Flat battery and frustration

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Flat battery and frustration Empty Flat battery and frustration

Post by Phil Bowen on Tue Aug 16, 2016 8:58 am


Simple Question,does the EC500 PCS charge your vehicle battery when on the mains?

We were off to sunny Pembrokeshire for the weekend, went to start my Autosleeper Burford (2013 model) .... flat battery!!!!! The van had been on the mains for two weeks. Jump started, 2 hour journey would sort it. Arrived with no incident as its an automatic!!!!. Pitch up and after a while as is usual the wife would like to move to a sunny spot, we'll do it the morning as its a bit late( me) Morning arrives get ready to move flat battery, going no where. So decide to do some asking and quite conflicting advice.
Marquis (Southampton failed to respond as the receptionist said they would)
3A's Carmarthen(Would not answer phone) so called on the way back, answer to above question NO it does not, even though it does say it does in handbook(3A's handbooks just give a general picture)
My mate Paul ( 30 years caravan and motorhome owner ....No it does not
Spinney Cheshire.... Yes it does as long as you have selected vehicle battery as the active battery by using the switch on a panel above the door. (Instant response.... great and thanks)
Mechanic in van next door... Yes as long as you have battery selected on the floor panel.
EC500 Handbook .."The EC500system incorporates a smart charge feature, which monitors both leisure and vehicle batteries and automatically adjusts and directs the charger power to maintain the leisure and VECHILE batteries at an optimal level"
Story ends, battery flat on Monday so jump started again to return home, battery tested and failed so now have new battery but would like the above answered so I don't have it happen again.... Help and thanks confused3 shrugg think_smiley_46 scratch head


Last edited by Peter Brown on Tue Aug 16, 2016 10:47 am; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Spelling)
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Flat battery and frustration Empty Re: Flat battery and frustration

Post by Greyhound on Tue Aug 16, 2016 10:37 am

Not sure about the 2013 models as you have newer charge controller to mine, but the best way to check is put a voltmeter on your battery and then go through the selections. When under charge you should be getting around 14V at the battery.

That way you not only confirm any advice on here, but you also get to see that the charge circuit is working properly.

Its unusual for a battery to only last a few years though. Have you had the van standing a long time not on charge and it's possibly gone totally flat. A 3 year old battery shouldn't fail to the point that it can't hold a charge like that unless it's been left to discharge completely and been damaged (or manufacturing problem).

What battery is it - most come with a decent length warranty from 3+ years. Might be worth looking into getting some money back.
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Flat battery and frustration Empty Re: Flat battery and frustration

Post by Peter Brown on Tue Aug 16, 2016 11:00 am

If you operate the 'shut down' switch on the psu, the smart charging feature is disabled and only the leisure battery will be charged either on hook up or by the solar panel.

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Flat battery and frustration Empty Re: Flat battery and frustration

Post by Phil Bowen on Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:46 pm

Thanks for your comments and will get the voltmeter to test for the charge. As you say it will give me peace of mind about when our charger is working. The van was left for a while but as soon as the message came up that the battery was low we put it on charge.
Peter will look into shut down switch being off because in the hand book says this should be used for lengthy periods of not being used to conserve the vechile battery, but doesn't mentioning any charging taking place
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Flat battery and frustration Empty Re: Flat battery and frustration

Post by Peter Brown on Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:58 pm

Because modern vehicles have systems active all the time, the Mercedes handbook tells you to disconnect the vehicle battery if its not going to be used for a few weeks to save it becoming discharged.

Your van should have a solar panel fitted as standard (at least 30W) and if the ECU 500 is left switched on, that will maintain the vehicle battery charge whilst the van is not being used. If you switch it off you disable the solar charging and the battery will be flat after about 3 weeks. Once the battery is flat you will need to charge it for at least 12 hrs (by whatever means) to get it back up.

As Noggin suggests, if you monitor the battery voltages using the different charge and switch options you will understand how it works.

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Flat battery and frustration Empty Re: Flat battery and frustration

Post by Phil Bowen on Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:53 am

Thanks again Peter it looks as though I will have to monitor the battery far more often than I had to with the Swift Kontiki that we had before this van.
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