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Old 04-18-2018, 10:23 PM   #1
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Brand New 5th Wheel Power Issue

Just bought a '18 29.5FBDS (first trailer!). Planning to live in it while we remodel the house. I'm having trouble with the power hookup though. I have a 20amp circuit in the garage, with a 20amp outlet. Plugged the 50amp cord to a 50-20 converter, and into the outlet.

My battery is fully charged, so I thought I could just disconnect the battery and run off the 20a hookup. No A/C is needed anytime soon. Oddly, only the outlets and microwave work. No lights, no love. The GFCI works properly. But nothing else turns on. There is a flashing green light in the fuse box, next to a button that says wizard mode.

I checked all the fuses and breakers. I did notice that the converter fan is not spinning, if that's a clue. My battery was reading 13.7v when it was connected to the hookup.

I would love any ideas what I could be doing wrong or have overlooked. Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-19-2018, 04:04 AM   #2
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A 50-amp service has 4 wires with two 120-volt HOT feeds. The service is a STANDARD 120/240 50-amp 3 pole with 4 prongs used for numerous applications.

A 50 amp service can draw 120 or 240 volts. Almost ALL 50-amp wired RV's use both sides of the service separately as 120 volt on each leg.

So your RV being plugged in to a normal 20 amp outlet is only providing 10 amps to each leg of your RV. You'll need to leave the batteries connected in order to have DC power to your lights and what not. The batteries will maintain charge as long as AC power is connected.
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Old 04-19-2018, 04:58 AM   #3
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If they are using adaptors, it should provide power to both legs of the breaker panel.

You have no DC output. If you have lights with the battery connected but not when disconnected your converter is bad or your battery disconnect switch is off.


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Old 04-19-2018, 05:03 AM   #4
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You need to leave the batteries connected. The converter will keep them properly charged. Your AC usage will be limited to 20a total if you are using the stated adapter.

No reason to disconnect them.
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Old 04-19-2018, 05:32 AM   #5
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You are correct... I corrected my post from earlier. Didn't have my coffee yet!
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Old 04-19-2018, 05:39 AM   #6
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With a modern converter, you do not need to have a battery connected. The old ones needed a battery connected to act as a filter as they were crude transformer styles. You converter will run everything but the slides and jacks without a battery. If your converter isn't powering the DC system without a battery, it's bad, wired incorrect or the battery disconnect is off. Tape up your positive lead.
I agree with the others when they say you don't need to unhook the battery. Just check the water level monthly. These new converters don't cook batteries anymore.


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Old 04-19-2018, 06:34 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mopar_Earl View Post
With a modern converter, you do not need to have a battery connected. The old ones needed a battery connected to act as a filter as they were crude transformer styles. You converter will run everything but the slides and jacks without a battery. If your converter isn't powering the DC system without a battery, it's bad, wired incorrect or the battery disconnect is off. Tape up your positive lead.
I agree with the others when they say you don't need to unhook the battery. Just check the water level monthly. These new converters don't cook batteries anymore.


Earl

I think you need the batteries connected in order to have DC power.
I just went and tried mine... I keep it plugged in to my 50 amp service all the time while parked in the driveway.
While plugged in, I disconnect the batteries (with the disconnect switch) and tried the lights... no lights, no fan, no DC power at all to the coach. Switched the batteries back on and I have DC power again.
Perhaps if you physically disconnect the leads from the batteries and keep the disconnect switch on, your converter would supply power. But I doubt that too, as it would sense no feedback voltage from the batteries.
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Old 04-19-2018, 06:37 AM   #8
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Leave the disconnect on. They wire the converter through the disconnect. It's odd, but they do. I changed mine. Turn disconnect off, disconnect battery leads and tape positive lead and turn the disconnect back on.

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