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 > WFCO WF-8955 amps in absorption mode

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mooky stinks

Cicero,NY

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Posted: 09/26/22 10:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a WFCO-8955 (55 amp) that absolutely will not go into bulk mode even though it’s a 3 stage converter. Not sure if it’s inadequate wiring or an inadequate converter. It’s always 13.6-13.8 no matter the state of charge of the batteries. What I’d like to know is how many amps is it putting out in this mode. And don’t tell me 55 because we all know that ain’t possible! ??


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shastagary

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Posted: 09/26/22 10:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

you can read about what others have done to force boost mode here

WFCO 8955 - force into boost mode

JBarca

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Posted: 09/26/22 10:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here is what I have run into with the WFCO on this non going into boost issue.

Part of the problem is wiring within the camper. A long run on no. 6 awg across a 25 to 18 ft run between the battery and the converter limits the converter from going into boost and it also limits the amps from the way the converter senses the battery.

In my case, the factory installed a 30 amp self resetting breaker in that same main feed line to protect the battery, wire etc. They know the converter will never be passing anywhere near the 30 amp breaker limit back to the battery in charge mode. The WFCO's in this setup has real issues going into boost.

My guess is, you may only be getting 15 to 20 amps from the converter to the battery regardless being in boost at 14.4 or standard charge at 13.6 volts. That is what I measured on mine while boondocking.

I did change out my converter from a prior 2 stage American Enterprises to a Progressive Dynamics and it has no issues going into boost, I can even use the wizard and force the modes. BUT, that same small wire that long is still limiting the charge amps even in boost mode.

In order to get the amps up, one needs to move a good power converter real close to the battery and used really large short cables. Then the converter can sense the battery resistance better and pump up the amps also.

It seems that maybe, the standard RV setup with a 55 amp or 60 amp power converter is setup to allow, approx. 20 amps to charge the battery while the rest of the 35 to 40 amps is running the camper. That smaller wire setup is making that happen on a long camper.

Hope this helps

John


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red31

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Posted: 09/26/22 10:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

you could certainly measure the amps and will likely find that it varies from near zero on up mainly based on the battery's condition.

Grit dog

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Posted: 09/26/22 11:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Good responses above.
I never got far enough to figure out if it was a wiring deficiency or just the normal behavior (which apparently can be tricked into working better), as we didn’t use the camper a lot and always had power either with hookups or the generator.
But had I kept the camper, I would have looked into the above suggestions and/or junked it for a better converter.
I had the same issue as the OP. It never went into full charge mode. Never saw more than 13.6V at the batteries.


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Learjet

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Posted: 09/26/22 12:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've had a couple of WFCO on previous campers...the solution if you really need boost mode is to change out the converter to either and IOTA or Progressive Dynamics with a mode switch so you can manually select boost.

I was able to manual get my WFCO to go to boost by turning it on with a battery checker connected (resistance load of @ 50 amps)...but this is not practical to do and didn't even work every time.


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ktmrfs

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Posted: 09/26/22 07:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

typical WFCO operation. Part of the problem is long undersized wiring. But IMHO them major issue is how the WFCO decides to go into boost mode. It stuffs the rated current into the battery and then AT the WFCO OUTPUT looks at the voltage needed to maintain the current. If it is above something around 14V it drops to the "trickle" mode. so... voltage drop along the run is usually enough to never let it go into boost mode. so, your stuck with a 13.6V or so output, and 15-20A.

If you only have one battery, likely never go into boost mode. a huge bank, sometimes. Others have done tricks, turn on a heavy load to keep the battery voltage down low so the WFCO output doesn't reach the trip point initially. Make sure you have very large and short wire to the batteries., usually very hard to do since most trailers have the converter way away from the tongue.

solution.............. replace with a well designed charger, Progressive dynamics, iota etc.


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JBarca

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Posted: 09/26/22 07:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mooky stinks wrote:

It’s always 13.6-13.8 no matter the state of charge of the batteries. What I’d like to know is how many amps is it putting out in this mode.


Something else to add, if you "never" see the voltage drop down into the 13.25 volt range, (float mode) sooner or later being at 13.6V (standard charge) "all" the time is a sign you are going to boil out the battery in short order. Check the electrolyte level often to not go below the plates.

If you are camping on shore power for 4 to 5 days and the voltage never drops to 13.25 V, there is a problem. Maybe the WFCO, maybe a bad cell in the battery. This is a separate issue from not going into boost mode.

WFCO's as they age are real good battery killers and other devices in the camper. They seem to die 3 ways. Way high voltage, real low voltage or just plain die and do not work. The first two ways you may not notice until other damage is done. At least when they die totally, they do not kill something else in the process.

ktmrfs

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Posted: 09/26/22 10:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mooky stinks wrote:

I have a WFCO-8955 (55 amp) that absolutely will not go into bulk mode even though it’s a 3 stage converter. Not sure if it’s inadequate wiring or an inadequate converter. It’s always 13.6-13.8 no matter the state of charge of the batteries. What I’d like to know is how many amps is it putting out in this mode. And don’t tell me 55 because we all know that ain’t possible! ??


I've measured close to a dozen WFCO's with an output voltage of 13.6V or so, and it's like most any charger hooked to a battery >50% charged that has an output voltage of 13.6V or so.

15A or so is all it's putting out. May be as low as 10A, might be as high as 20A.

Doesn't seem to matter if it is one 12V, a pair of 12V, a pair of GC2's or four GC2's. clip on DC hall device current probe is in the 15A or so range.

mooky stinks

Cicero,NY

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Posted: 09/27/22 05:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks! All great responses and pretty much what I thought about undersized wiring. I’d love to replace the wiring and converter but it’s just not practical for a couple times a year that I need it. I’m probably just going to do what was suggested above and bring along my 25 amp charger to help it along. I tried it last night in the driveway and it does boost the voltage up.

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