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Old 09-14-2018, 01:39 AM   #1
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THOR #13085
Onan 4KY generator charging issues?

I have a 2007 Four Winds Majestic 28A with Onan 4KYFA26100K.

When I start the chassis engine, the voltage taken off the House Battery is 13.6 - 13.8v. But when I start my generator the voltage is around 12.7 - 12.9v. After shutting the gen down and letting the voltage settle it seems to settle at 12.5v. I ran all the test on the converter in the coach and I get up to 13.3vdc and a good 120vac. Why am I not getting power to the battery at 13.3v? I am so confused. I recently replaced the Onan control board and it seems to be working fine. I have a Duracell AGM 100ah battery that is less than 3 mos old.

Any ideas where to troubleshoot? Surely this isnít normal. Right?
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Old 09-14-2018, 03:23 AM   #2
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THOR #2631
Just to be clear, when the generator is running (and after a short delay the transfer switch has operated to now have generator powering the converter with 120VAC) you measured 13.3 VDC on the converter output, but only measured 12.7 at the coach batteries? When you are on shore power (120VAC) and generator is off, what voltage do you measure on the coach batteries?
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Old 09-14-2018, 03:56 AM   #3
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THOR #13085
I need to check shore power again when I get near a place where I can plug in, but if I remember right, shore power gives me the high 13v range on the house battery. I ran this flow chart and it all checked out as it should. But when I step outside and take voltage directly from the battery, I get 12.7-12.9vdc. I hope I am explaining this in proper terms.

I am attempting to attach the flow chart. Hopefully it worked

Low current ---Blown Fuses - NO--- so I removed the polarity fuses and checked DC output. It was at like 13.28 vdc. When plugged back in, I checked the BLUE wire voltage and it was 13.3 vdc as well. But when I take voltage off the 'C' and 'D' wires, it reads what I see on the battery outside.....like 12.7-12.9vdc. Then after powering off gen, the resting voltage is around 12.5vdc. I'm at a loss.


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Old 09-14-2018, 04:47 AM   #4
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Well I am not an expert on either AGM batteries nor your old Parallax 7300 converter unfortunately, but on attached hyper link someone suggests that the old parallax 7300 is not a smart charger and could damage AGM batteries.......but I don't know if those claims are true or who these folks are. But I would re-verify your converter voltages when you are back on shore power and it might be worth considering a modern smart converter that is intended for AGM batteries sooner than later (if the comments are true).


Agm Battery, Parallax 7300 Converter, Cut-Off Switch - Information on the Casita Patriot 13' Travel Trailer - The Casita Club Forums
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Old 09-14-2018, 04:51 AM   #5
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Thank you so much!!! I was actually wondering if this may be the case. I am wondering if I have already damaged the battery as the highest resting voltage is 12.5v now. I will definitely look into that. Any suggestions on a good one that will work for me? I will be looking around but I dont have any experience with this as this is my first RV.
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Old 09-14-2018, 12:29 PM   #6
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Hi Zach, well my 2013 coach still has its original wet cell batteries but we don't do much boondocking.....and I have been using a Progressive Dynamics Intellipower Converter (PD4645 I believe to replace the OEM converter early on). It is a 4 stage converter and works fine for the wet cell batteries......not sure it is AGM compatible though, but it is probably time for me to consider new batteries.....AGM perhaps. Hopefully others who have the PD series converters or some known AGM compatible converters will chime in here.
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Old 09-14-2018, 01:25 PM   #7
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If you are seeing in the 13-14volt range when on Shore power(120v), or via the engine alternator, but only seeing 12ish while on the generator - you may have tripped the generator's breaker, located on the generator itself, which means the generator is running, but not providing any 120v power to the Main electric panel, and therefore to the converter/charger.
12.5 to 12.8 would be 'normal' Volts reading when 'at rest'...when 'off grid', and not being charged.
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Old 09-14-2018, 03:50 PM   #8
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So 12.5v is a good resting voltage for the AGM batteries? I was thinking this was about 80% charge. I keep reading that I should be seeing at least 12.9v. But honestly, I have no experience with these type of deep cycle batteries. I just know my generator should be charging at a higher voltage than 12.8v. I am wondering if I can just use my current converter and just get a charge controller or if I replace the whole thing? Life would have been easier with the regular wet cell batteries. I just didn't want to deal with the MX on them. I'll keep looking for a dual converter/charge controller that will work with the AGM batteries.

@Turner, I am getting a good 120V to the main electric panel. I checked that. Thats why I was confused. I am confused why my converter is stepping down the voltage from the 13.3-13.4v that I am seeing at the polarity fuses to 12.8 to the batteries.
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Old 09-14-2018, 03:56 PM   #9
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AGM uses the same chemistry as standard FLA so fully charged at rest should read 12.6 VDC
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Old 09-14-2018, 03:57 PM   #10
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Our 'stock' wet cell original batteries(4-6v type) are still doing just fine - 85,000+ miles over 4 years and a LOT of dry-camping/overnighting... I'm not sure why so many feel as though they have to somehow 'upgrade' to other types, but that's just me : )
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Old 09-14-2018, 04:10 PM   #11
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Thanks everyone. Yeah, I am new to this so I was just going by what I read and researched. I guess for the time being, I am just going to play this out and see how the battery does. If I trash it, I will look at doing something different. Anyone know how to tell the voltage for state of charge....

ie. 100% = 12.5v
80%. = ?
etc etc..
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Old 09-14-2018, 04:18 PM   #12
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my VOLTS reading, when in use, varies from the 'at rest' 12.5 to 12.8 or so, to a much lower 11.6 to 12.2 when in 'heavy' usage by items, or even temporarily into the 10's if the microwave is run while on the inverter.

if your readings are typically staying between 12.6 down to 11.9 or so, you'll be fine. If you have your AGS set to crank and charge the batteries when they fall to 11.9 or so, you'll also be in good shape. If you have an LBCO setting on your inverter, then set it to about 11.5 to help preserve the batteries by cutting off the inverter, should the gen fail to crank.
Check you SHORE button/setting - as it tells the Charger how many 'max' amps it can make use of when the Charger is in action while on Gen or Shore power. The higher the more it can use, for quicker charging... less if you want to make use of more amps for other things, like air conditioning, without tripping a breaker.
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