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Old 07-11-2019, 06:52 PM   #1
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Converter Confusion

Hi there,

Have tried looking for specific info regarding my tent trailer, but only finding info on bigger trailers.

Recently purchased a 1640 ESP tent trailer. It has a 25 amp converter with build in battery charger.

When I purchased it and did the "walk through", I was told only to push the on button to have it in use when I am not plugged into shore power and want to use the outlets for anything other than the interior lighting. The man told me the outlets won't work otherwise.

He said if I was plugged into shore power the converter doesn't need to be turned on.

However...I'm finding information that says to always leave your converter on??

The conflicting directions are confusing me. Why would the man at the dealership tell me this? Was he right, or wrong?

I went camping in it last weekend for three days for the first time. I was connected to shore power and did not have the converter turned on, and everything worked fine.

Thank you for the help!

Cheers,

Ryan
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Old 07-11-2019, 06:58 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by rbennett1209 View Post
Hi there,

Have tried looking for specific info regarding my tent trailer, but only finding info on bigger trailers.

Recently purchased a 1640 ESP tent trailer. It has a 25 amp converter with build in battery charger.

When I purchased it and did the "walk through", I was told only to push the on button to have it in use when I am not plugged into shore power and want to use the outlets for anything other than the interior lighting. The man told me the outlets won't work otherwise.

He said if I was plugged into shore power the converter doesn't need to be turned on.

However...I'm finding information that says to always leave your converter on??

The conflicting directions are confusing me. Why would the man at the dealership tell me this? Was he right, or wrong?

I went camping in it last weekend for three days for the first time. I was connected to shore power and did not have the converter turned on, and everything worked fine.

Thank you for the help!

Cheers,

Ryan
Parts of your description sound like you’re talking about an inverter not converter: “not plugged into shore power and want to use the outlets for anything other than the interior lighting.”
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Old 07-11-2019, 06:58 PM   #3
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Same situation right now I'm in. First time out. I'm not connected to shore power. Everything works except plugs. How do I turn on the converter?
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:01 PM   #4
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Are you positive that you may not be confusing a converter with an inverter?


Converter or Inverter (they are different)
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:07 PM   #5
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I have a converter. 4 breakers for ac and 6 fuses for dc. I just pressed the test switch on the outlet next to it and the reset switch won't engage again. 2514g popup
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:18 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by HappyCamperCanada View Post
I have a converter. 4 breakers for ac and 6 fuses for dc. I just pressed the test switch on the outlet next to it and the reset switch won't engage again. 2514g popup

I was asking the OP, as it appears he may be confusing a converter vs and inverter.


According to the rockwood site/brochure, the ESP does come with an inverter in addition to the converter.


https://www.forestriverinc.com/broch...ntBrochure.pdf



Roof Mount Solar Panel Prep W/1000 watt invertor to power all 110V electrical outlets excluding Microwave and A/C- -- -S- -- -- -Solar Panel Prep on Frame


Now to your question, it would be best if you and the OP read the link I provided in my first post.


Unless you have an "inverter", then your 120 volt AC outlets will not have power to them, UNLESS you are connected to a form of 120 volt AC power (sources can be shore power, generator, or an inverter).


Both of you, please read the converter/inverter link...as it explains your different electrical systems of the RV. This is one of the first things a new RV owner needs to understand.
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:25 PM   #7
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I have a converter. 4 breakers for ac and 6 fuses for dc. I just pressed the test switch on the outlet next to it and the reset switch won't engage again. 2514g popup

If you are referring to an GFCI outlet (test/reset button), then you have to be connected to some form of 120 volt AC power for this outlet to reset.


That works the same if in a RV or your stick & brick house.


By code RV's must have main GFCI outlets (which also have other outlets wired downstream from this main outlet so they are protected too.. by the main one) near water sources like sinks.


If the main gfci is tripped, then it nor the other outlets downstream from it will operate until the main GFCI is reset......which it has to have 120 volt AC power to be able to reset.
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:32 PM   #8
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This thread may help too, as it's aimed at those just starting out...with a lot of the more common things that aren't fully explained in initial pdi's.


New to RV's helpful hints
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:53 PM   #9
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Parts of your description sound like you’re talking about an inverter not converter: “not plugged into shore power and want to use the outlets for anything other than the interior lighting.”
Hi Mr. Dan.

Thanks for taking the time to explain. Thanks for those helpful links as well!
You are right, the inverter is a little panel for this model with an on/off switch. My mistake.

If there is a converter, there is no on/off switch panel. Was just wondering as diving into the research on the converters on line there is a lot of questions about turning it on or off when connected to power, which made me think I don't know where mine is, nor can I find an on/off switch for the converter. Your link has helped clear some of this up!

Either way, I confused the terms. The inverter on this model has a clear on/off switch panel. This I want to turn on if not connected to external power to use the outlets. The converter must be hidden within the frame somewhere, as there is no panel with an on/off switch like there is for the inverter. I'm assuming this is the case since it says "built in 25 amp converter with battery charger".
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Old 07-11-2019, 08:02 PM   #10
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You’re welcome... but to be clear, wmtire gave you the help you needed.
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Old 07-11-2019, 08:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbennett1209 View Post
If there is a converter, there is no on/off switch panel. Was just wondering as diving into the research on the converters on line there is a lot of questions about turning it on or off when connected to power, which made me think I don't know where mine is, nor can I find an on/off switch for the converter. Your link has helped clear some of this up!

Either way, I confused the terms. The inverter on this model has a clear on/off switch panel. This I want to turn on if not connected to external power to use the outlets. The converter must be hidden within the frame somewhere, as there is no panel with an on/off switch like there is for the inverter. I'm assuming this is the case since it says "built in 25 amp converter with battery charger".
Some of the confusion comes from the fact that the converter and electrical distribution are all one unit in a pop-up or A-frame. Behind the fuses and circuit breakers in the panel is the CONVERTER. But often the whole panel is called a converter.

The converter converts 120V AC to 12V DC (nominal values) to supply 12V devices and charge the battery. The converter does nothing when you are not plugged in to 120V AC shore power. The converter comes on automatically when you are plugged in to shore power. The converter is powered through one of the AC circuit breakers.

Your lights, fans, CO/propane detector, water pump, thermostat, and stereo all run off the 12V circuits - which have fuses. 12V is provided by the converter when plugged in to shore power, and by the battery when you are not plugged in. The converter also automatically charges the battery when plugged into shore power.

When stored at home, and not plugged in, the stereo and propane/CO detector drain the battery to nothing in a week or two - which is destructive to the battery in the medium term. If you store the pop-up not plugged in, you need to disconnect the battery by removing ALL the wires off one post or the other or installing a battery disconnect switch - no, a pop-up does not have a disconnect switch from the factory.

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Old 07-12-2019, 02:04 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by HappyCamperCanada View Post
Same situation right now I'm in. First time out. I'm not connected to shore power. Everything works except plugs. How do I turn on the converter?
Your popup doesn't have an INverter, just a CONverter.
Your outlets are 110v AC and only work when plugged into shore power or a generator.
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Old 07-12-2019, 03:15 PM   #13
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Now I know!
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