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Old 07-23-2016, 12:20 PM   #1
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Converter not charging battery and boiling batteries???

I'm having an issue with my electrical system on my new to me 2012 Jayflight 25bhs (from a dealer).

After unplugging I would find my battery would be dead in less than 24 hrs. I assumed it was the battery so have changed that out. Now on this trip, while plugged in I noticed a smell by my battery. I touched it and it is scorching Hot and sounds like it was boiling. I've disconnected the battery and will run just off the shore power. I've checked all fuses and the ground connections. Why would this be happening? Any ideas? Service takes months and months to get into around here.

Thanks for any tips.

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Old 07-23-2016, 12:27 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum! Do you have a multimeter? I would start by checking the standing battery voltage then plug into shore power and checking the voltage to determine of the converter is overcharging.
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Old 07-23-2016, 01:01 PM   #3
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Whenever I hear someone has just changed out their battery I have to ask haha... Did you hook up the battery correctly. I always look at the battery case and find the word 'NEG' or the symbol '-' and make sure this is the cable that goes to the trailer frame ground near the battery. I would hand trace this cable to be sure...

If your battery was wired up wrong it should have blown the REVERSE POLARITY fuses which apparently hasn't happened otherwise your 12VDC POwer Distribution Panel where the fuses are located would not be functioning when on Shore Power... (NO Ceiling lights i.e.)

The major thing that makes battery fluids boil out is over-charging by the converter/charger unit when on Shore Power or Generator. The older converter/chargers was usually a single DC voltage of 13.6VDC which will over time if left connected will boil out the battery fluids...

Once the battery fluids are depleted then the cells inside will grow deposits and eventually short our a cell. This is what makes the battery get very hot. This takes a few days to do this however and from reading your post here it sounds it has happened again in one or two days time...

The converter may be putting out too much DC VOLTAGE (More than 13.6VDC) but since you have been running Interior lights and things on the 12V DC system they would give a big clue if too much DC VOLTAGE is present - very bright and maybe some burning out on you...

I'm going with too long of a charge period with 13.6VDC (Over a week or so)

If your converter/charger is doing this it needs to be changed out for a more modern SMART MODE multi-voltage unit..

Unfortunately your new battery is toast again... Very few recover that start getting hot on you...

Roy Ken
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Old 07-23-2016, 02:24 PM   #4
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The battery is connected right as I traced the wires.

It's takes about 24 hrs before they start heating up. I found today the negative terminal was where it was hot.

I unhooked it all and the shore power and dad the battery had no juice. Reconnected and it smelled right away again and was hot.

Will need to get a multimeter to check. Both the old and changed battery were older one so I don't know if that is the problem or not.

Excuse my nativity but over charging will leave the battery with no charge?

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Old 07-23-2016, 04:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmac1983 View Post
The battery is connected right as I traced the wires.

It's takes about 24 hrs before they start heating up. I found today the negative terminal was where it was hot.

I unhooked it all and the shore power and dad the battery had no juice. Reconnected and it smelled right away again and was hot.

Will need to get a multimeter to check. Both the old and changed battery were older one so I don't know if that is the problem or not.

Excuse my nativity but over charging will leave the battery with no charge?

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Yes.......it boils all the acid out of the battery
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Old 07-23-2016, 10:07 PM   #6
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I think RoyBrady is correct---your converter is likely boiling off your batteries. If you get a multi-meter, I would bet you have a shorted cell or two. When the water boils off the battery, sulfides form on the exposed lead and eventually grow to touch a neighboring cell. Once that happens, the cells become electrically one cell. If I recall correctly, common 12 volt batteries have 6 cells that produce a little over 2 volts each. When a cell is bridged with another cell, the battery will only produce 10 volts or so because the cells become one. I suspect that since 12 volt appliances (lights, etc.) were meant to draw 12 volts and only 10 volts are available, more amperage is drawn to compensate. More amperage means more resistance in wire meant for 12 volts, which means more heat.

Of course, all of this is a guess....
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Old 07-26-2016, 06:52 PM   #7
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A few years ago I bought a brand new battery and had the same issue. I DID check the charging rate with a multimeter and all was fine. My assumption was that the battery was defective.

When I took it back to get a replacement under warranty the dealer said it was being overcharged. I said no. He wouldn't honor the warranty.

I replaced the battery from a different store (not doing business with the first store again) and the problem was solved.

My point is that batteries can be defective too.
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Old 07-26-2016, 07:03 PM   #8
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I have a multimeter now so I'm going to go out to where it's stored and test it tomorrow. Thankfully it's at a friend's country place that has some extension cords set up

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Old 07-26-2016, 07:28 PM   #9
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If you have a multimeter the first I would do is measure the BAT connections with the converter/charger powered up and read this DC VOLTAGE. It should read 13.6VDC unless it is in a smart mode charging sequence. My smart mode converter/charger only puts out 13.2VDC-13.6VDC-14.4VDC going through its smart mode charging sequence. Some other brands also has a 15.0VDC mode that runs for 15 minutes every 21 hours to clean up your battery cells... A charged-up battery just sitting there with no cables connected should read 12.6-7VDC

If you see any other DC VOLTAGE coming out of the converter/charger unit it is defective.

What causes the batteries to boil out fluids is being feed 13.6VDC for real long period of times... The smart mode converter/chargers will drop to 13.2VDC when not being used and this really helps the battery from being boiled out. Once the fluids are gone then the battery self destructs and shorts out an internal cell.

You have had two batteries do this now in a short period of time it appears.

Time to look hard at the converter/charger DC OUTPUT..

New batteries are not cheap haha...

When you said earlier you hand traced the battery terminals. You did read on the case of the battery where the word 'NEG' or symbol '-' terminal was located and this was absolutely the one that went to the battery frame ground... Regardless what the color of the battery cables are. If all of the fuses have been shorted around including the two REVERSE POLARITY fuses on the 12VDC Distribution Panel will do the same thing on getting the battery walls hot if reversed cables has happened. It is suppose to blow the fuses...

Something has to be REVERSED or internal cells shorted out... Did your battery cables spark heavy when you first hooked them up???

We all are trying to figure out why this is happening to you. It usually is just a blown fuse.

Roy Ken
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2008 STARCRAFT 14RT OFF-ROAD POPUP with PD9260C and three 85AH 12VDC batteries
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Old 07-26-2016, 08:14 PM   #10
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Thanks Roy, this is the type of diagnosis information I was looking for. One thing I did find was one of the two 30 amp reverse poliarity fuses was replaced with a 40 amp. I have since replaced that one and I will replace my in line 30 amp fuse too thats on the battery terminal just in case. Is there fuses any where else I may be missing?

If it helps, when I noticed the 2nd battery getting hot, it was the negative wire that was the hot temperature one. Also a disclaimer, the 2nd battery that boiled was also an older one of my friends, so the batteries may be the culprits.



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