inverter putting out 14.2 volts - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 10-14-2017, 10:39 PM   #1
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converter putting out 14.2 volts

We just returned to Arizona from our summer home in Alaska. While in Alaska I rewired my TV electrical system to provide enough power to the trailer to run a 12 volt portable freezer as well as the refrigerator.
When we stopped at night the battery voltage indicator on the solar controller always indicated fully charged batteries.
I had an occasion at a full hookup site to turn on the inverter to confirm it was operational. When I came back in the trailer a bit later the indicator on the controller was flashing a "check" warning message. The indicated voltage on the controller with the inverter on was 14.2 volts. Inverter off voltage reading was normal. I checked the battery electrolite and had slight bubbling so I assumed I was in an over charge condition and discontinued using the inverter for the remainder of the trip.
Does anybody have information or experience with this situation? Is there an adjustment on the inverter that can be dialed in? The inverter appears easy enough to replace but just thought I would put the issue and question out here for any input prior to buying a new unit.
Thanks for any responses.
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Old 10-14-2017, 11:03 PM   #2
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An inverter takes in approximately 12 volt DC power from the battery, and provides 120 volt AC power.
A converter takes in 120 volt AC power ("shore" power from the campsite outlet) and produces approximately 12 volt DC power to run stuff in the trailer and charge the battery.

It sounds like you mean that the converter produced 14.2 volts, not the inverter. Right? Once that is clear, we can make sense of the rest of the situation (which is probably perfectly normal).
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Old 10-14-2017, 11:12 PM   #3
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Yes,My mistake. I am indeed referring to the converter that is part of the distribution panel which is stock in the 09 17' trailer.
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Old 10-15-2017, 05:53 AM   #4
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I see no adjustments on the WFCO converter if that's what you have. Here's the page from the manual that shows how to properly check it's output. I'm suspect as to whether it's really bad due to the electrical work you've done. This will prove whether the converter is bad or it's something else.
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File Type: jpg converter.jpg (166.1 KB, 28 views)
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Old 10-15-2017, 09:18 AM   #5
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Thanks,
Yes I have checked the voltage at the terminals indicated as well as at various 12 volt outlet points in the trailer. All read 14.2 vdc with converter on and 12.75 vdc with converter off. RD
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Old 10-15-2017, 09:38 AM   #6
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Thanks,
Yes I have checked the voltage at the terminals indicated as well as at various 12 volt outlet points in the trailer. All read 14.2 vdc with converter on and 12.75 vdc with converter off. RD
If you disconnected the wires as mentioned then it does look like the converter is messed up. I bought one in the past from BestConverter, they also carry another brand that is a direct replacement for the board which is worth considering as WFCO's are not top notch units. Randy is the owner and can help point you in the right directions if you are doing this yourself.
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Old 10-15-2017, 10:03 AM   #7
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Thanks,
From what you wrote I am assuming there is a board that can be replaced? That would be excellent as opposed to replacing the entire converter.
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Old 10-15-2017, 10:17 AM   #8
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Randy would know for sure, I had swapped an Elixer board with a WFCO in my 06 Starcraft. Should be something like this PD4655MBA WildKat 55 Amp Main Board Assembly for WFCO 8955 or Parallax 7155 (Includes 4600 Remote) depending on what you have in your trailer. See if you can find a model number on it. I'm sure there are many places to get such, BestConverter happens to be the one I know of.
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Old 10-15-2017, 10:21 AM   #9
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Thank You,
I will pursue this. This looks like a doable solution. RD
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Old 10-15-2017, 10:57 AM   #10
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Thank You,
I will pursue this. This looks like a doable solution. RD
Bob's right Robin. Randy sells upgrades/retrofits for the WFCO. It changes out the mainboard and charger. Several have done it, with either the "Boondocker" board or the Progressive Dynamics. Last time I spoke to Randy he liked the PD better, but give him a call.
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Old 10-15-2017, 03:03 PM   #11
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Thanks all for the input. I have researched the converter operation process and it appears to me the converter is in the "bulk" charge mode when reading 14.2 vdc. Although I can't confirm my theory right now as the trailer is in dry storage, I am thinking that with the portable 12vdc freezer and the installed refrigerator both running when I turned on the converter it may have sensed a low voltage condition due to voltage drop from the heavy load applied and shifted into" bulk charge" mode.
Got my curiosity up now and I wish I could power up the trailer to test my theory. I will post again when I get a chance to confirm my theory
Thanks again for all the input.
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Old 10-15-2017, 04:11 PM   #12
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With the output wires disconnected it should not have seen any load.The highest output according to my manual is 13.6v, might be you are seeing your solar controllers output.
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Old 05-20-2019, 08:16 AM   #13
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Wonder if I can revive this thread. When we plug into shore power our solar controler first registers 15.4 amps and then indicates an error condition with three dashes, according to the Go Power tech. The overcharge condition resolves itself when I unplug shore power. Not much of an electrician so I don't know if I am going to attempt the diagnostic procedure mentioned above, but can I just open the battery isolation switch to prevent the converter from over charging when on shore power? BTW we paid $120 to Access RV in Salt Lake City to tell us our system was fine and there was nothing wrong.
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Old 05-20-2019, 08:26 AM   #14
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Nick,
If you switch the battery disconnect, what happens? I thought the 120v and 12v were separate with the 120v charging via the converter the 12v system and the solar is strictly 12v charging, I'm trying to under how one is impacting the other, if they are separate?
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Old 05-20-2019, 08:52 AM   #15
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Hey Jim,
Not going to try it until I get some more info from this forum and perhaps, Escape. To anweer your question, both the converter and solar charge the batteries. My question is if I flip the isolagion switch, is the battery isolated from the conveter. I am looking around for a wireing diagram now. Can't fix typos due to computer problem. sorry.
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Old 05-20-2019, 09:09 AM   #16
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If the 15.4 was volts rather than amps, and goes away when disconnected from the power pedestal, that indicates that the converter has a problem, and is producing over voltage. I don't see how it would be possible for the GoPower solar controller to register the current (amps) from the converter. I'd try shutting off the circuit breaker that feeds the converter, which would let you remain hooked up to the power pedestal for the rest of your 120 volt stuff until you can have the converter checked. You will then be depending on the solar panel & controller for battery charging.
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Old 05-20-2019, 09:14 AM   #17
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Hey Jim,
Not going to try it until I get some more info from this forum and perhaps, Escape. To anweer your question, both the converter and solar charge the batteries. My question is if I flip the isolagion switch, is the battery isolated from the conveter. I am looking around for a wireing diagram now. Can't fix typos due to computer problem. sorry.
The battery disconnect switch should isolate your batteries from the converter. The solar charger is connected directly to the batteries and is not affected by the battery disconnect switch - the only way to isolate the solar charger from the batteries, short of disconnecting a wire, is to remove the fuse.
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Old 05-20-2019, 09:15 AM   #18
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The battery disconnect switch should isolate your batteries from the converter. The solar charger is connected directly to the batteries and is not affected by the battery disconnect switch - the only way to isolate the solar charger from the batteries, short of disconnecting a wire, is to remove the fuse.
Yes, this is the way I understood the system...
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Old 05-20-2019, 09:19 AM   #19
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Jon's got it. The voltage controller in your converter is not behaving, and your solar controller is detecting the too high voltage. 15.4 volts may be appropriate for conditioning the batteries, but is too high for normal charging and in the long run will cook your batteries. (It may also burn other stuff out, like for example the controller on the Max Fan).



If there is a conditioning switch on the converter, that may be your problem - I do not know whether there is one or not, but there could be if a battery conditioning option is built in. If there is a battery conditioning switch, make sure it is turned off.
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