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Old 12-05-2014, 04:18 PM   #21
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Jim,

I think you are having trouble keeping up because of the voltage drop in the long run for the charge cable from the truck to the back of the 21.
I agree.

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I am planning to try this DC to DC charger once I pick up my 21 next year.

ctek d205S
Interesting. I couldn't find this model on the CTEK website. Did you mean the D250S, which happens to manage two inputs? It's expensive, but it seems that any of these DC-DC chargers as expensive, perhaps only because they are specialty products.
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Old 12-05-2014, 04:54 PM   #22
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I had looked at the Xantrex battery charger about six months ago. It really looks like a nice unit. Xantrex also makes a solar controller the C35 that is one of the three models that will charge the Interstate 6 volt batteries at the proper voltage. The battery charger has two issues; it still requires a converter be present in the RV to handle supplying current and protection to your 12 volt devices and it has had such terrible reviews.

It has been around for 10 years, according to one reviewer and the quality has slipped once production went overseas to China. The same problem occurred with the C35 solar controller. The battery charger seems to be used, like many RV products, on water craft. West Marine (link) had a number of reviews of the product.

Xantrex is a Canadian company that is a subsidiary of Schneider Electric. They have become a big player in power related manufacturing as they purchased over 30 companies in the last 20 years. I always used power protection products and uninterruptable power supplies from American Power Conversion (APC) in my prior life. They are now a Schneider company and I just went through a very large recall for their products.
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Old 12-05-2014, 05:04 PM   #23
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Ouch on the quality. Hope I got a good one.

I replaced my WFCO converter with a TRUEcharge2 and have had no issues. There is no need for a converter - the batteries and the charger output are paralleled (as was the WFCO.) So if there is more demand than the charger can put out the battery provides the difference. (WFCO was 55 amp, TrueCharge is 40.)
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Old 12-05-2014, 05:48 PM   #24
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Brian,

Yes i did type that in wrong. It is the D250S. A bit expensive but i believe it may be the least costly method, in terms of time and dollars, to correct the voltage drop. Previously i have run an inverter in my truck that powered a charger in the camper, but i am trying to avoid installing an inverter in the new truck.
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Old 12-05-2014, 06:14 PM   #25
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It is the D250S.
Thanks

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A bit expensive but i believe it may be the least costly method, in terms of time and dollars, to correct the voltage drop.
The CTEK manual describes a number of scenarios and explains how the management (switching) capabilities of the charger help, but they never clearly say that the charger will boost a low supplied input voltage to meet the target battery charging voltage. Does it really do this?

I wonder if all it does for low alternator voltage is to supplement charging with solar power output.

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Previously i have run an inverter in my truck that powered a charger in the camper, but i am trying to avoid installing an inverter in the new truck.
That setup makes functional sense. It was proposed in the FiberglassRV forum, where a supposedly qualified electrical engineer didn't understand the point and attacked and insulted the member who proposed it... but of course it would work. Did you ever measure the camper battery charge rate and quantify the improvement?
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Old 12-05-2014, 06:15 PM   #26
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Jim, I take it you can't fit a Group 24 12 volt battery in with your group 29?
No room at the inn for another battery in the vented box, but dual 6's will fit. They are the DuraCell model. I'll keep my Interstate 29 on trickle charge in the garage if I start to see the 6 era decline.
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Old 12-05-2014, 06:18 PM   #27
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I have Trojan T-105's, so I went to their site, and they recommend a 14.8V charge, 13.2V float, and a 15.5V equalize. At 14.4V, the Escape supplied charger is not too far off. For equalizing batteries, a couple times a year, I use a charger that I have at home that does a 15.8V charge. I can see that if you wanted the one in the trailer to do it all, you might want a new one.

I still don't understand how with deep cell batteries, that charging dual 6V, or charging a single 12V would have different charging needs.
Just for giggles I dropped Dometics and Atwood a note on the max input voltage their Fridge (RML8555) and the furnace in my fifth wheel can handle as the Interstates need 15.6 and the Trojans 15.5 for equalize. The fridge is 10-18v, the furnace is 10-13 volts. WHile I've got to think these are operating voltage ranges, do you think we need be concerned about smoking anything at the 15+ volts we need for charging and or equalizing?

Jim B, what do you use for your portable charger?
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Old 12-05-2014, 07:04 PM   #28
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Just for giggles I dropped Dometics and Atwood a note on the max input voltage their Fridge (RML8555) and the furnace in my fifth wheel can handle as the Interstates need 15.6 and the Trojans 15.5 for equalize. The fridge is 10-18v, the furnace is 10-13 volts. WHile I've got to think these are operating voltage ranges, do you think we need be concerned about smoking anything at the 15+ volts we need for charging and or equalizing?
I would say "no" to being concerned... but the furnace upper voltage spec is surprisingly low: any charger should run higher than that. My Atwood furnaces in other RVs seem to operate normally (albeit with a faster fan) at the highest charging voltage put out by my Progressive Dynamics converter/chargers.
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Old 12-05-2014, 07:11 PM   #29
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Just for giggles I dropped Dometics and Atwood a note on the max input voltage their Fridge (RML8555) and the furnace in my fifth wheel can handle as the Interstates need 15.6 and the Trojans 15.5 for equalize. The fridge is 10-18v, the furnace is 10-13 volts. WHile I've got to think these are operating voltage ranges, do you think we need be concerned about smoking anything at the 15+ volts we need for charging and or equalizing?

Jim B, what do you use for your portable charger?
I have been charging my Interstate batteries that high for a long time with no problems.
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Old 12-05-2014, 07:18 PM   #30
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I have been charging my Interstate batteries that high for a long time with no problems.
Good, 1 less thing to think too much about.
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