Inverter shuts off

klindgren

Retired Virginia Chapter Leaders
What would make an inverter shut off after 4 or 5 hours of travel. I turn the inverter on as we get ready to travel. After a little more than 4 hours, it shuts off. I can pull over and turn it back on, but it will shut off after a few minutes. After we get into our campsite for the night and hooked up to shore power, I leave the inverter off until we get ready to travel the next day. Again, the same problem. Inverter turns on and is fine for appox. 4 hours, then shuts off. I've already replaced the inverter once. Is it time to get another one? How long of a life cycle do these things have?
 

TrailCreek

Well-known member
Basic questions...

How old is your battery (s)? Did you have it tested?

What does the inverter run when traveling?

Have you checked the positive wire from your vehicle? It should charge the battery and run small inverter loads.



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carl.swoyer

Well-known member
A lot of variables here.
Low DC voltage high amperage draw against low DC. Possibility of lock rotor amperage. The later is when the startup amperage required is more than the capability of the inverter.
What do you have for an inverter?

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taskswap

Active Member
Some inverters have programming that shut them off in various conditions like low voltage, excessive draw, and another common one is overheat. As the others have said above there are some things there you can check, but posting the model number would be helpful. (Maybe, some data sheets are thin on details.)

I've had this happen with the stock CSW unit Heartland shipped with my Milestone 386. I ultimately just replaced it with a Renogy. I actually don't love the one I chose but at least it stays on.
 

TrailCreek

Well-known member
All good comments. My doctor once said when you hear hoof beats, don't think zebras. I'm sure that answers to these posts will give you a good starting point.

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LBR

Well-known member
If it is the 1K inverter for a residential refrigerator, I would venture a guess your batteries are weak...get them load tested soon.

Even if the tow vehicle is charging the trailer circuit properly, with marginal batteries, the resi frig will pull more at startup than your batteries/vehicle charging can provide.
 

klindgren

Retired Virginia Chapter Leaders
All good responses. Thank you. Batteries are less than two years old, but I will get them tested just to be sure they are not the problem. I have always had the problem that I get low voltage warning when I try to raise my 6 point leveling legs without being plugged into shore power. The auto-retract will shut down a couple times and I have to re-start it when I'm not hooked up to shore power. Never thought those two were related. But I've had that problem ever since we got the camper and when we replaced the original batteries, so not sure.
 

danemayer

Moderator
Staff member
All good responses. Thank you. Batteries are less than two years old, but I will get them tested just to be sure they are not the problem. I have always had the problem that I get low voltage warning when I try to raise my 6 point leveling legs without being plugged into shore power. The auto-retract will shut down a couple times and I have to re-start it when I'm not hooked up to shore power. Never thought those two were related. But I've had that problem ever since we got the camper and when we replaced the original batteries, so not sure.
Keith, if the batteries test ok, and the connections are clean and tight, trace the negative cable from battery to frame ground and make sure you have a good ground connection - no paint, no rust, for example.
 

TrailCreek

Well-known member
The leveling jacks shutting off is likely a weak minibreaker, but not if it works okay when on shore power. If you have the same problem plugged in or not, and have a lippert leveling system, give them a call and they will walk you through replacing it. Cheap part.

Still, check the batteries and charging voltage coming from your internal charger and confirm that your vehicle is charging the batteries when driving. It seems like the batteries are primary, but 2 years is a short lifespan. Sounds like they are not getting a proper charge.

You didn't say what the 120 volt draw is, maybe too high for your batteries. Can you or someone check amp draw?

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klindgren

Retired Virginia Chapter Leaders
Keith, if the batteries test ok, and the connections are clean and tight, trace the negative cable from battery to frame ground and make sure you have a good ground connection - no paint, no rust, for example.
Thanks Dan. We'll be home tomorrow and I'll trace that down as soon as we get settled.
 

klindgren

Retired Virginia Chapter Leaders
The leveling jacks shutting off is likely a weak minibreaker, but not if it works okay when on shore power. If you have the same problem plugged in or not, and have a lippert leveling system, give them a call and they will walk you through replacing it. Cheap part.

Still, check the batteries and charging voltage coming from your internal charger and confirm that your vehicle is charging the batteries when driving. It seems like the batteries are primary, but 2 years is a short lifespan. Sounds like they are not getting a proper charge.

You didn't say what the 120 volt draw is, maybe too high for your batteries. Can you or someone check amp draw?

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Thanks Thom. I'm pretty sure the batteries are getting charged while driving, but I'll put a meter on the truck end of the plug just to be sure. I have absolutely no problem raising or lowering the legs when on shore power and I've never had a problem using the auto-level button without shore power when we get to a campsite. Only when we try to auto-retract once hooked up and shore power is disconnected.
 

TrailCreek

Well-known member
Then I would check the ground wire, test batteries, as previously suggested by others, then call Lippert. They can walk you through steps to run down the issue. 574-537-8900.

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carl.swoyer

Well-known member
What would make an inverter shut off after 4 or 5 hours of travel. I turn the inverter on as we get ready to travel. After a little more than 4 hours, it shuts off. I can pull over and turn it back on, but it will shut off after a few minutes. After we get into our campsite for the night and hooked up to shore power, I leave the inverter off until we get ready to travel the next day. Again, the same problem. Inverter turns on and is fine for appox. 4 hours, then shuts off. I've already replaced the inverter once. Is it time to get another one? How long of a life cycle do these things have?
Did you ever find out what was causing the inverter to shut down?

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klindgren

Retired Virginia Chapter Leaders
Did you ever find out what was causing the inverter to shut down?

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Not really Carl. I think it might be associated with my batteries. I haven't had the problem since I replaced my trailer batteries, but I am not 100% sure that was the problem. Just have to wait and see.
 
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