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Old 11-15-2020, 10:43 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Vegas 24.1
State: Montana
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THOR #16625
All Batteries are Dead

I bought my 2018 Vegas 24.1 last year. It came with a year's free storage, so I just had them winterize it and store it last year. We are in Montana, so we do get winter. I only went to start it once through the winter. I intended to do it more, but never got around to it. They dewinterized it and I picked it up and it just worked.



This year, we built out a storage area attached to our driveway. I winterized it using all of the wonderful help on this forum. I left it plugged into shore power believing that it would keep the batteries topped up and I wouldn't need to worry about disconnecting them.


I went out today to give it and the generator a run, but all batteries (house and chassis) are all completely dead. I could use some help troubleshooting. There were two things different this year:
- I left it on shore power
- The Axxera radio was replaced with a newer model under warranty because it wouldn't take the firmware update that allowed the radio to play with the turn signal on, etc.


I only mention the radio, because I read here that the radio can drain both sets of batteries.


When I take it off shore power, everything is completely dead. Nothing when I try to start it. Generator won't start. The 50amp breaker beside the battery was tripped, but I don't know when or if that was part of the problem. I still have no power after resetting it.



Will the chassis batteries now charge (assuming they are still good) after resetting the breaker?


Should I rethink leaving it on shore power?


I really didn't want to dig into the dash to get at the chassis battery, but it looks like I will have to.


Any suggestions and answers would be appreciated.
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Old 11-15-2020, 11:59 PM   #2
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Try putting some jumper cables to your house batteries, and make sure that the Use/Store switch is set to "Use".
Once that breaker tripped: the batteries drained from the parasitic losses that are inherent in the system.
Good luck!
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Old 11-16-2020, 01:24 AM   #3
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You might want to check the water level of the batteries if they are flooded lead acid batteries. They may have dried out while stored. Also check to see what year the batteries were produced(coach batteries). They may have outlived their life if they are the original batteries. If they need to be replaced, make sure to photograph each cable connection and mark each cable as to where it belongs before disconnecting them.

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Old 11-16-2020, 02:25 PM   #4
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So was your use/store switch off?

You will need to keep the jumper or manual battery charger on for quite a while to attempt a recovery

If the batteries didn't freeze you might recover them, and per the other post check the water level if flooded
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Old 11-16-2020, 04:00 PM   #5
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THOR #16625
In my coach, the Use/Store switch automatically turns to Use when you plug in shore power. I double-check it anyway.



I checked the water level and topped up. It was down a little bit, but not a lot.


After resetting the breaker, I left it plugged into shore power over night. I will go out and check when I get a chance today. I will also dig out my car charger and hook it up to give the charging a boost.


Thanks for the help.
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Old 11-16-2020, 04:04 PM   #6
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If they are totally dead they're most likely toast. You can try to recharge, but I'd guess they won't keep a charge for any length of time.
If you had the switch in "store" mode that bypasses the converter so no charging will take place. Even with the switch in "store" it doesn't totally disconnect the batteries, the best option to disconnect for storage is remove the negative cable from the battery that goes directly to ground.
As mentioned top off the cells with distilled water, the chassis battery is probably maintenance free so no where to check it & try charging them or take them out to your local auto parts store to be load tested.
If by chance your dealer cheaped out & used marine type batteries that has CCA, MCA or CA listed on them those are hybrid batteries used for starting boat motors, not for rv use, they will not hold up to the constant charging/discharging in a rv.
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Old 11-16-2020, 04:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
...After resetting the breaker, I left it plugged into shore power over night. I will go out and check when I get a chance today. I will also dig out my car charger and hook it up to give the charging a boost.
Thanks for the help.
I hope that you find the batteries, "cocked, locked, and ready to rock!"
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Old 11-16-2020, 06:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
In my coach, the Use/Store switch automatically turns to Use when you plug in shore power. I double-check it anyway.



I checked the water level and topped up. It was down a little bit, but not a lot.


After resetting the breaker, I left it plugged into shore power over night. I will go out and check when I get a chance today. I will also dig out my car charger and hook it up to give the charging a boost.


Thanks for the help.
Most all newer automatic chargers and converters/inverters will not charge a dead battery so that is why you use an old style manual charger or jumpers
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Old 11-16-2020, 06:29 PM   #9
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Same thing happened to us.....USER ERROR!

We had to jump the chassis battery, then we took it on a road trip and it re-charged everything on the way!

We had ours plugged in and figured everything would just re-charge. We were wrong.
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Old 11-16-2020, 06:42 PM   #10
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Old 11-16-2020, 07:30 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
I bought my 2018 Vegas 24.1 last year. It came with a year's free storage, so I just had them winterize it and store it last year. We are in Montana, so we do get winter. I only went to start it once through the winter. I intended to do it more, but never got around to it. They dewinterized it and I picked it up and it just worked.
This year, we built out a storage area attached to our driveway. I winterized it using all of the wonderful help on this forum. I left it plugged into shore power believing that it would keep the batteries topped up and I wouldn't need to worry about disconnecting them.
I went out today to give it and the generator a run, but all batteries (house and chassis) are all completely dead. I could use some help troubleshooting. There were two things different this year:
- I left it on shore power
- The Axxera radio was replaced with a newer model under warranty because it wouldn't take the firmware update that allowed the radio to play with the turn signal on, etc.
I only mention the radio, because I read here that the radio can drain both sets of batteries.
When I take it off shore power, everything is completely dead. Nothing when I try to start it. Generator won't start. The 50amp breaker beside the battery was tripped, but I don't know when or if that was part of the problem. I still have no power after resetting it.
Will the chassis batteries now charge (assuming they are still good) after resetting the breaker?
Should I rethink leaving it on shore power?
I really didn't want to dig into the dash to get at the chassis battery, but it looks like I will have to.
Any suggestions and answers would be appreciated.
The 50 amp circuit breaker in the battery compartment connects the batteries to the use/store (master power) switch which in-turn is connected to the power center's 12 volt fuse panel. If that circuit breaker trips, the power center is disconnected from the batteries, so only the items connected through the other battery compartment circuit breakers could use battery power and only the coach's alternator could charge the batteries. New deep cycle flooded batteries can usually be completely discharged and still be recharged three or four times before they will not retain a useful charge. That is - if they sit fully discharged only for a day or so. Any flooded battery that sits completely discharged for a couple weeks or more is effectively dead because of sulfation. Most computer controlled chargers will not charge dead batteries. The charger needs to see at least 5 to 7 volts across the charger to make sure the battery terminals are not reversed before it will operate. Just connect another 12 volt battery across the terminals to get the charger to turn on. After a couple minutes, you can remove the jumper cables and the jumper battery if the batteries are going to take a charge.
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Old 11-16-2020, 07:52 PM   #12
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Old 11-17-2020, 04:08 AM   #13
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THOR #16625
All three batteries appear to have recovered. It started up tonight and everything seemed to work. I will let it continue to charge on shore power over night and then check the batteries with a multimeter. One of them seems to have a lot of gunk on the top.



What is the best way to test each house battery? I have read some conflicting info about having to separate them from the each other and the coach in order to test them. Is that true?



Completely unrelated problem: I was getting prepared to open up the dash to get to the chassis battery and found an unwelcome sight. The wood piece under the plastic dash covering and computer desk was just covered in mold! Lots of fun. DW did an initial cleanup and bleaching of the area, but now we have to pull up the dash vinyl to see how far it extends under there. I assume that moisture is coming up from below, so I will need to seal it better. I'm glad I caught it.
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Old 11-17-2020, 12:21 PM   #14
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Old 11-17-2020, 02:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
What is the best way to test each house battery? I have read some conflicting info about having to separate them from the each other and the coach in order to test them. Is that true? .
The only sure way to check the battery is by a load test. To use a load tester, the battery should be fully charged and sit for 12 hours (battery manufactures recommend 24 hours) Each battery should be tested as an individual - no cables attached but it does not have to be removed from the vehicle. The load tester simply puts a load known on the battery for a few minutes and looks at the voltage drop.
You can take the battery to the FLAPS and then load test the battery or you can spend a few dollars and do it yourself.
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Old 11-17-2020, 06:44 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
All three batteries appear to have recovered. It started up tonight and everything seemed to work. I will let it continue to charge on shore power over night and then check the batteries with a multimeter. One of them seems to have a lot of gunk on the top.



What is the best way to test each house battery? I have read some conflicting info about having to separate them from the each other and the coach in order to test them. Is that true?



Completely unrelated problem: I was getting prepared to open up the dash to get to the chassis battery and found an unwelcome sight. The wood piece under the plastic dash covering and computer desk was just covered in mold! Lots of fun. DW did an initial cleanup and bleaching of the area, but now we have to pull up the dash vinyl to see how far it extends under there. I assume that moisture is coming up from below, so I will need to seal it better. I'm glad I caught it.
3% peroxide in a spray bottle is very effective for any type mold/mildew and doesn't have all the corrosion issues with bleach gassing off
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Old 11-21-2020, 08:11 PM   #17
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I had to replace my Axerra radio by a Pioneer. The only problem I had is when I would turn off the RV, radio was still running. So even with shutting it down manually we found out that it was draining my batteries. You may want to check this.
I went to a pro shop and they did correct this wire connection issue.

Without using the shore power you may want to consider using an intelligent charger.
That's what I did and my batteries are always full charge . House batteries in store mode.
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Old 11-21-2020, 08:53 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
All three batteries appear to have recovered. It started up tonight and everything seemed to work. I will let it continue to charge on shore power over night and then check the batteries with a multimeter. One of them seems to have a lot of gunk on the top.



What is the best way to test each house battery? I have read some conflicting info about having to separate them from the each other and the coach in order to test them. Is that true?



Completely unrelated problem: I was getting prepared to open up the dash to get to the chassis battery and found an unwelcome sight. The wood piece under the plastic dash covering and computer desk was just covered in mold! Lots of fun. DW did an initial cleanup and bleaching of the area, but now we have to pull up the dash vinyl to see how far it extends under there. I assume that moisture is coming up from below, so I will need to seal it better. I'm glad I caught it.
I would use an electronic battery tester. I have one of the load testers but it doesn't give as much information as the electronic one. Being that they were discharged so far the internal resistance might have gone up. I have two of these and they work great https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 11-22-2020, 12:11 AM   #19
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I leave my RVs plugged into shore power all the time. Never an issue.

When I used trailers or pickup camper I didn’t bother. They charged on first trip.

My last three rigs (pickup camper, Class C, and Class A) have generators which I run once a month if stored for more than a month.

Now retired so rarely leave RV more than a month. Death Valley after Thansgiving and then south again forca couple months mid January.

I get a lot of practice winterizing, though.
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Old 11-22-2020, 12:38 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EarlyRV View Post
All three batteries appear to have recovered. It started up tonight and everything seemed to work. I will let it continue to charge on shore power over night and then check the batteries with a multimeter. One of them seems to have a lot of gunk on the top.



What is the best way to test each house battery? I have read some conflicting info about having to separate them from the each other and the coach in order to test them. Is that true?



Completely unrelated problem: I was getting prepared to open up the dash to get to the chassis battery and found an unwelcome sight. The wood piece under the plastic dash covering and computer desk was just covered in mold! Lots of fun. DW did an initial cleanup and bleaching of the area, but now we have to pull up the dash vinyl to see how far it extends under there. I assume that moisture is coming up from below, so I will need to seal it better. I'm glad I caught it.
So was your issue, you put in Store mode thinking that is what you do when you intend to Store the RV, but for good extra precaution you hooked up Shore Power; but when you come back all batteries are dead?

If so; can someone tell me what is the purpose of Store mode, given the RV does not come with disconnect switch?

Should the Switch be called Use & Temporary Shutdown of most all power?

Thus far I have only used Store Mode when I was lazy and wanted to quickly turn everything off, or in few cases where I parked overnight someplace but not using the coach. I put in store mode so all was shutdown.

I think it defies logic that the concept of store does not allow for using the coach's charging systems.
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