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Old 08-19-2016, 09:32 PM   #1
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Microwave throwing the breaker

My microwave has started throwing the breaker when I use it. Could I have an issue with the microwave, or is it possible to have a breaker that needs replacing?


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Old 08-20-2016, 07:15 AM   #2
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Is it on 15amp or 20 amp breaker? I assume you don't have an amp meter so you could take it out and plug it in to a circuit in your house with same size breaker. Only a few screws in the front and slides out. Then at least you have it narrowed down between microwave and camper circuit. Then if all OK with house test check connections (are there other outlets on that circuit?) And then you could try new breaker.
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Old 08-20-2016, 07:22 AM   #3
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quick question does it trip the breaker as soon as you try to use it or does it operate for a short time then trip the breaker? If it trips right away I would assume its the microwave if it takes awhile it may be the breaker. Make sure the wire leading to the breaker is tight in the breaker (turn power off). (I hate auto spell correct)
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Old 08-20-2016, 07:33 AM   #4
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Larry, if I recall correctly, didn't you just replace the electric element in your water heater also? I never asked in that thread, but what wattage element did you put in at that time?

Are you tripping a 15 amp circuit breaker inside the RV, or possibly the 30 amp main breaker either inside your RV or on the campground pedestal?

If a main breaker, then it's possible you are just overloading the circuits with the electric water heater, microwave, air/conditioner, etc.... all being on at the same time....especially if using a 30 amp power supply.

I usually have to turn off the air conditioner in my trailer if I use the microwave at the same time, in the summer.

Good reading here:

Basic RV Electricity - RV Information (RV Maintenance)

RV Converters and Amp Draw - RV Information (RV Maintenance)
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Old 08-20-2016, 03:02 PM   #5
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Breaker Tripping

I have learned which appliances in my RV draw the most power and minimize their joint use. I turned off the water heater breaker in the RV breaker box because I don't need hot water during the summer. I heat water in the microwave as needed. I, too, turn off the A/C while using the microwave. I minimize the use of lights and unplug small appliances when not in use. My refrigerator is the only appliance that is continually powered. I set the A/C to 68 degrees to cool my RV. I then turn the A/C off and use a WindMachine floor fan to circulate air. I turn on the A/C when the RV inside temperature becomes uncomfortable and repeat the process. This saves energy, the breakers don't trip, and all is good. I, too, am spoiled by A/C and often wonder how my ancestors tolerated the Texas heat and humidity. Happy motoring.
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Old 08-20-2016, 03:19 PM   #6
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Unhappy Overload...

If you have the A/C on plus the water heater on and on electric plus do you have your TV on ? What about the refrigerator is it on electric ? The microwave sends the whole camper into overload....
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:41 AM   #7
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Limit the loads

Quote:
Originally Posted by wmtire View Post
Larry, if I recall correctly, didn't you just replace the electric element in your water heater also? I never asked in that thread, but what wattage element did you put in at that time?

Are you tripping a 15 amp circuit breaker inside the RV, or possibly the 30 amp main breaker either inside your RV or on the campground pedestal?

If a main breaker, then it's possible you are just overloading the circuits with the electric water heater, microwave, air/conditioner, etc.... all being on at the same time....especially if using a 30 amp power supply.

I usually have to turn off the air conditioner in my trailer if I use the microwave at the same time, in the summer.

Good reading here:

Basic RV Electricity - RV Information (RV Maintenance)

RV Converters and Amp Draw - RV Information (RV Maintenance)
Ditto regarding use with other loads. If I'm going to run the microwave I turn off the air conditioner until the microwave is finished.
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:50 AM   #8
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Sorry it took so long to answer everyone. We are back home, and the RV is at the park. It'll be awhile before I get back to the camp and can respond to many of the comments.
We are on 50 amp.
There are 2 a/c's running, so overload may be the problem.
I can't recall the power of the changed water heater element, but it was bought at an RV store and they said it is standard.
It usually throws the breaker after the microwave has been running for awhile.
I am buying a meter to test things.
Thanks for the many responses! I'll update in a week or so once we get back to the campground.


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Old 08-21-2016, 11:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Tiner View Post
Sorry it took so long to answer everyone. We are back home, and the RV is at the park. It'll be awhile before I get back to the camp and can respond to many of the comments.
We are on 50 amp.
There are 2 a/c's running, so overload may be the problem.
I can't recall the power of the changed water heater element, but it was bought at an RV store and they said it is standard.
It usually throws the breaker after the microwave has been running for awhile.
I am buying a meter to test things.
Thanks for the many responses! I'll update in a week or so once we get back to the campground.


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On 50 amp, you really shouldn't be having a problem. WHAT breaker is it that is tripping?
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:20 AM   #10
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It is the 15 amp in the indoor breaker box labeled microwave.


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Old 08-21-2016, 12:42 PM   #11
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You need to check to make certain the voltage is up where it should be. If it is, find someone with an ammeter to measure the current when the microwave is running so you can see if it's working properly. Then you'll know whether to look for a new microwave or a circuit breaker.
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Old 08-21-2016, 08:33 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Tiner View Post
It is the 15 amp in the indoor breaker box labeled microwave.


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It could be the following:

1. A weak breaker (change breaker)
2. Your microwave may be using more that 15 amps, the wiring get hot then the breaker does it's job and trips. (disregard if you used it with no problems for months and it just started)
3. Internal wiring problem in your microwave and the breaker does it's job and trips.
4. Loose connection in your panel.

Whatever you do, don't reset the breaker and keep using the microwave. You could end up melting the wires and starting a fire.
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Old 08-21-2016, 08:48 PM   #13
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The breakers that FR use are the cheapest and least reliable on the market. Make a list of all the breakers in your panel and then unplug the shore line and take out one of the breakers and go to Lowes/HD/electrical supply house and get all new replacements. I had to do that over a year ago and haven't had any problems since.
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Old 08-24-2016, 07:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Tiner View Post
It is the 15 amp in the indoor breaker box labeled microwave.


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Larry, along with the advice others have given as to possible causes for your microwaves circuit breaker to be tripping, on a 50 amp RV/power supply (which it shouldn't be tripping, obviously).... we have seen some instances of where the microwaves circuit was incorrectly wired in combination with some other appliance/etc instead of being on a single dedicated circuit.

What I mean is, like the water heater, fridge, converter, or maybe just electrical outlets...got wired on the same circuit that the microwave is on. So possibly when you are using the microwave and these other appliances are on (or come on) then the circuit overloads and trips the breaker.


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Old 08-25-2016, 09:55 AM   #15
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As an update, I am now at the RV. The microwave trips the breaker after running for awhile. I'm headed to town to get an ammeter. Also, I'm verifying whether it is on a breaker by itself.


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Old 08-25-2016, 10:10 AM   #16
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This is all good information. We are taking delivery of a "new to us" '14 Palamino 340RK soon and did a complete 6 hour PDI this past Saturday evaluating everything in the coach. One of the "tests" I did, was to use the Microwave while both AC's were running full (92 degrees outside). Had no issue with blowing breakers or systems shutting down. We had fridge, 2 AC's, TV and microwave running at same time with a 50 Amp service.


I look forward to hearing Larry's solution and will add that to our book for future issue repairs I am sure we will encounter along the way.
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Old 08-25-2016, 10:15 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Tiner View Post
As an update, I am now at the RV. The microwave trips the breaker after running for awhile. I'm headed to town to get an ammeter. Also, I'm verifying whether it is on a breaker by itself.


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That implies an overload, which is why you should get a current reading. You seem to be on the right path.
This is why with our 30 amp trailer, I have to turn off the air conditioning while we run the microwave. If we don't do that, we'll trip either the main in the trailer or the breaker at the park power connection.
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Old 08-25-2016, 10:25 AM   #18
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Unhappy Power cord

Why not take a heavy duty extension cord like you would drag across the yard to use your weed eater and unplug your microwave and plug it in to this extension cord then plug the cord into the pedestal 120 volt plug. If it pops that circuit breaker then it is the micro wave causing the problem....
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Old 08-25-2016, 02:58 PM   #19
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Once again, all terrific ideas!
One of our a/c's had to be replaced today. For the past year and 1/2, it ran constantly, but never cooled. The tech said it was super low on freon, it was a closed system, and needed replacement (under warranty).
As he was working, I mentioned the microwave. After discussing it, he thinks it may be due to the extra load the old a/c was demanding. He recommends to run the full load of things using electricity and see if the microwave still throws the breaker. So far, it is doing okay. The only added load I'll need to test is running a griddle at the same time. It'll be Labor Day weekend before we'll do this final test.
I most definitely will keep y'all posted.


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Old 08-25-2016, 03:10 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Once again, all terrific ideas!
One of our a/c's had to be replaced today. For the past year and 1/2, it ran constantly, but never cooled. The tech said it was super low on freon, it was a closed system, and needed replacement (under warranty).
As he was working, I mentioned the microwave. After discussing it, he thinks it may be due to the extra load the old a/c was demanding. He recommends to run the full load of things using electricity and see if the microwave still throws the breaker. So far, it is doing okay. The only added load I'll need to test is running a griddle at the same time. It'll be Labor Day weekend before we'll do this final test.
I most definitely will keep y'all posted.


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Larry, I might could easily agree there if it was a main or something tripping. However the microwave should be on a separate circuit and it's individual breaker would also be unaffected by the air conditioner. Is there any chance the A/C got put on the same circuit as the microwave? That microwave SHOULD be on a 15 amp circuit and the A/C on a 20 amp usually. If that was the case, when the microwave circuit breaker tripped, the A/C would have shut off too.
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