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Old 08-15-2016, 01:46 PM   #1
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Forest River showing their true colors

So i was recently on a 5 week trip with my 2016 Forester. On week two, the AC suddenly put out a horrible burning smell and quit working. I found a very nice repair shop in Boise who quickly diagnosed the problem as a loose ground wire that burned up and melted the connection.

The repair guy, said it would have burned more but it used up all the oxygen in the junction box and put itself out. The cost of the repair was $100.95.

I contacted Russ Stoll from warranty administration and sent him the invoice. The invoice clearly shows that it was paid in cash, but because the invoice has the printed word "estimate" on it, Russ is expressing doubt that it will be approved.

I've put up with lots of hassle with my new Forester, including making many repairs myself. To be fed this line of BS is a new low. As i responded to Russ, does he really think i would fake a repair 1000 miles from my house so that i can collect $100 from FR?

I'll post how it turns out, but sure seems like a FR misfire to me.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:06 PM   #2
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I am going to ask Bob Byrne to get involved. Leo is here at the Rally in Goshen from FR and I am sure they can resolve this.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:12 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by MMulcahy View Post
So i was recently on a 5 week trip with my 2016 Forester. On week two, the AC suddenly put out a horrible burning smell and quit working. I found a very nice repair shop in Boise who quickly diagnosed the problem as a loose ground wire that burned up and melted the connection.

The repair guy, said it would have burned more but it used up all the oxygen in the junction box and put itself out. The cost of the repair was $100.95.

I contacted Russ Stoll from warranty administration and sent him the invoice. The invoice clearly shows that it was paid in cash, but because the invoice has the printed word "estimate" on it, Russ is expressing doubt that it will be approved.

I've put up with lots of hassle with my new Forester, including making many repairs myself. To be fed this line of BS is a new low. As i responded to Russ, does he really think i would fake a repair 1000 miles from my house so that i can collect $100 from FR?

I'll post how it turns out, but sure seems like a FR misfire to me.
Can you tell us where this loose ground wire was? I'd like to check that out.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:21 PM   #4
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Remove the air filter guard. Directly behind that is a grey square box. It happen inside this box.

I've attached a picture of the melted part.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:22 PM   #5
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trying again with attachment
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:24 PM   #6
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Remove the air filter guard. Directly behind that is a grey square box. It happen inside this box.

I've attached a picture of the melted part.
Thanks!
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:49 PM   #7
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I've never seen a ground burn up in 18 years of electric work unless there some other issue ( 12 volt DC circuits are a different story). I would have the circuit going to your ac checked again. Sound like to me that there is something messed up with the neutral(white)on that circuit and the ground is carrying the neutral load.
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Old 08-16-2016, 12:37 PM   #8
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Is this the coach AC or the AC to the chassis?
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Old 08-16-2016, 02:25 PM   #9
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I've never seen a ground burn up in 18 years of electric work unless there some other issue ( 12 volt DC circuits are a different story). I would have the circuit going to your ac checked again. Sound like to me that there is something messed up with the neutral(white)on that circuit and the ground is carrying the neutral load.


Lots wrong with the repair person's explanation.

Under normal conditions, no current flows through the ground. A loose ground would do nothing unless it touched the hot or some other issue existed.

The lack of oxygen is hilarious! A short will still get hot and melt things without oxygen.

Not saying there wasn't an electrical issue and I'm not saying it isn't fixed. Just sounds like a billy-bob "electrician."


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Old 08-16-2016, 03:00 PM   #10
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On the basis of the original issue , I opened up the connection box above the filter. Quick note, yes, I did turn off the circuit breaker and, did check to see if 115 volt was present with my non contact voltage sensor.
Once inside, white ground and black wires wrapped in black electrical tape. So the only way to inspect the connection is to remove the tape. when I was halfway through, I noticed that the black wire was coming out of the wire nut.
Now, was this do to me fiddling around with the wires? , possibly. However, I don't think I untwisted or did any untwisting of the other wire nuts or this one.
Anyhow, I didn't like the way that the stranded wire was wrapped around the black solid connector. I didn't like the exposed copper wire above the wire nut.. so I trimmed about an eighth of an inch of wire off the black conductor. I wrapped the stranded conductor around the solid black conductor. I applied the factory supplied wire nut. At first I thought it would be too small but it actually works rather well. Was able to get a good torque on the black wire nut. When I applied the same torque to the white and ground conductors I was able to get several turns on each wire nut.
I finished off by wrapping all three wire nuts with black tape. Primarily to prevent the wire nuts from coming loose. As there was no exposed copper showing now. I closed up the box remounted it cleaned the air filter, put on the cover. Turned on the circuit breaker.

I know this says nothing about how Forest River is handling the issue. However I am glad the poster mentioned this so that I could look at a potential problem, averted; down the road.
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Old 08-16-2016, 03:30 PM   #11
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This is a good example of the reason for putting your 110V connections inside a junction box so if it does fry the box will contain it. Good luck with reimbursement, and let us know how it turns out.
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Old 08-16-2016, 03:34 PM   #12
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O yeah...

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Originally Posted by B and B View Post
I am going to ask Bob Byrne to get involved. Leo is here at the Rally in Goshen from FR and I am sure they can resolve this.
...And while you're at it, tell him to try building their products with a bit more quality control and integrity... build quality and materials suck.
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Old 08-16-2016, 03:48 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Ej1332 View Post
I've never seen a ground burn up in 18 years of electric work unless there some other issue ( 12 volt DC circuits are a different story). I would have the circuit going to your ac checked again. Sound like to me that there is something messed up with the neutral(white)on that circuit and the ground is carrying the neutral load.
Got to agree here except add in my 40+ years of electrical work. Grounds should only carry current when a fault condition exists.
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Old 08-16-2016, 05:41 PM   #14
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X2 ej1332
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Old 08-16-2016, 06:18 PM   #15
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Companies have numbered invoices, estimate sheets and or quote sheets. So it wont show up at the end of the year as income (taxes) they use these at times. The work was done and the company pocketed the $ Not a big deal and Forest River knows this and will use it as a reason not to pay.
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Old 08-16-2016, 07:44 PM   #16
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Don't think the ground burned up. The picture shows the yellow lead, formally white had its wire nut melt away. To the tech the white and ground are synonymous, they aren't.
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Old 08-19-2016, 04:57 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by pribbens View Post
On the basis of the original issue , I opened up the connection box above the filter. Quick note, yes, I did turn off the circuit breaker and, did check to see if 115 volt was present with my non contact voltage sensor.
Once inside, white ground and black wires wrapped in black electrical tape. So the only way to inspect the connection is to remove the tape. when I was halfway through, I noticed that the black wire was coming out of the wire nut.
Now, was this do to me fiddling around with the wires? , possibly. However, I don't think I untwisted or did any untwisting of the other wire nuts or this one.
Anyhow, I didn't like the way that the stranded wire was wrapped around the black solid connector. I didn't like the exposed copper wire above the wire nut.. so I trimmed about an eighth of an inch of wire off the black conductor. I wrapped the stranded conductor around the solid black conductor. I applied the factory supplied wire nut. At first I thought it would be too small but it actually works rather well. Was able to get a good torque on the black wire nut. When I applied the same torque to the white and ground conductors I was able to get several turns on each wire nut.
I finished off by wrapping all three wire nuts with black tape. Primarily to prevent the wire nuts from coming loose. As there was no exposed copper showing now. I closed up the box remounted it cleaned the air filter, put on the cover. Turned on the circuit breaker.

I know this says nothing about how Forest River is handling the issue. However I am glad the poster mentioned this so that I could look at a potential problem, averted; down the road.
Now, if you want to be REALLY thorough do the same to each and every 120 Volt connection in every box in your RV.

If that one is loose, chances are there are more........The same workmen did all your connections.
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Old 08-19-2016, 09:22 AM   #18
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Yes, of course you're right. It's going to have to wait until I get to home base to dig into that level. Thanks for the reminder though.
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