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Author Topic: here's one to think about!  (Read 3195 times)
gumpy
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Slightly modified 1982 MC9


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« Reply #15 on: April 27, 2009, 12:56:58 PM »

Update:

Charger went thru it's cycle of charging and then float mode until it cut itself off this morning while I was gone. I checked the volatage in the batteries and all are back to normal voltage.

I guess I can't leave the battery switches ON and the charger ON for any length (if any) of time! I always unplug the charger before heading out because if I don't the batteries will get  overcharged sending the dash lights into a frenzy! Once the charger is unplugged, al lights go out and good to go!

I would have thought though that IF there was and there probably is, a phantom drain from somewhere, and the charger is plugged in and charging, why wouldn't the charger keep the batteries up to par even with the drain? It appears that the drain is happening while the charger is in float mode and not actual during charge mode (I think)!

Anyway, all is normal and we're good to go...

Next trip, Myrtle Beach!

Hope I can keep up with the other guys! Smiley

Ace


Doesn't make sense. Even if the charger is in float mode, it's charging, and should replenish the batteries for any small draw that occurs. By small draw, I'm talking about an amp or less to keep radio clocks going and engine ECUs. The charger should be rated for a certain amperage in float mode, but should reduce it's output when the batteries are full, and should not cook them. Float mode should be left on at all times with no ill effects on the batteries. If your charger is overcharging, you either have a bad battery, or a bad charger.

You evidently have a very large drain on your batteries that exceeds the capacity of the charger. I would be somewhat concerned about that, and large electrical loads can generate large amounts of heat and cause things to generate flames!


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Craig Shepard
Located in Minnesquito

http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
Blacksheep
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« Reply #16 on: April 27, 2009, 02:02:01 PM »

Gump I have always had a drain on the batteries when the switches are left on! I have checked and re-checked. The batteries will go way down when switched on over night but when the switches are off, it takes about a week or so. That was the reason for adding the charger while sitting and since then no problems as long as the DA remembers to turn the switches off!
The bus manual also states to turn them off even if the driver stops for dinner!
Ace
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niles500
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« Reply #17 on: April 27, 2009, 02:12:56 PM »

Ace - I bought this 24v unit -

http://www.batterymart.com/p-batteryminder-24v-1-2-4a-battery-charger.html

When I first used this, trying to bring the batts up from a fairly deep discharge, it kept shutting off - It must have been hitting a thermal trip and kept trying to reset - I just assumed that after a certain number of attempted resets it shuts down - Once I brought the batts to a full charge it works as it should - BTW let's you choose 1-2-4 amp, Flooded-AGM-Gel, and it has easy to read charge/batt status with trouble shooting - Since I have been starting with a relatively decent state of charge I have had no problems leaving it plugged in 24/7 - HTH
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- Niles
mikelutestanski
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« Reply #18 on: April 27, 2009, 03:49:16 PM »

ACE   how many sets of batteries are in your coach?   DO you have a separate set for the house?  Batteries that only serve loads while not moving or an inverter ? 
   THe other set for the coach should only run the coach whilst running.  IE  motor functions coach exterior lights etc.
 ANd if you have both sets are the sets isolated from each other?   
   Generally the grounds in each system are connected to the frame but for a house system I like to use a  negative wire for each circuit to make sure the circuits work and do not rely on a common ground connection.
   I remember  your last problem with the blown breaker you replaced some or all of your batteries  (start batteries I presume)? ?   

 ANyway it seems to me you have a phantom load that really knocks the system down.
    REgards and happy bussin
     mike
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Mike Lutestanski   Dunnellon Florida
  1972 MCI 7
  L10 Cummins  B400R  4.625R
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« Reply #19 on: April 27, 2009, 07:42:27 PM »

Mike I have 2 very separate battery banks. One consist of 4 group 31's for starting the bus and running the bus equipment such as lights externally, ecm, etc. The second bank consist of 6 6volt golf cart batteries that is used for my inverter and other lighting internally. It, the inverter has a built in charger and maintains the 6 batteries just fine.

Now the 4 group 31's have the bus charging system (alt, reg, etc.) to maintain them while running down the road and according to the volt gauges is working just fine!

Now while sitting and not running, the Prevost manual states that the 2 battery cut off switches, one for 12volt and one for 24 volt, should be turned OFF even if stopped for a short period of time, such as driver stopping for dinner.

My bus has always had a battery drain and quickly such as overnigt IF the battery switches are left in the ON position. If the battery switches are turned OFF and no other charger connected, it will take about 10 days or so to run the batteries dead and I mean DEAD DEAD!

This was the reason I bought the "on board 24volt 25 amp battery charger" made by "QUICK CHARGE"  and  I have had it plugged in each and every time I park the bus for any length of time such as here at home between trips. It has worked flawlessly until this DA left the battery switches ON the last time it was parked. Why it didn't maintain the batteries I don't know but will be making some calls tomorrow because tonight after doing some after dark research, I found one of if not the BIGGEST drain of my batteries. Here is what I did!

I turned the battery switches ON and opened all the bay doors on one side. All the bay lights worked! I manually, without closing the door, worked the light switch in each bay. To my surprise, they all worked... but ONE! The small bay above the drive wheels on the passenger side did nothing. The 2 lights in that bay stayed ON regardless of how hard, how soft, how ever I moved the switch. They jsut would not go off! I closed the door and let it sit for a while. When I re-opened the door, the lights were very hot to the touch. These lights are not the small cheap lights either. There are two lights on each side with 2 bulbs in each light. Now if you or anyone else remembers, a while back, I was a little concerned about the excessive heat build up in THAT bay when I went to retrieve my awning rod at Salt Springs 4 trips back! Those two lights DO put off a large amount of heat especially in a closed area such as this bay. This bay only measures about 11 inches tall, IF that!

So to sum this up, I think I found my battery drain that has caused me havoc since purchase and my over heated bay which was cause for alarm. I simply need to replace the light switch in that bay which I will order tomorrow as well!

Ace
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gumpy
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« Reply #20 on: April 27, 2009, 08:34:10 PM »

Well, that's a start.

However, you may also have a bad battery in your starting pack.  Batteries should not discharge that fast when you have the disconnects turned off.

I'd suggest you remove all the cables, charge each battery, and then monitor them for a period of a couple weeks without reconnecting the cables (obviously when you're not using the coach) and see if one of your batteries goes down significantly faster than the others. I just replaced one of my 8Ds in my starting bank because it had an internal problem. It would self discharge over a 24 hour period. Internal short, probably. It came with the bus 9 years ago, so I wasn't too upset. Replaced it for $160.

It sounds like maybe one or more of your starting batteries might be exhibiting the same symptoms.

craig

 
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Craig Shepard
Located in Minnesquito

http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
Blacksheep
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« Reply #21 on: April 27, 2009, 08:47:07 PM »

Craig, thanks! I will do just that but to be honest, I just recently changed all 4 of them. I know that doesn't say much but they really haven't given me much trouble. They have always had about 13.7 v on the high side and  13.2 volts on the low side. That means they never seem to read the same but almost always fall in that window!

I'm just glad to find "SOMETHING" that is obvious such as the lights in the bay rather than a cut wire touching metal!

Ace
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Blacksheep
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« Reply #22 on: April 28, 2009, 04:26:34 AM »

I want to correct the above post about there being 2 lights on each side. There are 2 lights on each side but when one bay door is open, all 4 bay lights come on from opening either door! So instead of having what I thought was 2 lights with 4 bulbs draining the batteries, I actually have 4 lights with 8 bulbs doing the drain!

Ahh things are looking positive again! Smiley

Ace
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Len Silva
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« Reply #23 on: April 28, 2009, 06:11:35 AM »

Ace,
I don't know about you bus but typically, the bay lights have power on the light fixture all the time and the switches complete the grounding circuit. That's how they can have multiple switches work the lights.
Rather than a bad switch, you probably have a wire from the lights to the switches that is grounded out somewhere.
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