Amphours, I think it’s 85AH per battery which should not be drawn down past 50% or below 12.0V. Again this is not enough battery storage to run everything you listed overnight. I would suggest installing at a minimum 400W of solar. You could put 400W of solar on your existing solar controller. 600W of solar would be better, but you would need to install a Victron 100/50 SmartSolar Controller and configure the panels in series-parallel. See the Solar Show and Tell thread for further information about upgrading your solar and batteries.

A voltage meter is needed to diagnose your problem. Batteries are likely damaged. Maybe the fuse is blown. Maybe the wiring is shorted out. You need to trace the voltage from the panels to the controller and then to the fuse and busbars to see if there is a break in the lines.
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Old 05-30-2020, 12:40 PM   #5
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2016 30' Classic
Livingston , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by AirMiles View Post
All that I see that is solar wiring related is yellow and green prewire. Yellow is connected correctly to positive and green is connected correctly to negative. The yellow output wire from the solar controller should have a 40 amp fuse or circuit breaker and then be connected to the positive busbar. The green output wire should be connected directly to the negative busbar. These busbars are located inside the grey box labeled ďCaution 12VDC Panel.

How many Watts of solar is on the roof? If itís factory, itís probably not enough Watts to run everything you listed without drawing down the batteries quickly. Also the Lifeline batteries do not have many Amphours, I think itís 85AH per battery which should not be drawn down past 50% or below 12.0V. Again this is not enough battery storage to run everything you listed overnight. I would suggest installing at a minimum 400W of solar. You could put 400W of solar on your existing solar controller. 600W of solar would be better, but you would need to install a Victron 100/50 SmartSolar Controller and configure the panels in series-parallel. See the Solar Show and Tell thread for further information about upgrading your solar and batteries.

A voltage meter is needed to diagnose your problem. Batteries are likely damaged. Maybe the fuse is blown. Maybe the wiring is shorted out. You need to trace the voltage from the panels to the controller and then to the fuse and busbars to see if there is a break in the lines.
Understood thanks. We got to the 12 V combine box up in the front storage. It basically has been poorly installed on the wall as the screws were no longer holding the box to the wall and it was just laying on the wires likely bouncing around on all yhe wires beneath it. Also found a yellow (looks like PV) cable not connected to anything but the wire looked to be crimped, and then found another end with a bad crimping connector. Likely the connection of the two wires.

That is as far as we got today. With the box not properly secured and the wire poorly crimped in a connection...all this could be the reason now for 2 dead batteries. We feel this is a warranty issue and would like to seek AS on new batteries, and the repairs to the box. But who knows they don't seem responsive to our finds and problems thus far.

In addition a weird find was the inverter was running while shore power was off and the Czone also noted it should be off.

The whole install up front was poorly done. The 12v box should be better reinforced to the wall and there was a 120v outlet just sitting. On the floor of the compartment with the inverter plugged into it and not sure where the romex goes to. All the bouncing the front end gets in travel I am surprised more things are not wrong. I have found a couple of electrical install issues that AS poorly constructed. One is this 12v combinination box and the 120v/12v fuse panel which is not properly attached and pivots from the floor connection.

I would put photos but I am not allowed for some reason to the forum with my phone.

Thanks.
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