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Flat batteries

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Flat batteries Empty Flat batteries

Post by Yorkshirelass Tue May 16, 2023 2:54 pm

1. We recently had to replace the vehicle battery on our 5year old Nuevo. On top of the battery is a unit with a plug and cable (pic attached). The cable was not plugged into the unit but looked as if it should have been. RAC mechanic thought this might be an isolation switch to protect the battery from discharge by the leisure battery. Does anyone know what this unit does, and should it be plugged in or not?

2. We have a Sergeant EC 328 PSU which should automatically protect the vehicle battery so can't understand why the vehicle battery should have become discharged. We have a solar panel also wired through the PSU. We are complete newbies, any ideas? We need to prevent it happening again. 

Just to add the leisure battery had also become badly discharged. Are these two things connected, or is it just coincidence.
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Post by Paulmold Tue May 16, 2023 3:25 pm

While you wait for responses, take a minute to say hello .....

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Post by Yorkshirelass Tue May 16, 2023 3:35 pm

wave
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Post by PLOUGHLIN Tue May 16, 2023 3:40 pm

iIt is one of these relays, don't know what it might do though.

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Post by Paulmold Tue May 16, 2023 4:04 pm

Could it be to do with isolation button on the ignition switch, when you press it prior to removal of the key , it isolates the battery from any drain but your central locking then won't work, you need to use key to open door. There should be instructions as to its use in your base vehicle handbook.

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Post by Tinwheeler Tue May 16, 2023 4:56 pm

Yorkshirelass wrote:wave
It’s meant to be in the section Paul linked to. hugegrins  A few words about yourself would be nice and you’ll find a whole load of tips on using the forum in that Welcome Section. It’s well worth reading to understand how the forum operates.  up!
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Post by Caraman Wed May 17, 2023 3:47 pm

As Paul has said, when the red isolate button is activated on the ignition a few minutes later the vehicle electrics are shutdown to reduce load on the vehicle battery in storage.  The 'few minutes' are to allow you to exit and centrally lock the vehicle.  The lump you have highlighted does this.
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Post by brains Sat May 27, 2023 5:02 pm

How long has it been since the batteries were fully charged?  The solar panel should keep both topped up now we are into longer days, but it’s not usually sufficient over the winter months. Is it parked in the open?

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Post by IanH Sat May 27, 2023 5:07 pm

100w solar, outside, will easily keep both batteries full all year round
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Post by brains Sat May 27, 2023 7:05 pm

IanH wrote:100w solar, outside, will easily keep both batteries full all year round

Doesn't work for me.  Maybe good for 5 or 6 weeks, but in both recent winters I've had to turn on EHU after getting a Sargent alert for low voltages.  We do have trees shading to the East.

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Post by Caraman Sat May 27, 2023 7:11 pm

brains wrote:

Doesn't work for me.  Maybe good for 5 or 6 weeks, but in both recent winters I've had to turn on EHU after getting a Sargent alert for low voltages.  We do have trees shading to the East.
If the alerts were SMS/e-mail alerts your EC700 cannot have been shutdown.  When it's not shutdown the winter solar is insufficient to keep both batteries fully charged.  If you shutdown the EC700 the solar should be sufficient to keep the VB fully charged and if the LB was fully charged to start with it should be fine without charge for 3 months.
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Post by IanH Sat May 27, 2023 8:49 pm

Mine is connected directly to a dual battery controller, then directly via 10A fuses to battery+ves.
No Sargent in mine, just direct connection. We too have some shading.
Never, ever use EHU at home even though it's metres away
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Post by brains Sun May 28, 2023 7:26 am

If I turn off the EC700 doesn’t that kill the tracker. And what about central locking?

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Post by Caraman Sun May 28, 2023 9:58 am

brains wrote:If I turn off the EC700 doesn’t that kill the tracker. And what about central locking?
It doesn't kill the tracker which continues to draw its external 12V supply from the LB via the LB in-line fuse and the No 2 fuse on the EC700 even when the EC700 is shutdown.  If the LB is disconnected or goes flat the tracker uses its internal battery.  

The central locking is powered from the VB and is unaffected by the EC700.  However, if the EC700 is shutdown the 12V habitation step won't work.
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Post by Caraman Sun May 28, 2023 4:53 pm

Caraman wrote:
It doesn't kill the tracker which continues to draw its external 12V supply from the LB via the LB in-line fuse and the No 2 fuse on the EC700, even when the EC700 is shutdown.  If the LB is disconnected or goes flat the tracker uses its internal battery and you should get a telephone call from the manned tracking centre in Bedford.  You shouldl also get a phone call if the armed tracker is triggered.  The LOCATE function on AS Monitor continues to work and the tracking centre is still able to actively track the motorhome if it is stolen.

The central locking is powered from the VB and is unaffected by the EC700.  However, if the EC700 is shutdown the 12V habitation step won't work.
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Post by motorhome-gramps Sun Jun 04, 2023 11:31 pm

hi  Yorkshirelass
the item you have photoed looks like a "smart charge altenator" sensing relay, i work at an Iveco dealers and the vans have something similar,when plugged in it will only charge when the engine is under less load, when unplugged the charge system should default to full charge i.e. 13.8 - 14.2 volts. if both batteries are going flat then it is likely to be a rather large draw of current you may need an auto sparky, if you have a volt meter or multimeter then you can test your charge rate yourself a healthy altenator will output 13.5 - 15 volts depending on state of charge over 15 v will damage the batteries, less than 13.5 the batteries will start to discharge.How ever 5Years for a battery is not bad, especially with modern vehicle high power consumption and many Altenators charging up to and including 170 amps.
if i am wrong and that is not an " intelligent battery sensor" then it is most likely a split charge relay. which is what allows the leisure battery to be charged from the altenator but then isolates the leisure battery from vehicle battery with the engine off. i hope this makes sense. if not then ask me about which bit i was not clear on.
having fully checked them photos it is defo a split charge relay so must be connected to charge leisure battery, however with the engine off the relay should swich off so as to not discharge main vehicle battery, if you have a multi meter and want info on how to carry out the checks let me know.
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Post by Dbvwt Mon Jun 05, 2023 7:28 am

I’m pretty sure I haven’t got a smart alternator but I’ve got one of those relays. It also looks part of the original vehicle rather than a split charge relay fitted to the A/S build which is why I also assumed it was for the red isolation button as already mentioned.
Happy to learn otherwise though smile!
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Post by The Bargee Mon Jun 05, 2023 8:04 am

Dbvwt wrote:I’m pretty sure I haven’t got a smart alternator but I’ve got one of those relays. It also looks part of the original vehicle rather than a split charge relay fitted to the A/S build which is why I also assumed it was for the red isolation button as already mentioned.
Happy to learn otherwise though smile!
Agree. I looked it up when I was trying to figure out the charging system and I think it is simply a heavy duty relay which isolates (probably) the entire negative side of the vehicle system completely when the red button is activated. Part of the original build. There must be a delay timer somewhere since I don’t think there is an integral timer.
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Post by Caraman Mon Jun 05, 2023 8:11 am

If in doubt as to its purpose, remove the cab floor so the battery is exposed and operate the Battery Standby System with the red ignition button.  At about 7 minutes listen to where the relay click comes from.
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Post by glyne lock Mon Jun 05, 2023 4:17 pm

The item is a relay
TYCO ELECTRONICS
p/n v23130-c2021
190 amp
this is just to isolate some items but some have a direct earth to keep them with power
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