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Old 01-16-2019, 02:00 PM   #1
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Electrical Question

So I just purchased a 2008 sandstorm. I have a question about the interior lights. If I am not connected to any electricity and my generator is not running shouldnít I still be able to use interior lights as long as my batteries are fully charged?
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Old 01-16-2019, 02:08 PM   #2
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Yes, IF your lights are 12 volt lights. Uncle Gene had 110v AC lights in his trailer. Do you have a battery disconnect switch? If so, is it in the Connect position?
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Old 01-16-2019, 04:56 PM   #3
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I do have a battery disconnect switch. It’s a red plastic key shaped switch located below the fridge ,and yes it’s definitely in the connected position.
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Old 01-16-2019, 05:03 PM   #4
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I do have a battery disconnect switch. Itís a red plastic key shaped switch located below the fridge ,and yes itís definitely in the connected position.
Then yes... you should be able to use them.

Some lights are on a separate switch even though the light itself might have a switch.

Have you checked for voltage at the light?
Used unit... maybe the bulb is defective?
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Old 01-16-2019, 07:29 PM   #5
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The lights come on when the generator is running or when I am plugged up to power. That’s why it confuses me. I guess you can tell I am very new to this type of RV.
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Old 01-16-2019, 07:34 PM   #6
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Have you had your battery(ies) disconnected?
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Old 01-16-2019, 07:34 PM   #7
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Could be resettable fuse usually located near battery. You may not be getting any battery power at all and when plugged in your converter is supplying power to lights.
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Old 01-16-2019, 07:58 PM   #8
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I don’t recall having the batteries disconnected recently I do know they are new and charged they are working well enough to crank my generator. That’s why I’m thinking there must be a switch somewhere I do not know about.
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Old 01-16-2019, 08:10 PM   #9
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just fore drill try moving the disconnect switch to the other position and see if that has any effect. if not then check the battery connections and check for a resettable 12 vdc circuit breaker in the battery cable. of course, there could be a loose connection anywhere. use a multimeter to confirm 12 vdc voltage at the batteries then check every connection as you move out from the batteries.
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Old 01-16-2019, 08:23 PM   #10
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I guess the first thing I should have checked was my fuse box. There are two breakers and fuses inside the box under the sink. I’m sure the batteries are connected otherwise my generator would not crank, correct?
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Old 01-17-2019, 04:55 AM   #11
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on ours the generator is wired directly to the batteries using dedicated battery cables. the battery disconnect switch is in another cable between the batteries and the fuse box / converter. so the generator can crank even with the disconnect switch off. you'll just have to trace some cables to see if yours is similar.
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Old 01-17-2019, 07:10 AM   #12
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There is a resettable current limiter near the umbilical cord junction box that connects the converter and the umbilical to the battery.

In Travel Trailers, it is on the frame close to the junction box, most likely within 10-12 inches of the box and may be covered by a red plastic cover.

In 5th Wheels, it is next to the metal umbilical box under the pin box.

There is a button on the short side that pops when the limiter trips.

They are also subject to corrosion, so remove the wires (one side at a time!) and clean the connectors with steel wool.

There may also be one right at the battery, so check behind it for that one.
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Old 01-17-2019, 07:35 AM   #13
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There is a resettable current limiter near the umbilical cord junction box that connects the converter and the umbilical to the battery.

In Travel Trailers, it is on the frame close to the junction box, most likely within 10-12 inches of the box and may be covered by a red plastic cover.

In 5th Wheels, it is next to the metal umbilical box under the pin box.

There is a button on the short side that pops when the limiter trips.

They are also subject to corrosion, so remove the wires (one side at a time!) and clean the connectors with steel wool.

There may also be one right at the battery, so check behind it for that one.
As her said check these, and while down there tighten up all wire connections. My old tt had this problem after it was about 2 months old. The connections loosened up or were never tightened properly to begin with.
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Old 01-17-2019, 07:57 AM   #14
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Thanks guys for all the info, I will go over this morning and check these things out.
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:50 AM   #15
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I guess the first thing I should have checked was my fuse box. There are two breakers and fuses inside the box under the sink. Iím sure the batteries are connected otherwise my generator would not crank, correct?
Do you have 12v there at the fuses?

When checking electrical systems (both 120v and 12v) you need to start with the basics. You need to start at the battery and work your way towards the rest of the R/V.
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Old 01-17-2019, 09:38 AM   #16
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Well as I said I’m very new to this type of RV. Everything works all the time aside from when I am batteries only.
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Old 01-17-2019, 02:27 PM   #17
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Well as I said I’m very new to this type of RV. Everything works all the time aside from when I am batteries only.
The 12v things work when plugged in (shore power) because your converter supplies 12v to the interior electrical system. Your converter converts 120v AC to 12v DC and ALSO charges your battery(ies) when plugged into shore power.

When you are NOT plugged into shore power, it is the battery(ies) responsibility to provide that 12v power.

You need to do some basic voltage tests starting at the battery (when not plugged into shore power) and follow the circuit from the battery(ies) back to the converter, The wires from the battery(ies) go to the converter and often have in their pathway a disconnect switch and 12v circuit breakers. You need to find where the current is not getting through.

12v circuit breakers are the small rectangular devices Herk posted photos of in Post # 12.
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Old 01-17-2019, 02:46 PM   #18
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I found the switch you’re talking about. It appears to be tripped and it doesn’t seem to be resetting. In other words the button does not stay pushed in when I push it in.
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Old 01-17-2019, 03:18 PM   #19
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I found the switch youíre talking about. It appears to be tripped and it doesnít seem to be resetting. In other words the button does not stay pushed in when I push it in.
You've probably found the problem. Auto parts stores have them and they aren't expensive. Replace with the same Amp rating.
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Old 01-19-2019, 09:15 PM   #20
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As soon as the weather warms up Iím going to bypass the voltage limiter. If I get lights of battery power alone Iíll know thatís the problem for sure.
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