Split chargers/panels/EHU possible probs!? (1 Viewer)

Bonkers the Dog

Free Member
Nov 9, 2018
372
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2 yrs
Any experts out there on the Pilote system? Or Electrics in general...

I have an 2013 Explorateur G782 on a ducato chassis and LT70 control panel with a single m/v battery, and two leisure batteries, all fairly new, all sealed and all about 110A rated heavy duty. I suspect I may have an electrical fault.

On Thursday we came back form a long trip, 160 mls, 4 hrs on the rd. Both battery light on the dash in the drivers display were on all the way. I put it down to a poor continental power supply as we returned from Holland and hoped that a long run would sort it. It didn't. So when I got home I hooked her up...

However, the van has been on shore power for 4 days and when I checked it today it the low battery captions were still showing and the panel was showing 12.2v for the vehicle and 13 for the hab, the engine turned over and fired first time, no issues. I find this puzzling, 12.2 is almost dead so shouldn't be able to start a lawnmower, let alone a 3 lt deisel!

So, I put a multi meter across all the terminals. Both habs are healthy. The vehicle battery low at first but was reading a steady input of about 12.47 when the engine was running and rose nicely when the throttle was blipped, so I assume its not an alternator problem.

The panel then showed the m/v and HAB batteries with a good charge.

Everything else is working fine but is currently switched off, there is no load except the fridge on its lowest setting.

I have now exhausted my m/v electrical knowledge! I have no experience of split chargers or leisure batteries; So the questions are...

Could it be a false reading from the panel, a form of glitch? Do they do that? How reliable is the voltage reading off the panels? Do the panels "retain" previous readings until updated by the system? A "lag-time" for want of a better term...

What is the status of the split charging system when the panel is off? Does it still charge the batteries, or does the panel need to be "on" to work the charging system at all?

Does the system charge hab first then vehicle?

Does the system pull charge from one battery to charge the other?

Any advice would be helpful.

Cheers in advance.
 

TheBig1

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Nov 27, 2011
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many many years! since I was a kid
Reading your post describes an issue with the alternator which may be intermittent. the diode pack and voltage regulator have been known to show such faults.
 
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Bonkers the Dog

Bonkers the Dog

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Nov 9, 2018
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Cheers mate. What is a diode pack? Is a voltage regulator the same as a voltage reg/rec on a bike? Is it an easy fix? I need to bottom this out ASAP as my warranty runs out soon! Simple and easy I can do, difficult and expensive is a warranty claim...
 

Nonose

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Mar 13, 2019
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1previous van. Not had one for 3 years.
Just a stab in the dark. Could your ignition battery be failing to hold a charge from the alternator and is being propped up by the charge coming back from your leisure battery's ? Could you isolate the leisure battery's from the ignition battery then test.
 
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Bonkers the Dog

Bonkers the Dog

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I could try that, yes. Just disconnect the terminals. Although I'm not quite sure if the system installed allows the power to flow round itself in that manner. I would have thought that there would be circuitry in place to prevent one battery draining the other, but that is of course an assumption!

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TheBig1

LIFE MEMBER
Nov 27, 2011
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many many years! since I was a kid
Cheers mate. What is a diode pack? Is a voltage regulator the same as a voltage reg/rec on a bike? Is it an easy fix? I need to bottom this out ASAP as my warranty runs out soon! Simple and easy I can do, difficult and expensive is a warranty claim...
its a part on the alternator. a bit awkward to change in place but can be done. basically the diode pack and regulator creates a stable dc voltage to charge the battery and run the vehicle electrical system. a failing component or dry joint will give the symptoms you describe
 

Nonose

Free Member
Mar 13, 2019
155
477
Gloucester.
Funster No
59,101
MH
Cl Riviera 121 (Vandora)
Exp
1previous van. Not had one for 3 years.
I could try that, yes. Just disconnect the terminals. Although I'm not quite sure if the system installed allows the power to flow round itself in that manner. I would have thought that there would be circuitry in place to prevent one battery draining the other, but that is of course an assumption!

In which case couldn't you remove the engine battery and charge it independently via a battery charger just to prove that battery?
 
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Bonkers the Dog

Bonkers the Dog

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Nov 9, 2018
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Pilote Explorateur
Exp
2 yrs
I could charge it in place with my bikes Optimate Intelligent Charger. That had crossed my mind as an option but I thought I would canvas here first.

I wouldn't know where to start with an alternator issue! I probably wouldn't bother as its an A class and you can't see anything when you lift the bonnet so I'm guessing I'd have to go in underneath. As I don't have a lift or a pit I'm not about to crawl under a 5 tonne wagon; not that i'd fit! And as I said earlier its under warranty so "not ma problem". I am due to take it to an auto electrician for a digital aerial fitting so I may ask him to do a diagnostic just to be sure.
 
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Bonkers the Dog

Bonkers the Dog

Free Member
Nov 9, 2018
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Pilote Explorateur
Exp
2 yrs
I've just checked it all again. Panel shows a full charge on all batteries, engine turns over nicely, a good voltage is coming off the m/v battery- 14.2 at idle, 14.4 when revved-but both red battery captions are still activated on the dashboard. Go figure as the yanks say.

Electrical faults! They're enough to drive ya crazy-bonkers.

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Bonkers the Dog

Bonkers the Dog

Free Member
Nov 9, 2018
372
944
Ayrshire
Funster No
57,155
MH
Pilote Explorateur
Exp
2 yrs
Anyway, thankyou all, I shall chase the advice up tomorrow, But enough of this gay banter, I'm off for a ruby; WOOHOO!
 

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