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Old 06-12-2020, 02:26 PM   #1
spade117
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Power Issue

Trailer has been sitting in driveway connected to shore power since I de-winterized it about 6-8 wks ago.

Battery is reading 13.4-13.7 volts.

Today, I went to put one of the slides in before mowing the lawn and nothing happened. Tried moving the other slide and nothing. The stabilizers and tongue jack did not work either. I ended up plugging into my truck and all of the devices would work.

After cutting the lawn, I put the main slide back out while still connected to the truck. It moved very slow, but I was able to get it back out.

I disconnected from shore power and checked a few other things: lights worked fine, water pump worked.

Based on this info, I feel it may be an inverter/converter issue, but I don't know for sure and if it is, this is where I feel I lack in knowledge and need help.

Ideas? What else can I test to know for sure?
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Old 06-12-2020, 03:13 PM   #2
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Sounds like you're batteries are toast or you have the battery disconnect in the "store" position & not being charged while connected to shore power.
If you have 13+ volts when connected to shore power I'd say your converter is working as it should.
Have you checked water levels in your batteries? If plugged in continuously they should be checked/topped off with distilled water regularly.
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Old 06-12-2020, 03:56 PM   #3
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The batteries are reading 13+ because they are connected to shore power via the converter. Remove the shore power. Wait about an hour and take another reading. If the batteries are less than 12.2 VDC they are basically discharged. Check the water levels. They may have boiled off during storage. If the batteries won't hold a charge you can get them tested at the auto parts store.
I'm a bit perplexed since the slides wouldn't operate even with shore power but that might be the case with your Springdale. The converter might be overtaxed charging the batteries to provide enough power to run the slides and jack.
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Old 06-12-2020, 04:06 PM   #4
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Water levels are good in the battery, I do check them regularly.

I did check the battery voltage with the shore power unhooked, but it wasn't after an hour, so I will do that and check back.
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Old 06-12-2020, 05:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spade117 View Post

I did check the battery voltage with the shore power unhooked, but it wasn't after an hour, so I will do that and check back.
After about an hour and 10 minutes with shore power unhooked, voltage reads 13.1.
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Old 06-12-2020, 06:15 PM   #6
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Batteries appear to be OK. Have you tried the slides again? With no shore power attached?
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Old 06-12-2020, 08:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canonman View Post
Batteries appear to be OK. Have you tried the slides again? With no shore power attached?
I did try them again. Slides, tongue and stabilizers all have no reaction (no sound, no nothing). Lights still work fine with no shore power.
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Old 06-13-2020, 04:37 AM   #8
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It sounds like one of the mini-breakers (there's two) that are wired next to the battery. On travel trailers, usually on the A frame bulkhead and on fifth wheels, mounted next to the battery. It may not be the "actual mini-breaker" it may be a crimp on one of the ring terminals attached to it. But the symptoms look like it's in the electrical distribution "at the battery wiring"....
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Old 06-13-2020, 05:16 AM   #9
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You've got a real brain teaser here. Since the tongue jack is having the same symptoms as the slides, the problem is likely at the common point where they connect. If you can connect the truck and have the slides/jack work with that power source, I'm with John and suggest tracing the wiring back to the distribution block. I'd bet the slides and jack connect at the same point. If the resettable breaker is good, then check from the breaker back to the battery.
I'd meter at the jack first. Should have 12vdc there at the switch. If not then back to the resettable breaker. If no power at the input side of the breaker then it's got to be the wiring back to the battery. The charge lead from the truck may be on the "fused" side of the breaker and that's why it was able to operate the slide/jack (just guessing here)
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Old 06-13-2020, 05:58 AM   #10
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I left shore power unhooked overnight, and checked the battery again this morning. 12.9-13.1 volts still.

Since this is a weak spot in my knowledge, I've attached 2 pictures to see if that helps in directing me to correct spots to check based on the last 2 posts.

I also changed out the 2 fuses that were easily accessible to see if that changed anything, but it did not.
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Old 06-13-2020, 06:24 AM   #11
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Looking at your top photo in post #10, it looks like there is a red wire connected to one side of the mini-breaker and there is a red wire AND a white wire connected to the other terminal on the mini-breaker.

My guess would be that the battery power comes into that mini-breaker from the other mini-breaker and the white wire goes to the tongue jack. If that side of the mini-breaker is not receiving power, then there's also no power to the other red wire on that breaker (which probably powers the slides).

So, I'd first measure for voltage (13.1 VDC) on the terminal on that mini-breaker with two wires (1 red, 1 white). If you have voltage there, then measure the other terminal on that mini-breaker. If you don't have power on those terminals, then look at the connection on "the primary mini-breaker" (the other one in your photo)

I'd suppose that you won't have voltage on that mini-breaker, or if you do, that it's not 13.1VDC.
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Old 06-13-2020, 06:36 AM   #12
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Excellent! Picture #1 is very helpful. Yes, these are the resettable breakers. You can see from the battery a heavy gauge cable connected to the top position on the left. Open this cover and meter for 12vdc at the top connector. One leg of the meter to the connector and the other to the frame ground located next to the breaker. If you don't have 12vdc on the top connector check the crimp connector on the cable from the battery. These are not always done real well. If you have power there then check the bottom connector. If no power there, the breaker is popped or bad. Hopefully it's that simple
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Old 06-13-2020, 06:59 AM   #13
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For some reason the top picture rotated, but yes, the white wire goes to the tongue jack. So top=right and bottom=left, and the primary mentioned is left and the one leading the tongue is on the right.

To confirm that I am checking properly, where exactly do I place the leads on either end of the voltmeter prongs?
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Old 06-13-2020, 07:05 AM   #14
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Canonman, I did not see your post before my last reply, but I seem to be getting different readings, so I want to make sure I am doing this correctly.
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Old 06-13-2020, 07:14 AM   #15
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Red lead from the meter to the top post on the left breaker where the battery lead attaches. Black from the meter to the frame ground located just to the left of the breaker.
If you have good voltage there, then move your red meter lead to the bottom post. voltage reading may drop by a little, like a 1/10 or so but should be close to what you measured right at the batteries.
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Old 06-13-2020, 07:32 AM   #16
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All of this is with shore power still unhooked.

Ok, depending if I touch the top of the screw holding the terminals or if I touch the metal being held by the screw, there is some variation. All of these readings are with the black probe on the frame ground:

Top left reads about 13v
Bottom left 12.8-13v

Top right starts at around 9.5 and continues to drop if I hold it there
Bottom right starts around 8 and continues to drop if I hold it there
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Old 06-13-2020, 10:36 AM   #17
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OK Is the white wire on the top right post going to the jack or is it from the connector to the truck? The larger red wire on the bottom post likely feeds the fuse panel in the trailer and carries power back from the converter to charge the batteries.
I'd suggest removing the white wire and take reading with it off. If the reading changes back to 12+vdc then we know there is a drain on that lead. If it doesn't change then remove the large red wire on the bottom post and and take another reading, If the reading comes back to 12+ vdc then try the slides/jack.
All the above is based on how our Cougar is wired but it looks very similar.
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Old 06-13-2020, 01:17 PM   #18
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Looking at the second photo that ground bolt and terminals look very corroded. I'd suggest removing and cleaning or replacing to ensure a proper ground.
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Old 06-14-2020, 09:39 AM   #19
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Looking at the second photo that ground bolt and terminals look very corroded. I'd suggest removing and cleaning or replacing to ensure a proper ground.
Yes, that was the plan following the Canonman's last post.

As I was trying to remove the nuts, the corrosion was bad enough that a stud on both mini breakers broke and the wire lug ring terminal to the tongue wire snapped.

Ran up to the RV store and got replacement mini breakers and terminal.

Redid the crimp on the terminal, cleaned all the others. Put everything back together and the slides and stabilizers now work. Tongue jack still does not work. Checked the terminal that I replaced and it is showing 13.6v, so I do not know why the tongue jack will not work. The light on the jack does work, bur nothing happens I when press the retract/extend buttons.
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Old 06-14-2020, 12:51 PM   #20
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Check the white wire going to the tongue jack and see if it has an inline fuse. Good that you replaced the corroded parts.
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