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Power Switch


Wonky

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Now then guys 'n' gals.

 

I have to finally ask the question because, for the life of me, I don't know the answer!!!

 

You know the power switch inside the caravan that can be switched from car to caravan? What is it's purpose and why should I switch to towcar when travelling?

 

I thought it was to enable you to take power from the car when your battery goes flat (as if!), but many people have told me to switch it to car when travelling otherwise your battery doesn't get charged -HELP! :unsure:

 

Martin W

Discovery D3 HSE + Coachman VIP 575/4 2016

www.pennplanning.co.uk

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I thought that the switch was used on site when your caravan battery is flat and you don't have a hook up to re-charge it. You can run all your 12v lights etc (but not fridge) from your car battery by plugging the 12S cable into your car. This is what we used to do about 15 years ago with our first caravan that did not have a mains hook up. But don't flatten the car battery as well.

 

On checking in my manual I see that there is a central position as well and that should be used when towing or if you want to provide 12 volt power to all circuits from the charger only. If the charger is not connected, ie when towing, and the switch is in the central position then all dc circuits are isolated.

 

You learn something every day. I did not know about the central position and have never used it. Because we now always have a hook up I have never moved that switch from caravan in our last 2 vans.

 

 

Pete.

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I never use the "car" position as it only seems to connect the van to the permanent live & earth in the car, assuming the 12S socket is connected. With a 110ah battery on the van it's never been necessary. The fridge works from the car in the central position. Don't know about battery charging whilst travelling, will check the destruction book when I get chance.

 

Keat

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Hi All,

 

The switch controls where the low current 12v caravan ancilliaries are powered from,car or caravan battery,with no 240v mains connected. The anciliaries include all 12v items such as lights,radio etc but exclude the refridgerator because of the high current drain.

 

The switch can be left in any position for towing as the battery charging is connected by on board caravan relay via the 12s line. This also runs the refridgerator on 12v when towing provided the refridgerator is selected on. :)

 

Frank

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Guest john1215
I thought that the switch was used on site when your caravan battery is flat and you don't have a hook up to re-charge it. You can run all your 12v lights etc (but not fridge) from your car battery by plugging the 12S cable into your car. This is what we used to do about 15 years ago with our first caravan that did not have a mains hook up. But don't flatten the car battery as well.

 

On checking in my manual I see that there is a central position as well and that should be used when towing or if you want to provide 12 volt power to all circuits from the charger only. If the charger is not connected, ie when towing, and the switch is in the central position then all dc circuits are isolated.

 

You learn something every day. I did not know about the central position and have never used it. Because we now always have a hook up I have never moved that switch from caravan in our last 2 vans.

Pete.

12441[/snapback]

 

This is what I thought. I have a tracker fitted to my van and this weekend, travelling home I inadvertently moved the rocker switch to the central position. Whilst driving home we had 10 calls from the tracker control to say that the tracker had activated. I spoke with a company rep who was at the NEC on Sunfday and he checked with Lunar. They say that in the central position, the 12 volt circuit is disconnected. The tracker thought that the power had been cut and this triggered the alarm. I usually tow with the switch on CAR and this is where I will leave it in future.

 

john1215

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My current caravan does not have a CAR/CARAVAN switch. When connected to the car, switch on the ignition and all 12v supplies go off and the 12v fridge supply and battery charging comes on. All controlled by relays in the caravan. Many other modern caravans are the same

 

Brian

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So, is it necessary to touch the switch at all if your battery is ok?

 

Martin W

Discovery D3 HSE + Coachman VIP 575/4 2016

www.pennplanning.co.uk

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Martin,

 

I would have thought that the only time you need to touch the switch is if your caravan battery goes flat and then you can then plug into the car and put the switch to CAR and run from the car battery.

 

The only other thing is that when your caravan is not being used, put the switch in the central position, which will switch everthing off, just in case you have left something on inadvertantly - status aerial for example, which is not obvious. Will flatten the battery in time. Mine just has an ON/OFF switch, so I just switch it off and all 12v goes off.

 

Brian

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Martin,

 

I would have thought that the only time you need to touch the switch is if your caravan battery goes flat and then you can then plug into the car and put the switch to CAR and run from the car battery.

 

The only other thing is that when your caravan is not being used, put the switch in the central position, which will switch everthing off, just in case you have left something on inadvertantly - status aerial for example, which is not obvious. Will flatten the battery in time. Mine just has an ON/OFF switch, so I just switch it off and all 12v goes off.

 

Brian

12482[/snapback]

 

Goood point about switching everthing off. Many posts on this forum about blown air system in the auto setting drawing current. Must remember to do this.

 

I recently added a relay box to our '92 'van to spec up to post '98 configuration. This has two trick relays in it and is wired in such a way that it knows if the car is connected. It took me ages to figure out the circuitry then about 20 minutes to fit.

 

Mike

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Martin,

 

I would have thought that the only time you need to touch the switch is if your caravan battery goes flat and then you can then plug into the car and put the switch to CAR and run from the car battery.

 

The only other thing is that when your caravan is not being used, put the switch in the central position, which will switch everthing off, just in case you have left something on inadvertantly - status aerial for example, which is not obvious. Will flatten the battery in time. Mine just has an ON/OFF switch, so I just switch it off and all 12v goes off.

 

Brian

12482[/snapback]

Ta Brian,

 

Think I've sussed it now!

 

My van is at home on the drive, plugged in to 240v 24/7 so I don't need to worry about the 12v bits draining the battery then do I. .....?

 

Martin W

Discovery D3 HSE + Coachman VIP 575/4 2016

www.pennplanning.co.uk

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No you don't. ....assuming your battery charger is switched on and working - your voltmeter should be showing around 13v

 

Brian

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This is what I thought. I have a tracker fitted to my van and this weekend, travelling home I inadvertently moved the rocker switch to the central position. Whilst driving home we had 10 calls from the tracker control to say that the tracker had activated. I spoke with a company rep who was at the NEC on Sunfday and he checked with Lunar. They say that in the central position, the 12 volt circuit is disconnected. The tracker thought that the power had been cut and this triggered the alarm. I usually tow with the switch on CAR and this is where I will leave it in future.

 

john1215

12457[/snapback]

In the hand book for the Lunar Zenith it says central position for charging the battery when towing

I. E. 12v electrics not connected to car or caravan batteries but charge from car to caravan battery is on

If switch is central and you connect to 240 hook up battery charger kicks in and 12v is fed thro battery to 12v system

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Just been reading my handbook but as it covers the whole Swift range there are different types of control switches fitted to different vans

 

BUT

 

according to Swift it is EU regulations that insist when the car is connected and engine is running then all 12v items are switched off and isolated by a relay except the fridge (if on) and charge to the vans battery - plus of course the road lighting.

 

BTW this is the 2005 handbook.

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