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Old 11-23-2016, 02:47 AM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: 32N
State: Missouri
Posts: 9
THOR #5930
House Batteries

Hi all. Newbie here and I have a question. We have a brand new 32N Windsport. We have the battery store or use switch inside the coach. The dealer told us to have this switch on anytime we are driving or have the generator on in order to charge those house batteries. With that said, we have not driven a long distance yet but have run the generator while stocking the coach, etc. however, the house batteries do not seem to ever charge based on the digital display in the coach.

When we took the camper out last weekend, we had the generator running the entire time however we encountered multiple problems which the dealer said was due to the house batteries being low on charge.

So I am confused as to why the generator would not provide enough power.

Will drive time help this?

Can you put a standard battery charger on these batteries?

Thank you!

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Old 11-23-2016, 03:14 AM   #2
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THOR #1765
I am not familiar with the Windsport 32N, but in all the other Thor Class A's which post in this forum, the house batteries should charge while you are driving (the engine is running) and while the generator is running or when plugged in to shore power. In most coaches the use/store switch must be in Use for the coach batteries to charge. Even if the house batteries are low, driving the RV for an hour or so and then turning on the generator should charge your house batteries enough to run all your systems. You probably did not run the A/C, so there is no reason why the generator should not run all your appliances and charge the batteries at the same time. You need to purchase a decent digital readout electrical meter (if you do not have one) to measure the voltage on your house batteries. Then you can tell if the batteries are being charged when you run your engine or your generator or when your are plugged in to shore power. The batteries can be charged with a standard battery charger, but your RV has a converter/charger installed that should automatically charge the batteries. One other thing to check is the 50 amp circuit breaker which is installed somewhere near the coach and chassis batteries. In my Axis one is attached to the house battery box. If the red flag is showing, it has tripped and you have to push the flag back up for the batteries to charge or to run the coach.
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Old 11-23-2016, 03:23 AM   #3
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THOR #3916
After you sort out the charge issues.... change out the junk Harris batteries for some quality ones
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Old 11-23-2016, 03:36 AM   #4
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THOR #1765
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Originally Posted by saddlesore View Post
After you sort out the charge issues.... change out the junk Harris batteries for some quality ones
And the junk WCFO converter charger which will destroy your new batteries.
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Old 11-23-2016, 03:50 AM   #5
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THOR #2601
I'll repeat Oneilkeys -- the USE/STORE switch MUST be in Use for the house batteries to charge. Also, check with your dealer but the Windsport engine driven alternator should also charge your house batteries when you are driving down the road (USE/STORE in Use) without simultaneously running the generator.

The house batteries will charge with the switch in Use when:
1 - you are plugged in to shore power (charged from the converter), or
2 - when your generator is running (charged through the converter), or
3 - running down the road (charged from the alternator).

Assume your coach batteries and the chassis battery are two separate battery banks. You have automatic circuits (sensors and relays) either in a battery control center (BCC) or a Bi-directional Isolation Relay Delay (BIRD)/Trombetta system. They operate by monitoring the voltage level on a battery bank. When that bank charge reaches 13.1 volts for 2.5 minutes, it will operate relays to isolate the fully charged bank from the other bank. It will then channel charging current to the second bank and again when that bank shows 13.1 volts for 2.5 minutes it will isolate that bank and switch back to the other. The reason the relays isolate one bank from the other is so that the weaker bank does not pull down the charge from the fuller bank.

For a more detailed description about how these monitor/relay systems work to keep both battery banks charged, put the word BIRD in the search function. Here is another link for more information about the BIRD/Trombetta or Battery Control Center:
http://www.thorforums.com/forums/f10...when-3315.html
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Old 11-23-2016, 03:58 AM   #6
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THOR #1944
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oneilkeys View Post
And the junk WCFO converter charger which will destroy your new batteries.
How do you determine that the WCFO is junk?
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Old 11-23-2016, 11:32 AM   #7
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THOR #908
don't over react. The WFCO isn't junk, and the batteries aren't junk. Not the best maybe....but that's something else.

My assumption is that every battery in every RV ever sold has been abused and is no longer any good.

You see, flooded cell batteries are finicky. They don't like being discharged deeply. Some folks use a rule of thumb of 50% charge.....as in never go below 50%. Personally, I don't think the exact number is all that critical to get hung up on because it would depend on the battery and other variables, but to remember to not deeply discharge the things.

On top of that, they will self discharge over time. In storage, they will loose a few percentage points of charge every month even with no wires at all connected. I learned this the hard way... replacing nearly new batteries in boats and my old pup way too many times taht had been neglected in storage....

So anyway, when they go below this 50% level (or whatever the number is) permanent damage is done and they won't hold as much charge again.

These batteries are hybrid batteries, meant to be a combination cranking/starting battery and deep cycle. I true deep cycle battery can support much deeper discharges.

So what I think happens.... these things sit on a dealer lot and are neglected. Customers might go through and flip on a light. That light stays on over night and drains the battery down to near zero. It might be recharged, but the damage is done..... it doesn't go back to 100%. Then at some point, you bought it. It might sit in storage for a few months, dropping a bit more form self discharge... and even more because a radio memory or some other "parasite draw" is connected. It just kills the things.

First thing I did was to buy disconnect switches for both batteries (house and chassis). As soon as I park the thing to store, I disconnect the batteries to eliminate any parasitic draw. The use/store switch might be taking care of it, but I just don't trust it.

Oh, here's a bit more on the subject....
The 12volt Side of Life (Part 1)
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Old 11-23-2016, 01:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TyCreek View Post
How do you determine that the WCFO is junk?
Check the charge specs for the typical deep cycle battery, then discharge it to 50%, this will be between 12. and 12.4 volts. Hook up to sure power and monitor the current and voltage from the WFCO and see if it meets the battery manufacturers specs. It won't come even close. The best I've seen from ours is 14.1 volts at 10 amps for lest then an hour and that is better then the same model in our last camper.

Typical charge cycles for deep cycle batteries from 50% for maximum battery life are:

10 to 13% rate of charge in boost. At 10% thats 10.5 amps for 100Ah battery or GC-2s about 22.5 to 25 amps for 4 hours.

Absorb or the last 90% or so hold the battery voltage at 14.8 volts while the current tapers off for up to 12 hours.

Float varies between 13.2 to 13.6 volts

Equalize 15 volts+ for 2 to 4 hours about once a month.

AGM's are a little different in they can handle a higher rate of charge and absorb is a little lower at 14.4 volts

Gels...don't waste your money.

Car and Deep Cycle Battery FAQ, Battery Manufacturers and Brand Names List, and

Measuring State-of-charge - Battery University

Links to good information about batteries; and while The 12 volt side of life is a good introduction, the SOC chart is wrong for today's batteries.
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Old 11-23-2016, 01:20 PM   #9
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THOR #908
ok, maybe true....
but that's advanced for serious application.

to suggest a new rv owner that has 3 posts to date swap out their equipment when they aren't contemplating serious usage isn't really necessary, in my onion.

We've been on the same cheap battery for 2-1/2 years using the wfco, and it has served us well enough so far. The battery was replaced by the dealer when we bought the unit, after I was able to prove they sold a dead battery.
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Old 11-23-2016, 02:02 PM   #10
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THOR #4735
do you have a CHARGER that you have not turned ON?

check your Charger/Inverter panel, if you have one... you may also have an AGS(auto generator start) that can be set to run your generator when the batteries are lower than a set voltage, such as 12.
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Old 11-23-2016, 08:05 PM   #11
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THOR #1765
Quote:
Originally Posted by TyCreek View Post
How do you determine that the WCFO is junk?
There have been lots of reports on this forum and others of the WCFO not starting in the 14.4v mode and then not going into float charge - which can boil your batteries. Mine starts out at 14.4v and switches to 13.6 in a few minutes, no mater how low the batteries are. Then it will not go into float charge (13.2v). I am going to replace my WCFO with a Progressive Dynamis PD4655 before I go on my next long trip. Then I can manually charge at 14.4v for an hour or two when I run my generator at a campsite and use all the 55amp capability of the charger. Currently, my WCFO will only charge at 13.6v and use a part of its 55 amps.
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Old 11-23-2016, 08:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blw2 View Post
ok, maybe true....
but that's advanced for serious application.

to suggest a new rv owner that has 3 posts to date swap out their equipment when they aren't contemplating serious usage isn't really necessary, in my onion.

We've been on the same cheap battery for 2-1/2 years using the wfco, and it has served us well enough so far. The battery was replaced by the dealer when we bought the unit, after I was able to prove they sold a dead battery.
Some WCFO chargers work OK for a period of time. The apparently have a high failure rate, but you can check and see if yours is working correctly. Same goes for Harris batteries. If you don't use your coach much and you always plug in at night, then they may work for you. I wasn't advocating anyone changing or replacing anything. I used my WFCO and Harries batteries for the first two years I had my Vegas and put 25,000 miles on it. They worked OK, but having lots of experience with large boat batteries and good charging systems, I was never happy with them. Two new"29" batteries improved the situation considerably, but I still was not satisfied with the charging of the batteries. I hope replacing the WCFO wil solve that. We go out for 2-4 months at a time and seldom plug in. So the batteries and battery charging are very important to us. If you plug in most nights, it probably does not mean as much to you - nor should it.
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Old 11-25-2016, 11:51 PM   #13
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THOR #5913
I had a similar problem and it may be WAY more simple than everyone is making it. If the battery is REALLY low as in it sat on a dealers lot for a while and was demoed with lights etc on it may be too low for the converter (charger) to kick on. This is a safety feature.

I took mine out and ran it to a battery store - a REAL one where all they sell is batteries not a big box. They tested it and said my battery was good. They threw it on their charger and told me to come back in an hour. I threw it back in the coach and hooked it to shore power - it charged right up.

Hope your problem is that simple.

Are you getting any power out of your batt?
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Old 10-08-2020, 08:50 PM   #14
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THOR #20802
Upgrade house battery

Hello, just purchased 2021 delano 24fb with 100 solar, 1000 inverter, and what i understand is only 1 house battery. I'm looking to see what is the best to start an upgrade of this system. Can i start with 1 100ah lithium first, then see how that goes, then if needed add another 100 solar and what does thor supply- will it accept lithium over wet/agm without more changes? Thanks for all advice- will probably upgrade step by step.
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Old 10-08-2020, 09:36 PM   #15
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THOR #12189
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oilcop View Post
Hello, just purchased 2021 delano 24fb with 100 solar, 1000 inverter, and what i understand is only 1 house battery. I'm looking to see what is the best to start an upgrade of this system. Can i start with 1 100ah lithium first, then see how that goes, then if needed add another 100 solar and what does thor supply- will it accept lithium over wet/agm without more changes? Thanks for all advice- will probably upgrade step by step.
Check the inverter. If it's an inverter/charger/xfr switch, make sure it has a lithium charge profile or that may have to be upgraded based on your decision.

I went batteries first. If you build out your bank, you may find you need a solar upgrade. I would think about holding off on the solar upgrade until I found out how many batteries I really need or would like to have. Then find what it takes to give them a decent charge. You can design so you can break the battery connections within the bank and charge only the online ones faster or better or, in the right conditions, have sufficient solar to charge them all if you get one or a more cloudy days.

I chose 4 lithium to stuff under the steps and replace 4 FLA then decide what it takes to charge them.

If you monitor things along the way, you can evaluate whether upgrades are cost justified. You may find 4 sixes wired series/parallel suit your needs just fine. If you wind up swapping out your inverter, consider upgrading. You'll want more as you discover what it can do for you and you wanted.

All this is just one person's perspective. I hope a few more ideas get thrown at you so you have options.
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Old 10-08-2020, 09:42 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by The_Breeze View Post
Check the inverter. If it's an inverter/charger/xfr switch, make sure it has a lithium charge profile or that may have to be upgraded based on your decision.

I went batteries first. If you build out your bank, you may find you need a solar upgrade. I would think about holding off on the solar upgrade until I found out how many batteries I really need or would like to have. Then find what it takes to give them a decent charge. You can design so you can break the battery connections within the bank and charge only the online ones faster or better or, in the right conditions, have sufficient solar to charge them all if you get one or a more cloudy days.

I chose 4 lithium to stuff under the steps and replace 4 FLA then decide what it takes to charge them.

If you monitor things along the way, you can evaluate whether upgrades are cost justified. You may find 4 sixes wired series/parallel suit your needs just fine. If you wind up swapping out your inverter, consider upgrading. You'll want more as you discover what it can do for you and you wanted.

All this is just one person's perspective. I hope a few more ideas get thrown at you so you have options.
Thank you for the timely reply- dummy me did not look under the step to even see how many batteries I have !! Newbie! My hope was just upgrade to 1or 2 lithum ( if room) and try to get away with that for awhile after checking charger. Thanks again. MD
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Old 10-08-2020, 09:49 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Oilcop View Post
Thank you for the timely reply- dummy me did not look under the step to even see how many batteries I have !! Newbie! My hope was just upgrade to 1or 2 lithum ( if room) and try to get away with that for awhile after checking charger. Thanks again. MD
That's what most of us do out here and I hope you get their opinions as well. It can get a little overwhelming but there's always a tid-bit makes you say 'hmmm, didn't think of that'.

This another thread on the topic, though a search may turn up a lot more. Good luck. Try to let us know which way you went and how it worked out. Who knows, maybe someone like yourself will benefit from your experience.

I started it and most of the feedback is invaluable. I was in your shoes once too.

https://www.thorforums.com/forums/f1...ler-23458.html
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