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Old 05-22-2012, 09:37 PM   #1
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XANTREX 458 problems

I own a 2002 Alpine coach 38 ft. It was purchased 2 years ago used. Since buying the unit we have had three 458, 2000 watt inverter fry after plugging into 50 amp shorepower. The unit was working fine on generator power, We have had it to camping world twice for diagnostics. They state they can find nothing wrong that would cause the inverter to fry when plugged into 50 amp shorepower, and said we should upgrade to a 2500 watt inverter. If the 2000 watt was designed to be used with this coach why would I try going bigger and chance yet another inverter frying at a cost of 2000.00. Is there something they may be missing to look at. Any help would be great. Thank you.
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Old 05-22-2012, 10:25 PM   #2
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BB58, typically with a charger/inverter type device going bad repeatedly one might suspect either a poor ground, overload, or poor connections (especially transfer switch). I hope CW has been thorough about checking connections and polarity on the 50 amp circuit. Have you used it with a 30 amp cicuit? Does it tend to fail while inverting or charging or what?

I would suggest that you use a clamp-on amp meter for all feeds (AC & DC) to determine if an overload is occurring. Are you using the same 50 amp source? Do you have an integrated surge protector on the 50 amp circuit?

You might also consider replacing the 458 with the new Xantrex 3000 which is 3000W and supports the Xantrex bus connection for using the monitor panel. However, if you can't find and correct whatever is causing the 458 to fail you could be asking for more serious problems by moving to a larger capacity charger/inverter.

Just some thoughts ...
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Old 05-22-2012, 10:43 PM   #3
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Maybe your shore power is miswired. That's where I would look first. Check out the input to the inverter on shore power. Should be easy enough for somebody that nows what they are doing to check it out. Maybe a good electrician vs. Camping World.
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Old 05-22-2012, 10:58 PM   #4
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The shore power has been at two different state parks. As soon as shore power circuit breaker is flipped on the inverter it is fryed and smoking. I have the same feeling about camping world also, but don't know where to go. Used two small business, in the local area with little success.
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:24 PM   #5
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Call Fuge Zantrex service in the San Diego area. He solved the ac intermittent power supply on our Zantrex. 2000 Alpine 38 foot Freedom 458 inverter. He is listed on the Zantrex web site as a authorized shop. He seems to be a person willing to give some telephone advice and has more than 20 years of working on inverters. He encouraged me not to replace the original unit since the older inverter was more substantial than the new product
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:32 PM   #6
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Found telephone number for Fuge Electronics 619-992-5932. best to call after 3:30pm.
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:44 PM   #7
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Yep, something is wrong with the input wiring if it fries when shore power is turned on.
Our 2000 watt 458 is still doing just fine, our house and chassis batteries lasted 9 years and even then they were actually pretty good.
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Old 05-23-2012, 12:30 AM   #8
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Hello & Welcome IRV2 and the Alpine Coach Forum.

I have a 2001, 38ft Alpine and had one Inverter go bad with an internal switch malfunctioning and one go bad because of a Bad Power connection, which let the Magic Smoke out and it stopped working. Before Replacing the Inverter you must find the problem as GM Davidson indicated.

I could be several things which can cause the Inverter to go bad. Replacing it with a larger one before you find the problem will only cause the new Inverters to go bad.

You must look at what caused the Inverter to go bad.

Were you connecter to shore power, or running on the Generator?
If you were on the Generator than take it to a certified Onan Dealer.

If you were on Shore Power were you connected to 30 amps or 50 amps?

When the Inverter went bad did you check the Shore Power for proper voltage?

If you were on 30 amps you should only have 120 volts on one leg and no power on the Common or the ground. (Note: if you have 120 volts on two legs on a 30 amp source this will cause severe problems and burn many things out) The 30 to 50 amp adapter has three prongs to plug into the power source and a four prong to connect to your power cord. The 30 to 50 amp adapter has an internal jumper to send power to both legs on the 50 amp power cord.

If you were on 50 amps you should have 120 volts on two legs and no voltage on the ground or the common.

I would also recommend that you install a Surge Protector which should prevent a meltdown if the incoming power is wired incorrectly or from a power surge such as a lightening strike.

I would also Check the transfer switch and to insure the wiring is tight and the switch is not burnt, malfunctioning or have wires crossed. The wiring from the Transfer switch to the coach is the same and would cause a problem if you are on Generator or Shore Power.

Also Check the Battery Compartment and confirm that the batteries are good and properly wired and the ground is in good shape. Remember that the batteries can also cause the inverter to good bad.

This should help in locating the problem or at least guide in the correct direction.
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:38 AM   #9
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If it smokes as soon as you flip the 50A power source on it sounds like you have it wired across the 240v legs. The generator only provides 120v so that might explain why it is OK on the inverter.
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Old 05-23-2012, 10:57 AM   #10
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OK- --lets stick with just the facts. Neither the genset nor 50 amp shore power put out 240 volts [both do put out two 120v legs.] If everything works on genset or 30 amp shore power, then its not the wiring in the bat compartment either. Since you 30 amp to 50 amp adapter [dog-bone] simply shares the 30 amps from shore power across the two 120 legs on the 50 amp plug, its sounds like somthing is wrong with the install of the inverter [twice is hard to believe].

Regardless of 30 or 50 amps at shore power, only one leg of the breaker box [ie 30 amps] can get to the inverter via the breaker--unless the breaker box has been altered too. IF you are in fact getting 240v to the inverter, there has to be a short elsewhere maybe where the 50 rv cord comes into the surge protector / transfer switch. Confusing since both 120v legs on yr genset and 30 amp shore power do work]. If it was the breaker box, you would have a lot more smoking in your coach than the inverter. Bottom-line-- there is way too much guessing going on here and way too few facts. Time to get a professional electician involved--and I dont mean Camping World......good luck....
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Old 05-23-2012, 11:13 AM   #11
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Old Scout, your facts are wrong. There is 240v across the X and Y terminals on the 50 amp pedestal outlet. RV Electric
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Old 05-23-2012, 11:25 AM   #12
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OK--said another way. There are only a couple of places where the 120v legs from 50 amp shore power can co-mingle [this excludes the breaker box since the two legs from the genset seem to work fine????? They are: the surge protector, the transfer switch, or the 50 amp rv cord. Its unlikely that two separate pedestals at two different parks were both shorted to 240--but if they were, you would have alot more problems than just the inverter--again too few facts here.
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Old 05-23-2012, 12:52 PM   #13
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The first place to look is the transfer panel, check for a loose neutral or indications of a neutral connection getting very hot. Make sure you are
not plugged into power when you do this and be sure to check the crimp
on the neutral wires (white) to make sure they are in fact crimped.
A bad neutral will cause just what you indicate when plugged into a 50
amp service.

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