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Old 05-20-2015, 12:36 AM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Chateau
State: Ontario
Posts: 2
THOR #2024
Winter battery storage class c chateau

In previous years my 1988 Ford motorhome was stored outside. I kept it plugged in and in the spring both batteries were still charged and I had no problem starting the engine.

This past winter my 2008 chateau class c was plugged in as I have done in the past.
Went out today and found the auxiliary battery was charged but the chassis battery was dead. Charged it up and then I could start the engine.

It would seem that the chassis battery does not accept power thru the auxiliary battery while plugged in. Is this correct?
If so do I have to remove the chassis battery and bring inside in the winter?
Can anyone answer this question?
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:10 AM   #2
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: 2011 Four Winds 28Z
State: Michigan
Posts: 1,274
THOR #531
I don't think Thor designs the coaches to charge the engine battery from the coach battery. However, the coach battery should charge through the engine alternator when it is running.

There should be an emergency start switch that allows you to start the engine from the coach battery though.

I think they opted for charging the coach battery via the alternator rather than charging the engine battery via the coach battery, as they provided an emergency engine start off the coach battery.

I live in Michigan, so I might experience similar winters as you do. I start my coach in the winter time about once a month, and that is sufficient to keep the engine battery charged.

This might not be sufficient for some of the Class A coaches, but the E series Class C coaches do not seem to have as many "parasitic loads" on the engine battery (stereo, etc.).

I also start the genny at the same time (under a 50% load), as if you don't periodically run the genny, you may have problems down the road.
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:27 AM   #3
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Brand: Still Looking
Model: Fleetwood Flair 31E
State: New York
Posts: 314
THOR #2025
I'm running into the same issue. I looked at the service manual and didn't see anything regarding shore power and chassis battery charging. I recently installed a 30 line for my coach thinking it was going to charge my chassis...not. The shore power only seems to keep my house batteries fresh. At the moment, I am doing research on The Echo Charge...check it out on Amazon. It may be a solution for this problem.
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Old 05-20-2015, 04:29 PM   #4
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 34E
State: California
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THOR #937
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Originally Posted by FW28z View Post
I don't think Thor designs the coaches to charge the engine battery from the coach battery......
It is possibly different based on the year of manufacture, and the model.

On some late model Thor products the power converter charges both the house and chassis batteries when connected to shore power.
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Old 05-20-2015, 05:24 PM   #5
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Brand: Entegra
Model: Entegra Accolade 37TS
State: Virginia
Posts: 3,362
THOR #1469
From page 96 of the latest version of the Thor Owner's Manual for Class B+, Class C and Class A gas:

"When the motorhome engine is not running, the chassis and auxiliary batteries are kept separated from each other within the electrical system through the use of a battery isolating controller."

Also, page 100 has a statement which reads:

"When stopped at a campsite that allows you use of the shoreline, the 120 volt electrical system will recharge your auxiliary battery."

These statements tell me the chassis battery is not charged when connected to shore power.

Also, the manual gets into a relatively detailed description of the procedures required for batteries during winter storage.
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Old 05-20-2015, 05:45 PM   #6
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THOR #2025
I called Thor today and they confirmed that shorepower will not send any trickle charge to engine battery. Nada. Very nice folks at Thor.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:53 PM   #7
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Chateau
State: Ontario
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THOR #2024
Thanks for all the feedback.
I live in Ontario so I guess this winter I will just take the battery out and store inside. I have two old cars that I have to do this with as well.

Still can not understand why Thor built the charging this way. My old Ford Royal Classic charged both batteries from the plug in power.
That was great when motorhome sat for extended periods in cold weather. No problems with batteries.
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:14 PM   #8
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THOR #2025
I'm ordering the Echo Charge from Amazon. I tracked down the installation instructions from the website and it looks really easy.
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Old 05-21-2015, 01:49 AM   #9
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State: Virginia
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THOR #1469
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Originally Posted by Bwallace View Post
Thanks for all the feedback.
I live in Ontario so I guess this winter I will just take the battery out and store inside. I have two old cars that I have to do this with as well.

Still can not understand why Thor built the charging this way. My old Ford Royal Classic charged both batteries from the plug in power.
That was great when motorhome sat for extended periods in cold weather. No problems with batteries.
My previous coach was a Forest River and it functioned in the same way. This is the way other manufacturers have their systems set so Thor is not the only ones.
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