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Review from Christopher Cook :
"Allan diagnosed the problem immediately, very impressed with cleanliness and speed of repair, the Dealer could not find the fault!".
Things are happening at Schaudt which might make the below incomplete? Suggest you also read 'The Future' web page HERE.
We are Schaudt recognised distributors able to repair or supply the Schaudt Elektroblock range, all models from the EBL 20 through and beyond the famous EBL 99 which is fitted in more Motorhomes Worldwide than any other Charger/Power Unit. We typically supply new Elektroblock EBL 99 units at half Dealer prices.
Schaudt units are reliable, well made units and one of our favourite chargers to repair. Support from the factory is excellent and we can obtain any new part from a WSF 01 Windscreen Wiper relay to the Elektroblock EBL 99.
Contary to the information on the Web Forums they do have built in Spike/Surge protection, via a Metal Oxide Varister on the 240v mains input circuit. This is exactly the same electronic protection as used by almost all the Chargers we repair from Arsilicii to Nordelettronica.
Again contrary to what you may read on the Forums they do NOT have a problem with mains voltage spikes, less than 0.02% of the units we see have issues with mains Spikes/Surges and almost all of these are picked up abroad in France, Spain and Italy where Electrical storms are more common than the UK. Some mains issues are caused by inappropriate Generators.
Almost all of the problems we see with Schaudt Elektroblock EBL charger failures are down to the use of Batteries past their best, not 230v mains borne issues.
The key to prolonging the life of any Motorhome/Caravan charger is replacing the battery before it is past it as batteries deteriorate as they age, even the very best batteries from Victron Energy.
As they age they place an increasing load on the charger. Some budget batteries at 1 year old can be placing a bigger load on the charging systems (Alternator and Mains 230v charger) than the best battery does at 3 years old. See here for more info
Schaudt Elektroblocks are far more than just a Charger, they are sophisticated units, with multiple functions :
1. Controlling all charging for Solar, Alternator or Mains/generator. The EBL has built in Alternator charging control, there is no separate Split Charge relay like on some British built vehicles.
2. Solar Power charging consolidation by displaying Solar charge, both the Voltage and Current, on the main display. This is only available if the Schaudt recommended Solar Input sockets are used (both the Data and Charge socket) and, in most cases, the Schaudt Solar LR1218/LRM1218 regulators, see our Solar Power pages for more info.
Some LCD display units, like the DT 201/EBL101 and DT 220/EBL 220, have a separate, screen to show Solar charge, like this below :
In the photo above the Solar 'page' (note little Solar/Sun symbol) shows 1.1amps is going into the Habitation battery and 0.7a to the Starter battery. If you press the Battery button a second time, the Voltage screen is displayed for both Starter and Habitation battery. The above display information is only available if the Solar install follows that recommended by Schaudt and the Motorhome manufacturer, see Here for more details.
3. A power boost controller for the Alternator charge to the Leisure battery. Some of the Schaudt products, like the WA range, use Voltage Boost technology that boosts the Alternator output to compensate for lost voltage over a long cable run.
An Elektroblock equipped Motorhome has very heavy duty cables for the Alternator cabling, generally higher quality/core thickness than many other Motorhomes, resulting in little loss of voltage. Along with the way the Elektroblock works, this helps an Elektroblock to recharge it's batteries on the move more quickly than some other units and why aftermarket Alternator Battery 2 Battery Booster units should NOT be fitted unless the installer fully understands the Elektroblock and the implications. The Schaudt Elektroblock already charges the Habitation batteries at the fastest rate commensurate with long Battery Life.
4. Starter battery charging when on mains EHU, with between 2 - 6 amps charging dependent on the EBL model. Therefore a "Battery Master" style device should not be fitted as the EBL already has this functionality built in.
5. Power distribution with the required safety mechanisms to do so. The fused output can supply power up to 90% of the fuse rating, as per most fuse protected devices.
Some Elektroblocks will cut all 12v power when the voltage falls below a preset level, usually around 11v, to allegedly prevent damage to the battery from complete discharge. But note that for long battery life most battery manufacturers recommend a discharge to no lower than 12.2v, otherwise Battery life is usually compromised. Even on specilised Long Life batteries.
Many of the charts you will find on the web are out of date, based on old high Antimony based technology. They also don't take account of the fact that different technology batteries have different voltage ranges. Sealed/VRLA (Gel, AGM and Powerframe) have a resting voltage of 13v not the 12.6v that many out of date charts depict so have a correspondingly higher fully discharged voltage.
No other chart we have seen represents this.
This is a chart published by Yuasa, who are the biggest battery manufacturer in the World :
6. Most Elektroblocks control the refrigerator operation, even offering the ability to run an AES Fridge directly from the Leisure battery for short intervals without the Engine running.
7. Frost protection. On some models a frost protection valve will open to drain the Water Tanks below preset temperatures.
8. A Power Supply/Charger that provides much of the 12v demand in addition to charging the battery.
9. The ability to integrate an additional mains Charger unit to cope with multiple batteries that go above a Schaudt Eletktroblocks 180Ah limit. Because the EBL charges both Habitation and Starter Batteries, you should make an allowance for the Starter battery capacity when calculating the bank size.
The second (or even third) auxillary charger puts it's 12v output directly into the EBL and the charge is distributed evenly to the batteries as required with the Control Panel showing the extra charge.
10. The EBL 99k built from around 2013 onwards has greater inbuilt protection for various circuits in the form of electronic fuses. In the event of a short circuit, the EBL may require resetting to reactivate the fuse. This is done by turning the unit off for 30 seconds, then back on. This applies to some other late model EBL units as well. Pre 2013 EBL units do not have a 'reset', turning these off and on sometimes results in the unit not powering back on. We recommended that you never use the On/Ein, Off/Aus button on the front of an EBL.
The Solar charge regulator should pass it's charge output into the Elektroblock preconfigured Solar ports (one for the charge power and one for the data output from the Schaudt Solar regulator) so that the EBL can distribute all Battery charge current and show the values on the Control panel. This isn't always essential on units like the EBL99, but it doesn't make sense to create an intelligent unit to distribute all charging with full transparency of the charge rate on the Control Display, then bypass it's intelligence by going straight to the battery. You may impact the warranty if you don't fit the Hymer/Schaudt recommended device, particularly if the wiring is changed/cut for the installation of a Battery Master, which will in any case short circuit the EBLs functionality?
See below for more information on why a Battery Master style device, like the Vanbitz, CBE, Sterling, etc, compromises the EBL and is also the least efficient method when installing Solar.
The EBL 101, 226, 220, etc should have the recommended Schaudt Solar regulator fitted. Both the Solar Regulator 'power/charge' cable and the Solar reg 'Data' cable should plug directly into the EBL. This is because these EBL's are designed to handle ALL power being drawn from, and all charge into, the Habitation Area batteries.
By being the sole controller of the battery power the EBL can calculate how long the battery will last and show a display on how many Amp Hours (Ah) remain.
If any device is either putting power into/drawing it out of the battery directly, without going through the EBL, the calculations will be incorrect. In severe circumstances, such as the battery voltage rising when the EBL expects it to be dropping, or vice versa, the EBL can believe there is a fault and shut down.
You can see on the picture below, over towards the lower left, a 3 pin Solar Regulator charge socket which is used to Solar Charge both the Habitation and Starter batteries. Additionally over towards the upper right hand side is BL9, a mini 4 pin Data Socket that the Schaudt regulator uses to pass the data for the EBL 220 to calculate the charging rate from the Solar Panel and for the DT220 LCD display.
The Schaudt regulators come complete with all cables, connectors, instructions, fuses, etc to make the installation far easier than via any other method. It takes 10 minutes to cable up a Schaudt regulator to an EBL. We have seen Installers invoicing hours for the time taken to wire a generic Solar regulator, like a Stecca, to a Hymer Habitation and Starter batteries.
The Schaudt LR regulators are more expensive to buy initially but will save money overall by costing a lot less to install, as the cables are all supplied and pre made. This also reduces the risk of the installer causing expensive damage which is sometimes created when they try and wire in the Solar charge to the Starter battery.
We very rarely see a Motorhome manufacturer recommended Solar Install, even when done by Dealers, although this situation improved in 2016.
Be very careful about Solar installs done by SMC of Newark as they don't use the correct Schaudt equipment and go against the Motorhome manufacturers instructions on Solar installations. They also won't put them right under warranty when the owner subsequently discovers the incorrect and less efficient Solar Installation.
One installation they did, not only used a none Schaudt Solar Regulator but the regulator did not have a specific AGM battery charge profile, so not surprisingly the AGM Habitation batteries were destroyed. Other issues were, no safety fuse to isolate the Solar Panel for safety and maintenance, poor Regulator location, etc. Not what the Motorhome builder or the electronics supplier recommended.
When pointed out to SMC Newark they responded to the customer to the effect 'that's how we do them all, Tuff".
This is a LRM 1218 with the cable kit that comes with it :
See the Solar Power page for more.
If you connect your Motorhome to mains supply a few days before you leave for your holiday you will reduce the chance of Starter battery issues as well as ensuring you have full leisure batteries. You don't need to activate the control display panel, i.e. switch it on. The charging will still take place even with the panel 'off'.
This operation is quite different to the Sargent EC range (like EC500) which requires you leave the display 'powered on' for it to manage the charging via it's 'Smart' feature. As a result there can be some misinformation around this as some people used to the Sargent systems will tell a Hymer owner that the EBL must be left on when this is not necessary and vice versa.
How to look after your EBL:-
Do not pull any plugs out of the EBL until you first:-
Disconnect the mains EHU supply and in a Motorhome switch off the ignition.
Photograph or record which fuses are in which slots on the front, a replacement EBL comes from the factory with only minimal fuses.
If one is connected, disconnect the Solar panel from the regulator. Do not leave the regulator connected to the solar panel as the next step of removing the Battery leads may damage the regulator.
If you have an electric step, retract it now as once you have disconnected the EBL it may be stuck out.
Manually hold close the frost protection valve (a Clothes peg does a good job) as taking off the power may drain the water tank.
Switch off 12v at the Control Panel display, usually above the door.
On an EBL 220 and other later models you need to 'isolate the battery' on the control panel, if you do not do this there is a chance the EBL will not power up after installation. Our honarary Schaudt expert Peter Brown says,
"In paragraph 5.2 (Changing the battery) of my copy of the Electroblock EBL 220-2 manual it says:
"Disconnect the battery from the Electroblock by activating the battery isolation on the DT/LT ... control and switch panel".
"On the LT510 panel this isolation is achieved by pressing the living area battery button in for 10 seconds.
Other control panels have other ways of doing it so check the manual.
Remove the leads from the Habitation, and in a Motorhome, the starter batteries. Sometimes it is hard to gain access to both leads, so just removing one (the -) is usually ok. Label the + lead (often Blue or Black) with Red tape and the - lead (often Brown) with Black Tape.
Double check EHU is not connected and remove the plugs from the front of the EBL starting with the Mains 'Kettle' lead.
On units like the EBL 208 and 225 each Lucar connector should be labelled and insulated as they are removed. Also take lots of photos. The Control panel connectors with the very wires are easily broken, take great care and do not pull on the wires, you must pull only on the connector itself and some are difficult to grip.
Read this next paragraph in it's entirety before undoing these connectors. Clearly label the 3 primary connections at the BACK of the Elektroblock, on relevant models like the EBL 99 and 100. Failure to disconnect all the batteries earlier will leave some of these wires in a 'live' state. Take great care not to short them, touch them against each other or to the rear metal panel. Insulate each one well. We suggest you wrap insulating tape around the screwdriver blade (Flat blade not Pozidrive) to ensure it doesn't contact the metal backplate of the EBL unit when undoing the three screws. Undo them in this order : Wohnr/Leisure battery/(usually a Black lead), then the centre lead Minus/(usually twin Brown leads), then the Starter/(usually Red lead). The screws should be hard to undo, you will require a quality stout flat blade screwdriver.
Once the plugs and wires are disconnected there are normally only 4 screws holding the EBL to the floor/wall.
Please pack it carefully, there are delicate components inside the unit. We sugget at least 3 inches/75mm of soft packaging around the unit, to absorb any shock, with a strong cardboard box over that. We can not repair physical damage only Electronic.
Please help us keep the above section accurate by emailing any anomalies that you find when removing your particular Elektroblock unit.
Standard Royal mail 48hour which costs £13 is trackable and usually arrives in 2 days.
Repopulate the fuses in the Elektroblock EBL front panel as per your photograph, etc. Elektroblock units arrive from the factory with the minimum of fuses. Putting in the Fuses now is often much easier at this stage.
Do not put any plugs or connectors into the EBL until you first:-
Disconnect the mains supply and in a Motorhome switch off the ignition.
If one is connected, disconnect the Solar panel from the regulator. Do not leave the regulator connected to the solar panel as the next step of removing the Battery leads may damage the regulator. Please be extra carefull about reconnecting the battery the correct way around, the German builders often use Brown for Neutral and Blue or Black for Live.
Remove the leads from the Habitation, and in a Motorhome, the Starter batteries. Sometimes it is hard to gain access to both leads, so just removing one (the -) is usually ok.
Double check that no plugs are inserted at the front of the box then connect the three/four fat wires at the back of the EBL IN THE ORDER they were removed above -
RED (ROT) to it's connector. Brown (Braun) to it's connector, Black (Swarz) to it's connector. Note that some Motor home builders use coloured cable that is different to that suggested by Schaudt.
If the battery leads have not been disconnected take great care not to touch the leads to each other or to the Aluminium back panel.
If any of these leads do touch or short, check the big fuses (between 30 - 50 amp) usually located around the Starter and Leisure batteries.
Plug in the MNL multiple plugs into their sockets, then the control panel connectors (with the thin wires) but do not plug in the Mains Kettle lead yet.
Reconnect the battery leads TAKING GREAT CARE to put them on the right way around, positive to positive, etc. Ignore the cable colours, go by the symbols on the battery clamps themselves.
Turn on the EBL by pressing the switch in at the top to EIN. Some EBL units like the EBL 109, 208, etc do not have ON/OFF EIN/AUS switch.
If the Control Panel won't turn on double check all leads/connections/fuses. If it is a later EBL, like the EBL 220 try activating the battery isolation on the DT/LT ... control and switch panel, see removal instructions.
If the battery leads touched on the wrong terminal for even a fraction of a second, the EBL control electronics will suffer reverse Polarity failure.
If all is ok, Plug in the mains 240v EHU into the side of the Motorhome.
Then plug in the EBL mains kettle lead. The EBL should 'click' when the lead is inserted. If it clicks continually the charger current is not able to leave the EBL and the clicking is the safety relay shutting it down. Pull the kettle lead and the clicking should stop. Replace any blown fuses in the front of the EBL and around both the Starter and Leisure batteries and replace the kettle lead, you should now hear a single click. If the Control Panel won't turn on double check all leads/connections. If it is a later EBL, like the EBL 220 try activating the battery isolation on the DT/LT ... control and switch panel.
If not email us.
Test all functionality, every light, every appliance, Running fridge from Alternator, Alternator charging, etc. Everything.
Don't assume anything is working until you test it. You have disturbed wiring, connectors, etc
Things that previously worked might not now. Removing and replacing an EBL can have quite a traumatic effect on the connectors and wiring in some hands.
Note that the settings/values of the old box may have been lost giving confusing readings for the Digital display EBL units, like the EBL 101, EBL 220. So things like the Amp hour (Ah) values will need to be relearned by the EBL and this can take a few days to get back to normal.
For posting and packing details use the Contact Us page.
This is NOT one we destroyed earlier. This EBL 99 is scrap, as we can't repair it as the entire Schaudt charger PCB has been removed, unlikely the factory will either, as there is no longer a charger PCB inside the unit to repair :
Because this unit has been modified, a big hole drilled in the side case plus internal modifications (in many instances the Schaudt Charger PCB's completely removed) many repairers will not entertain these.
This most likely cost around £90 for the 1990's designed Zig charger, plus an awful lot of time. In man hours and parts, most likely around £200 total? Yet the Zig add-on charger struggles to deliver 10amps and only at 13.5v. It will take forever to charge up 2 decent Motorhome batteries.
It is so inferior to the factory original it is likely to lead to premature battery decline.
When a proper factory standard charger repair from us would cost only about £130, does it make sense?
Schaudt DT 201B.pdf
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