Of all the problems a coach owner can encounter, none is as dreaded as the dead coach scenario. Over the years we’ve fielded more emergency calls about power failures than any other problem. And in nearly every case, the failure was entirely avoidable.
House battery failures almost invariably occur when a coach is connected to a shore power outlet, and are caused by one of two things. Either the shore power source fails … or the owner/operator fails to check if the shore power connection is in fact “live” coming into the coach. To help prevent either scenario, every Liberty Coach ever built – starting with Liberty #1 over 45 years ago – has come equipped with built-in shore power indicators. These began with an indicator lamp on the 110 volt circuit breaker panel, followed by an illuminated icon on the Moritz/Octoplex flat panel, and on our latest models, the words “Shore Power Connected” prominently displayed on the Crestron or iPad Power Page.
And that’s just where we started. In 1985, we added the Generator Auto Start function, which starts the generator when a predetermined low battery condition is reached and continues to run until the batteries are charged. Then in 2002, we introduced an additional feature called Shore Loss Protection, which monitors incoming shore power and in the event of an interruption immediately starts the generator and keeps it running until either shore power is reestablished or the owner/operator corrects the problem.
Both of these features have been standard equipment on Liberty Coaches since their introductions, and for obvious reasons should never be engaged while the coach is stored in an enclosed building. When used properly, they virtually eliminate the possibility of a battery system shutdown due to shore power loss or operator error.
The key words there, of course, are “used properly.” Every coach owner/operator should be thoroughly familiar with these systems and how to use them, and proper startup procedures should be added to your arrival and coach setup check lists. Doing so is the closest thing to a foolproof way to eliminate the dreaded “Zero-Dark-30” sense of panic that comes with waking up to a dead coach.
If you have any questions about the systems discussed here, as well as specifics about your own coach, please don’t hesitate to contact the Liberty Coach service team.