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Old 10-09-2016, 12:07 PM   #1
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Motor batteries going dead

We just got our 2005 Journey 36g this summer. If the coach is not being used for about 2 weeks or more, the motor batteries keep going dead. At first we were parking it outside, and now its inside when we are not on the road. I have replaced the batteries and turn everything off when not using it. It is even plugged into 120v. It doesn't seem to matter if it's stored inside our outside, the motor batteries keep going dead. What am i missing?
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Old 10-09-2016, 12:13 PM   #2
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We just got our 2005 Journey 36g this summer. If the coach is not being used for about 2 weeks or more, the motor batteries keep going dead. At first we were parking it outside, and now its inside when we are not on the road. I have replaced the batteries and turn everything off when not using it. It is even plugged into 120v. It doesn't seem to matter if it's stored inside our outside, the motor batteries keep going dead. What am i missing?
The answer is to get a Trik-L-Start, or similar device. A lot of motorhomes are not set up to keep the motor batteries charged when connected to shore power.
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Old 10-09-2016, 12:14 PM   #3
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Dead Battery

Does your rig have a battery control center box? It possibly does. This is box that controls all battery charging, and power disbursements to all of the batteries, coach and chassis.

They have a tendency to fail and are not cheap, maybe $800 or so.
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Old 10-09-2016, 12:16 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum.

Small draws from the dash radio , engine control module , trans controller , two to three weeks is about average, for chassis battery drain.
Some coaches don't charge the chassis batteries , when on shore power and require installation of a trickle-start to charge the batteries , or if the coach isn't on power when stored ; a full chassis battery disconnect.
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Old 10-09-2016, 12:31 PM   #5
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Here's the Winnebago Service Tip on adding a Trik-L-Start to keep the chassis batteries charged whenever the coach batteries are being charged: 2006-04 Trik-L-Start -

(Note that the LSLProducts link in the document is out of date--here's the correct one: Ultra TRIK-L-START Starting Battery Charger/Maintainer)
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Old 10-09-2016, 07:24 PM   #6
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Trick-L-start solved this problem for me.

It is easy to install ... it took me longer to remove the screws from the fuse box cover than it did to install it ... the directions are easy to follow

It will be the best dollars you will spend on your rig
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Old 10-09-2016, 09:59 PM   #7
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Our 03's battery will last about 3 weeks before going dead. Solar charger helped extend the time but i still found the battery discharged a few times. Solved the problem by installing a battery disconnect in the battery compartment. Haven't had a problem since, well, except for that one time when i forgot to actually use the switch.

Yours is probably like mine in that shore power (the converter) doesn't charge the chassis battery. Since you have power available, the Trik L Start sounds like the way to go.
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Old 10-11-2016, 05:33 PM   #8
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Yes our battery goes dead to so I installed a battery disconnect and that solved the problem.
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Old 10-11-2016, 08:42 PM   #9
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We plugged our Battery saver in back beside the bed and ran the wire up to the batteries when we had our 36G
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Old 10-11-2016, 10:13 PM   #10
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You should have a BIRD unit in your MH that keeps all batteries charged when on shore power or when the engine is running.
"Intellitec's BIRD is a Bi-Directional Isolator Relay Delay
Bi-Directional Isolator Relay

Charging batteries in an RV application.
When the coach is being driven, batteries will be charged from the engine's
alternator.
When the coach is plugged into shore power,batteries will be charged from the
converter or inverter/charger.
If neither battery is being charged, the batteries are fully isolated.
The controller also senses heavy load so neither battery to prevent the wrong battery from being inadvertently discharged."

That is one post from this irv2.com thread
My 2000 Winnebago has one(it was bad when we acquired the MH), yours should have one too.
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Old 10-16-2016, 02:44 PM   #11
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Thank you all for the info. I have purchased A Trik-l-Start and can't wait to get it installed.
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Old 11-06-2016, 12:32 PM   #12
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Does anyone know if the installation in the same on the 04 36g as the newer versions? I think I need one of these on my MH


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Old 11-06-2016, 12:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by throbbin367 View Post
Does anyone know if the installation in the same on the 04 36g as the newer versions? I think I need one of these on my MH
throbbin367
Is the installation of WHAT "the same on the 04 36g as the newer versions"?
Wondering
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Old 11-06-2016, 01:03 PM   #14
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The trickl start. I read through the link above about the Winnebago service bulletin and it only talks about p and s models


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Old 11-06-2016, 01:49 PM   #15
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I've gone through the same issue with our '08 Adventurer and discovered that the TV/ Radio speaker switch is the culprit. If you leave the switch in the TV position, a relay in this circuit draws aprox. .25 amps from your coach batteries. The fix is to remember to switch it to Radio when you are not using the RV. Unfortunately this fix is only as good as my memory.
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Old 11-06-2016, 02:51 PM   #16
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Does anyone know if the installation in the same on the 04 36g as the newer versions? I think I need one of these on my MH...
Yes, it's the same. Page 3 of the Front End Wiring Installation diagram for your coach shows the electrical box with the solenoids referenced by the Trik-L-Start install pdf.
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Old 11-06-2016, 03:04 PM   #17
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Thank you. I think I'll be ordering one of these this week and get it installed before the weather gets very cold


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Old 11-06-2016, 05:25 PM   #18
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I've gone through the same issue with our '08 Adventurer and discovered that the TV/ Radio speaker switch is the culprit. If you leave the switch in the TV position, a relay in this circuit draws aprox. .25 amps from your coach batteries. The fix is to remember to switch it to Radio when you are not using the RV. Unfortunately this fix is only as good as my memory.
On our 2003 I found the steps are also on the chassis battery. Not thinking about it and opening and closing door uses power. I actually just installed a "battery Tender" for the chassis battery for the winter so this should help in the summer also when plugged in.
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Old 11-06-2016, 08:14 PM   #19
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We had a Battery Tender on our 04 36G, he had it plugged in beside the bed and ran the wires through to the batteries.
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Old 11-06-2016, 10:29 PM   #20
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Thank you. I think I'll be ordering one of these this week and get it installed before the weather gets very cold


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Throbbin367,
There are quite a few on here that think all motor homes are built and equipped the same way when it comes to batteries and charging. Well, it just aint so. Winne and Itasca, for years, had no such thing as the "BIRD" system. At least most of the diesels didn't. The system they use that Chris has referred to many times, is actually very simple. There's no electronic thinking.

Without going into all the history, it wasn't until late '05 or early '06 that Winne and Itasca started installing the "Trik-L-Start" from the factory. Prior to that, many, many folks were constantly battling the dead-chassis batteries problem after their coaches had been sitting for even short periods of time. As has been explained, parasitic loads cause many issues like this to happen.

So, if a person knows for sure that there is NO CHASSIS BATTERY charging during shore power, and it's a Winne or Itasca product of the era we're speaking of, then either the Trik-L-Start or, the newer better unit, the Amp-L-Start can very easily installed. There are numerous ways to install it including the way Winne does it in it's bulletin.

By the way, neither the Trik-L-Start or, the Amp-L-Start is a battery charger. All it is, is a small box, about 1/2 the size of cigarette pack, that is connected between the house batteries and the chassis batteries. What it does is this. Normally, on diesel coach, the inverter/charger handles charging the house batteries duties. Now, when the the charging side of that inverter/charger is charging the chassis batteries, that little black box, is seeing the difference in voltage, between the house batteries and the chassis batteries. When it sees .5V difference between the two sets, it goes into action.

What it does exactly is, it SIPHONS off, a portion of the amperage that is heading towards the house batteries, and sends it to the chassis batteries. The Trik-L-Start limits a maximum amount of no more than 5 amps, to be utilized for the chassis batteries. The big brother, the Amp-L-Start, limits 15 amps to be siphoned off and sent to the chassis batteries.

You'll see my installation of the Amp-L-Start below. It was insanely simple on mine. It has a series of LEDs on it that, correspond with whatever action it's in control of at the time. To me, there is no other and simpler way of taking control of keeping your chassis batteries charged, while on shore power. It is a permanent, simple and reasonably cost system.

Scott

Pic #1 is my electrical bay and, the area in the upper right is where the Amp-L-Start is to be installed.
Pics #2 and #3 show it installed. Doesn't take up any room.



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