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Alternator charge warning light and chime


Steven P
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Today I decided to run my coach (been a month) and I fired the gennie first, then the engine.  After 10 to 15 minutes I started getting an alternator charge warning light and chime on dash.  Aladdin read bw 13.5 and 14.4 volts,  Scangauge running bw 13.6 and 14.4 volts.  If I turned on headlights, it'd stop.  If i turn off the magnum charger, it stops.  If I turn the charger on, it starts back.  Seems like it's over charging.  I have an Amp L start that I installed almost a year ago.  This issue is new.  Any ideas?  Thank you. 

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Thanks,  I will.  Anyone have a pic of the battery isolator?  When I installed the Amp L Start last year, we threw an engine fault which said volts too high, but never had the alt light going off.  It did it one more time this year.  Very inconsistent.  As long as I kept the battery charger off, the beeping didnt return.  I didn't have a lot of time to investigate more.  

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Thanks.  I will look, but I dont think I have that one either. 

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Steven, here is a photo of my Battery Isolator Relay which is made by White-Rogers.  Some of the newer models have been using a BigBoy Relay which looks similar.

It is the big relay located in between and just below the two large Guest Battery Disconnect Switches and just above the White -Rogers Battery Cut-Off Relay (which is bypassed).

Rear Run Electrical Bay-02.jpg

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Steven, I have had this issue s couple of times over the 15 years that I owned my 2004 Diplomat. Each time the issue was the voltage regulator in the Leece  Nevel Alternator. The last time I had this issue I changed my alternator out to Acdelco Reme , it was a direct swap and got rid of the issues with the Leece alternator. Voltage is now a continuous 14.5 at idle all the to 2200.

 

Larru

2004 Diplomat 

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Thank you both!  I will look further into this soon.  I'll try to get some pics of my battery bay, but it seems like it has something to do with feeding back from the battery charger with the gennie running.  Do Amp L starts go bad?  

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“Thank you both!  I will look further into this soon.  I'll try to get some pics of my battery bay, but it seems like it has something to do with feeding back from the battery charger with the gennie running.  Do Amp L starts go bad? “

Yes, Amp L Starts do go bad.  

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I have some updated info on my battery charging concern.  Today I changed my old BEP switches to Blue Seas switches and that went well until the house charger started charging.   Then Amp L Start started flashing red which from what I see is common if volts exceed 14.7V and it's supposed to shut off charging of the chassis batteries to protect them.  However, all batteries were measuring 14.8V w a voltmeter and I could hear them "cooking".   Inwas hooked to shore power and the engine was not running.  I checked all my settings and they seem appropriate. Talked w Scotty and decided to change the flooded setting to AGM.  This lowered the charging to 14.4V.  

Sorry for the long post.  Is it normal for the charger to charge at 14.8V?  It was in the absorb state at the time.  Since the chassis batteries continued to charge while the Amp L Start was flashing red, has its protective feature gone bad?  

Thank you, 

Steven P

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Steven,

My Magnum MS2012 (2000Watt) normally charges in Bulk and Absorption mode of 14.6 to 14.8 so the voltage you seeing seems to be correct. Now remember that every time the power is disconnected and reconnected the Magnum Inverter/Chargers starts the programmed charging cycle. The default charging cycle is 120 Minutes but can be changed through the Setup keys on the remote.  If the charge cycle was interrupted by either loss of power (turn generator off if on that power source or shore power) the charge cycle when then Magnum is powered back up will start the 120 minute charge program but the Bulk Rate charge will be less as the % charge of the batteries will be higher. This just extends the Float rate charge after the Absorption rate is complete.

As I look back on the first post photo showing the Aladdin 14.1 and  Scangauge  13.8`  Battery Charge Voltage they are .4 volts  . Now the Aladdin voltage information is coming from a different connection than the ScanGauge. I would check all the Ground connections in the dash, battery compartments, Chassis and all run panels (front and Back). I chased a issue with gauges in the dash and turned out a loose ground. After that incident I went through the entire coach and tightened every ground, even pulled most on the Chassis and cleaned the connections then put dielectric grease on the connections to make sure there was a good ground. After that exercise my issues with the dash along with correct voltage reading between the Batteries. Alternator, and ScanGauge were correct.

Note: The Charge Voltage on the Magnum remote is showing the state of the House Batteries not the Chassis Batteries as when the Generator is on the Chassis Batteries are isolated from being charged from the generator, that is why there is a difference in the dash voltage and the Magnum remote.

There is also a 'Charge Fault Relay' that is powered from Aux Terminal on the Alternator that turns the 'Alt Charge' light on the dash. The normal mode is when the Alternator's output is at normal voltage 13.8 -14.5 the Aux terminal is outputting 6 volts (that is the normal output voltage). This 6 Volt output energizes the coil in the ' Charge Fault Relay' that turns the 'Alt Charge' light on the dash off and when the engine is not running but the key is in the run position the 'Alt Charge' is Lite. In the situation that the first photo shows is the Alternator is outputting 14.1+ Voltage but the 'Alt Charger' Light is on. This means that either the Charge Fault Relay is bad (mine went bad this last summer) or the Aux output on the Alternator is Bad but I would not bet on that or the 14+ volt on the dash gauges would not be correct. Now the wire on the Aux terminal on the Alternator may have come loose or it is just the 'Charge Fault Relay' have failed.

Note: The Charge Fault Relay has a (6 Volt Coil) not a 12Volt, as the volt from the Alternator to the relay is 6Volts. This Relay is not going to be available at the most local parts houses, I will try to find the part number for the relay I purchased (purchased from a Cummins dealer as used in Diesel trucks) so to help you location a replacement. Once you find the relay just remove it and the light will turn out until you find a replacement relay, the part # and coil voltage will be marked on the top or side of the relay. The relay is a Black square plugin style relay, mine was located in the Front Run panel (Driver side) on the right side wall when looking into the bay, Yours may be located in different location so you will need to hunt for it.

Loose grounds can cause numerous issues and with the amount of bouncing and movement our coaches receiving going down the road is hard enough on the connections (just imagine putting your house on a trailer and towing a thousand miles what kind of shape it would be in) now add all the environment issues (rain, heat, cold, humidity) it is a wonder at times these coaches don't have more issues.

I have spent many days being proactive with my coach (original owner) checking and rechecking and always seem to have sometime that needs to be fixed or adjusted. I worked for years as an electrical controls design and troubling tech on high speed production equipment and loose connections were one of the most common source of failures or those phantom failures that drive everyone crazy.

Sorry for the long post but since there is not a lot of documentation around for the coaches (I was lucking mine came with a  set of electrical diagrams - these are not complete as they cover many different models but are helpful 90% of the time). If I can help you with any questions please advise.

Larry

2004 Diplomat 30'

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Larry,

Nice response.  Thank you. I was always wondering if my Scangauge and Aladdin should match up.  The volts are not the only reading not matching up, so I just figured there was a delay or they get their readings from a different source.  I will start checking grounds and go from there. 

Thank you again,

Steven P

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When you have the unit connected to shore power the inverter/charger is charging the house batteries on a 2006 Dip and the Amp-L-Start will charge the chassis batteries from the house.  When you start the engine the engine alternator charges the chassis batteries and the house batteries are connected to the chassis by the interconnect relay (Trombetta OEM). Which is controlled by the Intellitec interconnect relay delay control device.  Thus the Amp-L-Start is no longer in play for protection.  Because the two battery banks are now hard wired together the alt fail light will be activated if the inverter/charger is doing a high voltage charge.  This is quite common and generally not a concern.  If you have Alt Fail under different conditions then other items need to be looked at.

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