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Old 05-18-2020, 10:33 AM   #1
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12V Electrical System Problems - 2002 Brave 32'

Hi, I'm new to the forum (not new to RVs, however) and am helping some friends with their recently purchased, low mileage 2002 Brave 32' Class A.

Basically, none of the 12V circuits in the coach work, unless you are connected to shore power. No lights come on. Water pump won't run. Nothing on the control panel near the bedroom is active. So, once again, if you are not connected to shore, everything in the coach is dead—if you're connected to shore power, however, everything is good. Here are some additional details:

- The coach batteries are two beefy 6V deep-cycles under one of the entry steps, wired in parallel of course, and they seem to be in good shape: measured yesterday at 13.4v (total) and holding.

- There is a 12V breaker panel (push-in style) over the microwave, and none of those were tripped (which makes sense given that all circuits are fine on shore power).

-Their converter/charger unit is a newer-looking Parallax Power Components unit, model 7445. When connected to shore power, the converter is outputting about 13.6v at the main +- terminals, which sounds right to me. (Owners have told me that they found it covered in cat hair, initially, and they also don't think its little cooling fan every comes on.)

-This rig has a PowerLine 2000 Energy Management System, which I don't have any experience with. Not sure if it's part of the equation on the 12V side, or if it's strictly involved with the 110AC circuits.

What are the likely causes or fixes for this issue? I feel like there's got to be an open switch/fuse/breaker/solenoid somewhere in the mix, but I'm not familiar with this RV model, at all.

Thanks for the help!
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Old 05-18-2020, 11:49 AM   #2
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Okay, sounds like an interesting bug hunt, for sure! So let's get a few nagging questions out of the way first, not to accuse you of anything but to verify so we don't run by something easy?
One is how the 13. 4 was tested. Was the RV plugged in and the charge system running when the battery voltage was checked? This might lead one to believe the battery was good when we were actually seeing the output of the charger. The 13.4 sounds a bit higher than I might expect if it was the battery alone and had set for a bit before testing, so that it was not just the surface charge.
Will do a bit of looking to see what else might be a bug. Staying home anyway!

Step one after the battery might be to check the "battery mode solenoid" on this drawing at sheet six:
http://www.winnebagoind.com/diagram/...ire_139158.pdf
Cut and copied this portion if not handy to look at all the rest:
Says it is inside panel above step, so is that easy to get to? If so check there is battery voltage on the big lugs on each side of the solenoid that would mean it is working and passing here. Sounds like a logical place to start if easy enough to get to it.
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Old 05-18-2020, 12:06 PM   #3
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Definitely, question away... wrong assumptions can easily derail any repair scenario.

I see where you're going with that battery voltage, and it's a good one. I'm 95% sure that I tested them while the converter/charger was powered down (no shore power), but I was 1) running around, 2) trying to get stuff done, and 3) fielding questions from the owner simultaneously. Not a recipe for clearheaded thinking, maybe.

I will verify the battery voltage and report back.

And, if anybody knows of a main disconnect somewhere, please holler. Like I mentioned above, I do not know this rig and the owner's haven't had it long: it could be something very obvious/simple.
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Old 05-18-2020, 12:07 PM   #4
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Also look at the 12Volt panel as it seems to be in the same box above the step? Looks like direct feed from battery to solenoid but a second 16 gauge yellow wire going from solenoid to the panel. Just above the battery shown on drawing.
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Old 05-18-2020, 12:09 PM   #5
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Others answered while I was typing, some of what I suggested has been answered.

I am assuming a "typo" about 6V batteries wired in "parallel". That should be "wired in series".

When you measured the 13.4V at the battery terminals was the shore power disconnected? If the batteries did not have a connection to the converter, then after a few hours off of shore power the voltage will drop to 12.6V for fully charged batteries. That you have 13.4V at the batteries would indicate the converter, or other charging source, is connected to the batteries.

Do you see the 13.6V at the batteries when on shore power and then when shore power is off the voltage drops to whatever voltage you measure at the batteries?

When off of shore power what voltage do you see at the converter? You should see the battery voltage.

Is it possible there is an inverter/charger somewhere that is charging the batteries?

Can you trace out the large battery cable (probably at least #2 AWG) and follow it to the converter (or maybe an inverter/charger)?
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Old 05-18-2020, 01:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morich View Post
Step one after the battery might be to check the "battery mode solenoid" on this drawing at sheet six...
This is very helpful and something that I suspected, and, yes, I think it's pretty straightforward to access that area under the steps.

Definitely need to read up on all this and go back for more/better testing.

Thank you!
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Old 05-18-2020, 01:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by al1florida View Post
I am assuming a "typo" about 6V batteries wired in "parallel". That should be "wired in series"...
Darnit. Correct. Wired in parallel would double their effective capacity, not voltage.

Thanks for the other suggestions in your message; I will have to get back over there and do some more testing, report back.
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12v, battery, brave, breaker, converter/charger, electrical, ems, fuse, problems, solenoid


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