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Old 01-22-2022, 12:50 PM   #1
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This Conversion Makes Me Very Nervous

My 2021 Forest River Salem FSX 177BH presented me with a big surprise after purchase.

So, with very little electrical knowledge, do I want to attempt a clean-up of the factory wiring and use this waterproof upgrade suggested by some of the members of this forum?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 01-22-2022, 12:59 PM   #2
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What is the problem with the factory wiring that you need to fix? The pic seems to show nice neat wiring?
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Old 01-22-2022, 01:12 PM   #3
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What is the problem with the factory wiring that you need to fix? The pic seems to show nice neat wiring?
Believe it would be better for underbelly wiring be placed in a "waterproof" container?

Thanks
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Old 01-22-2022, 05:13 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by HistoricMustang View Post
Believe it would be better for underbelly wiring be placed in a "waterproof" container?



Thanks
It's well worth the effort. Terminate each wire with crimped ring connector and make connections to each stud.

Not only weatherproof but no more wire nuts.

Take a few pictures from several angles so you'll have a reference should you forget which wire was connected to which.
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Old 01-22-2022, 05:52 PM   #5
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It's well worth the effort. Terminate each wire with crimped ring connector and make connections to each stud.

Not only weatherproof but no more wire nuts.

Take a few pictures from several angles so you'll have a reference should you forget which wire was connected to which.
Power in and power out make me nervous.....and I assume on photograph the two wires at bottom are ground wires.

Will see if I can locate diagram on wiring waterproof box.

Thanks
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:38 PM   #6
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Quote:
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My 2021 Forest River Salem FSX 177BH presented me with a big surprise after purchase.
If it's under warranty, you need to get it fixed under warranty. It's possible that something else caused your 'surprise' and simply rewiring with that box won't fix the problem.
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:42 PM   #7
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What is the problem with the factory wiring that you need to fix? The pic seems to show nice neat wiring?
Until you take the cover of that standard household non-weatherproof junction box and see the rat's nest inside!
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Old 01-22-2022, 06:43 PM   #8
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Power in and power out make me nervous.....and I assume on photograph the two wires at bottom are ground wires.

Will see if I can locate diagram on wiring waterproof box.

Thanks
The two wires at the bottom of your photo are positive 12V DC wires connected to a DC circuit breaker.

My 7-pin connector cable had a pinched spot in it that created a break in one of the wires going to the right side brake/turn signal light on the trailer. I ordered a 7-pin plug with cable and the same weatherproof connection box. You will have to install the correct size ring connectors onto each of the wires that currently have wire nuts on them. It is a much neater connection box when you are done. Your current setup relies upon the wire nuts to be weatherproof. The upgrade relies upon the junction box to be weatherproof.
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Old 01-22-2022, 07:22 PM   #9
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See that blue crimp connector? It WILL FAIL at some point

Fortunately for me mine failed when I was testing my brakes on the driveway.
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Old 01-23-2022, 10:39 AM   #10
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Am going to take the top off of that household box and see what I have.........then go to the next step..........whatever that is......

Can I assume "power" from the "7 pin" comes in one side of the waterproof box and out the other side?

I like a challenge............as my Dad told me many, many times: "You are not learning unless you **** up."

Do I need to disconnect battery to do this work?

Thanks.
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Old 01-23-2022, 10:46 AM   #11
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An easier way may be to open box stretch the wires out and assuming the wires are connected with wire nuts place a dab of silicone inside the opening. Push the silicone in the opening of the wire nut TV with a little smeared around the wires coming out about a half an inch. This will prevent moisture from getting at the wires. As mentioned also coat the blue wire connector seen in your picture.
My RV has many terminals that are open to the elements so I coated all of them I could see and reach. The silicone when cured is easy too remove if it becomes necessary.
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Old 01-23-2022, 10:48 AM   #12
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Am going to take the top off of that household box and see what I have.........then go to the next step..........whatever that is......

Can I assume "power" from the "7 pin" comes in one side of the waterproof box and out the other side?

I like a challenge............as my Dad told me many, many times: "You are not learning unless you **** up."

Do I need to disconnect battery to do this work?

Thanks.
Yes!
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Old 01-23-2022, 11:35 AM   #13
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If the wires in your photo scare you wait until you remove that cover!
Yes, battery disconnected, truck disconnected, and not plugged into shore power.
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Old 01-23-2022, 02:12 PM   #14
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I don't believe anything is waterproof and the more "waterproof" you try to make something the more you keep moisture inside instead of letting it out.
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Old 01-23-2022, 04:14 PM   #15
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Taking pictures before starting are a good idea. When I do projects like this, I use masking tape to number the wires that connect to each other. Sometimes, the color may change or two circuits may have the same color, so it can get confusing. Numbering 1 to 1, 2 to 2 make it easier. I do this one connection at a time as I disassemble.
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Old 01-24-2022, 08:02 AM   #16
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I've had enough crimp connections fail in different applications that I don't trust them. Go to an electrical supply place and buy a quality crimper. Especially on boats and trailers, I crimp, then solder. Buy a can of flux, the flux in the solder just isn't enough.

I've had multiple failures on boat trailer tail lights. Even the ones that are "waterproof" tend to get water in them, and then the water can't get out. The best result for me was to drill a 1" hole in the bottom of the light and seal the top and sides. It didn't let water in when submergerged, and allowed it to dry once out of the water.

Definitely disconnect all power before working on it.
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Old 01-24-2022, 09:24 AM   #17
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While this wiring and connection box may have surprised you, there are hundreds of thousands of R/Vs with this same type of wiring and connections. I'd bet only a small percentage of those folks have redone any wiring/connections.

Is it worthwhile to redo the wiring and connections sure... nothing wrong with that.
Just keep in mind there are plenty of other electrical connections (brake magnets, tail/running lights, etc.) that likely have the same connections.

And you'll probably not want to see the rats nest behind your breaker box and converter.
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Old 01-24-2022, 01:35 PM   #18
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If it makes you feel better, by all means, do the conversion.

IMHO, much ado about nothing. RV wiring has been done this way for a very long time. "Does that make it right?" Probably not, but if you poke about the forums, you don't see much discussion about this junction box being a major trouble spot. In other words, there are other, bigger fish to fry in the world of RV reliability. Ground connections are a good example.

An easier solution might be to replace all wire nuts with "waterproof" crimp connectors. Many of these have a grease in the connector that seals out water.
You could also use some waterproof tape around the perimeter of the junction box to further seal out water...but still allow removal to service or modify the rig's wiring. P.S. Many waterproof wire nuts are rated for buried cable running 240 volts, so there's nothing inherently wrong with wire nuts...so long as they are tight and the wires are properly twisted together.

If you must, you must, but it's likely going to be a waste of time and money better spent on other preventive maintenance and upgrades. For example, learn about the sail switch on your furnace, how to replace it, and lay in a spare.
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Old 01-24-2022, 03:02 PM   #19
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Perhaps, it might be easier each season to just pop of the "top" of current junction box, clean it out, inspect and put the "top" back on........

At least it gets an annual inspection.
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Old 01-24-2022, 03:05 PM   #20
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It wouldn't make me nervous, other than having to lay on a gravel pad to do it in my case. I haven't had a problem yet with the stock setup though.
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