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Old 06-08-2018, 07:00 PM   #1
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Battery charging

I am on shore power at my house and there was a post on here about how to throw the house battery switch to let the shore power charge the battery as well. I check with my meter and it does jump it up to a small bit. My concern is this. Since it is shore power and not a trickle charger which will shut off when fully charged is this running the risk of over charging the battery?
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:07 PM   #2
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Someone could correct me but I think your converter will not allow it to "overcharge"
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:07 PM   #3
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If shore power could cook a battery: mine would have been toast a long time ago!
I'm pretty sure that they've got this sort of thing all figured out by now...

...pretty sure...
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:16 PM   #4
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Assuming you have a Thor class A of modern vintage, make sure the store/use switch is in the USE position and the system will take care of the batteries if it is operating normally. All modern Thor Class As come with a three stage converter. The last stage is a floating charge of 13.4/5 volts. Min voltage needed to charge a flooded battery is 13.4 volts. If you have an inverter you can check the house battery's condition by turning the inverter and observing the battery voltage. If no inverter, then you need a volt meter to check the house battery. 13.4/5 volts is good; less than that is bad. The converter system also includes a bi-directional relay which should also keep the chassis battery charged. Be sure an check the water level every 30 days or so.
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:37 PM   #5
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Thanks for a simple, and very good explanation!
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Old 06-08-2018, 08:01 PM   #6
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Sorry no class A, I have always been a straight C student so I figured why stray.
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Old 06-08-2018, 08:39 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Doc McCoy View Post
Sorry no class A, I have always been a straight C student so I figured why stray.
Thanks Jim, good, simple explanation!
Same batteries, same procedure. Whether a honor student or the straight C student
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Old 06-08-2018, 09:13 PM   #8
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Ok, if the system is designed to prevent overcharging, then what's going on with mine. Our mh is housed and on constant 50 amp service. I have a battery tender attached to the coach batteries as well. When it sets for a couple of days, the chassis battery overflows. When I disconnect the tender it stops. So, I no longer have the tender attached. I assume I have an overcharging issue?
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Old 06-08-2018, 09:52 PM   #9
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If it's plugged in, the switch is set to "Use", AND you've got a maintainer on the batteries: yeah... you've got too much juice going in!

One or the other: never both.
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Old 06-08-2018, 10:37 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Beau388 View Post
Assuming you have a Thor class A of modern vintage, make sure the store/use switch is in the USE position and the system will take care of the batteries if it is operating normally. All modern Thor Class As come with a three stage converter. The last stage is a floating charge of 13.4/5 volts. Min voltage needed to charge a flooded battery is 13.4 volts. If you have an inverter you can check the house battery's condition by turning the inverter and observing the battery voltage. If no inverter, then you need a volt meter to check the house battery. 13.4/5 volts is good; less than that is bad. The converter system also includes a bi-directional relay which should also keep the chassis battery charged. Be sure an check the water level every 30 days or so.
This post is correct - if (and its a big IF - the Thor issued converter/charger works correctly. I have had two (2014 Vegas and 2016 Axis) and neither worked as they should. Both WFCO converter chargers would never start in the boost mode and the second one would not go into the maintain mode - which would have destroyed the batteries. I replaced my WFCO with a Progressive Dynamics PD4655 which works correctly. It is easy to check if your WFCO is working correctly if you have a volt meter. If u dont, go buy one. It will save you in the long run. First, run your house batteries down below 11.5v. Then plug the coach into shore power and left the charging system stabilize for a few minutes. Check the voltage at the house batteries. If the charger is in the boost mode, the voltage should read about 14.1v. If it reads 13.5 or so, the charger did not go into boost mode as it should. This means it will take your batteries a lot longer to charge. After a few hours (depending on how discharged your batteries are the voltage will drop to around 13.5. Leave the coach plugged in to shore power for 24-36 hours and check the voltage again. Eventually it should drop down to around 13.1v or the maintenance charge. This will keep your batteries fully charged without boiling them over and destroying them. If your charger does not step down to 13.1 within 48 hours, the converter/charger is defective and should be replaced. Dont leave your coach plugged in for long periods of time or you will ruin your batteries.
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Old 06-08-2018, 10:47 PM   #11
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Good point: the darned thing could be defective...
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Old 06-08-2018, 11:43 PM   #12
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When working correctly and inverter/charger or converter will not overcharge the batteries. They are designed to 'float' the batteries when fully charged. If you have any telemetry, you can see the voltage drop as the batterie(s) charge up.
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Old 06-08-2018, 11:45 PM   #13
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Just a quote from the Battery University - "The recommended float voltage of most flooded lead acid batteries is 2.25V to 2.27V/cell. Large stationary batteries at 25C (77F) typically float at 2.25V/cell. Manufacturers recommend lowering the float charge when the ambient temperature rises above 29C (85F)."


2.25 volts per cell equates to 13.50 volts for a 6 cell battery, where as 2.27 volts per cell equates to 13.62 volts.



This ought to confuse everyone.
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:53 AM   #14
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In the 2 years we have owned Vegas, I have only filled house batteries once.

A good portion of the time it is plugged in to shore power. I keep a tattle tail voltage indicator in power port off chassis battery. It ranges 12.4 to 12.8. I have looked in AM and saw 12.4, then in afternoon it will be 12.8. Not every day but serves as quick check. I have never needed to add water to this battery.

The house batteries stay at full on indicator unless we are parked at racetrack in cool weather overnight. During high heat demand, 40 degrees or less and showers/lighting/furnace/fridge I have seen 2 lights in morning. I would fire either internal or race trailer generator and it would recharge house batteries while I make coffee. I will also sneak out and watch a DVD/Bluray through 700 watt inverter to cycle house batteries some, if I take it down to 3 lights, 2 movies, it recovers pretty quick.

I did have to replace power supply board for converter once, both give same voltages and charging characteristics.
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