Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×
 

Go Back   Thor Forums > Thor Tech Forums > Maintenance and Repair
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 04-15-2020, 06:45 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
State: Nevada
Posts: 1
THOR #18077
Converter and Battery charging

A guy at a big chain RV dealership told me that my generator will only charge my house batteries 3 amps at a time, but that I could buy a battery charger like the one below and it would charge them much faster (depending on the capabilities of the charger I bought, the one below is a 15A.)

I have a 2017 Class A with a Xantrex Pro 1800 inverter. My understanding is that the inverter is also a converter and it is what charges the batteries when the generator is running or hooked up to shore power.

I now know for sure that several things this guy told me were incorrect, and have reason to believe that other things he's told me are incorrect.

Can anyone confirm or deny any of this?

First, is my inverter also my converter, and does that mean the inverter is charging the batteries?

Second, is it really that slow? Will this charger be faster?

Finally, if I need to use a battery charger, how do I connect the clamps to a 4-battery system? I have 4 batteries wired in parallel, and learned from a previous post that there is a way to optimize the wiring when doing so. I assume the same holds true for connecting the battery charging...do I want to connect to the positive terminal of a specific battery and the negative terminal of another specific battery? OR the same battery? Or does it matter?


https://www.amazon.com/Schumacher-SC..._rd_i=15707061

__________________
CoachDitka is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2020, 07:58 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Hooligan2's Avatar
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: 2016 Siesta Sprinter 24ST
State: Florida
Posts: 559
THOR #2812
Welcome to the forum

MY Siesta has a converter that charges the battery. I Don't know particulars of your inverter. An inverter changes 12 volts from battery to 115 volts ac to run appliances. Some inverters require a separate battery charger.

However here is an article on balanced charging of a 4 battery parallel bank.

https://www.impactbattery.com/blog/t...s-in-parallel/
__________________
U.S. Coast Guard retired- 1956-1985
Pensacola, Florida
2016 Siesta 24ST
1972 Moto Guzzi Eldorado
Hooligan2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2020, 08:23 PM   #3
Site Team
 
16ACE27's Avatar
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 27.1
State: Florida
Posts: 9,729
THOR #7035
A 2017 Class A what?

The salesman lied. factory converters can charge the batteries at 45, 55 or more amps either from shore power or the generator.

I doubt your Xantrex 1800 is anything other than an Inverter.
__________________
Ted & Melinda
2016 ACE 27.1
2016 Chevy Sonic Toad
2020 Chevy Colorado Z71 Trail Runner Alternate Toad
16ACE27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2020, 09:07 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Judge's Avatar
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: 2020 Magnitude SV34
State: Florida
Posts: 3,327
THOR #12751
The guy at your dealer is a moron.... or I should say he is very uneducated when it comes to RV's to be more politically correct.

There are Inverter / Chargers but your Xantrex Pro 1800 is an Inverter only and does not charge batteries. I have had that model and I know it for a fact. It only converts the DC power from your House batteries to AC current to run your residential fridge and maybe a couple other outlets. It is a full sine wave inverter to allow you to run things with a compressor like a residential fridge.

You also have a Converter / Charger onboard. It is possibly a WFCO but without knowing your make and model we can't be sure. It would be located in the vicinity of your breaker panel and other electronics and probably hidden from view.

The Converter / Charger serves two purposes. The Converter takes your AC shore or generator power and converts it to 12V DC to run the 12V accessories in the coach (lights, vent fans, furnace, etc.).

The Charger is responsible for charging the House batteries (and the chassis battery in some cases but that is a lesson for another time). The Charger takes the AC power and it becomes the battery charger. Some models are better than others. I pulled my stock WFCO Converter / Charger and installed a Progressive Dynamics PD2600 that has an intelligent charger with 4 charging modes. It is a 60 Watt model.

Your Converter / Charger is designed to quickly bring your House batteries up to a useable charge on Shore Power or Generator Power. You don't need a separate battery charger.

You need to find the manuals for the components installed in your coach so you can determine what make and model accessories are installed (like your Xantrex Pro 1800 and the Converter / Charger) so you can read up on how they work and their specs.
__________________
Judge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2020, 09:32 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Travelin' Texans's Avatar
 
Brand: Redwood
Model: 36FB
State: Arizona
Posts: 1,649
THOR #3610
Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachDitka View Post
A guy at a big chain RV dealership told me that my generator will only charge my house batteries 3 amps at a time, but that I could buy a battery charger like the one below and it would charge them much faster (depending on the capabilities of the charger I bought, the one below is a 15A.)

I have a 2017 Class A with a Xantrex Pro 1800 inverter. My understanding is that the inverter is also a converter and it is what charges the batteries when the generator is running or hooked up to shore power.

I now know for sure that several things this guy told me were incorrect, and have reason to believe that other things he's told me are incorrect.

Can anyone confirm or deny any of this?

First, is my inverter also my converter, and does that mean the inverter is charging the batteries?

Second, is it really that slow? Will this charger be faster?

Finally, if I need to use a battery charger, how do I connect the clamps to a 4-battery system? I have 4 batteries wired in parallel, and learned from a previous post that there is a way to optimize the wiring when doing so. I assume the same holds true for connecting the battery charging...do I want to connect to the positive terminal of a specific battery and the negative terminal of another specific battery? OR the same battery? Or does it matter?


https://www.amazon.com/Schumacher-SC..._rd_i=15707061
Were this salesman/guy at this dealerships lips moving?
That's your first clue when ask most folks at the dealership how something works.
__________________
Danny & Linda
Sold '13 Thor Redwood 36 FB
Traded '13 GMC Denali DRW D/A
Currently RV & truckless
Replacement undetermined
Travelin' Texans is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2020, 09:45 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
State: Georgia
Posts: 2,585
THOR #4735
I think that most of us have learned, at least over time, or by personal experience and stories from others, that many, many 'salespeople' at rv dealerships are just that, salespeople, and are NOT experienced RVrs, probably have never owned an RV, and generally should not 'assume' they 'know' things that they have little to no real-world experience with.

Many can confuse a Converter, which is common to many RVs, with an INVERTER, which does exactly the OPPOSITE, and is not part of most RVs... at least not the smaller ones.

A Converter simply uses 120v Shore Power, when you are plugged in, to 'convert' that power back down to 12volts, so that your onboard 12v lights, fans, appliances, furnace, water pump, etc can then use THAT power instead of your batteries.
It also, at the same time, CHARGES the batteries. And, yes, it is quite capable of charging the batteries - no additional 'charger' needed.

An Inverter, though, gives you 120v power when you are NOT plugged into the campground. It uses the batteries to 'invert' 12v power UP to 120v power for your outlets, microwave, residential FRIDGE, etc.
Some smaller RVs might have a small inverter, to power a TV while traveling or off-grid,
but most don't. The Converter is all they have.
Some larger RVs may have an Inverter, ESPECIALLY if they come from the factory with a Residential 120v 'household' type FRIDGE, since that type of fridge is ONLY powered by 120v power. These same RVs may only have this power to the fridge, and not to anything else, depending on the size of the Inverter.
A few other mid-size RVs, with residential fridges, will have a larger Inverter to power both the Fridge AND one or several other 'outlets', but not all. It will probably also still have a 'Converter/Charger', like most any other RV.

And, for the big boys, they have VERY LARGE inverters, generally at least 4 house batteries, and the Inverter powers ALL outlets within the RV, and even has it's own integrated BATTERY CHARger, which is more efficient than the typical 'Converter' that most other RVs will have.


You are wise to divert your questions to this forum, and us experienced RVrs, versus the typical 'salesperson' at an rv dealership.
__________________
the Turners...
two Campers, two Electric cars
former diesel pusher traveler
TurnerFam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-2020, 04:47 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Brand: Still Looking
Model: Winnebago Travato 59G
State: Alabama
Posts: 4,511
THOR #6826
I had a CW salesgoober that just insisted the water pump was a whole house filter. And he said the 33 ft gas class A would “certainly” get 12 - 15 mpg. The last straw with him was when he said the advertised price was fixed - take it or leave it. We left. Interestingly the dealership general manager called me a few hours after we got home and offered a highly satisfactory deal. I had a different guy when we went back!
__________________
Pete'sMH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2020, 10:50 PM   #8
Junior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Challenger 37 KT
State: Maryland
Posts: 11
THOR #527
On my 2013 Challenger, I have a Progressive Dynamics Intelli-Power converter/charger. It is, indeed, separate from the inverter. It’s even in a different compartment.

The sales guy has no clue what he’s talking about. The last 2 digits in the model number indicate the max amperage. I believe mine is a 60 amp. It senses your batteries and will use the proper voltage to quickly bring the batteries up to 90% of full charge then tops them off at a lower voltage.

My dad, an electrical engineer, called them (Progressive Dynamics) with detailed questions and was impressed with their knowledge and their service.

You should have received the manuals for your equipment if you purchased new. There should also be a sheet somewhere in your rig with all the model and serial numbers for all the stuff Thor added. If not, it was very easy to snap a picture of my converter on my phone and consult with Dr Google to find the manuals online.
__________________
Roadkill9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2020, 05:26 PM   #9
Junior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Ace 29.4
State: New York
Posts: 25
THOR #6366
Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Judge View Post
The guy at your dealer is a moron.... or I should say he is very uneducated when it comes to RV's to be more politically correct.

There are Inverter / Chargers but your Xantrex Pro 1800 is an Inverter only and does not charge batteries. I have had that model and I know it for a fact. It only converts the DC power from your House batteries to AC current to run your residential fridge and maybe a couple other outlets. It is a full sine wave inverter to allow you to run things with a compressor like a residential fridge.

You also have a Converter / Charger onboard. It is possibly a WFCO but without knowing your make and model we can't be sure. It would be located in the vicinity of your breaker panel and other electronics and probably hidden from view.

The Converter / Charger serves two purposes. The Converter takes your AC shore or generator power and converts it to 12V DC to run the 12V accessories in the coach (lights, vent fans, furnace, etc.).

The Charger is responsible for charging the House batteries (and the chassis battery in some cases but that is a lesson for another time). The Charger takes the AC power and it becomes the battery charger. Some models are better than others. I pulled my stock WFCO Converter / Charger and installed a Progressive Dynamics PD2600 that has an intelligent charger with 4 charging modes. It is a 60 Watt model.

Your Converter / Charger is designed to quickly bring your House batteries up to a useable charge on Shore Power or Generator Power. You don't need a separate battery charger.

You need to find the manuals for the components installed in your coach so you can determine what make and model accessories are installed (like your Xantrex Pro 1800 and the Converter / Charger) so you can read up on how they work and their specs.

Judge, when you replaced the WFCO converter, did you have to replace the whole Distribution Center, or were you able to just wire the new PD2600 in?
__________________
Bobo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2020, 06:26 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Judge's Avatar
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: 2020 Magnitude SV34
State: Florida
Posts: 3,327
THOR #12751
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobo View Post
Judge, when you replaced the WFCO converter, did you have to replace the whole Distribution Center, or were you able to just wire the new PD2600 in?

I did not have to replace the WFCO Power Distribution Center. The stock WFCO Converter / Charger in my coach was a standalone unit and it was a very easy plug-and-play swap out with the PD2600.

If your Converter / Charger is part of your Power Distribution Center, Progressive Dynamics makes the PD4600 that allows you to remove the stock Converter from the Distribution Center and then install the PD4600 in its place.
__________________
Judge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2020, 07:36 PM   #11
Junior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Ace 29.4
State: New York
Posts: 25
THOR #6366
Awesome! Thanks!
__________________
Bobo is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Thor Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.




All times are GMT. The time now is 08:08 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2