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Old 01-13-2019, 09:00 PM   #1
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Angry Chasing my tail with electrical issues....

Please help lead me in the right direction! I am so stumped after 2 days of trouble shooting an electrical issue in my 2004 Winnebago Vectra. I noticed low power on the house 12v side because my radio was cutting in and out whenever I turned my 12v lights on which were dim. Didn't matter if I was on shore power or generator power the house batteries showed 11.0 volts on my panel. All of the AC side worked perfect at 119-121. But here's the kicker.... The Magnum MS2012 inverter/charger panel shows 13.65V and my solar charger panel shows about the same. So the inverter is only charging in float mode about 1-3 amps. I tested the batteries and they show 13.65 and I tested the battery cables coming into the inverter and they were 13.65. So what would cause a battery system and inverter that should be 13.65 only having 11.0v up on that battery meter on the onplace panel? Another symptom is when I run the generator my AC side works great but the house batteries drop even lower at about 10.9. Shut the generator off and they go up a little. I did start the engine and noticed that the charging rate was up a little but I'm still not getting the 12V I need to run the lights, radio or any of the other 12v stuff. Does anyone have any idea where to start testing after the batteries and inverter? There must be some sort of lead coming from the batteries into the coach and a panel that breaks it all out. I have a 12V panel under the bed but it's just breakers from what I can see. Please help! Leaving on a small vacation this Friday and don't want to be trouble shooting my entire trip. Thanks!
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Old 01-14-2019, 04:11 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aw2657 View Post
Please help lead me in the right direction! I am so stumped after 2 days of trouble shooting an electrical issue in my 2004 Winnebago Vectra. I noticed low power on the house 12v side because my radio was cutting in and out whenever I turned my 12v lights on which were dim. Didn't matter if I was on shore power or generator power the house batteries showed 11.0 volts on my panel. All of the AC side worked perfect at 119-121. But here's the kicker.... The Magnum MS2012 inverter/charger panel shows 13.65V and my solar charger panel shows about the same. So the inverter is only charging in float mode about 1-3 amps. I tested the batteries and they show 13.65 and I tested the battery cables coming into the inverter and they were 13.65. So what would cause a battery system and inverter that should be 13.65 only having 11.0v up on that battery meter on the onplace panel? Another symptom is when I run the generator my AC side works great but the house batteries drop even lower at about 10.9. Shut the generator off and they go up a little. I did start the engine and noticed that the charging rate was up a little but I'm still not getting the 12V I need to run the lights, radio or any of the other 12v stuff. Does anyone have any idea where to start testing after the batteries and inverter? There must be some sort of lead coming from the batteries into the coach and a panel that breaks it all out. I have a 12V panel under the bed but it's just breakers from what I can see. Please help! Leaving on a small vacation this Friday and don't want to be trouble shooting my entire trip. Thanks!
What is the voltage measured with a meter at the house batteries when you are disconnected from shore power and the generator is off?

About your statement: " I tested the batteries and they show 13.65 and I tested the battery cables coming into the inverter and they were 13.65." The 13.6V you are reading would be the charging voltage from the inverter/charger.

A fully charged battery is 12.6V, but a good battery just disconnected from a charger is going to be showing a lot less than 13.6V. Usually about 13.0-13.2V. 11V is a dead battery.

I don't know why the panel is showing 11.x volts. I didn't think the panel would disconnect the charging voltage and actually measure the battery voltage. But I guess it could.

I assume the chassis battery is showing normal voltage???
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Old 01-14-2019, 04:43 PM   #3
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Thanks al1florida, I checked my batteries this morning after they have set for a while and not connected to any power source and they are right at 12.6. I think I have narrowed down my issue to a faulty battery disconnect solenoid that must have just enough corrosion in it to make a connection but not a good connection. After hours of research on the computer I found a few old posts that talked about the house battery disconnect failing and one of the symptoms was the a battery voltage on the oneplace panel was less than the battery voltage reading from the inverter/charger. That was exactly what I was seeing and over the last month it would be different every time. Also flickering lights and very low power to the radio and other 12V lights. I tried flipping the disconnect switch back and forth a couple of times and now I have the same reading on the oneplace panel as I do the Inverter/charger panel at 12.5. So What I am thinking is that the solenoid is working but not like it should. I have both the battery disconnect solenoid and the battery boost solenoid on order from Amazon and when it shows up in the next couple of days I will throw them in and report back. Fingers crossed this should fix a lot of my little annoying 12V issues like charging the batteries quicker too!
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:07 PM   #4
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Do you have the schematics from Winnebago, and do you know how to read them?

Welcome to the Forum!.
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:12 PM   #5
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rgvtexan, yes I did download all the schematics and chased them around. I just wasn't sure where to start with the systems. I used the schematics to find where the battery disconnect solenoid was located and now I have to take a few things apart to test and replace it. Thank goodness Winnebago posts all the schematics online....it's a life saver!
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:35 PM   #6
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As you notice there are different wires from the batteries to the charger/inverter and the house loads. A dirty or loose connection (or contactor) anywhere along this route could be the culprit.
A multimeter is your best friend in this case. Sometimes measuring from the stud to the terminal (or across closed contact) will show a voltage (use a low scale) when it should be zero. When you find this you have found the problem.

Good Luck
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Old 01-14-2019, 06:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aw2657 View Post
Thanks al1florida, I checked my batteries this morning after they have set for a while and not connected to any power source and they are right at 12.6. I think I have narrowed down my issue to a faulty battery disconnect solenoid that must have just enough corrosion in it to make a connection but not a good connection. After hours of research on the computer I found a few old posts that talked about the house battery disconnect failing and one of the symptoms was the a battery voltage on the oneplace panel was less than the battery voltage reading from the inverter/charger. That was exactly what I was seeing and over the last month it would be different every time. Also flickering lights and very low power to the radio and other 12V lights. I tried flipping the disconnect switch back and forth a couple of times and now I have the same reading on the oneplace panel as I do the Inverter/charger panel at 12.5. So What I am thinking is that the solenoid is working but not like it should. I have both the battery disconnect solenoid and the battery boost solenoid on order from Amazon and when it shows up in the next couple of days I will throw them in and report back. Fingers crossed this should fix a lot of my little annoying 12V issues like charging the batteries quicker too!
Sounds you are right on top of this. Making the solenoid work it's contacts several times and clearing up the problem for the moment really points to the solenoid being the problem.

Isn't amazing what you can get from Amazon! A solenoid for an RV and you find it on Amazon. I found my roof A/C motor on Amazon a couple of years ago for about 60% of what the local appliance parts store wanted.
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:22 PM   #8
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While you're in there (if it hasn't been done already) you might want to add a Trik-L-Start to keep the chassis batteries charged up whenever the coach batteries are being charged, as described in this Winnebago Service Tip: 2006-04 Trik-L-Start -
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