Dead Batteries - 2006 Fleetwood American Tradition 42R

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New member
Jul 19, 2018

I am new to the RV world and I just bought the above coach.  After driving it home I had to leave it sit a few days.  I thought I had turned off all electric but when I returned the coach was dead.  I was able to jump the cranking batteries and the coach now will start and run.  However, only a very few things will work at the front dash.  Virtually everything else is dead including the generator, backup camera, leveling, a/c and all lights through the entire coach.  What can I do to bring them back?



Well-known member
Jul 27, 2016
Welcome Bill!

it sounds like the house batts are dead as well.  When you say A/C I am assuming you mean the house A/C and not the dash A/C?  Your batts probably won't run that anyways and unless you have a 50 amp hookup, I wouldn't recommend turning them on until the genset is running since they will draw too much current for a 15 amp house outlet.

It helps to think of the chassis and the house as two separate entities. 

Everything you describe with the exception of the backup camera sounds like house batts.  I would suggest putting the backup camera on hold until you diagnose the rest.  Also on any used RV there is always the fun game of deciphering what was done to it before you took ownership of it.

Do you have a multimeter or a battery charger?  I assume so or else you wouldn't have been able to get the chassis batts running again.

Locate the house bats, safely charge them and get the genset running.  Then you can do some diagnostics and see what is working and not working.


Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Feb 2, 2005
West Palm Beach, FL
As K&T says, most all of tht stuff depends on having the house batteries charged up. If you leave the coach running long enough, it engine alternator will fully charge the chassis batteries and then start on the house system, but its probably easier to put an external charger on them. Or get the coach plugged in so its own charger can do the job. Can you se an adapter to plug the coach shore cord into a household 15A receptacle? That should provide enough power to do battery charging.

One of the downsides of a high end coach like that is they are power hogs.  Even with everything "turned off", there are systems on stand-by that are drawing small amounts of power. The cumulative effect is that batteries get drained rather quickly - my Tradition would last only about 5-6 days without shore power or some genset run time.

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