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Randall, RVIA Certification
Category: RV
Satisfied Customers: 11028
Experience:  RVDA/RVIA Master Certified Technician with many years experience.
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Recently acquired a 2006 Roadtrek RS Adventurous and the DC

Customer Question

Recently acquired a 2006 Roadtrek RS Adventurous and the DC electrical system is giving me a large headache. I inadvertently left the refrigerator switch in DC mode overnight with no external power or engine on. The batteries ( 2 6v in series ) were dead in the morning. Would not recharge with the engine on. The batts were over 3 years old and completely dry, so I replaced them. Did not solve the problem. Now the new batteries won't charge with the engine on. I can get 12 + volts by using jumper cables on them which allows me to use cabin DC accessories including starting the generator. After running the generator for an hour with the jumper cables disconnected, it appeared that things were back to normal. Batteries Dead the next morning. Help?
JA: Did you test the battery with a voltmeter? And have you ever changed one before?
Customer: Chassis battery? Yes, 12.5 v before engine start, then 14 v when engine running.
JA: Are you hoping to fix this yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: As I mentioned, I have replaced the house batteries with a pair of 6 v flooded golf cart batteries.
JA: Anything else you think the mechanic should know?
Customer: my RV has a battery separator and a Tripp-Lite inverter/charger
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: RV
Expert:  Randall replied 11 months ago.

Sorry for the delay in someone getting to your question. IF you still need some assistance I can help you sort this problem out. Just let me know.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thanks Randall;
Yes, I still need assistance, however I've been trying to trace circuits with a dvm. As I stated before, the truck battery won't charge the house batteries, which are new. 2 6v in series which are near zero now.
The truck battery although 3 years old is still kicking out 12.6v at rest and 14v when engine is going and alternator contributing. At the front end of the truck battery I have a small flat box that has 6 fairly high amp cb's. I tested for voltage and they all put out except one marked 70 amps which appeared to go to the battery separator. The battery separator had no voltage at either in or out. I replaced the cb and now have full battery voltage at the separator, but still nothing coming out.
The fact that I get no charging voltage at the house batteries make me think I need to replace the separator. What do you think?
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Also, something is draining down the house batteries very quickly. I can use the house circuits if on an outside power source, used neighbors 12v to jump, got the generator started and tried to charge up batteries. The next morning, the house batts were dead again. I'm new to this RT and I'm still learning my way around it's pitfalls.
Expert:  Randall replied 11 months ago.

Do you have the fridge on DC mode? That is only for when you are travelling and if you aren't will drain the batteries in less than 24 hours. Check that and get back to me and we can go from there.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
No, fridge is off. I did that once.
More info: After my earlier post today, I "played" with it some more. I think my problem is the Battery Separator. Nothing coming out of it to the house batteries. Bypassed it from the charging circuit and voila! The house DC bank lit up like a Christmas tree and everything worked. Started and ran the generator for awhile. Flipped on the inverter and AC accessories worked. Don't worry, I reconnected the Separator so whatever my current drain is won't eat up my truck battery.
Unless you advise otherwise, I'll be buying a new Battery Separator tomorrow.
Expert:  Randall replied 11 months ago.

That sounds like it could be the culprit! You were just a step or two ahead of me........good job! Get back to me if we need to dig into this some more.

Expert:  Randall replied 11 months ago.

Hopefully, you got this resolved as I didn't hear back from you. You can always return to this posting again if you Bookmark it and we can do a follow up. All part of our service and please take time to enter a rating as that is the only way I get credit for my time spent helping you. Thanks! Be safe........