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Old 11-18-2022, 07:55 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perry Butler View Post
You have flooded lead acid batteries?

If so, there is no way they should read 13.2v if batteries are totally disconnected, surface charge is removed, and you wait four hours to test. Even 12.8 would be high for FLA batteries, much less 13.2.

Either I'm missing something or your batteries are still connected to something.

Enjoy,

Perry
Surface charge was not removed, because I misunderstood your instruction and tried to run LED lights/water pump after batteries were disconnected. I assumed that you wanted me to get rid of any residual electrical current. Will repeat the procedure later. Batteries were completely disconnected from trailer except 2 x 6v batteries connected in series. Please bare with me for my lack of electrical knowledge. I appreciated your troubleshooting knowledge.

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Old 11-19-2022, 12:59 PM   #42
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Resting Voltage

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Originally Posted by alanmalk View Post
Take your resting voltage measurement a few hours after sunset.
Hello alanmalk,
The resting voltage is 12.7v. This morning I covered the Solar panel for two hours and took that reading.
Load test: I switched on 4 LEDs lights and waited for 10 minutes. The voltage at the battery terminal dropped from 12.7v to 12.5v . At the inverter terminal it also registered 12.5v. I could not do the hair dryer load test because I reset the external GFCI and it would not reset. The button stuck in test position. I have to buy a new outlet for it.
I am beginning to understand the processes. I was a little bite slow to comprehend what every one wanted me to check. You are trying to help me to assess the wiring connections, conductivity, continuity and voltage drop at the inverter terminal. This a good measure to recheck wiring integrity because it was working fine before. I thank you for it.
Perry was very helpful to suggest methods to assess the batteries state of charge. I understand a normal charged batteries is 12.8v. When I tested the batteries yesterday, I did get a reading that was 13.5v. It was strange.
I don't know if a bad GFCI outlet is causing all this issues. I will report back when I do the load test using a hair dryer after fixing the GFCI outlet. Thank you.

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Old 11-19-2022, 02:58 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Tonny LR View Post
Hello alanmalk,
The resting voltage is 12.7v. This morning I covered the Solar panel for two hours and took that reading.
Load test: I switched on 4 LEDs lights and waited for 10 minutes. The voltage at the battery terminal dropped from 12.7v to 12.5v . At the inverter terminal it also registered 12.5v. I could not do the hair dryer load test because I reset the external GFCI and it would not reset. The button stuck in test position. I have to buy a new outlet for it.
Tonny LR
If all you did was run 4 LED lights for 10 minutes your voltage should not have dropped to 12.5, unless your lights were on when you took that reading, but 4 LED lights should not lower your voltage .2 volt.

So, were the lights off when you took that 12.5 reading? If so, I'm guessing your batteries are failing.

Food for thought,

Perry
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Old 11-19-2022, 03:43 PM   #44
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...
I could not do the hair dryer load test because I reset the external GFCI and it would not reset. The button stuck in test position.
...

This may, or may not have something to do with your inverter turning off too quickly. The key question to ask - does the inverter power also go to the GFI ( and other outlets ) as well as powering the microwave. The reason I ask is, Escape may have done some interesting wiring and my inverter was not supplied by Escape. If there is an easy way to take the GFI out of the circuit (or buy a new one), that may be an important step.

But back to the possible weak batteries. Can you try a "medium" load test? Say for example, turn the propane furnace on for 15 minutes?

Start by taking a voltage reading at the battery terminals. Then turn on the furnace. After running it for 15 minutes (trailer should be nice and warm) put the multi-meter on the battery terminals and report the voltage while the furnace is running. You will be taking a nominal 3 amps out of the battery. After 15 minutes you will have pulled a nominal 1 Amp-Hour of power out of the batteries - a trivial amount but enough for our purpose. The voltage reading should be reasonably close to the starting voltage.
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Old 11-19-2022, 06:30 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perry Butler View Post
If all you did was run 4 LED lights for 10 minutes your voltage should not have dropped to 12.5, unless your lights were on when you took that reading, but 4 LED lights should not lower your voltage .2 volt.

So, were the lights off when you took that 12.5 reading? If so, I'm guessing your batteries are failing.

Food for thought,

Perry
When I reported that it was 4 LED lights, let made it 5 because one of the lights is a double lamp. Yes, there was a 0.2v drop. When I recorded the voltage, the lights was still on. I am thinking about taking the 2 batteries to a battery shop or may be to ask Auto Zone for a battery load test. Thanks.
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Old 11-19-2022, 06:32 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by alanmalk View Post
This may, or may not have something to do with your inverter turning off too quickly. The key question to ask - does the inverter power also go to the GFI ( and other outlets ) as well as powering the microwave. The reason I ask is, Escape may have done some interesting wiring and my inverter was not supplied by Escape. If there is an easy way to take the GFI out of the circuit (or buy a new one), that may be an important step.

But back to the possible weak batteries. Can you try a "medium" load test? Say for example, turn the propane furnace on for 15 minutes?

Start by taking a voltage reading at the battery terminals. Then turn on the furnace. After running it for 15 minutes (trailer should be nice and warm) put the multi-meter on the battery terminals and report the voltage while the furnace is running. You will be taking a nominal 3 amps out of the battery. After 15 minutes you will have pulled a nominal 1 Amp-Hour of power out of the batteries - a trivial amount but enough for our purpose. The voltage reading should be reasonably close to the starting voltage.
Will conduct the test next week and get back with you. Thanks.

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Old 11-19-2022, 10:02 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by alanmalk View Post
This may, or may not have something to do with your inverter turning off too quickly. The key question to ask - does the inverter power also go to the GFI ( and other outlets ) as well as powering the microwave. The reason I ask is, Escape may have done some interesting wiring and my inverter was not supplied by Escape. If there is an easy way to take the GFI out of the circuit (or buy a new one), that may be an important step.

But back to the possible weak batteries. Can you try a "medium" load test? Say for example, turn the propane furnace on for 15 minutes?

Start by taking a voltage reading at the battery terminals. Then turn on the furnace. After running it for 15 minutes (trailer should be nice and warm) put the multi-meter on the battery terminals and report the voltage while the furnace is running. You will be taking a nominal 3 amps out of the battery. After 15 minutes you will have pulled a nominal 1 Amp-Hour of power out of the batteries - a trivial amount but enough for our purpose. The voltage reading should be reasonably close to the starting voltage.
The inverter power also go to the only one GFCI outlet as well as powering the microwave.
Running the furnace for 15 minutes for Medium load test is an excellent idea. This test will help to find out if my batteries are well charged and strong because a weak batteries will not start and run the furnace blower motor at full speed to activate the Sail switch. You have an excellent electrical knowledge. I appreciate your help.

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Old 11-20-2022, 04:45 AM   #48
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When I reported that it was 4 LED lights, let made it 5 because one of the lights is a double lamp. Yes, there was a 0.2v drop. When I recorded the voltage, the lights was still on. I am thinking about taking the 2 batteries to a battery shop or may be to ask Auto Zone for a battery load test. Thanks.
Tonny LR
FWIW, Autozone is likely to use a modern high frequency AC based digital battery capacity tester that gives you a CCA number but its basically a guess. a real battery store is more likely to have an old school 'carbon pile' tester that actually draws 100 amps or so off the battery for a few seconds and determines it can actually deliver real current and tells you how much capacity that battery has left based on how fast the voltage dropped during that high current test.

those high frequency digital testers can be found on fleabay and amazon for like $30. a good high current resistive tester is going to be at least $100 and maybe 2-3X that.
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Old 11-20-2022, 04:53 AM   #49
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btw, a Maxxfan deluxe (the 10 speed version) on the highest speed is almost 5 amps ... thats my usual battery load test in the trailer, like if I want to quickly bleed off surface charge.
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Old 11-20-2022, 09:15 AM   #50
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btw, a Maxxfan deluxe (the 10 speed version) on the highest speed is almost 5 amps ... thats my usual battery load test in the trailer, like if I want to quickly bleed off surface charge.
Hello John,
I am so happy that you suggested to run a Maxxfan deluxe to do the load test in the trailer. This method will be very easy. We are going out of town for a Thanksgiving gathering. Will do the test next week. Thank you.
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Old 11-21-2022, 02:25 PM   #51
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Furnace load test

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Originally Posted by alanmalk View Post
This may, or may not have something to do with your inverter turning off too quickly. The key question to ask - does the inverter power also go to the GFI ( and other outlets ) as well as powering the microwave. The reason I ask is, Escape may have done some interesting wiring and my inverter was not supplied by Escape. If there is an easy way to take the GFI out of the circuit (or buy a new one), that may be an important step.

But back to the possible weak batteries. Can you try a "medium" load test? Say for example, turn the propane furnace on for 15 minutes?

Start by taking a voltage reading at the battery terminals. Then turn on the furnace. After running it for 15 minutes (trailer should be nice and warm) put the multi-meter on the battery terminals and report the voltage while the furnace is running. You will be taking a nominal 3 amps out of the battery. After 15 minutes you will have pulled a nominal 1 Amp-Hour of power out of the batteries - a trivial amount but enough for our purpose. The voltage reading should be reasonably close to the starting voltage.
Hello alanmalk,
I conducted the furnace load test. The initial reading at the batteries terminals was 13.0V. Turned on the furnace and ran it for 15 minutes. The final batteries terminals reading was 12.8V. There was a 0.2 volt drop. At first, I could hear the furnace blower motor came on, then heard a click that activated the sail switch and then a second click that activated the high limit switch. A few minutes later, furnace was blowing warn air which made the cabin nice and warm.
I also ran the Maxx fan load test which also showed a 0.2 Volt drop after I turned the fan on high speed for 10 minutes.
I would like to find out if a 0.2 V drop is significant to indicate my batteries needed to be replaced.
I am confident to say the wiring is intact. Now is the question of replacing the inverter . I am going to wait till Spring time and come up with a plan of action. I will consult a battery shop to do a load test. Replace the batteries if they are bad. Consider replace the inverter if batteries are dead.

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Old 11-21-2022, 11:03 PM   #52
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Hello alanmalk,
I conducted the furnace load test.
...
I would like to find out if a 0.2 V drop is significant to indicate my batteries needed to be replaced.
...
0.2 V drop at the battery terminals, starting from 13.0, ending at 12.8 is quite "normal" and would indicate to me that the batteries are in good shape given the modest load.

Regardless, one necessary test is to measure the voltage right at the inverter connection, as close to the body of the inverter as possible. A bigger drop is expected, dependent on the load and type (motors can have a very big initial load until they reach full speed). But if your worst case voltage (the first 1 second) is over 11.5 V, then you can assign a "pass" to the batteries, wire and connections. Then point the finger at the inverter.
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Old 11-22-2022, 08:47 PM   #53
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0.2 V drop at the battery terminals, starting from 13.0, ending at 12.8 is quite "normal" and would indicate to me that the batteries are in good shape given the modest load.

Regardless, one necessary test is to measure the voltage right at the inverter connection, as close to the body of the inverter as possible. A bigger drop is expected, dependent on the load and type (motors can have a very big initial load until they reach full speed). But if your worst case voltage (the first 1 second) is over 11.5 V, then you can assign a "pass" to the batteries, wire and connections. Then point the finger at the inverter.
Hello alanmalk,
Thank you for continuing to offer ideas to troubleshooting inverter problem. I will conduct this test soon. What is it mean 'the first second is over 11.5V'? Is it meaning the initial voltage draw causing the batteries to drop from 12.8V to over 11.5V ? Thanks again.

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Old 11-22-2022, 09:10 PM   #54
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while it is interesting to watch the voltage under loads, you will only get the battery status by measuring the voltage after shutting the load off. under very high loads, the voltage can drop quite a lot. it needs to be at rest to measure its actual voltage.

the typical dual flooded golf cart battery setup is 200-225 amp*hours. thats 2400-2700 watt*hours rated... unlike 'marine/rv' batteries, golf cart batteries can be drained much deeper than 50% without long term effects, you could get a few 100 discharge cycles of 2000-2200 watt*hours each from them before they start to wear out.

just don't drain them completely out. thats bad for them
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Old 11-22-2022, 10:06 PM   #55
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...
under very high loads, the voltage can drop quite a lot. it needs to be at rest to measure its actual voltage.
...
Short term, high load voltage is essentially measuring internal resistance of the battery plus resistance of the wires and any connections. At-rest voltage is measuring state-of-charge. Both useful, but very different objectives.


Back to the "first second" under high load. The objective is to see if there is enough voltage to keep the inverter running. If the voltage drop is too great (and this depends on many factors so 11.5 is just a ballpark number), then the inverter will likely shut down, which appears to be the main symptom. So I am just wondering what the initial surge, when turning on the hair dryer, is doing to the voltage.
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Old 11-23-2022, 10:34 AM   #56
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Batteries Discharge

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Originally Posted by John in Santa Cruz View Post
while it is interesting to watch the voltage under loads, you will only get the battery status by measuring the voltage after shutting the load off. under very high loads, the voltage can drop quite a lot. it needs to be at rest to measure its actual voltage.

the typical dual flooded golf cart battery setup is 200-225 amp*hours. thats 2400-2700 watt*hours rated... unlike 'marine/rv' batteries, golf cart batteries can be drained much deeper than 50% without long term effects, you could get a few 100 discharge cycles of 2000-2200 watt*hours each from them before they start to wear out.

just don't drain them completely out. thats bad for them
Hello John,
Thank you for taking time to explain dual flooded batteries and their discharge capability.
I would like to take the opportunity to thank forum members for their contributions on how to test batteries. I have learned a lot. I had no ideas as to how to start troubleshooting inverter problem initially, except following the manual.

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Old 11-23-2022, 06:48 PM   #57
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Short term, high load voltage is essentially measuring internal resistance of the battery plus resistance of the wires and any connections. At-rest voltage is measuring state-of-charge. Both useful, but very different objectives.


Back to the "first second" under high load. The objective is to see if there is enough voltage to keep the inverter running. If the voltage drop is too great (and this depends on many factors so 11.5 is just a ballpark number), then the inverter will likely shut down, which appears to be the main symptom. So I am just wondering what the initial surge, when turning on the hair dryer, is doing to the voltage.
Hello alanmalk,
I conducted the 15 minutes furnace load test today. I connected the meter probes to the inverter terminals using crocodile clamps for battery. The reading was 12.8V. I enlisted my wife as a helper to turn on the furnace while I kept an eye on the meter reading display. The voltage dropped from 12.8V to 12.7V during the first second when blower motor came on. Voltage maintained on 12.7V for 10 minutes then dropped to 12.6V for the remining 5 minutes. The resting voltage was 12.6V. Can I assume that the batteries are heathy?. Now It is evident that the inverter may be the problem. Can an inverter go bad if you only used it less than 4 times in 8 years?

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Old 11-24-2022, 09:43 AM   #58
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Hello alanmalk,
I conducted the 15 minutes furnace load test today. I connected the meter probes to the inverter terminals using crocodile clamps for battery. The reading was 12.8V. I enlisted my wife as a helper to turn on the furnace while I kept an eye on the meter reading display. The voltage dropped from 12.8V to 12.7V during the first second when blower motor came on. Voltage maintained on 12.7V for 10 minutes then dropped to 12.6V for the remining 5 minutes. The resting voltage was 12.6V. Can I assume that the batteries are heathy?. Now It is evident that the inverter may be the problem. Can an inverter go bad if you only used it less than 4 times in 8 years?

Tonny LR
You need to do the same test connections while running the inverter under a heavy load. Be sure you are connected to the inverter terminals, not to the crimp connectors attached to it.

If you see a voltage drop under load below 11V, it is likely the inverter is shutting off due to low voltage. Check all the connections between the batteries & inverter for tightness. If it worked before, the wire size should not be a problem, but Escape does cut it close on acceptable wire size on some inverter installs.

If you have the inverter fuse connected directly to the battery without a fuse holder, be suspicious - a number of mechanical fuse failures have been the result.
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Old 11-24-2022, 01:50 PM   #59
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Hello alanmalk,
I conducted the 15 minutes furnace load test today.

That works nicely for the "light load" test.


Can I assume that the batteries are heathy?.

Likely healthy, as so far you have not seen anything to the contrary.


Now It is evident that the inverter may be the problem. Can an inverter go bad if you only used it less than 4 times in 8 years?

Yes. Any electronic component can fail at any time.

Tonny LR
See my thoughts in blue.

At this point we are hoping you can do the heavy inverter load test with a hair dryer as outlined above. We need to prove that all components are working properly: Connectors, wire size, any fuses, possible hidden corrosion, etc. Remove some insulation from the inverter terminals if necessary - it can be replaced. Get your meter clips on exposed bare metal. Turn on the inverter and fire up the hair dryer while you watch the meter closely.
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Old 11-24-2022, 02:37 PM   #60
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See my thoughts in blue.

At this point we are hoping you can do the heavy inverter load test with a hair dryer as outlined above. We need to prove that all components are working properly: Connectors, wire size, any fuses, possible hidden corrosion, etc. Remove some insulation from the inverter terminals if necessary - it can be replaced. Get your meter clips on exposed bare metal. Turn on the inverter and fire up the hair dryer while you watch the meter closely.
Thank you!

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