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Should I Turn Off My RV's Converter When It's Plugged Into Electric?

by Bonnie J
(Yuma, AZ)


Pictured Above Progressive Dynamics Inteli-Power 9200 Series 60 Amp Converter/Charger with Built-in Charge Wizard

I am living in my parked RV for the next 6 months to 1 year and hooked up to shore power, water & sewer. I have 2 sealed Sears DH Platinum batteries that are about 1 year old.

I have disconnected the batteries and I dont think that anything in my 1989 Lazy Daze class C motorhome runs off 12 volt only. I replaced the converter/inverter about 3 years ago.

So much for background: I hear the converter running frequently, Should I disconnect the converter to save wear and tear on it?

ANSWER: Hi Bonnie thanks for submitting your question on our Ask An RV Question Page

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First a little background information so everyone will understand my answer to your question. When your RV is not hooked up to electricity (Shore Power); the RV's house batteries supply the power to all of your RV's 12 volt DC appliances and accessories.

When your RV is hooked up to shore power, the house batteries are bypassed and the RV's Converter takes over the job of providing 12 volt DC power to your RV and in most cases the converter also includes a battery charger that charges the RV's house batteries when the RV is hooked up to shore power.

The fact that you have disconnected the house batteries from the system is not a problem, in fact depending on the type of battery charging system that your converter uses it has the potential of damaging your RV's house batteries if they are left connected long term. Unless the battery charger on your converter has a float charging mode (battery maintenance mode). You can leave your house batteries disconnected until a couple of days before you plan to hit the road again or you can purchase a separate float charger and leave your batteries connected to it so they will constantly be receiving a maintenance charge.

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OK (drum roll) the answer to your main question is do not mess with the converter and attempt to turn it off as your RV does indeed have some appliances and accessories that need 12 volt DC power even when plugged into shore power. Listed below is some of the items in your RV that require 12 Volt DC power to operate.

* Interior Lights
* Furnace (for blower motor and thermostat)
*·Bathroom fan
* Kitchen fan
* Refrigerator (circuit board)
* Slide-out motor (if equipped)
* Propane leak detector

Do not worry about any excessive wear and tear on your RV's Converter as they are designed for constant operation.

I hope this helps.

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Happy RVing

RVing Al

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