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Old 06-02-2011, 08:42 PM   #1
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DC Converter Fried on new TT

Hi All,

Just got our new Puma 26FBSS camper prior to Memorial day and went camping at a Campground in WV and during our stay the main transformer at the campground blew sending out 240+ volts to all the circuits at the campground last count there were over 40 campers damaged ranging from converters, Air conditioners, Microwaves, and LCD TVs. The campground stated that every camper signed a "camp at risk" clause and they will not cover any damages.

Our DC converter was blown (Parallex 7155) and its around 200.00 to replace, This is an important lesson to learn if we had a surge protector we would have been spared this problem. I have contacted my insurance company to see if they will pay for a replacement. Should I replace the unit with the same converter or look at an upgrade? Does anyone have any suggestions on a direct replacement upgrade?

Al
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Old 06-02-2011, 10:08 PM   #2
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I know of a nice Surge Protector - Progressive Industries Electrical Management System EMS-PT30C (30amp) or the EMS-PT50C (50amp) -- Sorry for your loss....I'd have been PO'd. Every time I read one of these posts about fried coverters, I show the DW why I purchased the surge protector ! Not sure if I would have wanted to be a Camp ground owner when something like this happens! Sorry I can't help you on the up-grade, but thanks for posting so others (Campers) can see it really does happen !! So it is worth buying a Surge Protector !!
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Old 06-03-2011, 06:22 AM   #3
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Sorry about your bad luck!
I don't suppose this is covered by your insurance??

And I'm not trying to start a big discussion here but surge protectors
are made for voltage spikes.
These typically are only milliseconds long.
A transformer that puts out 240 volts when it should have only been
120 will probably go right thru the surge protector and fry any thing
that happens to be on at the time.

I'm not saying you shouldn't have one but in this case I wonder if
it would have made a difference.
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Old 06-03-2011, 09:04 AM   #4
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Still wondering how that could happen.

What possible failure mode at the pole transformer could cause 240 to show up on one leg of a circuit? Sounds like a "cop out" by the campground to me. If their electrician made a mistake when reconnecting the wires of a burnt out transformer; can see how that would do it.
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Old 06-03-2011, 09:40 AM   #5
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Kydan...The EMC-30PTC from Progressive Industries will shut-off the power to the TT, If 240volts is detected, So for this type of surge protector it would have just shut the power off. Now will some cheaper surge protectors...not sure about. This protector IS pricey ! @ $230 if search the internet and find it on sale. It retails for around $370 I believe.
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:16 PM   #6
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Herk, I am thinking the same thing, unless the neutral conductor is lost at the x-frmr. The end result would be 240 L-N on both phases. I did have a situation about 2 years ago during a wind storm where a lineman mis-wired a x-frmr bank and I ended up losing $1,800.00 in household electronics. Many neighbors lost their much more including meter sockets, panels, etc. The utility company paid for repairs.
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by electromagn8 View Post
Herk, I am thinking the same thing, unless the neutral conductor is lost at the x-frmr. The end result would be 240 L-N on both phases. I did have a situation about 2 years ago during a wind storm where a lineman mis-wired a x-frmr bank and I ended up losing $1,800.00 in household electronics. Many neighbors lost their much more including meter sockets, panels, etc. The utility company paid for repairs.
Correct me if I am wrong, but if the neutral was disconnected, you would only have 1/2 of a connection in a 110 outlet (the hot) and NO connection on the Neutral. Thus no power AT ALL. This should not even be an issue on the 50 amp service since even through there would be 220 across the "hots" without a neutral there would be NO current on any 110 VAC breaker.

I can totally understand a mis-wire causing this problem. If the other hot was wired to the neutral grid at the campground, then there would be 220 across the 110 outlets.
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:29 PM   #8
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If the neutral is lost at the point (or close to) the secondary of the x-frmr, then it basically connects the phases together at the next distribution point. This then essentially makes the 120v circuit 240v, when loads are connected to both phases to complete the path.
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:39 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by electromagn8 View Post
If the neutral is lost at the point (or close to) the secondary of the x-frmr, then it basically connects the phases together at the next distribution point. This then essentially makes the 120v circuit 240v, when loads are connected to both phases to complete the path.
OH! Duh! I think I get it!

This could only happen in a 50 amp camper though since both phases are only used in a two buss system (50 amp camper). The neutral buss in the panel (with no neutral to drain off the return current to maintain 120 VAC) would carry that current to the "other side" through components used on that leg, like the second AC making everything "see" 220 VAC.

In a single phase unit (30 amp) there would be no second phase to carry the current "back home" so there would be no power.

Did I get that right?
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
OH! Duh! I think I get it!

This could only happen in a 50 amp camper though since both phases are only used in a two buss system (50 amp camper). The neutral buss in the panel (with no neutral to drain off the return current to maintain 120 VAC) would carry that current to the "other side" through components used on that leg, like the second AC making everything "see" 220 VAC.

In a single phase unit (30 amp) there would be no second phase to carry the current "back home" so there would be no power.

Did I get that right?

I think you got it.

I got a call from the camp ground and the power company gave them a claim number for us to use to be compensated for any loss. So it seems it may have been a power company issue. The campground stated the lineman did something wrong which caused this problem to begin with.

Also my insurance company stated the damage would be covered as well.

So all well that ends well.

I am going to purchase a surge protector this weekend.

Regards,
Al
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALMcKinney View Post
I think you got it.

I got a call from the camp ground and the power company gave them a claim number for us to use to be compensated for any loss. So it seems it may have been a power company issue. The campground stated the lineman did something wrong which caused this problem to begin with.

Also my insurance company stated the damage would be covered as well.

So all well that ends well.

I am going to purchase a surge protector this weekend.

Regards,
Al
Just an update,

Looks like I will have to contact my insurance company, power company will not pay for any damages per campground.

Take care,
Al
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:11 PM   #12
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At least you didn't do it yourself!
A "buddy" of mine forced his camper's 50 amp 120V plug into a 240V welding receptacle in his shop. Needless to say, the guy is a dufus.
But he did get it repaired for about $50. Only one component blew, but it did leak some nasty-looking oil.
But if there is a "surge" protector that stops 240V, it might be a good thing to have.
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:39 PM   #13
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Progressive Industries EMS-PT50C surge protector will stop a 240V shot ! Its worth the cost !!
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Old 06-05-2011, 11:23 PM   #14
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i understand the floating neutral, i've seen it happen in someone's home. they must have had several problems at the campground.
here, they tie the neutral to ground at each pole and at the home. the one above had a poor connection from the utility (had to be re crimped). the ground from the meter base had also been cut (from trimming grass with a solid blade).
i'm wondering if a surge suppressor would have prevented ur problem.
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