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-lenny- 03-11-2020 02:16 PM

Hot steps, again
 
1 Attachment(s)
A couple years ago while plugged in to the sticks and bricks, the dogs suddenly started avoiding the entry stairs to the rig. To the point they had to be carried in, and would jump from the top step to get out. I took off my flip flops, and with one foot on the step and one in the cool grass of the lawn, I discovered their motivation! A quick check found the 110 extension we were using had a bad ground. Replaced that and all was good, but it took the dogs a while to trust again.

Last night, it rained a lot here and suddenly the dogs are acting funny on the steps. I checked all my shore power connections (both ends of cable, portable EMS) and they look good, ie no blackened prongs or corrosion. I did the bare foot test and feel nothing. EMS shows no errors. So Iím not sure whatís going on here. I have a multimeter that I know absolutely nothing about. Pic for my options. What should I check? Iím reading the sticky now...

Attachment 224972

-lenny- 03-11-2020 05:25 PM

So a couple things I found:

Keep in mind, I'm no electrician so I apologize in advance if I misuse the vernacular.

Using the multimeter, I tested every outlet in the rig.


With the pins in hot and neutral, I get 121.xx volts.

Pins in hot and ground, I get 124.xx volts.

Pins in neutral and ground, I get 3.xx volts.

I tried pulling fuses, flipping breakers, finally flipped main breaker and I still have 3 volts on the ground. If I understand correctly, this means that I have eliminated the house wiring and appliances, and my problem is between my portable EMS on the power pedestal, and the fuse/breaker box.

Heading out to see if I can find some rubbed wires in the basement or battery compartment.

Edited to add: If I remove shore power and run on batteries, I do not have a hot ground.

nayther 03-11-2020 05:42 PM

3 volts is not much, I'd imagine normal stray voltage. Don't know if you have read Mike Sokol's various discussions on hot skin but you might read up on it. He contributes to RVtravel.com. Very knowledgeable.

-lenny- 03-11-2020 06:29 PM

Thank you for the reply. I did read the sticky, and went to his website and watched a few videos. Lots of knowledge for sure. My concern is that suddenly the dogs are avoiding the steps again. Now, granted Labradors are not the toughest dog out there, but I don't think they are the most skittish either. And both dogs are acting weird with them. In my reading, hot to neutral should have read the same as hot to ground, and neutral to ground should have read 0. I was going to check continuity of the power cord, but it is raining again in the Great Sonoran Desert. Imagine that lol.

5picker 03-11-2020 07:21 PM

With your R/V plugged in as you normally would... take your multimeter and set it to read AC voltage.

Stick the black lead well into the ground (dirt) near the step and touch the red lead to some part of the metal steps where it will make good contact. (Not on paint or rubber but a rivet head or bare metal)

What does your meter read?
This would indicate what your dogs might be feeling.

-lenny- 03-12-2020 09:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 5picker (Post 2285246)
With your R/V plugged in as you normally would... take your multimeter and set it to read AC voltage.

Stick the black lead well into the ground (dirt) near the step and touch the red lead to some part of the metal steps where it will make good contact. (Not on paint or rubber but a rivet head or bare metal)

What does your meter read?
This would indicate what your dogs might be feeling.

Steps read a little over 9 volts.

The steps I installed back in December. They are the "stair" type that fold inside the coach doorway, and are mounted to the floor inside the coach. I did look underneath for wiring before I started sinking screws, and found none.

I folded the steps in, so they were not touching the door frame, and I still get 9v on the chassis, door frame, etc.

Honest Abe 03-12-2020 09:31 PM

Run your electrical tests when the rig and ground are dry. Checking after a rain could shunt the voltage to ground, as water is a conductor of electrical current. This is probably why you didn't sense any tingling when barefoot after the rain. Dry testing could possibly lead to a different dog-gone result!

Chascin 03-12-2020 10:06 PM

-lenny-, Not that long ago there was a thread on the form where someone installed the one piece steps and put a screw through a wire in the area of the the threshold. I know you mentioned that you checked for wires, but maybe you missed one.

cavie 03-12-2020 11:27 PM

For the dogs sake please call an electrician. Neutral to ground should NEVER read any voltage. You have a hot skin condition.

dbledan 03-14-2020 12:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cavie (Post 2285946)
For the dogs sake please call an electrician. Neutral to ground should NEVER read any voltage. You have a hot skin condition.

X2 For his sake as well...

wmtire 03-14-2020 03:16 AM

Mike Sokol is a member here on our forums, and a great guy.



We keep a sticky here, which Mike explains a lot, and what to look for.


https://www.forestriverforums.com/fo...-rv-89191.html

-lenny- 03-15-2020 03:34 PM

So an update: We moved sites, and no longer have a hot ground, nor voltage showing on steps and frame. I did discuss this with the park owners so they are aware. I will continue to check to ensure we are actually good. I read the sticky, and went to the website. Lots of great information for sure. Thank you to all for taking the time to help, I do appreciate it.

Reverse_snowbird 03-15-2020 03:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by -lenny- (Post 2287566)
So an update: We moved sites, and no longer have a hot ground, nor voltage showing on steps and frame. I did discuss this with the park owners so they are aware. I will continue to check to ensure we are actually good. I read the sticky, and went to the website. Lots of great information for sure. Thank you to all for taking the time to help, I do appreciate it.

You might want to feed those dogs a couple of steaks. :D

wmtire 03-15-2020 05:02 PM

Have you added a non contact voltage tester to your RV toolkit yet, as per Mike Sokols advice?

cavie 03-15-2020 05:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by -lenny- (Post 2287566)
So an update: We moved sites, and no longer have a hot ground, nor voltage showing on steps and frame. I did discuss this with the park owners so they are aware. I will continue to check to ensure we are actually good. I read the sticky, and went to the website. Lots of great information for sure. Thank you to all for taking the time to help, I do appreciate it.

You ready to buy an EMS yet?? It would not haved turned on power to your rig.:trink39:

D W 03-15-2020 05:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by -lenny- (Post 2287566)
So an update: We moved sites, and no longer have a hot ground, nor voltage showing on steps and frame. I did discuss this with the park owners so they are aware. I will continue to check to ensure we are actually good. I read the sticky, and went to the website. Lots of great information for sure. Thank you to all for taking the time to help, I do appreciate it.

Being this situation happened before at your "sticks & bricks", and has now happened again at a CG, logic would dictate that the fault is in your rig. I would venture to guess that when you moved your rig whatever was causing the "fault" was disturbed. Who knows when it will happen again. If you're not into electric then I strongly suggest you enlist the services of a qualified electrician to get the problem corrected as soon as possible. And, testing for stray voltage with your bare foot is not a condoned practice! :crying:

wmtire 03-15-2020 06:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by D W (Post 2287659)
Being this situation happened before at your "sticks & bricks", and has now happened again at a CG, logic would dictate that the fault is in your rig. I would venture to guess that when you moved your rig whatever was causing the "fault" was disturbed. Who knows when it will happen again. If you're not into electric then I strongly suggest you enlist the services of a qualified electrician to get the problem corrected as soon as possible. And, testing for stray voltage with your bare foot is not a condoned practice! :crying:


It was stated in the OP, that when it happened at his house, the root cause was determined and fixed.

cavie 03-15-2020 06:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by D W (Post 2287659)
Being this situation happened before at your "sticks & bricks", and has now happened again at a CG, logic would dictate that the fault is in your rig. I would venture to guess that when you moved your rig whatever was causing the "fault" was disturbed. Who knows when it will happen again. If you're not into electric then I strongly suggest you enlist the services of a qualified electrician to get the problem corrected as soon as possible. And, testing for stray voltage with your bare foot is not a condoned practice! :crying:

This from post #1

"I discovered their motivation! A quick check found the 110 extension we were using had a bad ground. Replaced that and all was good, but it took the dogs a while to trust again". :trink39:


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