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Small concern about battery issues - Sargent EC400


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Hello Everyone - I'm a new poster from the Isle of Skye, and I wonder if anyone can help my wife and I with an issue we (might!) have with our Autocruise Accent, which has a Sargent EC400 Power Control System, and EC466 Motorhome Control Panel.


We have recently replaced the Vehicle Battery for the second time in 4 years because it was pretty much flat. We've now also replaced the Leisure battery as it too was flat.


We have a concern that, when the engine is running, the Vehicle Battery LED and the Leisure Battery LED both flash every second or so on the control panel. We think (could be wrong) that the last time this happened was when we had a problem with the inline fuse in the location of the leisure battery that blew when the heating stopped working off the Leisure battery.


Does anyone have experience of Sargent power systems on motorhomes where similar issues exist?





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We have an Alto and when we are moving we do get the green light flashing on both batteries.


Can I suggest you log on to the Swift Talk forum





there you will find lots of other Accent owners and information about Sargent , if you ask your question there it is more than likely you will get an answer from Sargent + a phone number they are very helpful.


good luck

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Documentation for the EC400 system can be found here




Answers to a number of commonly-asked questions are provided, including this advice:


"The Car and Caravan lights (LED's) on the control panel are flashing?


This indicates that the engine is running and that the leisure and vehicle batteries are linked during the charging process.


On a caravan, if this is happening with the engine off but the caravan connected to the car, then it is likely that the car is wired incorrectly. Please check the 13-pin wiring of the car (see ISO11446 Data).


If the LED's flash all the time with no car connected, then the wiring in the 13-pin plug should be inspected and it is also suggested that the wiring behind the lighting fuse box (C44 fuse box) is checked, especially the adaptor connecting to the Nordelectronica alarm system (when fitted).”


It would appear, then, that (when a motorhome has an EC400 system and the vehicle’s engine is running) the battery-related LEDs on the Sargent control-panel should flash. Consequently, the flashing LEDs should be regarded as normal behaviour and not indicating any sort of fault.


Regarding your need to replace batteries, this may just be bad luck (batteries aren’t immortal) or down to how you operate your motorhome.


If you use your motorhome infrequently, its starter-battery will discharge (particularly if there’s an alarm running) and, if the battery is allowed to become heavily discharged, harm to the battery may result. If the battery can be ‘maintained’ (ie. its electrolyte-level can be topped up) the level should be reqularly checked.


Similarly, if you do a lot of ‘wild camping’ and your usage of the leisure-battery’s power causes it to become heavily discharged regularly, a 4-year lifespan is probably not too bad.

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Derek - Thanks so much for taking the time to reply. All of this makes sense. I guess we have to get into better habits. We tend not to use Benny (The Motorhome) during the winter, which on Skye can be cold, but we didn't disable the PSU for the leisure battery or unhook the vehicle battery, so it's possible some degradation happened here as well.


Anyway, we're now in possession of two brand new batteries, and with the advice received on here, we're a lot happier, Thanks.



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