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Old 05-21-2021, 02:05 AM   #1
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Electrical issue

I am having some electrical issues and they seem to be deteriorating.

I am staying in my friend's yard and plugged in into 20amp outlet. I set max shore power to 15 amp on Magnum controller.

Last summer I used to be able to run 1 AC while plugged into 15 amp outlet and setting my max shore power to 10 amp without any problems, but this time around I keep tripping their circuit breaker. I tried to lower max shower power to 10 amp but it did not change anything. AC starts working and then trips the breaker after few minutes.

It happened couple of weeks ago and I haven't used AC since. At the same time I was able to run everything but washer without issues including clothes dryer as long as I was not using several power hungry appliances at the same time, but couple of days ago dryer also started to trip the breaker. We tried several different outlets on different breakers but it did not change anything - works for few minutes and then trips the breaker.

If I reset the breaker it gets tripped sooner second / third time around.

My 30 to 15 amp adapter gets hot and so does the plug of the extension cable that plugs into tha adapter on my side.

I tried different brand new adapter and different extension cables - nothing changes.

This evening I tried to use microwave and it tripped the breaker after 1 minute while nothing else was using power.

Any ideas?

Thanks
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Old 05-21-2021, 02:13 AM   #2
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You have an electrical draw somewhere. Is your water heater set for electric or propane?

Can you measure incoming power? If yes, turn on breakers one at a time to find the power hog.
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Old 05-21-2021, 07:27 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by AlexG View Post
I am having some electrical issues and they seem to be deteriorating.



I am staying in my friend's yard and plugged in into 20amp outlet. I set max shore power to 15 amp on Magnum controller.



Last summer I used to be able to run 1 AC while plugged into 15 amp outlet and setting my max shore power to 10 amp without any problems, but this time around I keep tripping their circuit breaker. I tried to lower max shower power to 10 amp but it did not change anything. AC starts working and then trips the breaker after few minutes.



It happened couple of weeks ago and I haven't used AC since. At the same time I was able to run everything but washer without issues including clothes dryer as long as I was not using several power hungry appliances at the same time, but couple of days ago dryer also started to trip the breaker. We tried several different outlets on different breakers but it did not change anything - works for few minutes and then trips the breaker.



If I reset the breaker it gets tripped sooner second / third time around.



My 30 to 15 amp adapter gets hot and so does the plug of the extension cable that plugs into tha adapter on my side.



I tried different brand new adapter and different extension cables - nothing changes.



This evening I tried to use microwave and it tripped the breaker after 1 minute while nothing else was using power.



Any ideas?



Thanks


Try turning off battery charger on magnum controller
If that alleviates the problem
House batteries are on the way out
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Old 05-21-2021, 07:52 AM   #4
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How long /What gauge is the "extension cable " you mention?
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Old 05-21-2021, 08:06 AM   #5
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You're pushing the limits a bit. You likely have a 13,350 BTU Dometic AC unit. it requires 2700 -2900W starting power and 1000 -1300W running. Translation... about 23 amps starting and about 10 amps running. Concur with the recommendation of monitoring the incoming draw.
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Old 05-21-2021, 09:06 AM   #6
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The A/c is to much draw for a 15 amp or even a 20 amp circuit. If it does start on that it’s hard on the Compressor. The microwaves can draw 1,200 watts or more a d that’s 10 plus Amos alone. A clothes dryer uses more and I’m not sure how it’s working on 120v anyway. My guess is the breaker in the house is weak from being hot from high current draws. Also it’s hard on the dog bone connection. I would invest in getting a proper electrical connection to alleviate these issues. It’s really not worth the trouble it can cause by not doing proper connection. Also make sure your using a #12 drop cord at the shortest length possible for best results. Your fine if no A/C no dryer and no water heater. Replace the house breaker.
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Old 05-21-2021, 10:28 AM   #7
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Thank you for all the replies.

I will measure draw and try to play with the circuit breaker to see if I can isolate the draw.

I tried 4 different extension cables. The last 2 were 50 feet 12 gauge.

I don't seem to have a problem starting the AC as it trips the breakers after several minutes of use. I am really worried that tripped the breakers by using just microwave, not sure if my fridge was actively running at the time.

Probably will not get to it today, still a workday for me.
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Old 05-21-2021, 10:36 AM   #8
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The A/c is to much draw for a 15 amp or even a 20 amp circuit. If it does start on that it’s hard on the Compressor.
-- Sure but I was running it just fine last summer

The microwaves can draw 1,200 watts or more a d that’s 10 plus Amos alone.
-- Nothing else was running

A clothes dryer uses more and I’m not sure how it’s working on 120v anyway.
-- It worked fine 2 days ago. It runs fine off the same outlet when I run cable directly to it

My guess is the breaker in the house is weak from being hot from high current draws.
-- Used several different outlets all on different breakers

Also it’s hard on the dog bone connection. I would invest in getting a proper electrical connection to alleviate these issues.
-- That would be great and I offered to cover the expanse for 30 AMP, but not my house...

It’s really not worth the trouble it can cause by not doing proper connection.
--Have to stay here until after my daughter's graduation from high school and nearest campground is way too far away

Thanks
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Old 05-21-2021, 10:56 AM   #9
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Does your coach have auto gen start setting? If so I might try and program this setting under the temp control, so the Generator will turn on run the A/C while the generator is on. While I cant explain why it worked one summer but not the next, the next question I would have is does you coach have a energy management system in it. An EMS system prioritize the Energy distribution to the coach appliances, for example if you have a residential fridge, the fridge is going to be a higher priority then an AC unit.
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Old 05-21-2021, 11:54 AM   #10
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I was asked to not run generator as it is right by the house

The problem is not to cool the coach but why it is happening. I thought that setting the max shore power level is specifically designed to overdrawing the power from the source, yet this setting seem to be ignored.

I am worried that there is an electrical problem and it seems to be deteriorating as it takes less and less load to trip the breaker

I never heard of EMS before, but I not sure it is relevant to the issue of overdrawing power if max power level is set below the level that the breaker can handle. I can see tripping the breakers on the RV side in this situation or having appliance not working right - my washer was giving me an error while spinning at high speed until I plugged it in directly to the house's outlet outside the coach's system

I am connected to GFCI outlet so I assume that there are no shorts otherwise it would trip the outlet before the breaker
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Old 05-21-2021, 03:47 PM   #11
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Thanks to everyone who pitched in.

I played with working loads a little and read what that max shore power actually means and was able to solve the problem.

I ended up tracing it residential fridge turning on and starting to run compressor while AC was working and tripping the breaker.

The reason I was able to run AC of 15 amp outlet last summer without issues was due to just working on the projects inside the coach and not really needing to run anything else and my fridge was off.
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Old 05-21-2021, 06:58 PM   #12
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Thanks to everyone who pitched in.

I played with working loads a little and read what that max shore power actually means and was able to solve the problem.

I ended up tracing it residential fridge turning on and starting to run compressor while AC was working and tripping the breaker.

The reason I was able to run AC of 15 amp outlet last summer without issues was due to just working on the projects inside the coach and not really needing to run anything else and my fridge was off.


Glad you figured it out. One thing that would help is installing an easy start on your a/c unit. Itís adaptive and learns exactly how much current is needed to start the Compressor. It is supposed to be really good. Takes less amperage to start and is easier on the unit. Iím hoping to buy and install one on each of my a/c units on my 32BH forest river Vibe. I think theyíre about $400 and thatís why I havenít done it yet...LOL...
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Old 05-21-2021, 07:47 PM   #13
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If you haven't got one, I suggest getting a wall-mounted voltmeter so you can monitor what's happening with the voltage. If it's getting down around 105-107 volts, that's not good. As voltage goes down, an AC draws more current, which in turn causes more voltage drop. 50' of #12 extension is too small IMO. Every plug to connector connection can also introduce resistance which can also increase voltage drop.
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Old 05-21-2021, 08:45 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Eric B FR Diesel View Post
Does your coach have auto gen start setting? If so I might try and program this setting under the temp control, so the Generator will turn on run the A/C while the generator is on. While I cant explain why it worked one summer but not the next, the next question I would have is does you coach have a energy management system in it. An EMS system prioritize the Energy distribution to the coach appliances, for example if you have a residential fridge, the fridge is going to be a higher priority then an AC unit.
Eric,
Iím a little unsure of how you would expect the AGS setup supplied by a Berk like my 2015 34QS would work under this situation. The Magnum AGS does have the option to install a pigtail connection to the AC to allow the AC to start the generator before starting the AC. I have never heard of anyone who actually has one of these installed, so Iím interested in your insight here.

After a few years of pondering this and reading the Magnum instructions, when Iím NOT on shore power, I set my AC to start at a lower temperature than I set the AGS to start the generator. This way, the AC attempts to start and the thermostat throws an E7 fault code because there is not any power on the side of the circuit breaker that serves the AC. Then, when the temperature continues to rise to the point that the AGS starts the generator, the thermostat realizes there is enough to power to run the AC, so it clears the E7 fault code and runs the AC.

The crucial thing about my process is that it requires the coach to be disconnected from shore power.

If I had the Magnum pigtail, things may be different, which is why Iím interested in your insight on this.

óGordon
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Old 05-21-2021, 08:50 PM   #15
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easy start will probably be a project if / when i will get around to lithium and solar
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Old 06-24-2021, 11:18 AM   #16
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Eric,
Iím a little unsure of how you would expect the AGS setup supplied by a Berk like my 2015 34QS would work under this situation. The Magnum AGS does have the option to install a pigtail connection to the AC to allow the AC to start the generator before starting the AC. I have never heard of anyone who actually has one of these installed, so Iím interested in your insight here.
This method of temperature-based Generator control is specific to units equipped with the PrecPlex system used on coaches built after 2019.
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Old 06-24-2021, 12:06 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by AlexG View Post
...
I ended up tracing it residential fridge turning on and starting to run compressor while AC was working and tripping the breaker.

The reason I was able to run AC of 15 amp outlet last summer without issues was due to just working on the projects inside the coach and not really needing to run anything else and my fridge was off.
yes, this is EXACTLY what the 'SHORE MAX' setting is for - it allows the OWNER to help control the Battery Charger's amperage usage when OTHER Things need to have more priority, like the air conditioner, etc. Now, it does not, though, have anything to do with the fridge coming on, or the compressor coming on, etc, as the fridge is simply plugged into an outlet - it ONLY serves to LOWER the amperage of the Battery Charger.
Another way to help 'solve' this in a slightly different way is to simply turn OFF the Battery Charger.

You can STILL trip a breaker, whether Shore Power or the Generator if you try to use 'too much' power at any given time, but at least the Battery Charger is not something that is 'lurking' in the background, as a silent user of power.

Some coaches that have an integrated 'Power Management System' will be programmed to 'shed' some loads, or power users, when the power needs are approaching the set Amperage maximum, but this generally is not the same - it's for any 'directly wired' appliance, electric water heater, or air conditioners on their own breakers, etc, and not for the OUTLETS within the coach, or the fridge, or the Battery Charger, if integrated within the INVERTER, and therefore can't be 'controlled' this way.
May there be some newer technologies coming that can? maybe, but I'll bet the wiring scheme will have to change, too.
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Old 06-24-2021, 01:58 PM   #18
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I ended up running 1 extension cord directly to fridge and another extension into the bedroom to plug in either washer or dryer.

I also bought "2 of 30 amp into to 1 50 amp" adapter and ran 2 x 20 amp extension cords to it, which allowed me to power both pre-inverter sides of my electrical panel independently.

I only had to remember not turning any appliances without first turning off AC
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