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Converter Running Constantly


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#1 rslavicek

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 09:04 AM

When we are plugged into shore power the converter runs all of the time.

 

The batteries seem to be charging correctly and while dry camping the 12 volt system works correctly. We can go overnight without recharging.

 

The motorhome is a 2010 and has the original 2-12 volt batteries for house power.

 

 Is this a sign that my batteries need replacing?


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#2 desertdeals69

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 11:28 AM

Unless the converter has a voltage control that shuts it off when the battery voltage gets to a certain point it will stay on.  If it stays on it will boil the batteries if on too long.


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#3 DickandLois

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 11:58 AM

rslavicek.

 

Welcome to the FMCA Forum!

 

Could you post the Model and Make of your inverter / charger for the group? Do you have the Operators Manual ?

 

Many units are manual on and off. So you need to turn it off when not in use to lower current draw when dry camping, they do draw a phantom current to keep ready when its time for coffee or run some 110 volt item.

 

Rich.


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#4 wolfe10

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 02:25 PM

Let me start over in answering this.  A converter takes 120 VAC and "converts" it to 13.0-14.5 VDC to bring the batteries to full charge and then maintain them at the preset level.  The preset level really depends on whether it is a smart charger or a "dumb one". Dumb ones pretty much keep a constant voltage applied-- generally in the 13.2-13.5 VDC range.  A smart charger will start out at higher voltage if the batteries are discharged and then taper off to a lower voltage after the batteries are fully charged.

 

So, a converter normally WILL run all the time-- supplying constant voltage.  The amount of current (amps) it sends to the batteries depends on the draw-- once the batteries are charged, they will pretty much match their output to compensate for your electrical use.

 

To evaluate the converter, use a digital voltmeter (they start under $20 at any auto parts house, Radio Shack, etc).  Tell us voltage at the batteries with converter off (or shore power and generator off) and then with it on. 

 

And, as Rich said, if we know the brand and model we can give you more specific information.

 

Brett


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#5 ticat900

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 03:54 PM

Unless its overcharging and your having to add water at abnormal intervals it means its working correctly.

 

As long as the MH is being used the converter will run constantly for sure as lites are 12V, furnace, fridges etc.


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#6 DickandLois

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 05:14 PM

It would be good if the OP could post the Model and Make of the unit. One can get caught in the semitics of the words.

Is it a Converter or a Inverter / Charger ?

That very well can determine how the unit works.

 

Rich.

Converter- a device that converts alternating current to direct current or vice versa. Compare inverter, synchronous converter.

Invertor- any device for converting a direct current into an alternating current

Charger- a device that charges storage batteries.


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#7 ticat900

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 07:51 PM

Rich,

 

Nothing to get caught up in at all.The converter charges the batteries not the inverter. He clearly says converter and batteries. The inverter obviously does not run all the time-- it may be on but that means nothing.

 

He's talking about when plugged into shore power so bringing up the inverter is irrelevant. Suspect he has a gasser A with converter only.


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#8 rslavicek

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 11:55 AM

Thanks Everyone.  We are on the road, I should have some time in the next few days to post the make and model.  It is hidden under a cabinet and I need to pull drawers to get to it.

 

 I don't have a multi-meter with me, but we are heading home next week and I have all of the equipment there.  Everything seems to be working correctly, the batteries are not boiling, but we have a loud buzzing from the converter.  

 

We are in southern California right now and while the days have been warm the furnaces run at night so some of the charging is to replace the draw from the batteries.


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#9 ClayL

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 01:56 PM

If by "running all the time" you mean the fan is always running, then that might be due to dust, pet hair, fiber, etc. building up on the input screen and limiting the air flow,

The fan is usually set to come on a set temperature of the heat sink in the converter. If it has trouble getting enough air it will run constantly.

I have to vacuum mine out once a year or so.


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#10 rslavicek

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Posted 18 January 2014 - 10:37 AM

It looks like I made a mistake.  I started  rummaging around in the cabinets during a stop over and found that the culprit was a surge protector mounted next to the converter.  The surge guard is made by Surge Guard and called an RV power protection transfer switch model 41260.  There are a couple of fault indicator lights on the unit, but neither was  on.

 

I'll try surge guard and see if they can be any help.

 

Thanks again for all of the help.  


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