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12 Volt Problem


LYNDA

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Thought we had sorted our 12 volt problem by buying a new battery only to find two weeks later battery flat and no 12 volt which is a bit of a pest as my water heater wont work or my water pump had a look at the charger under the seat all looks ok lights are on and power is obviously coming back to the van or my 12 volts wouldnt have worked when battery was charged am i right on this point?

So am i right in thinking my charger is not charging the battery and is there anyway i can by pass the built in charger with a seperate charger as a tempory measure or is the whole unit b*****ed and i need to replace it if so how and how much would i be looking at.

Thanks for any advise

Lynda

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Thought we had sorted our 12 volt problem by buying a new battery only to find two weeks later battery flat and no 12 volt which is a bit of a pest as my water heater wont work or my water pump had a look at the charger under the seat all looks ok lights are on and power is obviously coming back to the van or my 12 volts wouldnt have worked when battery was charged am i right on this point?

So am i right in thinking my charger is not charging the battery and is there anyway i can by pass the built in charger with a seperate charger as a tempory measure or is the whole unit b*****ed and i need to replace it if so how and how much would i be looking at.

Thanks for any advise

Lynda

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Lynda, When your 'van is plugged into the mains, do the 240v systems on board work? This at least shows that the mains lead is supplying 240v into the 'van.

Mikey

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Lynda, When your 'van is plugged into the mains, do the 240v systems on board work? This at least shows that the mains lead is supplying 240v into the 'van.

Mikey

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Yes no problems at all with 240 volts all the lights work the kettle boils and the microwave cooks like a dream.

Lynda

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OK, How old is your van, and what make and model is it? Do the 12v systems work when mains power is on? If not, maybe circuit breaker has tripped out, and, stupid I know, is 12v switch turned on on the panel/

Mikey :blink:

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OK, How old is your van, and what make and model is it? Do the 12v systems work when mains power is on? If not, maybe circuit breaker has tripped out, and, stupid I know, is 12v switch turned on on the panel/

Mikey :blink:

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Ok here we go the van is a swift conquerer and it is on a 1991 plate get my drift,

12 volts dont work when main power ie 240 hook up is pluged in all the lights on the charging unit light up to let me know it is on however there is a small light that puzzles me this is lit and says trip lamp should this only come on when it has triped and if so how do i switch it off, and yes the switch on the main pannel is in the caravan position.

Lynda

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Lynda, I'm not trying to be offensive when I suggested trying the panel switch. I was once about to dismantle the entire electrical system when Mrs Spursboy noticed that it wasn't turned on. Eliminate the simple things first, (i. e. me). Sounds to me as if the light saying trip lamp is your problem. How you reset this, I don't know, could be a circuit breaker or a fuse. Anybody else out there have knowledge of Lyndas' control panel, please mail her

Mikey :blink:

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The 12v should work when plugged into the mains even if the battery is flat.

 

You could be right, in that the circuit for that part of the unit is duff but are you sure that you have got the charger circuit switched on, usually a separate switch and that you have checked all the fuses? If so have a good "fiddle" with all the switches as one might not be in the correct position.

 

Some vans have a separate 12v switch near the door so that the 12v can easily be switched on/off when leaving and returning.

 

The light is probably just an indicator light to show that the unit is plugged into the mains and that the trip switch is on. If you push the trip this should go out. The trip switch should be checked regularly to check that it is working. I normally do this ever time before I disconnect.

 

If you still have problems this is probably a matter for Gary or the Swift Owns Club Technical officer. Try all avenues before replacing the unit as that will not be a cheap solution.

 

Good luck.

 

Roger

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Lynda, I'm not trying to be offensive when I suggested trying the panel switch. I was once about to dismantle the entire electrical system when Mrs Spursboy noticed that it wasn't turned on. Eliminate the simple things first, (i. e. me). Sounds to me as if the light saying trip lamp is your problem. How you reset this, I don't know, could be a circuit breaker or a fuse. Anybody else out there have knowledge of Lyndas' control panel, please mail her

Mikey :blink:

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Micky no offence taken just trying to make light (pardon the punn) of the whole situation im at the end of my teather as we use the van every weekend and its no fun having no hot water or running water for that matter my loo wont even flush which is a bit of a bummer as this is the first van we have had with such luxurys just about my luck but thanks for the advise.

Lynda

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Whereabouts in the country are you? Maybe someone could recommend a person to look at it for you.

 

Have you asked anyone on site when you are away at the weekend? What about your local dealer?

 

Can you post a photo of the unit as this might help? Hopefully it is something simple. Don't dispair!

 

Roger

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Hi Lynda,

 

Couple of questions, might be able to help

 

When the van is plugged in to 240V and the trip light is illuminated, is your charging unit getting hot?

 

Is the switch on the control panel a 3 way switch - ie. caravan, car & "O"

 

Steve :)

                                                           Fiat Rimor Europeo 69P Motorhome

 

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Whereabouts in the country are you? Maybe someone could recommend a person to look at it for you.

 

Have you asked anyone on site when you are away at the weekend? What about your local dealer?

 

Can you post a photo of the unit as this might help? Hopefully it is something simple. Don't dispair!

 

Roger

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we are in york (strensall village) have e-mailed swift for a manual awaitig a reply will keep you all informed my 12 volts arnt working when my hook up is connected so maybe my unit is past it.

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Hi Lynda,

 

Couple of questions, might be able to help

 

When the van is plugged in to 240V and the trip light is illuminated, is your charging unit getting hot?

 

Is the switch on the control panel a 3 way switch - ie. caravan, car & "O"

 

Steve :)

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Hi Steve

When the 240v is pluged in all the electrics that run on 240v work ok there is a light on the charger unit that says on/off when in the on position it light up and the trip lamp is also lit by the side of the black charger unit is a small white unit this has three switches one says charger/fridge the other says sockets and the third says trip when i switch the third one down every thing goes out so i know this is the 240v trip switch the other two are in the up position when on when i switch them down the charger light goes out and the sockets dont work so i assume they need to be up so both sockets and charger are receiving power what i dint understand is even though my battery is flat and the charge is on i still get nothing from my 12v.

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Hi Lynda,

 

Couple of questions, might be able to help

 

When the van is plugged in to 240V and the trip light is illuminated, is your charging unit getting hot?

 

Is the switch on the control panel a 3 way switch - ie. caravan, car & "O"

 

Steve :)

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Sorry missed this but yes the control pannel is a three way switch car/caravan/off

and this is situated above the sink beside the light and fan which is in a built in unit.

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Just a suggestion, I think your switch might be in the wrong position for charging if it is set to "caravan"

 

You may also be getting an annoying buzzing sound from the 12v lighting strips, if so it's because they are being powered off the charging unit rather than the battery and that is why the trip light is on - the charging unit is overloading because it cannot cope with the amount of current drawn

 

Switching to the "O" position on the control panel should switch on the charging circuit, and supply a charge direct to the battery which in turn will power your 12v appliances, you may notice a slight dimming and silencing of the lights as you switch over from the caravan position to "O"

 

Before you try this you need to recharge your flat battery with a standard battery charger first.

 

Hope this helps,

 

Steve :)

                                                           Fiat Rimor Europeo 69P Motorhome

 

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Lynda, a couple of years ago we were at a site in Somerset when I noticed that the 12 volt lighting was getting progressively dimmer and that the battery charge indicator was low. I checked all fuses, switches etc. I realised that the inbuilt charger unit had failed, a bit of a nuisance as we had several more days to stay. As the 240 volt side of things was ok I bought an inexpensive battery charger which I positioned beside the battery, out of the way, and plugged in. Left things for a while and all was ok. We completed our holiday and upon return home had the guys who service the van check out the inbuilt charger. ...scrap, unfortunately. They fitted a new replacement and we've had no further problems.

This may be a short term solution for you.

Best regards, Ian

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Lynda, a couple of years ago we were at a site in Somerset when I noticed that the 12 volt lighting was getting progressively dimmer and that the battery charge indicator was low. I checked all fuses, switches etc. I realised that the inbuilt charger unit had failed, a bit of a nuisance as we had several more days to stay. As the 240 volt side of things was ok I bought an inexpensive battery charger which I positioned beside the battery, out of the way, and plugged in. Left things for a while and all was ok. We completed our holiday and upon return home had the guys who service the van check out the inbuilt charger. ...scrap, unfortunately. They fitted a new replacement and we've had no further problems.

This may be a short term solution for you.

Best regards, Ian

 

Lynda, sorry, meant to say that the replacement charger unit cost £84-00 plus vat, fitted. My van's a Swift as is yours so I imagine the price would be similar.

Regards, Ian

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We had a similar problem on our van last year, and also 7 years ago when it was new. We bought and used an ordinary charger till we could get it fixed under the warranty, and keep it in the van for emergencies, so we used it again last year.

On the first occasion "Plug-in Systems" sent their man to fix it so I don't know what the problem was, he just fitted a new charging unit.

Last time OH decided to look at it when we got home and found the problem lay with the output fuse, or rather actually the fuse holder. He replaced it and it has been fine since.

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Charged the battery up and had it checked battery ok will take it over to the van tonight and see what happens but have arranged for a local electrician to call and have a look tomorrow.

Thanks to everyone for all the help will let you know what the final result is next week thanks again.

Lynda

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  • 1 month later...
Hi, Im  a newbie, if you use 240v hookup do i still need a battery,

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Simple answer? Yes!

 

The battery is required essentially to 'smooth out' the power supply voltage particulaly if your van is not absolutely brand new.

 

You may also find that if you are running all 12v appliances, lights etc. , the power supply may not have enough guts to run everything hence the battery would supply that additional power. .

 

Hope this helps.

Regards

 

Martin W

Discovery D3 HSE + Coachman VIP 575/4 2016

www.pennplanning.co.uk

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I use my Knaus on 240 vac without a battery.

In common with most German vans it has a 20 amp psu which does not need a battery.

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So how do you get the lights to work when there is no hook up available?

 

Our van is in storage and hook up is only possible if we move the van out onto a pitch - so for maintenance and cleaning etc we rely on the battery and gas.

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Please note if your knaus has a converter and not a charger (very common on the continent) NEVER TRY AND USE IT FOR CHARGING YOUR BATTERY !!! unless you like your battery looking like the sky last night !! (Black charred and full of pretty little sparkly things) Seriuos damage can occur.

 

 

Back to the original post

Something that nobody has suggested yet, Are your battery terminals OK ??

common problem !!

To check if charger is working, Turn off mains, check voltage on control panel, Turn mains back on, check voltage again. A fully charged battery is about 12. 5v (any thing less is flat), and if charger is ok this will rise to approx 14v.

 

Dave

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