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Electrical Discussion of preventative/corrective maintenance and other technical issues regarding your coach's electrical system.

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  #1  
Old 07-21-2008
JHess JHess is offline
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Default current draw

Hello, i am a newby just picked up my 82 fc 35 last month. when i bought it all the batterys were dead except 1 12 volt battery that was running the whole coach. this battery when fully charged dies in just a few hours.
I have checked the current draw and its pulling 2.5 amps when every thing that i know of is off that can be. So my question is does any one know how many amps is normal, is there anything common to draw that much when going bad? i have since ordered 6 new 6v trojans and would like to get this resolved before installing them.
any help is much appriciated.
thanks
Jeremy Hess
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  #2  
Old 07-21-2008
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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birds have what we call "phantom" loads,little things like 15 clocks,a few sporlan valves,and who knows what else that drain the batterys.

i keep my coach plugged in all the time,alot of guys put a battery disconnect at the battery bank.
ohh,and welcome to the site!
Randy
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  #3  
Old 07-22-2008
JHess JHess is offline
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thanks randy, i have disconnected all the digital displays i could find and it still only droped .5 amp. i do alot of dry camping so this concerns me a bit.
Jeremy
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Old 07-22-2008
fxdwg fxdwg is offline
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Jeremy,
I'm somewhat going through the same as you. I'm finding tons of 12v stuff still powered, even though I'd thought I'd shut it all off. Good luck finding all of it!
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  #5  
Old 07-22-2008
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Welcome to the site, Jeremy. You are dealing with one of the issues most of us new Blue Bird owners face. I don't have the luxury of being able to store mine where I can plug it in and faced the issue of a dead starting battery every time I went to pick it up despite having turned everything in sight off and also disconnecting the main battery cutoff switch. The problem was cured with the addition of two small solar panels. They cost about $100 and I have experienced no problems since they were installed. Good luck with your Bird.
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  #6  
Old 07-22-2008
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We have an 84 PT36.
After turning everything off, I have a constant current drain of 8 amps per hour.
When we get to Georgia and BB, we will have BB seperate house and starting batteries.
I hear BB didn't start seperating batts till 91.
So many valves, so little batteries..
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  #7  
Old 07-22-2008
JHess JHess is offline
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well this problem looks to be pretty common. if this was a regular new style vehicle even with lots of control units this would be totally unexceptable. I think i am going to isolate the start batteries completely, i would also like to look into the solar panels so if anybody has a good sorce for those the info would be much appriciated. Thanks for everyones help.
Jeremy
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  #8  
Old 07-22-2008
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warbucks13477 warbucks13477 is offline
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Some of you guys are not putting your location and model and year of coach you have so its a little difficult to give you specifics.

But in the early coaches I would not separate the batteries but leave them as one unit like BB designed. Reason, its actually a better deal for you if you are dry campers. I can see if you add another bank of batteries but separate them by an isolator and use both banks for the house. Even if you run both banks down low you still have the generator battery to start the generator which will power the charger to recharge your batteries.

In my opinion the generator has two uses, one to power your high current devices when you are off shore power, and the other as your emergency start if the chassis batteries are drawn down to low to start the engine.

I would advise everyone that does a lot of dry camping to buy a link 1000 or 2000 to monitor all DC circuits in your coach including your batteries. You can set it so a set voltage causes an alarm to go off and warn you when the chassis batteries get to the point where they are low but will still start the engine. You can use the link by itself and you do not have to have a Xantrex inverter/converter. It operates off its own shunt but will also control the Xantrex units.
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  #9  
Old 07-23-2008
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I would check all of my battery cables to check for good connections and for a good ground. Also you might consider using battery disconnect blade switches on your batteries, one for each bank of batteries. I had the same problem but once I put on the blade switches I had no other problem, but you have to remember to USE them.
If you have a bad battery or two - three, they will pull all others down since they are all connected together in some fashion. Only your gen battery is seperate from the coach & engine start battery. It may just be time for new batteries. Solar is also a great solution, but with good batteries and having them disconnected with a balde switch or some other mechanical means of seperating total power your batteries should hold power 6 months or more.
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  #10  
Old 07-24-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by birds_first View Post
I would check all of my battery cables to check for good connections and for a good ground. Also you might consider using battery disconnect blade switches on your batteries, one for each bank of batteries. I had the same problem but once I put on the blade switches I had no other problem, but you have to remember to USE them.
If you have a bad battery or two - three, they will pull all others down since they are all connected together in some fashion. Only your gen battery is seperate from the coach & engine start battery. It may just be time for new batteries. Solar is also a great solution, but with good batteries and having them disconnected with a balde switch or some other mechanical means of seperating total power your batteries should hold power 6 months or more.
Check out Downloads & Files > Batteries, Inverters, and Solar Panels for more of that kind of information.
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