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Old 08-23-2014, 03:01 PM   #1
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The Hunt for the Charger

A new-to-me 2005 E250 has, according to the PO, a 110V charge capability for the house battery, but on my in-depth electrical system exploration I sure can't find it. PO said he had Sportsmobile Fresno install a 200Ahr house battery and set up the electrical system when he bought the vehicle a few years ago (2nd owner). He used it as a work truck and it was a daily driver, did not use it for camping - just some travel. He had no service records or systems documentation.

Here's what I find:
1. Battery Separator with AUX lead diving beneath floorboard (I assume to the engine battery) and 2 leads coming from MAIN. One goes to the 12V AirCond distribution panel then on to the "main" 12V distribution panel. The other lead is connected to a large, bumpy mass of electrical tape (The Mass).

2.The Mass has a large red lead heading into it which I assume is the house battery source coming from under the floorboard. The remains of a cryptic note suggest that there is a fuse inside The Mass somewhere.
3. Leaving The Mass is a red lead going to a West Marine 1000W inverter (not inverter/charger, just inverter).

4. Also leaving The Mass are two similar black wires, one going to a ground bus, the other heading aft under the cabinets heading in the direction of the refrigerator and water heater, but if that's a ground, I don't see a power lead going with it.
5. Also leaving The Mass is a 2-0 Heavy Duty welding cable, about 18" long, which terminates in another, smaller mass of electrical tape and appears to be connected to nothing.

6. An extension cord leaves the inverter outlet, heads into even another mass of electrical tape in which it appears to "tap into" the 110V leads coming from the shore power connector, heading to the 110V panel.

Although this system is not ideal, it appears to work by using the engine alternator to charge the house battery while underway. The appliances/outlets/etc. work fine, but I do not find anything that suggests a 110V charging capability using shore power.

I could solve this by replacing the inverter with an inverter/charger, although I would have that done by someone who knows a lot more about electricity than me, or I was considering installing a solar panel to keep the house battery charged.

Thoughts/comments appreciated.
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Welding Cable.jpeg   Inverter.jpeg   Mass.jpeg  

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Old 08-23-2014, 06:11 PM   #2
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Re: The Hunt for the Charger

I'd recommend solar; I use a portable panel. Prices have been coming down. At least get it wired so that solar can be added. A converter for AC to 12DC with smart charging might, these days, have a solar controller built in, but I dunno. If you're gonna use air con you're probably gonna do some days hooked up to AC, so might as well charge house batteries with it. Also useful for trickle charging.

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Old 08-23-2014, 06:31 PM   #3
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Re: The Hunt for the Charger

CALL Fresno it looks like the charger is missing to me but I would only trust them to tell you what was done.
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Old 08-24-2014, 12:25 PM   #4
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Re: The Hunt for the Charger

I also agree to call Fresno. Looks like the PO pulled out some stuff and replaced it with different equipment. Hard to say but in most cases the 2/0 lead would run from a terminal where the inverter charger hooks to and on to the house battery system.
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