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Old 10-28-2020, 02:56 AM   #1
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Default Power gremlins in 2016 Roadtrek?

I just bought a 2016 Roadtrek SS Agile Ecotrek with Lithium batteries, Solar and it has voltstart, I have something weird happening with the electrical, Probably my not understanding things.

So if I park the vehicle, turn off the inverter and disconnect the battery there is still a power drain on the system. I leave it overnight, and there is a relay the clicks about once a minute and not enough power to open the sliding step on the sliding door. If I turn on the engine, inverter and connect the batteries everything seems to be happy for a while.

So what is the proper way to turn it off when stored for short or long periods?
What settings do I need so the solar panels top up the batteries?
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Old 10-30-2020, 04:35 AM   #2
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Default 2016 Roadtrek SS Agile Electrical Problems/Diagrams?

Hi all,

I just purchased 2016 Roadtrek SS Agile with Lithium batteries, solar cells, volt start and it has some electrical issues. Does anyone have electrical diagrams or an outline of how all this works? I've got the RoadTrek manuals and How To stuff, but they not much help with diagnosing a problem.

If the batteries is disconnected via the control panel, should there be ANYTHING still pull power? I can here a relay trying to engage periodically at the back and the driver's side. Is there something that monitors the temperature and dumps the hotwater tank to prevent it from freezing? or may be something that is trying to tell voltstart to the engine even if voltstart is turned off on the dash?

I have an email from the previous owner stating that she had a problem and took it to an RV dealer and they said the solenoid for the lithium batteries was bad so they bypassed it allowing she to finish her journey. I've request more information on if this was ever resolved and fixed.
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Old 10-30-2020, 04:49 AM   #3
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this would lead me to then check that when you 'think" the batteries are disconnected- that they actually are.


the solenoid is a switch in most applications when you press a button or switch this will energize a coil in the solenoid and cause a metal disk or plate to move, making a connection between the "big wires" through which high current would flow


first- before doing anything else
I would see if they wired around this so that the batteries never disconnect


all electrical system checks need to be done with good, known, fully charged batteries


the typical solenoid switch is used for the vehicle starter- most are very easily replaced or repaired- they are cheap...like $15 for a ford



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Old 10-30-2020, 04:57 AM   #4
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Anyone know where the battery disconnect solenoid is located on 2016 Mercedes Roadtrek/EcoTrek?

This is why I am also looking for electrical diagrams because it is hard test things without knowing what things are in the system and how they are connected.
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Old 10-30-2020, 12:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodbri View Post
I just bought a 2016 Roadtrek SS Agile Ecotrek with Lithium batteries, Solar and it has voltstart, I have something weird happening with the electrical, Probably my not understanding things.

So if I park the vehicle, turn off the inverter and disconnect the battery there is still a power drain on the system. I leave it overnight, and there is a relay the clicks about once a minute and not enough power to open the sliding step on the sliding door. If I turn on the engine, inverter and connect the batteries everything seems to be happy for a while.

So what is the proper way to turn it off when stored for short or long periods?
What settings do I need so the solar panels top up the batteries?
I would take a look at your battery isolator/separator. On my PW Lexor, I had this issue. The separator went bad. The switch would not open and the lithium to chassis connection was always active. Thus lithiums would equalize voltage with chassis battery. After replacing the separator, the issue disappeared. In addition, I added a switch to the separator to manually disable it.
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Old 10-30-2020, 01:53 PM   #6
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Ecotrek systems are not the typical setups most of us are familiar with.


AFAIK:

Chassis side:
Standard alternator --> starter battery

House side:
High output alternator --> kicker AGM --> ecotrek lithium modules

I have not previously seen any comments about any electrical crossover between the chassis side and the house side on ecotrek setups.

Quote:
Originally Posted by woodbri View Post
............................................. I have an email from the previous owner stating that she had a problem and took it to an RV dealer and they said the solenoid for the lithium batteries was bad so they bypassed it allowing she to finish her journey. I've request more information on if this was ever resolved and fixed.............
The terms solenoid and relay are often used interchangeably when discussing RV's. From previous discussions, ecotrek modules use relays. Worst case scenario would probably be a non functioning ecotrek module.
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Old 10-30-2020, 04:34 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by woodbri View Post
Anyone know where the battery disconnect solenoid is located on 2016 Mercedes Roadtrek/EcoTrek?

This is why I am also looking for electrical diagrams because it is hard test things without knowing what things are in the system and how they are connected.
I have a 2016 EcoTrek with AGM batteries and my disconnect solenoid is under the front seat. You have to remove the seat to get to it. Try not to disconnect the wiring that goes to the seat as it will trip an error code that has to be reset by MB. I've been told that if you disconnect the coach battery before removing the seat the error won't be recorded.

My EcoTrek has the Webasto heater which has power connected directly to it and doesn't go through the relay. It must go through a proper shut down process to keep it from getting sooted up and also will dump the water out if it gets below a certain temperature.

My solar panels easily keep it charged when the battery is disconnected.
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Old 10-30-2020, 04:46 PM   #8
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I have a 2016 EcoTrek with AGM batteries and my disconnect solenoid is under the front seat. You have to remove the seat to get to it. Try not to disconnect the wiring that goes to the seat as it will trip an error code that has to be reset by MB. I've been told that if you disconnect the coach battery before removing the seat the error won't be recorded.

My EcoTrek has the Webasto heater which has power connected directly to it and doesn't go through the relay. It must go through a proper shut down process to keep it from getting sooted up and also will dump the water out if it gets below a certain temperature.

My solar panels easily keep it charged when the battery is disconnected.
If your RV has AGM's as you mentioned then you likely have an E-Trek or E-Trek Package. EcoTrek refers to their lithium modules -> https://roadtrek.com/featured-options/ecotrek/
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Old 10-30-2020, 05:00 PM   #9
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You are correct mine is E-Trek not EcoTrek.
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Old 10-30-2020, 06:31 PM   #10
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Thanks guys! This gives me some ideas what to check for. Sounds like if you rarely see post about Ecotreks then most RV service centers probably don't see much of these either and therefore may not know how to diagnose issues with them.

I hoping an email to Roadtrek might also shed some light on the problem.
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Old 10-30-2020, 09:56 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodbri View Post
Thanks guys! This gives me some ideas what to check for. Sounds like if you rarely see post about Ecotreks then most RV service centers probably don't see much of these either and therefore may not know how to diagnose issues with them.

I hoping an email to Roadtrek might also shed some light on the problem.

There are actually quite a few discussions on the AGM etreks on this forum, and many of them go very deeply into the wiring, problems, possible fixes as there have been some issues with them and failing batteries.


I would suggest you might want to take some time with search function and see what you can find, and I think you will have enough reading to cover longer time than you want to spend
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Old 10-31-2020, 01:55 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodbri View Post
Thanks guys! This gives me some ideas what to check for. Sounds like if you rarely see post about Ecotreks then most RV service centers probably don't see much of these either and therefore may not know how to diagnose issues with them.

I hoping an email to Roadtrek might also shed some light on the problem.
There are thousands of posts and hundreds of topics on this forum containing the word "ecotrek" extending back 5 years. I think we're still waiting for an owner that has a thorough understanding of it all to emerge. Up to now it seems to be mostly questions and few details & little understanding of it all.

You mentioned that at some point a solenoid for the lithium batteries was bypassed. Perhaps that module can't be turned off now and the battery heater relay is clicking on and off.

All just guesses as little to no technical documentation seems to be available.

This post might help: https://www.classbforum.com/forums/f...tml#post111637

It has two PDF files attached that could help increase your overall understanding of the system.
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Old 11-01-2020, 10:21 PM   #13
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I have a 2017 Agile with EcoTrek and it never seemed quite right but gradually got worse such that with three years on it I could no longer rely on the battery or charging system. Dealers were no help whatsoever. Finally, the service contact on the RoadTrek website referred me to Beaver Motors in Beaver Springs, PA. These guys work on EcoTrek systems all the time. It turns out my wiring was coming loose, and all three charging sources were not set for Lithium batteries and were charging at 14+volts which is a no no. They repaired all of that and asked me whether I wanted new batteries or to try it out and see how it went. I elected to get new batteries which have much lower parasitic draw. Total was over $7000 but I got the vehicle I thought I was buying in the first place. Solar can actually keep up with the batteries now. I cannot tell you how pleased I was with Beaver Motors. Phone number is 570-832-2631, talk to Nick and he may be able to give some good guidance on your own repair efforts.
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Old 11-02-2020, 11:22 AM   #14
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Just a long note not directed at anyone in particular.

Charging at 14+volts should not be a problem for 4 LiFePO4 cells in series if at an appropriate C-rate. A suggested maximum charging voltage of 3.65VPC or 14.6V looks to be the common recommendation from several manufacturers. 3.7VPC or 14.8V is said to be an overcharge voltage but even that can serve a purpose. The actual maximum charging voltage for LiFePO4 cells is 4.2V - https://www.google.com/search?&q=max...e+lifepo4+4.2v - no one currently suggests charging at that voltage though.

The lowest charging voltage to get the batteries near full is 3.4VPC or 13.6V for 4 LiFePO4 cells in series. - https://www.powerstream.com/lithium-...ge-voltage.htm

Charging does occur at lower voltages than that but results in reduced capacity. Note that charging at reduced voltages isn't necessarily beneficial:

From Marine lithium batteries in operation | Nordkyn Design

Quote:
Charging at reduced voltages, down to 3.4V/cell, only increases the absorption time and therefore the overall charging time, but achieves strictly nothing in terms of preventing the battery from getting fully charged and then overcharged. It only takes longer for this to happen. Furthermore, low-voltage charging opens the door to severe longer term performance issues which arise from memory effects in the cells.
On this forum, I think Winston is charging at lower voltages of 13.6V & 13.8V depending on the charge source.

On my DIY LiFePO4 build, charging at 14V looks to me to be ideal. - https://www.classbforum.com/forums/f...tml#post107800

---------------------

C-rate

Charging at .3C for cell longevity seems to be a common recommendation. For a 200Ah ecotrek module that's 60A. The high output alternator in those RV's will charge a single ecotrek module at over 1C.

Forum member chris_g19 reported 1.2C charging rate for his ecotrek - https://www.classbforum.com/forums/f...html#post90874
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Old 11-06-2020, 04:56 AM   #15
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This is probably a silly question, but where are my ecotrek batteries located on 2016 Roadtrek SS Agile? and how can I tell if I have a version H or L ecotrek?

I assume they are somewhere under the RV. I heard you can drive one side up on a curb to give you room to scoot under it, unfortunately I live in rural NH and we don't have curbs.
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Old 11-06-2020, 11:48 AM   #16
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Quote:
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This is probably a silly question, but where are my ecotrek batteries located on 2016 Roadtrek SS Agile? and how can I tell if I have a version H or L ecotrek?

I assume they are somewhere under the RV. I heard you can drive one side up on a curb to give you room to scoot under it, unfortunately I live in rural NH and we don't have curbs.
Mine are under the back where the spare tire would normally go. I understand on the ones with Alde heating system that doesn't have propane they are under the left side behind the driver door.
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