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Old 04-28-2017, 05:58 PM   #1
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Axis House batteries not charging on shore power in Use mode

We keep our Axis in storage plugged into shore power with the Use switch on. The other day when I brought it home to install the new sink I noticed the light over the sink kind of flickering, very subtly. Today when I brought it home I went to turn on the radio in the bedroom and the display is off and it won't power on. All house lights come on, but also flickering now.
Can someone help us newbies step through troubleshooting this? I have it here at the house now and want to get this figured out if possible! Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-28-2017, 06:22 PM   #2
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flickering lights? syou may have some loose wiring..... the main wiring box is under the passenger side bed.
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Old 04-28-2017, 06:48 PM   #3
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I call it flickering... may be more like pulsing...
Here's a video of what I see.
PS - I notice the video I uploaded from my iPhone won't playback on this site on my iPhone or iPad, but it will on my Macbook.
Attached Files
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Old 04-28-2017, 07:19 PM   #4
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I reset the GFCI in the bathroom and the house lights no longer flicker/pulse so we're making progress. Could this GFCI prevent the house batteries from charging? Bedroom radio still has no power.
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Old 04-28-2017, 08:20 PM   #5
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I switched from Use to Store and back to Use & tried the lights again and they flicker/pulse again. If I switch back to Store then hold it a few seconds after switching to Use, the lights come on strong and look normal with no flickering. Am I just not holding the switch long enough when I put it in Use mode?
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Old 04-28-2017, 09:44 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by TexAxis
Am I just not holding the switch long enough when I put it in Use mode?
If your coach is wired correctly holding the switch shouldn't make a difference. It simply controls a solenoid on/off. Holding it down doesn't make it "more on".
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Old 04-28-2017, 10:21 PM   #7
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If you haven't done it already, I'd start at very beginning by checking battery voltage to determine whether the battery is indeed getting charged or not. Try checking voltage with RV plugged in and also without being plugged in. Don't run engine during this test to keep alternator out of it.

If battery is low, then need to focus why it's not charging. If battery is fully charged, then problem is obviously downstream of battery.
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Old 04-28-2017, 11:12 PM   #8
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If you haven't done it already, I'd start at very beginning by checking battery voltage to determine whether the battery is indeed getting charged or not. Try checking voltage with RV plugged in and also without being plugged in. Don't run engine during this test to keep alternator out of it.
Thanks Chance. I just checked voltage unplugged from power and it's 9.18 volts on both batteries. I'm getting ready to take it back to storage and will check voltage again once I have it plugged in to shore power.
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Old 04-29-2017, 12:24 AM   #9
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I drove the RV 7 miles back to storage and tested again with engine off, batteries read 12.88 and 12.86, and wall display showed them fully charged as well (earlier at home display showed just 1 light on). Driving it charged them, but why isn't shore power charging them? What can I check next?
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:05 AM   #10
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With the coach plugged into shore power what voltage do you have at the batteries? Is the Converter breaker tripped. The voltage you saw after a 7 mile drive is surface charge, the batteries didn't have enough time to charge.
With the alternator a dead battery, and 9+ volts is dead, will take several hours to charge and it might not hold the charge.
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:10 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by TexAxis View Post
I drove the RV 7 miles back to storage and tested again with engine off, batteries read 12.88 and 12.86, and wall display showed them fully charged as well (earlier at home display showed just 1 light on). Driving it charged them, but why isn't shore power charging them? What can I check next?
More important, to rule out other issues, were the lights still flickering and radio still having issues, or were they working ok with higher battery voltage?



The next thing I'd check is breaker feeding 115-Volt AC power to converter. You need to determine if converter is working -- sounds like it may not be. But shouldn't assume anything. Suspect anything but verify before ruling out.

Once plugged in, make sure that your RV is actually getting 115-Volt power. Microwave display is an easy indicator I use as long as it can only get power from shore or generator.
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:21 AM   #12
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Like Chance said, I would also be suspicious of the converter, or inverter, if equipped. I think the use store switch is engaged in use, which leads to, either power going to the converter isn't there, or the converter itself is failing.
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:45 AM   #13
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I checked the panel below the fridge and no breakers, including the converter, had tripped.

Lights and bedroom radio worked fine at higher battery voltage.

Unfortunately I didn't know about surface charge so I didn't check voltage once plugged in. I'll do that when I return over the weekend.

Microwave display is on when connected to shore power.

Aside from checking to make sure the breaker isn't tripped, how do I check the converter?
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Old 04-29-2017, 02:46 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by TexAxis View Post

....cut....

Aside from checking to make sure the breaker isn't tripped, how do I check the converter?
Easy first step is to check the voltage it's outputting to batteries. A problem you may encounter is if the batteries are fully charged when you get back, you may not be able to determine for sure. A better test is to check battery voltage after partial drain and then after the converter is powered.


Also keep in mind battery could be bad or not holding enough charge -- unlikely but possible. Did you also check water level in battery? Is it possible battery arrived charged to your home but loss charge while there, making your lights and radio not work right?
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Old 04-29-2017, 03:07 AM   #15
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Easy first step is to check the voltage it's outputting to batteries.
And I do this by checking voltage at the batteries?

Quote:
A problem you may encounter is if the batteries are fully charged when you get back, you may not be able to determine for sure. A better test is to check battery voltage after partial drain and then after the converter is powered.
I'll do this and report back.

Quote:
Also keep in mind battery could be bad or not holding enough charge -- unlikely but possible. Did you also check water level in battery? Is it possible battery arrived charged to your home but loss charge while there, making your lights and radio not work right?
I didn't check water level on batteries. I tried the back radio and kitchen light when I first got home and the radio was already dead and the light was dim & flickering so I think my batteries were already discharged when I arrived home.
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Old 04-29-2017, 03:10 AM   #16
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Easy first step is to check the voltage it's outputting to batteries. A problem you may encounter is if the batteries are fully charged when you get back, you may not be able to determine for sure. A better test is to check battery voltage after partial drain and then after the converter is powered.

...
Put the use/store switch in 'Store' - and then measure the voltage on the output side of the converter... Should be at least 13v.
(Being in 'Store' prevents reading battery voltage... replaced one for a neighbor recently that was outputting well under 12v. Theirs was in an outside bay and easily accessible (non-Thor rig).)
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Old 04-29-2017, 03:30 AM   #17
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Put the use/store switch in 'Store' - and then measure the voltage on the output side of the converter... Should be at least 13v.
(Being in 'Store' prevents reading battery voltage... replaced one for a neighbor recently that was outputting well under 12v. Theirs was in an outside bay and easily accessible (non-Thor rig).)
The reason I don't like doing that myself is that I once had a converter that couldn't regulate voltage with bad battery. Opening the switch would be equal to an open circuit or a completely dead battery. It's possible newer converters may output correct voltage without a battery connected as a load, but I don't know that for sure. Electronics can be finicky.
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Old 04-29-2017, 10:43 AM   #18
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The reason I don't like doing that myself is that I once had a converter that couldn't regulate voltage with bad battery. Opening the switch would be equal to an open circuit or a completely dead battery. It's possible newer converters may output correct voltage without a battery connected as a load, but I don't know that for sure. Electronics can be finicky.
I would say that converter should be replaced...
How many people come here that have run their rig on shore power with the switch in 'store' - finding it didn't charge their batteries?
Other than not charging batteries - there is no warning about not be able to run in that mode.
If the converter can't handle that condition - it should be replaced.
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Old 04-29-2017, 10:50 AM   #19
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I would say that converter should be replaced...
How many people come here that have run their rig on shore power with the switch in 'store' - finding it didn't charge their batteries?
Other than not charging batteries - there is no warning about not be able to run in that mode.
If the converter can't handle that condition - it should be replaced.
I think Chance's point is that some converters are designed to gracefully handle that situation without causing damage to the converter. Granted I'd expect that feature in a good one, not the junk Thor installs LOL.
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Old 04-29-2017, 12:33 PM   #20
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I would say that converter should be replaced...
How many people come here that have run their rig on shore power with the switch in 'store' - finding it didn't charge their batteries?
Other than not charging batteries - there is no warning about not be able to run in that mode.
Doesn't the switch have to be in USE while on shore power to charge the house batteries?
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