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How to Repair a Camper Travel Trailer Electrical System

Updated on March 25, 2016
Randy Godwin profile image

Randy is a lifelong lover of the outdoors and especially camping. This article is intended to help the RVer save money and time on repairs.

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Electrical System Design

Most RV’s and camper trailers utilize the same types of electrical systems as those used for an average small home. But in addition to the 110 volt electrical supply, there may also be lights, fans, a refrigerator, or other electrical devices which use a 12 volt supply, like that of a car or truck.

A 12-volt DC system powers the RV refrigerator to keep food cold while the RV or camper trailer is moving from place to place. The same goes for the lights and fans. It also keeps the on-board batteries fully charged. This system relies on the 110-volt AC electrical power supply for amperage.

It is possible to pull a 12-volt power supply from the RV or camper trailer's electrical system or 110-volt campsite power supply. Then the 110-volt supply can be stepped down to 12 volts after it is run through a power converter and to a particular appliance.

Rewiring a Classic RV

A classic 1946 Spartan travel trailer.
A classic 1946 Spartan travel trailer. | Source

Most of RV systems will switch from the 110-volt AC to the 12 volt DC supply automatically when there is a power interruption. These two electrical systems are treated independently from each other when diagnosing electrical problems, except for determining power to the converter. This translates to:

  • 110 volt power-- > converter-- > 12 volt power-- > 12 volt breaker box -- > refrigerator or lights

As in a home, the 12-volt system has its own set of breakers to control each circuit. The lights, fans, or refrigerator may each be on their own circuits, depending on the amperage required. If the converter is supplying 12 volts to the breaker panel and the breakers test positive for voltage, this leaves the wiring or the particular appliance at fault.

A 1956 Serro Scotty classic.
A 1956 Serro Scotty classic. | Source

Essential Tools and Resources

  • If you are not familiar with electrical wiring or troubleshooting electrical systems there are some very good books available to help you understand and repair common RV electrical problems. I would recommend RV Electrical Systems: A Basic Guide to Troubleshooting, Repairing and Improvement to any novice and experienced electrician alike. It will be an enormous aid to understanding RV electrical systems.
  • Another must for tracing down electrical problems is a voltage meter. This handy tool will allow you to check the circuits for continuity and for the correct voltage required for each breaker. A simple test light can be used but will not test for broken circuits caused by bad wiring or other electrical problems. Both of these tools are inexpensive to own and will more than pay for themselves over time. The voltage meter can be used for home electrical problems as well as any other electrical related problem. Both are offered on this page for a reasonable price.

Troubleshooting Common 110-Volt Problems

  • The 110 volt outlets used in some RVs and camper trailers are prone to shorts because of the way they are installed. Some are merely clipped onto the wiring by cutting into the wires. These types are notorious for not working correctly. Replace these types of outlets with standard house types to put and end to loose connections. Since some of the walls are so thin, a smaller receptacle box may be required for the outlet to fit flush in the walls.
  • Ground fault interrupter outlets are another common cause of electrical problems. These are located in places where a possibility exists of someone touching them with wet hands. They automatically break the circuit when moisture comes in contact with the outlet to prevent shock to the person touching them. A simple reset button must be pressed for the circuit to once again be completed. On occasion they will need to be replaced or the other outlets on the line will not work either. Pay close attention to the instructions when replacing these GFIs.
  • In older RVs and camper trailers you may still find fuses instead of circuit breakers. Since the advent of many new electrical devices, these older fuse systems may not provide enough amperage to handle a microwave or other high amp appliance without blowing a fuse or kicking a breaker. Simply replacing the fuse or breaker with a higher amp substitute may be all that’s required. Replacement of the entire breaker box may be the only option remaining if this doesn’t solve the problem.
  • The newer RVs and camper trailers may have two RV A/C rooftop units which require more amperage than the older models to operate without kicking the standard 30-amp power supply used by many campgrounds. Fortunately, many campgrounds and RV parks now provide 50-amp service for these types of units. When making reservations or checking in, be sure to ask about the availability of a 50-amp hook-up if you own a unit with multiple A/C units.

Keeping your electrical systems in good and safe working order insures a trouble free camping trip with no sudden power outages to ruin the trip. Most problems can be repaired easily if you understand how the system works. RV electrical manuals along with a few inexpensive tools are well worth the cost of their purchase.

If you are completely confused by electrical wiring there are also some very good basic books to start you off. It isn’t very hard at all to check electrical circuits, switches or outlets with an inexpensive voltmeter. Just remember, when touching any wires be sure the power to that particular circuit is off. If in doubt, turn off the main breaker or unplug the RV or camper trailer from the power supply. Happy camping!

Replacement Power Converters

Progressive Dynamics (PD9270V) 70 Amp Power Converter with Charge Wizard
Progressive Dynamics (PD9270V) 70 Amp Power Converter with Charge Wizard

Power converters for all makes and models of motorhomes and camper trailers available.

 

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    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Gordy, first check the negative battery cable where it attaches to the steel frame of the RV. This is the main ground for the entire 12 volt DC system. It is not uncommon for the is connection to corrode and cause a bad ground.

      If the ground is clean then connect a good battery charger to the batteries. If everything works okay then the power converter is bad.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Gordy 2 weeks ago

      Just got this 94 Newmar kountry aire class a rv. When I start the engine is kills my auxiliary batteries and when I plug in the shore line just my outlets are working and that doesn't charge my auxiliary batteries either. Change the house fuse but still won't go from DC to AC

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Randy, the fridge thermostat operates on the 12 volt DC system. Is everything else 12 volt operating normally?

      Randy

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      Randy 3 weeks ago

      I have a 2017 Coleman travel-trailer i keep it pluged in for extra refrigerator and when i went in every thing is off no electricity the plug normally shows a blue light now there is a blue and red light i checked all breakers not sure where to check now

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Justin, you might try cleaning the negative battery cable where it attaches to the steel frame of the camper as a bad ground may cause the problem. If the charger works the ground is good.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Justin, both the AC and the fridge use the 12 volt system to power the thermostats.

      Randy

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      Justin 4 weeks ago

      Thanks and I will give that a try. If it is the converter why won't the AC and fridge come on? They have separate breakers with good voltage to them.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Justin, this sounds like a bad power converter as all the items you mentioned not working are on the 12 volt system in some manner. You should have a battery or a place where the battery should be. Find the area and connect a good battery charger to the posts or cables to see if everything works fine then. If so, a new converter will solve the problem. Feel free to ask for more info if needed.

      Randy

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      Justin 4 weeks ago

      Hi Randy

      I have pull behind that has been working fine on shore power out at deer lease. Had big storms come thru after hurricane in TX. I've some electrical know how. Power pole and supply are good. 120 into camper. 110 - AC, WH, microwave, GFCI, fridge breakers. All receiving 110. Checked and reset all breakers, checked all fuses. Problem is AC, Fridge and anything 12 volts not working. 110 wall plugs out outside work. Microwave works. Never seen a battery on the camper. Inverter is getting 110. Any ideas where to look? Only thing I noticed is, when I leave blower and lights on and kick shore power on it all runs a split second and that's it. Thanks and keep up the great work helping us.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Bob, probably the converter or a warning monitor of some sort. I don't have an electrical wiring diagram for your camper.

      Randy

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      bob baumbaugh 6 weeks ago

      A unit under the bench seat of my 2001 Cheyenne camper trailer is beeping. Why?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      No problem Lavenda, I just wish I could've been more help to you. Feel free to ask me if you have another RV problem. Most of the time I can help, but nothing is better than to actually see the problem live. :)

      Randy

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      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      I found a WF-8935 converter with amazon. This is the number on the old converter is it the one I should order. I cannot find away to ask questions with amazon, but it is the same converter that was in there. I really don't have no help sorry for bugging you so much.

    • profile image

      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      I have got one on Amazon going to order it tomorrow. Thank you

    • profile image

      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      yes I have checked converters on Amazon and they are to big to to put on the panel with the fan. Or I don't need that no more. I am going to check again, Will a WF-8955 converter fit in a 8935 spot under my fuse box?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavenda. have you checked converters on Amazon?

      Randy

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      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      We took measurements and the ones I have found will not fit back in the hole

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavenda, most converter s will work as long as the amperage is the same or better.

      Randy

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      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      I have a question for you? Are all the 8900 55 amp converters the same size for my camper trailer. I am going by the colored wire inside connect to it. This is all the information I have got off the panel WF-8935/45/55amp and I got From 35/45/55Amp mainboard DC output

    • profile image

      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      Thank you and I pray it does.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Hope that solves the problem, Lavenda. :)

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      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      I had someone come check my electric and my camper is getting some elecltric, but my 35/45/55 Amp main board DC output is gone out. so I have to order me 1 and he is going to put it in.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavinda, I need a bit more info such as are you sure the breaker in your Mom's home isn't tripped? And is the 110 volt power panel in the camper powered? Do you not know anyone who can tell me more about the problem as I need more info in order to help you.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavender, look on Amazon for at least a 50 amp converter.

      Randy

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      Lavenda Nettles 6 weeks ago

      I need a WF-8935/45/55 amp coverter . How do it find this for my camper. Do I go by the 55 amp coverter for a 8935?

    • profile image

      Lavenda 6 weeks ago

      I had my camper trailer checked out today and the coverter box needs to be replaced these are the no. I got off it WF-8935/45/55amp and also from 35/45/55Amp main board Dc output. What do I need to search for to get this item?

    • profile image

      Lavenda Nettles 6 weeks ago

      Hello Randy I finally got my 110 30 amp power cord plugged into a 110 30 amp socket in my mother's trailer I have no one to help me, but I still didn't get any electric to my camper. Help?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Cole, it's possible the vacuum and IPad were plugged into the same circuit the converter was on and was damaged when the converter went out.

      Randy

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      cole 7 weeks ago

      The battery's are new and taking a charge. The micro wave inside light will come on so there is power going to it but that is all it will do. I have ordered a new PD 9245 to replace the 9145 that smoked. Could the vacuum and the I-pad be affected on 110 by a bad converter?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Cole, check the battery to see if the converter is charging it properly. If so, you should get a reading of at least 13 volts DC. Unless the microwave has a 12 volt thermostat it shouldn't have been affected. Have you checked the microwave outlet yet or the breaker the microwave is on? Smoke is not good and I suspect the converter may be toast.

      Randy

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      Cole P. 7 weeks ago

      Hi Randy:

      We were at an RV park getting ready to leave and my wife was using a vacuum in the 5th wheel and my son was on a I-pad plugged into a 110 outlet. The vacuum started to smoke and the I-pad according to my son was doing weird stuff????? I was out side and noticed smoke coming from the power converter. After we got home I plugged into our home power and noticed the microwave/convection oven was not working but every thing else seems OK. What should I be looking at first?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks Lavenda, and let me know if you need some more info. :)

      Randy

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      Lavenda Nettles 7 weeks ago

      Ok I will try and will get back to you. Thank you and I shared you to face book

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavinda, there has to be a breaker somewhere in the camper. See if you can see the end of the connecting cord where it goes inside the camper. It should lead to some sort of fuse or breaker box.

      Randy

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      Lavenda Nettles 7 weeks ago

      No one can find a 110 breaker in the travel trailer. I have found the fuse box. And a reset button on a plug in socket.

    • profile image

      Lavenda Nettles 7 weeks ago

      I was doing some thinking. I am thinking the 30 amp. might not be getting any power we do have a coverter from the 30 amp from the camper to the extention cord. But I wanted to plug it into my 110 30 amp in my mother's trailer window it will reach, but so much rain I haven't tried it yet going to try tomorrow.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavenda, is the power getting through the 30 amp receptacle to the camper? A bit more info may help.

      Randy

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      Lavenda Nettles 7 weeks ago

      the power cord from the camper and he added a heavy duty extension cord and plugged into 110 30 ap. in my mother's trailer It was fine for about a week and the electric went off and will not come back on and yes we through the breakers and the extension cord plugged a fan in it and it worked but it's like the power cord to the camper is not getting juice, he said it could be the coverter, but how can you say that when you have no electricy.

    • profile image

      Lavenda Nettles 7 weeks ago

      I have a 2008 Fema cavlier Trailer. I had the power cord plugged into my mothers trailer on a 110 30 ap. It had power for about a week than the electric went off and will not come back on

    • Randy Godwin profile image
      Author

      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Lavenda, what type of cord did you connect the power with? Or did you plug the camper directly into a receptacle? Have you checked the house breaker as well as the camper main breaker? A bit more info may help solve the problem.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Lavenda Nettles 7 weeks ago

      I have a 2008 Fema camper Trailer. I had the power cord plugged into my mothers trailer on a 110 30 ap. It had power for about a week than the electric went off and will not come back On

    • Randy Godwin profile image
      Author

      Randy Godwin 7 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Jackie, hook a good battery charger up to the battery and if everything works okay then the converter is bad. Also, try cleaning the negative battery cable end where it attaches to the steel frame of the camper. A bad ground here will cause all sorts of problems.

      Randy

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      Jackie 7 weeks ago

      The plugs work in my trailer but the lights and fridge do not. Any idea what the problem could be?

    • profile image

      jumperrn 8 weeks ago

      Thanks for your time.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 8 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      jumpern, unless there's a bad ground on the monitor I have no clue. Sorry!

      Randy

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      jumperrn 8 weeks ago

      Randy:

      I have an old Alpenlite truck camper. I have a control monitor showing fresh and waste water levels and battery information as well as a switch which runs the water pump. The display and pump work fine when attached to 110 power. When on just 12 V battery, the pump works fine but the display lights don"t function.

      Any thoughts?

      Thanks

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Phillip, are you sure you're not plugged into a 50 amp 240 volt connection? There's no way that you could get 240 volts from a 30 amp 120 volt connection unless the wiring is bad.

      Randy

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      Phillip glendenning 2 months ago

      Will be the problem if you just move the trailer with no electrical problems then you relocate to a new spot in your Transformer vibrates when you plug it in and no lights but it reads 240 volts coming out of the sockets

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Shirley, the only way to tell what is on any particular circuit is to turn all the breakers off but the main and turn each breaker back on while checking to see what is powered by each particular circuit. When you find a circuit with little on it you can add an outside GFI circuit to this breaker. Unless of course, you have an empty breaker already in the power panel.

      Randy

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      Shirley Cole/Ohio 2 months ago

      We just purchased a 1979 Sunline TT, Model 12 1/2 Mc Has 110 and 12v, but 12 v wiring has been rigged and in sad shape, lights only work on driver side(clearance, brake etc.) Unit was supposedly stored for almost 35 yrs. Pretty solid, fridge only propane/elec, which is fine, would like to add an outside outlet. How can we do this safely without over loading wiring? Trying to obtain owner's manual for schematics without success and Sunline out of production since 2006. Thank you for any help. email is pepsigirl12397@yahoo.com

    • profile image

      Stephen Greel 2 months ago

      Thank you Randy I kept researching this and was led to check my bathroom receptacle and reset the button. I did and power returned to all the plug ins.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Stephen, have you checked to see if power is getting to the breakers yet? The lightning may have damaged the main in the power panel.

      Randy

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      Stephen greel 2 months ago

      I have a 2017 Starcraft launch. Last night we had a little ghtning storm and the power surged. None of the 120 v outlets are getting power. I checked the circuit breakers and the seem good.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Adam, there should be an access panel to get to the wiring for the slide-out. Hope you find the culprit!

    • profile image

      Adam Mercado 2 months ago

      Hi Randy, thanks for the reply. Yeah really puzzling. I will have to resort to removing the fixture and checking the ground in the cavity behind it. I'm sure I can rig something where I replace the rivets with screws. That's a project I don't want to get into a couple of days before we head out. Any chance the wiring reveals itself under the dinette slide out? Any clues what to look out for?

      Thanks again

      Adam

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Adam, you do have a mystery on your hands. In most cases a problem with the 12 volt system is a bad ground somewhere. I cannot assure you the problem is in the riveted fixture but you may have to remove it as a last resort. Installing a new tow package wiring harness may be the only solution if the removal of the fixture doesn't help find the problem.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Adam Mercado 2 months ago

      Hi Randy. First, after reading this long thread I have to thank you for your consistency in replying over the years. It's thanks to people like you that dunces and noobs like me are able to arm themselves with a tiny amount of knowledge. I have bookmarked your websites for future reference

      Anyhow, I have a unique problem, at least one not addressed by the many Q and A below. Recently bought a used 2004 PUP tent trailer. We are all set to go out on our first trip this weekend. What I at first assumed was a bad bulb, upon further inspection turns out to be something more puzzling. The drivers side turn signal down not work on the trailer.

      Here's what I have learned in my hours of scouring the web and troubleshooting with my multimeter

      Using a known good bulb (from the passenger side) the problem persists

      Using the same 'faulty' bulb on the passenger side does not recreate the problem there.

      THE BULB IS RULED OUT AS THE PROBLEM

      Checked #50 fuse for TRL TRN L in my tow vehicle - 12v in

      Checked tow vehicle trailer connector for LEFT TURN/BRAKE - 12v out

      Checked ground at tow vehicle trailer connector - 3.3ohm

      Checked main ground under the trailer. Screw is tight and clean and visually free of corrosion.

      Checked voltage at left turn/brake housing - 6.7v intermittent (signal)

      Checked ground to left turn/brake housing - 3.3ohm

      So by all accounts the voltage is getting there, but somewhere along the way it is getting shorted out maybe. Without being able to isolate the turn signal ground from the brake, that reading is inconclusive.

      The trouble is, the wiring comes from the harness at the hitch, disappears into the metal frame and is never seen again. Any Deals how I can trouble shoot the light fixture if all the electrical wiring is buried in the hull of the trailer. I cannot find an access panel anywhere. Further, the light fixture is riveted to the back panel. I cannot remove it and replace it without getting the angle grinder out, and I'd rather avoid that three days before our trip. Unless you recommend the fault is very likely back there I'll save that mod for another day.

      Is there a way to test the ground at the main ground on the frame? How do I check that?

      Many many thanks for bearing with me. Wanted to provide you with as much into as I could.

      Adam

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Mary, do you know which circuit the beeping item is on? Have tried turning off the breakers one at a time until you find the circuit powering the beeping item? A bit more info may assist me in helping you with this problem.

      Randy

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      Mary 2 months ago

      Fleetwood Pioneer 2006, when u plug in it BEEPS , turn on a light stops for awhile... churps... beeping. Took off the gas hoses to tanks...beeps,,, from under thr refrig. I have it plugged into a dedicated circuit just for the trailer. ????Electrican went thru it, still beeps so what makes it beep? Sounds like an alarm...but for wha,,,,t HELP..need it not to beep so we can use it for the a/c...

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Marco, this is a strange occurrence, especially as your power converter was not powered by 110 volts at the time. It may be the power converter was ,draining the batteries by some sort of backwards effect. Other than that, this is all I have..

      Randy

    • profile image

      Marco Werkhoven 2 months ago

      Hi Randy,

      Searched all over the web for a solution to an electrical problem we have in our trailer. Looking at your experience you might have some ideas.......

      We mostly camp off the grid with solar panels. Never an issue, until the other day. We are off the grid, non of the 110 volt appliances in use of course, battery indicator shows 2/3 full. Suddenly, within a matter of less than a minute the battery indicator drops to zero, all power is lost. Then a few minutes later the fan of the converter starts humming for 5 seconds (and we are off the grid), and the power comes back on. Battery indicator shows 2/3 full. A few minutes later the cycle repeats, and repeats, and repeats........

      I then flipped all the 110 volt breakers to the off position, in a desperate attempt, and the strange battery drain disappeared. But it seems to have done a number on the batteries. They don't hold up nearly as well as they normally do.

      Any ideas where the problem might be found??? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      No Samuel, just for the fans and compressors.

      Randy

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      Samuel Miller 2 months ago

      I have replace the start capacitor and run capacitor on both roof A/C's.... are there other capacitors?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Samuel, have you checked the capacitors yet? A weak cap may cause the problem using a generator to power the ACs.

      Randy

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      Samuel Miller 2 months ago

      Okay, ordered a new power transfer switch, swapped out the old one, fired up the generator, started an A/C and it operated normally. Engaged the 2nd A/C, the amps surged, and disconnected the generator. I am at a loss as to what to do next.

      Running on shore power, I can run both A/C's.

      If there is a short circuit, I have no idea how to find it and eliminate it?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Joe, more than likely those wires are from the switch. Check the switch to see if it is working correctly as this is a common problem. Also, check the chandelier for proper grounding. Is this fixture 12 volt DC or 110 volt AC powered?

      Randy

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      Joe Darling 2 months ago

      I have a 2014 Laredo made by Keystone chandelier over table does not work no power coming to the wires just happened not too long ago always did work all all the lights work check fuses and Breakers all seem to be fine and its suggestions Only has two wires coming out of ceiling

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Joel, this could have been a park power issue but I doubt it as the voltage in most parks are monitored with safety devices to prevent such. I'd keep an eye pealed for further power converter problems just in case.

      Randy

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      Joel 2 months ago

      I have a 2005 Gulf Stream. My power converter started to smoke so I un-plugged the city power right away. after we got back home I plugged it in to our home power and everything seems to be working fine. The fan is turning, all electrical devices are working and I'm getting 12.8 volts to the battery's. Could it have been a park power issue or is it time for a new converter.......... Thank you for your input. JP

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Mike, does your AC have a wall mounted thermostat? If so, I suspect the power converter is at fault. Try connecting a good battery charger and if everything works fine, then the converter is bad.

      Randu

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      mike canady 2 months ago

      First time travel trailer owner. Maiden voyage went to full RV hookup site and everything worked great for half the day AC - lights- microwave then AC stopped working and lights slowly dimmed then out. second day AC worked fine but lights did same thing dimmed until going out. Any ideas ? Also microwave worked the whole time both days so no problems there.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Sam, the guy at the company may be correct.

      Randy

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      Samuel Miller 3 months ago

      Yes indeed, it doesn't matter which one is started first.

      I called and talked to the company that makes the power transfer switch, and he wanted to sell me a new one. He said the generator contactor needed to be replaced.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
      Author

      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Sam, have you tried starting the 2nd ac first to see what happens?

      Randy

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      Samuel Miller 3 months ago

      Still haven't solved this: RV running on generator. 120 V+- at both terminals of power transfer switch. Start 1st roof A/C, everything keeps running. Start 2nd roof A/C; when its compressor kicks on, the power transfer switch kicks off. The generator keeps running and generating 120V+- to the transfer switch. After a few seconds, the transfer switch cycles (clicks), and then cycles (clicks) kicks back off.

      Is this maybe that the control panel of the power transfer switch is damaged and needs to be replaced?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Glenn, check the battery negative ground where it attaches to the frame of the camper. You need a clean connections here.

      Randy

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      GLENN 3 months ago

      HELLO HOW R U HAVING LIGHT PROBLEMS ON MY CAMPER CONNECTION ON MY TRUCK IS FINE CONNECT EVERYTHING NO LIGHTS

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Brad, Check the negative battery cable where it's connected to the steel frame of the camper. This is the main ground for the 12 volt DC system and is prone to corrode. A bad ground here will cause all sorts of problems such as you mentioned. Let me know if this doesn't solve the problem.

      Randy

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      Brad 3 months ago

      Hi, I'm having issues with my camper. Just changed the converter and battery but still have issues with battery not holding charge and runs down rather quickly. Not sure what to do next. Any advice??

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hello again Samuel, it may indeed be the generator as you've pretty much covered the AC end. Perhaps the generator isn't putting out as many amps as it once did. I'd be interested to know if it is indeed the generator and if it is please let me know if it's no problem. Thanks Sam!

      Randy

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      Samuel Miller 3 months ago

      Replaced both the start and run capacitor on each of the two A/C's. As before, they run just fine on shore power, but not on the generator I am definitely open for more ideas on how to resolve this.

      Here is what I noticed today: when on the generator, the battery monitor started out showing 100% charge, but when I started an A/C, the battery charge readout dropped to 76% and kept slowly dropping to 72%. I turned everything off, and plugged shore power back on. The battery charge readout shows 100%; I then started both A/C's, the battery still shows fully charged, and both A/C's are cooling the RV.

      So that may suggest the problem lies somewhere in the generator / RV 120v system / battery charging area?

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      Michael Gray 3 months ago

      Everything that runs on 12V is working. When I plug into shore power or run the generators, everything works including the AC. However, the Microwave and the Fridge show no power at all. no display on the microwave and the 12V display on the refrigerator works, but won't turn on. Also, I checked the plug for the fridge and it has power. Everything works in the coach, but this two items.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Michael, can you give me a bit more info?

      Randy

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      Michael Gray 3 months ago

      If have a 2003 Holiday Rambler Vacationer. When hooked to shore power or running the generator, the fridge and microwave have no power. What may the problem be?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Samuel, more than likely either one or both of the ACs needs the compressor start/run capacitors replaced.

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      Samuel Miller 3 months ago

      Hello. We are second owners on this 2004 Monaco Camelot since December, 2015. Both roof A/C's worked normally on either shore power or generator. In the last week, however, when using the generator, only one A/C can be run. Regardless of which A/C is started, when the second one is engaged, it appears that when the compressor on the second A/C kicks in, the generator responds by disengaging from the RV electrical system. The generator keeps running, and no breakers are tripped, but the power is disengaged for about 30 seconds before re-energizing.

      Any idea on the cause of this problem, and any suggestions on how to correct it would be appreciated.

      Thank you.

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      Samuel Miller 3 months ago

      Hello. On my 2004 Monaco Camelot, both A/C's ran normally while connected to both shore power and generator. Just recently, I can only power up one A/C while running on the generator. It doesn't matter which A/C I start first, when I activate the second one, it appears that a large enough spike in amps is created that the generator disconnects from the RV electrical system. The generator keeps running, no breakers are tripped, but the electrical supply from generator to RV is interrupted for maybe 30 seconds before reintroducing power.

      If I reconnect to shore power after this event, both A/C's can be run normally.

      Any idea what is causing this problem, and how may it be corrected?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Sharon, check the negative battery cable where it attaches to the steel frame of the camper. A bad ground here will cause your problem. After cleaning the connection here if the system is still down try connecting a good battery charger to the batteries. If this solves the problem the converter is probably bad.

      Randy

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      Sharon St Clair 3 months ago

      We own 2015 Thor Chateau class c our 12 volt system stopped working this past weekend or 110 everything works when plugged in . We checked fuses and replaced the batteries with no change . Any ideas

      Thanks

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Sandy, There should be an access panel you can remove to get to this part of the camper and it may indeed be in the bathroom. Look for a removable panel usually held in place with screws.

      Randy

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      Sandy Migaj 3 months ago

      Hi Randy, I have a 2012 Heartland travel trailer 26'. It has a back bathroom and 2 bunks. When I unplugged it last time we camped, I accidentally pushed the plug completely inside the compartment. Is there a way to get access to this compartment from inside the trailer. I cannot grab the plug to pull it back out. I believe I would need to get there from the bathroom, but not sure.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Dan, did you install the 30 amp recept yourself, or did you have it done?

      Randy

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      Dan 3 months ago

      Hi Randy,

      I'm another newbie in travel trailer ownership, i have a 2002 24' polomino. I just had a 30 amp plug ran at my house so i could plug in there. When i try plugging in the trailer it arcs at the receptacle. I've put a meter on the new outlet and it is not tripping, so it seems fine. And then i tried turning off the breakers in the trailer and tried again, still arcing. Ideas? Any help would be appreciated.

      Thanks

      Dan

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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Steven, let me know if you don't find the problem, and thanks for the nice comments.

      Randy

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      Steven calaway 3 months ago

      Randy you're the man. I haven't tried yet but will after work. It HAS to be a short in the circuit. Wish I knew the routing of the wire. Guess all I can do is work my way back from the first good light and see if maybe I punctured the wire with a screw or something while installing the new lights. Like those old Christmas lights, 1 broken bulb ruins everything. Thanks again for the reply, and so fast! Wish I could give you internet points or something lol

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Steven, this sounds like a bad ground somewhere. Usually the light fixture itself serves as a ground if mounted on a metal surface and these type lights may not have a ground wire. If the surface the light fixtures are mounted to are fiberglass or plastic then a ground wire is used. If many lights are on the same circuit--as yours apparently are--then a bad ground or short in the 12 volt power wire is more than likely the culprit.

      Randy

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      Steven calaway 3 months ago

      Hi Randy. Quick question from a struggling newbie. 1992 Coachmen Catalina Lite- I replaced all exterior running lights and brakelights with newer LEDs. the 4 orange running lights on the front half of the trailer lit up with no problems. The back halfs running lights(orange ones on side and red on top of the back)doesn't work and they aren't getting power. Brakelights work fine. I removed each new light and there aren't any knicks in the power cable and I'm completely dumbfounded. Any ideas?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      No problem, RN. Let me know what you find and I'll put it on my list of possibilities to assist others with similar problems. :)

      Randy

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      RN Carstensen 3 months ago

      RE: 2000 Wildwood T25-

      The other day my meter was showing a .7 amp drain on the batteries with everything shut off including the refer and WH. Today shows no drain. I re-hooked up the batteries and we will see if the problem returns. If it does I will try and isolate the problem by removing fuses. Thanks for your help.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 months ago from Southern Georgia

      Larry, I've had so many questions the last few days I've forgotten your particular problem. It's better send me an email by using the contact author link at the top of my article. Sorry, it's been a madhouse the last few days!

      Randy