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Unread 03-12-2014, 10:31 AM   #1
Not Yet Wild
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Default PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

Having gone through some problems that track to low batteries, and having recharged one pair back to 15.3v with a car charger, I checked the shutoff point on the Powerwise and it came up at 37.4V, repeatedly, instead of the 44.5 that Trojan specifies. Other than that it works fine, relay clicks on at proper time, starts charging between 16a and 10a, depending on the battery state.

I did a lot of searching on Pw chargers, and this problem doesn't seem to come up anywhere.......Does somebody know if this tracks back to a particular part on the charger, or do I just need to go through the standard troubleshooting routine:
check the fuse
check the diodes
test the transformer
jumper across the circuit board and see if it works OK
any other steps?

Thanks

Jim
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Unread 03-12-2014, 11:13 AM   #2
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

The metal capacitor may be the problem. I had one to partially open and caused the exact same symptoms. You can check the capacitance with a meter designed to measure capacitance or maybe you can find a capacitor with the same ratings locally and try substituting it. Another thing you might try is to borrow a charger and see how it acts to prove charger is problem or not.
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Unread 03-13-2014, 10:18 AM   #3
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

good call, Radioman, I've tried a friend's charger and it works the same. I'm now thinking it's either wire corrossion or dead batteries.
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Unread 03-13-2014, 11:44 AM   #4
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

A hydrometer is a good tool to evaluate battery condition by checking the specific gravity of the battery's electrolyte. You can find a weak battery or cell without running all kind of voltage and load tests.
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Unread 03-13-2014, 12:18 PM   #5
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

Quote:
Originally Posted by radioman View Post
A hydrometer is a good tool to evaluate battery condition by checking the specific gravity of the battery's electrolyte. You can find a weak battery or cell without running all kind of voltage and load tests.
Yes, so long as you have the proper type and flush between cells and know how to interpret the results
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Unread 03-13-2014, 12:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

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Originally Posted by scottyb View Post
Yes, so long as you have the proper type and flush between cells and know how to interpret the results
I helped someone who could not afford a whole set of batteries determine which ones needed replacing. Put on charge. Afterwards two batteries had electrolyte with bubbles on all cells and measured around 8 volts. The rest were just not active and measured around 6.3 volts. Checked the cells on all batteries with a hydrometer. The two batteries that measured 8 volts had good specific gravity in the green. The other 4 batteries had one or more cells in the red. Now the problem is owner can't afford 4 batteries.
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Unread 03-13-2014, 12:55 PM   #7
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

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Originally Posted by radioman View Post
I helped someone who could not afford a whole set of batteries determine which ones needed replacing. Put on charge. Afterwards two batteries had electrolyte with bubbles on all cells and measured around 8 volts. The rest were just not active and measured around 6.3 volts. Checked the cells on all batteries with a hydrometer. The two batteries that measured 8 volts had good specific gravity in the green. The other 4 batteries had one or more cells in the red. Now the problem is owner can't afford 4 batteries.
Yup - then what do you do?
One aspect of the service trade I don't miss is delivering bad news. I used a Lestronic battery pack draw down machine and refractometer. When I said they were bad they were bad, lol
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Unread 03-13-2014, 12:57 PM   #8
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

Since two different chargers are shutting off at too LOW of a voltage, I suspect corroded connections and/or bad cables in the cart's battery charging loop.

The cart's charging loop consists of the Radsoks in the charge receptacle, the two 8Ga or 10ga wires from the charge receptacle to the main + & - terminals of the battery pack, the five high current cables connecting the six batteries together, and the batteries themselves, but bad batteries won't make the charge shut off at too LOW of a voltage. Instead, the charger simply wouldn't shut off.

Where, exactly, are you measuring the 37.4V and how long after the charger shut off?
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Unread 03-13-2014, 01:34 PM   #9
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

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Originally Posted by JohnnieB View Post
Since two different chargers are shutting off at too LOW of a voltage, I suspect corroded connections and/or bad cables in the cart's battery charging loop.

The cart's charging loop consists of the Radsoks in the charge receptacle, the two 8Ga or 10ga wires from the charge receptacle to the main + & - terminals of the battery pack, the five high current cables connecting the six batteries together, and the batteries themselves, but bad batteries won't make the charge shut off at too LOW of a voltage. Instead, the charger simply wouldn't shut off.

Where, exactly, are you measuring the 37.4V and how long after the charger shut off?
Right, which is why we wanted to know the chargers shut off voltage on the other cart.
Good to see you got the backup computer running
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Unread 03-13-2014, 02:18 PM   #10
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Default Re: PW Charger stops at 37.4 V???

There are a lot of short cuts I use to determine weak cells in batteries but I am afraid to post them here because they are risky. By the way I am not in the business of repairing golf carts other than assisting family members, my few friends and my own. Golf carts present some interesting problems when they act up. If one thinks they are an experienced electronic expert and never worked on a golf cart that won't run, tackling one can change your attitude about yourself.
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