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Old 03-26-2020, 04:14 PM   #1
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THOR #14428
Generator and house battery issues

Hello all. I have a Thor Challenger. So I have determined my house batteries are shot and need to replace. However, while I assumed they had just drained down I tried starting my generator to no avail. I put a jumpstart box on one of the batteries and the Generator started right up. So I thought I would leave it running for a bit to charge up the house battery. After about 30-45 minutes the generator shut off. So I went back later and tried the same thing. Used the box and jumped the generator and 30-45 minutes had the same result.

So my question is, could the generator be dying from the battery issues or is it something different? It would seem to me once the generator is running the house batteries wouldn’t be holding it back right? Thanks for the help.
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:26 PM   #2
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I just had this same situation, the battery was dead, could not hold a charge. Changed out, back in business.
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:29 PM   #3
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THOR #14428
Thanks so much.
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:42 PM   #4
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it almost sounds like your generator is stopping because it's being told to, not because of the house batteries, as their levels would not prohibit it from continuing to run - it's simply a running engine.

now, could it be that you have a setting on your Magnum panel, called 'Run Time' under the AGS settings, that is asking it to 'stop' after 30 minutes? Has this issue of the generator stopping happened before, under more normal conditions?

You shouldn't have to 'jump start' your House batteries from an external source - Thor provides an 'AUX', or otherwise called an 'emergency switch' near the dash area, that TIES TOGETHER both the Chassis and House batteries, for this very situation, where both battery banks can help start either the Generator, or the RV Engine, if either battery bank is low.
PRESS and HOLD the AUX switch while you then START the generator.

I would not necessarily suggest that just because this is happening that your House Batteries are 'dead', they are just low, and it looks like the Generator's output, thru the ATS(auto transfer switch) is not getting power to the Battery CHARGER.
Do the House Batteries get charged while you are plugged into Shore Power?

If not, either condition could be caused by a tripped INVERTER MAIN breaker, or a loose wire at that Breaker, or even a loose wire at the Inverter, itself.
Is all the outlets working when on Generator or Shore Power? IF so, the power is getting to and thru the Inverter, and the breaker would not be an issue.

Is the BATTERY CHARGER actually 'ON' at the Magnum Panel?


Once you get this figured out, and have constant Battery Charging, once the batteries are up to 'full', or around 12.8 volts, with generator or shore power off, then you can go into EQUALIZE mode at the Magnum Panel, giving the House Batteries a 'equalizing' charging of 4 hours to the battery bank, making them all 'equal' in condition.
You may have one battery that has some bad cells, or even a single bad cell, which can create conditions that don't allow proper charging... or they may just have been drained beyond what it takes to crank over the generator, and once fully charged again, should be fine.

I would NOT suddenly replace the House Battery bank 'just because' you are having an issue, which might have nothing to do with them.... that's an expensive and time consuming aggravation if not warranted.
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:51 PM   #5
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THOR #14428
Quote:
Originally Posted by TurnerFam View Post
it almost sounds like your generator is stopping because it's being told to, not because of the house batteries, as their levels would not prohibit it from continuing to run - it's simply a running engine.

now, could it be that you have a setting on your Magnum panel, called 'Run Time' under the AGS settings, that is asking it to 'stop' after 30 minutes? Has this issue of the generator stopping happened before, under more normal conditions?

You shouldn't have to 'jump start' your House batteries from an external source - Thor provides an 'AUX', or otherwise called an 'emergency switch' near the dash area, that TIES TOGETHER both the Chassis and House batteries, for this very situation, where both battery banks can help start either the Generator, or the RV Engine, if either battery bank is low.
PRESS and HOLD the AUX switch while you then START the generator.

I would not necessarily suggest that just because this is happening that your House Batteries are 'dead', they are just low, and it looks like the Generator's output, thru the ATS(auto transfer switch) is not getting power to the Battery CHARGER.
Do the House Batteries get charged while you are plugged into Shore Power?

If not, either condition could be caused by a tripped INVERTER MAIN breaker, or a loose wire at that Breaker, or even a loose wire at the Inverter, itself.
Is all the outlets working when on Generator or Shore Power? IF so, the power is getting to and thru the Inverter, and the breaker would not be an issue.

Is the BATTERY CHARGER actually 'ON' at the Magnum Panel?


Once you get this figured out, and have constant Battery Charging, once the batteries are up to 'full', or around 12.8 volts, with generator or shore power off, then you can go into EQUALIZE mode at the Magnum Panel, giving the House Batteries a 'equalizing' charging of 4 hours to the battery bank, making them all 'equal' in condition.
You may have one battery that has some bad cells, or even a single bad cell, which can create conditions that don't allow proper charging... or they may just have been drained beyond what it takes to crank over the generator, and once fully charged again, should be fine.

I would NOT suddenly replace the House Battery bank 'just because' you are having an issue, which might have nothing to do with them.... that's an expensive and time consuming aggravation if not warranted.

Thanks for the info. Yes the generator has always worked fine. And like I said it seems to run fine once it was started. But unless it is running I have zero power to MH. None of the indicator lights work. Once I started the generator, I checked the battery level on the info panel and it said full. So I immediately thought, well the battery was too low to start the generator but now that it is running, it has charged up the batteries. Came back from a walk and noticed the generator wasn’t running. Had the same issues again. No house battery power. Won’t start Generator again.

I tried holding down the emergency start and got nothing. The only way I could get the generator to start was to use the jump box.
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:53 PM   #6
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TurnerFam is probably right, I’m sorry I didn’t pay attention to turning off in 30 minutes, just the not holding a charge part. I checked and I have running time setting. Sorry.
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:09 PM   #7
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Your batteries will not charge from the generator unless the latching relay for your USE/STORE switch is in USE.

The fact that your "battery" indicator shows Full when the generator is running and lights, etc work just shows the converter is supplying 12 VDC to the DC buss, but that voltage (and charging current) will not get to your batteries unless you are in USE.

Take a voltmeter and measure the voltage at your batteries when the generator is running. I'm betting it is very low.
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:16 PM   #8
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THOR #14428
So I checked the AGS settings and the generator was set for an hour. Which is about the right time frame. But why all of a sudden would that be that way? I have ran my generator for several days straight while at a ski lodge with no power? So why now is it shutting off? I still get no start even holding down the emergency start button. I still think my batteries aren’t very strong but not sure if that’s an issue or not. I haven’t been anywhere to hook up tp power, but I am heading there today.
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:19 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by 16ACE27 View Post
Your batteries will not charge from the generator unless the latching relay for your USE/STORE switch is in USE.

The fact that your "battery" indicator shows Full when the generator is running and lights, etc work just shows the converter is supplying 12 VDC to the DC buss, but that voltage (and charging current) will not get to your batteries unless you are in USE.

Take a voltmeter and measure the voltage at your batteries when the generator is running. I'm betting it is very low.
I know I had it in USE mode because I left one light on...a light above the kitchen just so i could see it from inside the house to make sure everything was still on. When the generator kicked off, the light went out as well.
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:38 PM   #10
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THOR #14428
OK so I think I have an idea of the situation. But there’s one hangup up that doesn’t make sense to me. I still have a suspicion that the batteries are probably shot I need to be replaced. That would explain the generator not starting. The a SG switch was sent to an hour, so that would explain the generator shutting off. Since I don’t believe the batteries are any good I think after they shut off it’s not holding any charge so that explains why I can’t restart it. I still have a suspicion that the batteries are probably shot I need to be replaced. That would explain the generator not starting. The a SG switch was set to an hour, so that would explain the generator shutting off. Since I don’t believe the batteries are any good I think after they shut off it’s not holding any charge so that explains why I can’t restart it. All of this would make sense except for one question I have which is why would the generator run for hours and even days in the past and not turn off after an hour but now it is? If this is easily explained then I think the rest of my problems all fall in line. Thank you all for the help I really do appreciate it
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:53 PM   #11
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With my situation, when the generator turned off I put a voltage meter on the battery and it was 10.6 V. and would not restart the generator, I had to start the motorhome to restart the generator. It didn’t make a difference how long the generator ran for, the battery was just dead. With the new battery it’s back to the way it should be.
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Old 03-26-2020, 06:01 PM   #12
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With the engine running I still can’t start the generator.
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Old 03-26-2020, 06:04 PM   #13
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Is the main switch on?
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Old 03-26-2020, 06:41 PM   #14
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The engine running has nothing to do with starting the generator, it's likely that your store use switch near the entrance door is in the down or store position therefore not providing any charging to your house batteries
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Old 03-26-2020, 06:41 PM   #15
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And you have no converter, you have an integrated battery charger/inverter, which essentially does the same functions
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Old 03-26-2020, 06:43 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erockster20 View Post
I know I had it in USE mode because I left one light on...a light above the kitchen just so i could see it from inside the house to make sure everything was still on. When the generator kicked off, the light went out as well.
Have you checked the battery voltage with a multimeter when the generator was running? When it wasn't?

Good help doesn't come from guesses and assumptions
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Old 03-26-2020, 07:32 PM   #17
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On my unit when the battery was dead, I started the engine and that provided the voltage to start the generator. Didn’t charge anything, just started the generator.
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