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    Battery not charging?

    My 2008 Berlingo HyLo has the Zig X70/X80 battery charger and the Zig control panel with the voltmeter. The 85 amp battery looks new and appears to be the original. I have had mains connected to the Romahome all week with the control panel on Caravan.
    Yesterday the battery showed fully charged when I left and made a non stop 90 mile journey in 1½hrs with the control panel on Caravan and only the fridge switched on battery and the sat/nav (which draws next to nothing, of course). On arrival the volt-meter was in the yellow and, obviously, the Eberspacher would not fire up. I had no mains hook up overnight. Out of interest, returning on the same journey I put the control panel on Car and had no fridge or accessories switched on at all.
    On arrival back here the volt-meter was still in the yellow.
    Disconnecting the leisure battery and putting a volt-meter across the 2 wires with the engine running showed 12 volts on both Caravan and Car settings. Something is wrong. Or is it me? Anyone any ideas? Thanks, Graham
    Last edited by GeeCee; 03-04-2011, 11:48.

    #2
    I am not familiar with Zig systems, but I DO know that 12 volts from a battery is only HALF charged. Being the nominal battery voltage. A fully charged battery should read 13.2 volts (slightly more if it has just come off charge, but the higher "surface" voltage will disappear once used). A "flat" battery is considered to be 10.8 volts and the battery should never be discharged below this.
    My first thought is that your vehicle charging system is not doing its job since both batteries show the same half-charged voltage.
    Jim.
    P.S The vehicle charging voltage with the engine running should be about 14.7 volts tested across the battery with the headlamps on.
    Last edited by Twolitre; 03-04-2011, 12:48. Reason: P.S.
    Keeping people waiting is stealing a part of their lives.

    Comment


      #3
      I'm no expert, but try charging with a car battery charger rather than thru the system, it maybe needs a boost. On full for an hour, then trickle charge overnight. Might just do the trick. It won't solve the system charging problem though!

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        #4
        battery

        try all your fuses i had same thing last year

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          #5
          The fridge does not run from the leisure battery, when travelling the fridge runs from the alternator.

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            #6
            Clarifying the voltage readings

            I fear I may have misled you. I only checked the voltage using the disconnected leisure battery wires to see if a charge was reaching the leisure battery, and I now presume it was. I did not use a modern digital voltmeter but the old fashioned dial and needle type which only gave an inaccurate idea of the voltage. Graham

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by GeeCee View Post
              I fear I may have misled you. I only checked the voltage using the disconnected leisure battery wires to see if a charge was reaching the leisure battery, and I now presume it was. I did not use a modern digital voltmeter but the old fashioned dial and needle type which only gave an inaccurate idea of the voltage. Graham
              Testing like that is of no value.
              The charging system can only be tested under load i.e. with the engine running and head lamps or similar load such as heater switched on. That checks that the alternator is capable of charging the battery. Hence the 14.6 volts under load to make current flow into the battery at a suitable rate (rather than out of it.
              Testing the leisure battery charge/connection can only be done when the vehicle battery is already fully charged. There is usually an electrical arrangement which makes sure the vehicle battery charge has priority over leisure batteries until the vehicle battery is fully charged. There may be a slightly lower charge voltage at the leisure battery because of the extra wiring length, but only a tiny fraction of a volt. Any more than that indicates a wiring resistance/fault.

              There is nothing wrong with an old moving coil/needle voltmeter. And to be honest I trust those more than digital meters a lot of which fluctate all over the place. As long as the maximum voltage scale reading is no more than about 20 volts for 12 volt vehicle systems. Larger range meters will be less accurate.

              The charging system CANNOT be checked with the battery disconnected!
              Jim.
              Last edited by Twolitre; 03-04-2011, 21:31.
              Keeping people waiting is stealing a part of their lives.

              Comment


                #8
                GeeCee.
                Under the bonnet on the right hand side you'll see a black box containing some fuses, in the corner of the box( remove the lid first), you'll see a fuse on its own in a holder with two heavy red wires going to it. This fuse is the link to the 2nd battery, if it's blown your 2nd battery will not charge via the engine.
                Ant

                Comment


                  #9
                  Still with battery problem

                  Thanks Ant, and all the other guys with suggestions. I have done as suggested but the fuse is intact. Incidentally I removed the negative wire to the leisure battery to make sure it would reach the other side of the battery box while the control panel switch was in the off position. With the fuse back the wire sparked as I reconnected to the battery. Is it not meant to be dead via the relay with the control switch off and engine off?
                  I have had the mains connected to the Romahome all night, control position Caravan, and immediately the control panel showed full voltage. However, this morning on removing the mains cable the the control panel immediately went to midway in the yellow. This is rapidly suggesting to me a dud battery and so I am going down to Halfords to get it tested. If it is dud as thought I shall indulge myself with an Ecosol 100 battery; that should do the trick.
                  Thanks, I will keep you informed.
                  Graham

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Just a thought. When you had the mains connected did you make sure that the battery charger was switched on (it is under the seat next to the battery).

                    You must also be careful to check what size of battery will fit.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Now acquired new Elecsol 100 battery

                      Thanks for the thought, but yes, I did have the mains switch under the seat switched on.
                      I have now bought an Elecsol 100 leisure battery, perfect fit in the battery box; the instructions with it say to "condition charge it before use" whatever that means. I have put it on the Romahome but NOT connected it up yet to the Romahome battery clamps. I have though connected my stage charger up to it because it should give it a good charge.
                      Two points for Ant. The relay is probably all right because when I turn the ignition on, no engine running and passenger seat up, I here it click, when I turn it off I hear it click again.
                      When I disconnected the Romahome battery clamps from the original battery, ignition and therefore engine off, there was an obvious spark between the FIRST removed clamp and the battery. I imagined that circuit would be dead and putting a volt meter across the 2 wires showed no reading. Very odd, is this normal? Thanks, Graham
                      Last edited by GeeCee; 05-04-2011, 17:43. Reason: I can't tell first from last!

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by GeeCee View Post
                        When I disconnected the Romahome battery clamps from the original battery, ignition and therefore engine off, there was an obvious spark between the last removed clamp and the battery. I imagined that circuit would be dead and putting a volt meter across the 2 wires showed no reading. Very odd, is this normal? Thanks, Graham
                        There may be a capacitor in the Zig, that would explain a spark
                        Derek Our Berlingo camping car

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I wasn't referring to the mains switch. On ours the battery is under the passenger seat and next to it is the battery charger which has a small switch on it. When mains connected and charger switched on there is a small LED that shows you that it is charging. In my handbook is it image 20 on page 4

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by GeeCee View Post
                            Thanks Ant, and all the other guys
                            and jayjay.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Battery mystery solved!!!!!!

                              Hi, all. Having charged my new Elecsol 100 amp carbon fibre 5 year guarantee leisure battery all night, cost £106 including next day delivery, I fitted it this morning. Exactly same size as previous battery, it fits in the battery box, and seems to work perfectly. I took the "old" battery, new looking and 2½ years old, to KwikFit for testing. (Halfords said they couldn't test a leisure battery, didn't have the equipment!!!!) In front of me is the printout from their digital tester. It reads "Battery unservicable, cell short circuit". So now we know what the problem was. I left the battery with them. Er, they offered to sell me an identical 85 amp battery for £112 but I made an excuse and left. Am I the only person to be pleased to be told by KwikFit his battery is rubbish?
                              Anyway, thank you all for your advice. I (we) hope to meet you at the Roma AGM or at Moreton in the Marsh. I shall be the one with the happy smile as his heater blasts out full heat. Graham and Carole

                              Comment

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