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The converter in the WFCO power center supposedly monitors battery charging and after a couple of days goes into a lower voltage maintenance mode. In setting up for winter storage I noticed that after several days the voltage did not drop down.
In tracing down what was going on, I discovered that the Alde circulation pump was running. Further investigation led the tool menu on the control panel: the second row left button is "Constant pump operation." The choices are Cont and Therm. Therm is the default and normal position, my unit was in Cont mode which explained why the pump was running. So far, so good.
But when it got colder I discovered that even with the control in Therm mode when the actual temperature falls below the set temperature the pump runs regardless of whether the gas is on at the tank, the 120 volt power is on or the controls are set to turn off electric and gas heat.
My measurement indicated that the Alde system was drawing .85 amps, not a small amount.
My conclusion is that the WFCO converter was seeing the current draw and assuming that the battery was not fully charged, and thus never went into maintenance mode.
So it would appear that in cold weather the pump is always running when 12 volt power is present, from the battery or the converter.
It is of course possible that I have missed something here, and any comments on logic or conclusions are most welcome.
Or is the operation of my particular Alde unit defective in some way?
Is this a "problem" or just the way it works?
At any rate for these reasons I have installed a switch on the 12 volt dc power to the Alde system so that when in transport, storage or just gone for the day we can be sure there is no Alde drain on our battery. Other than possible confusion in forgetting the switch is off, I can see no down side to this.
A further advantage of being able to shut down the DC operation has to do with the famous Alde little green fuse holders, with the fuses that can blow unpredictably at the most inconvenient moment, as for instance when you want some hot water or heat. It is said, on the internet so it must be true, that to avoid these random outages you should turn off the Alde when plugging or unplugging AC power, and perhaps DC power. But you cannot really turn of the heat function, only lower the temperature on the thermostat. Being able to just switch off the whole thing with one switch and then only turning it on when you need hot water or heat avoids a whole lot of opportunity to lose a fuse.