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Open Roads Forum  >  Class C Motorhomes

 > Overview of power

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rxsrule

Patchogue NY

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Posted: 03/29/06 05:56am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am a newbie...getting my Tioga 23E in a month.. I am being overloaded with info..I fear I am "lost in the trees but dont see the forest"

So.... how about an overview..

When I am not hooked up to "shore power", what can I run with my propane, my battery, my generator or comination thereof?

When I am hooked up, what runs off the "shore power" and what doesnt?

pdoucet

MA

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Posted: 03/29/06 06:22am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When hooked to shore power in most cases the generator is disconnected from the coach and you can not run anything off of it. If your water heater is only gas then that will run off your propane as will your stove. While unhooked your generator will take the place of the shore line giving you the ability to run all the 120V items just as if you were plugged in. That is items like your microwave, air conditioner, TV etc. It will also power your converter which charges your house battery for thing such as the lights which are all 12V DC.


Pierre


rockhillmanor

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Posted: 03/29/06 06:27am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you are buying new, you will be given a walk thru by the dealership.
My advice is to bring your significant other to this walk thru AND a video camera. You won't remember it all, you can then watch the video when you encounter a problem.

In regards to your questions:

Everything runs off the shore power. AND Everything runs off the generator.

It gets trickier when you want to run off ONLY the house battery. [emoticon]


We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned,
so as to have the life that is waiting for us.


klhutch

Sububan Chicago

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Posted: 03/29/06 07:52am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree that you want to pay special attention to the walk through that the dealer gives you on delivery and videotape it if you can. We can give you some general idea of how various things are powered but the dealer should know all the specifics of your MH and explain them to you.

On our BT Cruiser here are the things that run off the house battery (DC coach power):

All the internal and external lighting.
The TV antenna amplifier.
The electric entry steps.
The fresh water pump.
The smoke/CO/LP detectors.
The controls and fan for the furnace/AC.
The controls for the refrigerator.
The motor for the slideout.
All the exhaust fans.
Maybe the in dash radio/CD player but it may run off the vehicle battery.
I believe the starter motor for the generator but that may be on the vehicle battery too.

Here are the things that run on AC power:

The compressor for the air conditioning.
The microwave oven.
The TV.
The heater for the refrigerator.
All the internal and external AC outlets.

Here are the things that run on propane:

The stove.
The hot water heater.
The heat for the furnace.
The heater for the refrigerator.

Finally here is how things are typically inter-related:

AC shore power will also drive a power converter that provides DC coach power and battery charging for the house battery. Your coach battery won't run down as long as you have shore power.

When the vehicle's engine is running the alternator that charges the vehicle battery will also charge the coach battery. There may be a switch you can activate that allows the coach battery to crank the vehicle engine in an emergency.

If you don't have AC shore power available the generator will do anything that AC shore power can do.

In a gasoline powered MH the fuel for the generator comes from the vehicle's gasoline tank. In a Diesel powered MH the generator might be a Diesel unit that runs from the vehicle fuel tank or it might be a propane unit that runs from the propane tank. Generators that are powered from the vehicle fuel tank generally have a fuel pickup that will not allow the generator to use vehicle fuel when the tank is below 1/4 full to prevent you from stranding yourself by using all the vehicle fuel in the generator.

The refrigerator gets power for its heater from either AC power or propane but it also requires DC power from the coach battery for its controller. Some refrigerators can also get heater power from the coach battery but since this drains the battery quickly it is uncommon. RV refrigerators do not use "freon" and a compressor like home refrigerators. Instead they use ammonia as the refrigerant and the circulation of the ammonia is driven by a heater instead of a compressor. This is what allows them to run off either propane or electrical power.

Ken

CorpsVet

Colorado

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Posted: 03/29/06 08:12am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

*VERY* nice summary, Ken!

rxsrule

Patchogue NY

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Posted: 03/29/06 08:31am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ken
Wow! thanks for a terrific, complete..concise, easy to understand answer
Now I get it!!
chris

cwqnee

LaBelle, FL

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Posted: 03/29/06 03:11pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

klhutch
Ken,

That was one of the most cogent, informative and timely answers to a question that I've seen on this board in many a while! As I read thru your answers I followed along, trying to imagine how I would have answered the question. I couldn't think of anything you might have overlooked or omitted.

Great job, Ken!


Chuck Kuehne
(Wintering in FL, Summering in MT)

Sierra Mama

Nelson, BC Canada

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Posted: 08/26/06 03:48pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Okay......but does this apply to all models and makes? And sorry to be so...ac and dc power House battery and Coach battery???????? We have been plugged in for the last month and of course should have started the engine but didn't. Batteries were dead but we were plugged in? Do you need to unhook your batteries and there is so many. Overwhelmed and a greenhorn. Sorry

Cool Mike

No. California

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Posted: 08/26/06 04:47pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Being plug in will charge the house battery, but not the truck engine starting battery,(in most cases) only the alternator will charge the starting battery.

Some MH have an emergency start button on the dash, that temporarily connects the coach battery to the truck starting battery to start the engine, then you release the switch and let the engine alternator recharge the truck battery.

Or you could use a separate small battery charger on the truck, if it sits for long periods of time.


2001 27' Four Winds Class-C E-450 V-10.
Buick Park Ave Ultra, Ford Ranger PU, JD 500 backhoe.
1941 Farm All "A"

Jim Shoe

Amelia, OH

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Posted: 08/26/06 06:52pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

On my 2005 Tioga, the LP Detector and the electric step run off of the chassis battery instead of the house battery, thus running it down pretty quickly. I installed a blade type battery disconnect on the chassis battery to use when in storage or if I'm in a park for more than a few days. (I put the steps down first)


Retired and visiting as much of this beautiful country as I can.


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