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Old 04-25-2020, 03:37 PM   #1
Rodman30
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Battery Shut off

Have a 2020 Passport 199 ml is there a battery disconnect switch somewhere on the unit? (Cant locate one)Or do I just need to install one (If so any recommendations) or Just disconnect the battery leads during storage?
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Old 04-25-2020, 06:25 PM   #2
chuckster57
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If you don’t see one on the frame by the battery(s), it probably doesn’t have one. You can add one or just remove the positive cable from the battery.
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Old 04-26-2020, 05:49 AM   #3
Roscommon48
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not your positive, disconnect your negative to stop the drain of electric. you don't need a shut off switch.
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:11 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roscommon48 View Post
not your positive, disconnect your negative to stop the drain of electric. you don't need a shut off switch.
Not here to argue but EVERY battery cut off I have seen installed on an RV is on the positive lead.

Can you provide documentation that there is a difference? Again not arguing just wondering...
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:30 AM   #5
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With cars/trucks it's safer to remove the neg cable fist. Reasoning behind that is if while loosening the positive cable in a cramped engine bay your wrench hits metal you're now welding.

Regarding campers, before I put a battery switch in I removed the neg cable for 2 primary reasons. 1. there's only one neg. cable as opposed to several positive cables.
2. If the positive cable would fall down on the frame and the shore cable gets plugged in it wouldn't do the converter any favors. Maybe a remote possibility but it's the kind of luck I have.
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flybouy View Post
With cars/trucks it's safer to remove the neg cable fist. Reasoning behind that is if while loosening the positive cable in a cramped engine bay your wrench hits metal you're now welding.

Regarding campers, before I put a battery switch in I removed the neg cable for 2 primary reasons. 1. there's only one neg. cable as opposed to several positive cables.
2. If the positive cable would fall down on the frame and the shore cable gets plugged in it wouldn't do the converter any favors. Maybe a remote possibility but it's the kind of luck I have.
This is as I was taught 50+ years ago!
I also removed the - cable when stored.
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:49 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by flybouy View Post
With cars/trucks it's safer to remove the neg cable fist. Reasoning behind that is if while loosening the positive cable in a cramped engine bay your wrench hits metal you're now welding.

Regarding campers, before I put a battery switch in I removed the neg cable for 2 primary reasons. 1. there's only one neg. cable as opposed to several positive cables.
2. If the positive cable would fall down on the frame and the shore cable gets plugged in it wouldn't do the converter any favors. Maybe a remote possibility but it's the kind of luck I have.
Just thinking out loud here:

If there are 2 or 3 cables attached to the positive battery terminal, for a battery cutoff switch to effectively disconnect ALL power to the trailer, then ALL of those cables must be routed through the battery cutoff switch.... That's the "issue" with the OEM BCO switch in most units. The factory "branches off some of the power leads "before the BCO switch" to always have power to slides, landing gear, CO monitor, LPG monitor, stereo memory circuits and ?????

So, to install a "100% effective battery cutoff switch" then EVERY one of those "cables on the positive terminal" would need to be "routed to the output terminal on the BCO switch"...

That's why (I think) the factory installs the BCO switch on the positive terminal. They can branch off some "parasitic loads" and still "cut off much of the power"... If they installed it on the negative terminal (almost always 1 cable) there would be no way to "keep part of the system powered on when the BCO switch was opened"...

ADDED: Then there's the state/federal requirement to have a functional breakaway capability during ALL towing over a specific trailer weight. If that cable to the breakaway switch is "connected the same way as the other parasitic load cables AND an owner installed a separate 100% BCO switch, by just pulling ALL the cables on the positive terminal to the new BCO switch, well, there goes that "unswitched breakaway requirement"...

Rocks in the soup??? or ???? without looking at any specific trailer and the way Keystone wired it, just putting a BCO switch on "all the cables on the positive or even on the single negative cable" might well unintentionally disconnect a mandatory safety device... Who travels with the BCO switch in the disconnected position??? Few if any, but if one does it and the trailer disconnects from the tow vehicle without emergency braking..... Just sayin'
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:56 AM   #8
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When installing a battery, I do attach the POSITIVE first so you cant ground out your wrench. When I work on an RV or auto I do remove the NEGATIVE for the same reason, cant "ground out" the wrench or component.

My question wasn't about hooking up/ taking off a battery. It was about which line to install the cut off on.
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:13 AM   #9
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I have a battery disconnect switch. It is a blade style on the negative post. When opened there is no flow of electrons as verified by my V meter. I like it, it was cheap, and my batteries maintain charge from all the "ghost" loads the trailer has. (TV, CO2 detector, etc.) And it is much easier and quicker than a wrench and pulling the negative lead. I think John's thinking is correct. But the concerns of the factory about ghost loads and mine are different. When I want the trailer to go to sleep I want it all to go to sleep, even the CO2 monitor. Rodman30 I recommend the cut off. I got mine here: https://amazon.com/s?k=battery+cutoff+switch+12v
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:16 AM   #10
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So I went looking and hers what I found:
NHRA requires POSITIVE side, but stock car sanctioning bodies require NEGATIVE

https://www.hotrod.com/articles/kill...e-or-negative/

Lots RV forum sites use the positive side and site the break away as an example if the person forgets to turn it back "off" before towing.
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:25 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by chuckster57 View Post
So I went looking and hers what I found:
NHRA requires POSITIVE side, but stock car sanctioning bodies require NEGATIVE

https://www.hotrod.com/articles/kill...e-or-negative/

Lots RV forum sites use the positive side and site the break away as an example if the person forgets to turn it back "off" before towing.
In addition to the "NHRA/SCA sanctions and their "arguments" there's the marine industry that "requires BCO's on the positive terminal. Their reasoning is that if the boat is "in the water" there's always a ground path if you touch the negative side of the circuit with the negative terminal disconnected... What they fail to mention is that if you're standing in 3' of water, leaning over your gunnel, touch the positive terminal, you become the ground if the negative terminal is connected to the boat grounding system....

There's arguments for and arguments against and have been since magnetos were replaced by batteries. I'd suspect Henry Ford and Karl Benz argued the magneto disconnections about the same time they started building cars on opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean.....
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:35 AM   #12
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Either way works to totally disconnect! So do it whichever way makes you happy!
I removed the negative cable from battery #2 then attached a 2 amp solar charger to the positive of battery #1 & negative to battery #2 & this kept both batteries at 12.2 volts all winter, but was stored in Arizona with 322 days of sun every year also helped.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:02 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckster57 View Post

Lots RV forum sites use the positive side and site the break away as an example if the person forgets to turn it back "off" before towing.
Chuck, are you saying the “break away” brakes won’t work if battery is disconnected? I’ve never considered that. Assumed it gets power from TV. My trips are always short and battery is hooked up to run jack, but could see time where connected to TV for days I might have disconnected.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:05 AM   #14
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Break away "power" is direct from battery at the junction box. If the disconnect is on the positive side BEFORE the junction box then yes the BCO will disable the break away switch.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:24 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Ksupaul View Post
Chuck, are you saying the “break away” brakes won’t work if battery is disconnected? I’ve never considered that. Assumed it gets power from TV. My trips are always short and battery is hooked up to run jack, but could see time where connected to TV for days I might have disconnected.
The emergency breakaway switch functions when the trailer "breaks away from the tow vehicle". In most situations, if the trailer "breaks away, the 7 pin umbilical connecting the trailer to the truck will also separate. There is no "power from the tow vehicle to activate the brakes in that situation"... The ONLY approved method of wiring the breakaway switch if "to the trailer battery". That may be through the 7 pin connector block mounted in the pin box or on the trailer A frame, or directly to the battery, but never rely on the tow vehicle power to activate the trailer breakaway system...… And, if the battery cutoff switch "completely disconnects the battery from the trailer system, then there is NO power to the breakaway switch and emergency trailer braking system.
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:33 AM   #16
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I have to laugh at myself for not thinking that one through. LOL! Of course. Thanks guys.
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Old 04-26-2020, 11:26 AM   #17
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Seems irrelevant to me which cable you interrupt as long as you interrupt the flow from one post to the other. As for "driving away with the battery disconnect" can only happen with a manual, hand cranked tongue jack. I mounted mine on the neg cable only because it's a single cable and the switch itself is mounted on the battery box cover. I have to turn it on to lift/lower the jack so no forgetting.
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Old 04-26-2020, 02:57 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by flybouy View Post
Seems irrelevant to me which cable you interrupt as long as you interrupt the flow from one post to the other. As for "driving away with the battery disconnect" can only happen with a manual, hand cranked tongue jack. I mounted mine on the neg cable only because it's a single cable and the switch itself is mounted on the battery box cover. I have to turn it on to lift/lower the jack so no forgetting.
As long as you're "thinking things through" you're right... However, there's the "potential" that someone stores their trailer next to the garage, plugged into shore power and "for some reason" (I can think of a few) turns the BCO off. Depending on how the electric tongue jack is wired, he can lift the trailer, hitch up, never turn on the BCO switch, unplug the trailer from shore power, coil up the shore power cable, get in the tow vehicle and drive off without ever turning on the BCO switch... "Perfect storm of events" ?? Yeah, but theoretically, someone with an electric jack "could" hitch up with the BCO switch turned off....
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Old 04-27-2020, 04:12 AM   #19
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I have this cutoff switch on the neg and this 200a fuse on the pos...

https://www.amazon.com/Ampper-Batter...s%2C443&sr=8-9

https://www.amazon.com/Bay-Marine-Si...7989881&sr=8-5
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Old 04-27-2020, 04:55 AM   #20
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I would worry that the disconnected negative cable could fall and make contact with the frame somewhere - Reconnecting the circuit...

I have this cutoff switch on the neg and this 200a fuse on the pos...

https://www.amazon.com/Ampper-Batter...s%2C443&sr=8-9

https://www.amazon.com/Bay-Marine-Si...7989881&sr=8-5
Your worry about the "other end of the negative cable falling down and contacting the frame somewhere" is not anything to be concerned about. The "other end" of that cable is already screwed to the frame, making contact, so if the "battery end that was disconnected happens to touch the frame, it's already bolted to it anyway....

You're correct in being concerned if you disconnect the POSITIVE battery cable and have the trailer plugged into shore power. The converter battery charging circuit will provide power to the positive side of the battery wiring, rendering that cable "hot". Should it touch the frame, it would cause a "direct short to ground" from the converter to the positive battery cable.

Your 30 amp fuse terminal may be too small for the trailer battery. There are some (many) trailers that require up to 50-80 amps to power the hydraulic pump, the leveling system and the slides. In most Keystone trailers produced since about 2010, the WFCO converters used are rated at 55 amps. Theoretically, "normal operation of the converter/charger" could apply up to 55 amps of DC power directly to the battery terminals. Additionally, the "other end of that white (in older trailers) or red (in newer trailers) positive battery cable goes directly to a 40 amp or a 30 amp DC circuit breaker. So essentially, you're "fusing both ends of a wire" with installation of that terminal fuse block.

ADDED: I see (after posting the comment about the 30 amp fuse terminal) that it is actually a 300 amp fuse terminal. That is a "marine device" intended to prevent "meltdown of battery cables" in the event of a wet/shorted marine engine starter. It would serve no purpose in the RV environment since the other end of that cable is already fused at 30 or 40 amps in most trailers.
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