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Inverter usage

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Tom, thank you for all your input and help. I will check out the Yahoo! group and give Monaco a call too and report back anything I find. I'm sure both are good sources for future reference also. I know others have had this problem or a similar one and hopefully others will benefit as well. The bright side is that the inverter seems to be doing its job of keeping all the batteries charged and and supplying inverted power. It seems the relay problem is more of an annoyance than anything else, although I keep thinking the contacts in the relay must be taking some wear and tear as they probably arc each time the open and close.

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Inverters have an off switch? :rolleyes:


Did you get your problem with the engine alternator not charging the house batteries fixed? We have a Monoco Monarch and had the same problem, now fixed.

Sorry to be so long replying but my wife just noticed your post.


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I doubt that your coach batteries are charged by the engine alternator. Monaco uses a Converter, which is plugged into a 110 outlet somewhere in your coach. This outlet is usually not on the inverter, so it is powered only when you are plugged into shore power or running the generator. Find the Converter (mine is a Progressive 9000), and see if you have a charge Wizard plugged into it. If your batteries are the type that have water, that you have to check frequently, the charge Wizard will decrease the amount of "boil", and therefore the amount of white battery acids you have to clean out of your battery compartment.


house batteries should be charged by the engine alternator...and the generator, your choice. our '08 Fleetwood charges the house batteries when we travel, generally, we can't get enough charge from our generator via the inverter/charger unless we let the generator run for several hours.

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Well, it's been quite awhile and I have to admit that I gave up on this problem, at least temporarily. I recently replaced all four of my 6-volt batteries and the switching has subsided considerably. I was on an Escapees forum and got the following explanation:

Since you don't mention what your MH is, I will hazard a guess as to the equipment and what is going on. It sounds to me like you have an Intellitec BIRD (Bi-directional Isolator Relay Delay) -- actually a pretty neat thing to have in spite of the clacking solenoid! The BIRD allows the system to charge both battery banks when either is being charged, ie your house batteries will be charged along with the engine batteries from the engine alternator when driving; and the engine batteries will be charged along with the house batteries when plugged into shore power. The "cause" of your "problem" clicking is that the controller senses heavy loads on either battery bank and isolates the two banks to prevent the wrong battery from being inadvertently discharged.

The clicking is "normal" -- fortunately on my coach, the solenoid is located in a comparment under the driver seat. I hear it when sitting in the main area of the coach, but not from the bedroom. I don't normally hear it when connected to shore power, but do notice it when boondocking. Maybe you can add some insulation between the location of the solenoid and the living compartment? (be aware that the solenoid normally is fairly hot to the touch)

Following is some verbaige from the Intellitec website on how the BIRD operates:


It operates by sensing the voltages on both batteries. When either of these voltages exceeds 13.1 volts for approximately 2.5 minutes, which happens when either battery is being charged, the control will close the isolator solenoid, connecting the two batteries together, charging them both.

After the solenoid has been closed, the system continues to sense the voltage. If the ignition switch is off and the battery voltage drops below 12.6 volts for approximately 1 minute, which might occur when the converter is heavily loaded, the solenoid is opened to prevent the chassis battery from being discharged by the coach loads. When the voltage goes above 13.1 volts again for approximately 2.5 minutes, the solenoid closes again.

If the ignition switch is on, the control allows the voltage drop below 12.0 volts for approximately 1 minute, before the solenoid is opened to insure the alternator's full output is available for important chassis functions.

When the voltage goes above 13.1 volts again for approximately 2.5 minutes, the solenoid will close.

It seems to explain my situation.

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