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Old 03-22-2015, 05:05 PM   #1
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New Guy needs electrical advice

Hi everybody,
This is my first post, I am trying to help my friend with his 2006 Greyhawk 31ss. History is back in September 14 he changed out the house battery because it was weak (I was not present) he says that he ran the generator the same day before changing the battery. After changing the house battery there are issues that I will list below.
1. House battery discharging
2. Shore power will slowly charge house battery but nothing inside RV will work just as if it was running on a low battery, and will trip breaker inside house if even cabin lights are turned on. Alternator does not appear to charge house battery at all.
3. If house battery is disconnected, shore power works perfect and can be disconnected with door switch.
4. there is zero power going to the Onan generator to start it.
5. No breakers or fuses are popped.

Any help you can give me to diagnose this will be helpful, I'm thinking in the direction of the ATS right now but am inexperienced with respect to RV's.
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:47 PM   #2
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The automatic transfer switch has nothing to do with it that only switches between shore power and geny.

Not to offend anybody, but did he accidentally reverse the battery connections it has been known to happen.
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:58 PM   #3
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I will double check and see, but I have run many tests on it at the battery and am 99% sure that the ground is going to the frame. He is not an electrical wizard but he is no stranger to mechanical work... If not the transfer switch or reversed battery possibly one of the solenoids underneath?? Ideas..
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Old 03-22-2015, 08:43 PM   #4
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I would say check the battery cables too. I will have to admit I have been a licensed electrician here in Ontario for the past 30 years. I got around to hooking all my electrical back up up to both the AC panel & the DC circuits. I also installed my new converter & yes I did reverse the leads from it to the DC panel. The lights came on, the fridge didn't or the furnace. It took me 4 hours of shaking my head & realizing in DC cars black is negative & red is positive. In my trailer white is negative & black is positive.
Duh
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Old 03-22-2015, 09:41 PM   #5
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Thanks, I will check again tomorrow to rule it out 100%. It would be nice if that was the problem. He did mention that he is "pretty sure" he put the battery in the right way so there is a little room for doubt.
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Old 03-23-2015, 04:33 PM   #6
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So I checked the house battery and it is hooked up correctly. Interesting enough the positive pole shows negative continuity on the meter, probably from the open circuit... So that brings me back to my original problem, what could cause this? Something causing an open circuit that is discharging the house battery and not allowing it to charge from the alternator also disconnecting all 12v power from the generator. Ideas??
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Old 03-23-2015, 06:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soloeo_99 View Post
So I checked the house battery and it is hooked up correctly. Interesting enough the positive pole shows negative continuity on the meter, probably from the open circuit... So that brings me back to my original problem, what could cause this? Something causing an open circuit that is discharging the house battery and not allowing it to charge from the alternator also disconnecting all 12v power from the generator. Ideas??
I'm not clear about your comment about negative continuity on the positive pole. Can you elaborate? If your VOM shows 0V across the battery posts that suggests a dead short in the wiring which would drain the battery in short order. It could also be that the new batt is defective but that doesn't explain why the breakers trip.
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Old 03-23-2015, 06:30 PM   #8
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The "negative continuity" has me at a loss as well. An "open circuit" will not discharge the battery nor will it charge it. A "dead short" will either blow a fuse,trip a breaker or melt wiring.

Just based on the original description this is not going to be an easy one and may require a trip to the RV shop or someone very familiar with RV electrical systems. Most contractor electricians do not qualify. Home systems are quite different from RV's.
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Old 03-23-2015, 07:30 PM   #9
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Sorry about the lack of clarity guys. What I meant to say was even with my negative terminal disconnected from the battery I checked continuity on the positive side just to see if there was a short, but the needle went in the reverse direction the little way that it can go, I would expect if there was a short it would show some positive reading on the meter. BTW not being a certified electrician I sometimes use wrong terminology, I said open instead of closed circuit..
We took the battery out and fully charged it, tested it and it threw a solid reading of 12.3 after a day of charging and a day of sitting. We are both thinking it will have to go to the shop, but if there is a chance someone has come across this type of problem before it is worth a chance. The absolutely strange part is that the system worked perfectly the same day in a parking lot. The old battery was removed and in less than an hour a new one was put in and hooked up correctly, he took pictures to be sure, and no 12v power to the generator.
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Old 03-23-2015, 08:23 PM   #10
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Sorry about the lack of clarity guys. What I meant to say was even with my negative terminal disconnected from the battery I checked continuity on the positive side just to see if there was a short, but the needle went in the reverse direction the little way that it can go, I would expect if there was a short it would show some positive reading on the meter. BTW not being a certified electrician I sometimes use wrong terminology, I said open instead of closed circuit..
We took the battery out and fully charged it, tested it and it threw a solid reading of 12.3 after a day of charging and a day of sitting. We are both thinking it will have to go to the shop, but if there is a chance someone has come across this type of problem before it is worth a chance. The absolutely strange part is that the system worked perfectly the same day in a parking lot. The old battery was removed and in less than an hour a new one was put in and hooked up correctly, he took pictures to be sure, and no 12v power to the generator.
Continuity between which points (sounds like battery + terminal and ??? What scale did you set the VOM to?
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