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Old 12-14-2012, 10:28 AM   #1
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Inverter issue need help please

We were told by a repair guy that our inverter/converter is going out.
Monaco Diplomat 2000 38a
Progressive Industries 50amp Portable EMS

Symptoms:
1)Used blowdryer and inverter breaker flipped
2)Power outage (park wide); smelled electrical smoke in bedroom; no breakers flipped on inverter or breaker panel in coach; no power; flipped all the breakers and it came back on; electric heater was running; fried fuse in heater.
3)Moved coach from Florida to Georgia; 2nd day here turned on electric heater;
tripped breaker on inverter; caused outage to fridge; unplugged fridge from outside access panel for 30 min; ran it on propane/auto; it switched back to electric on its own when we plugged it back in.
4)Splendide combo has not been spinning; last night it came on by itself and the heater would not heat. blower was blowing fine. Atwood propane heater. Husband checked switch on propane tank; the switch does not light; propane to stove in kitchen; I unplugged washer and heater started working.

Have ordered a Magnum MS 2812 and the remote.

What do you guys think? Do I have gremlins

Can we upgrade from a Trace Freedom 2000W to the 2800W Magnum? do we need more batteries or different batteries? The remote is like a christmas tree when this happens...all red and green.

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Old 12-14-2012, 11:39 AM   #2
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You did not indicate that any investigation of the electrical system has been preformed and that's the only way to factually know what's going on.

It may be just the batteries need attention, or maybe a faulty ground somewhere, or other loose wires. Someone with a multimeter, and the knowledge to use it, could diagnose the problem, and impart knowledge at the same time.

Just IMHO.

Ed
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:23 PM   #3
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Pawnotes - have a look at this recent thread Blows inverter .

First of all: No, I don't think that you have gremlins.

We found out the hard way that it matters where high capacity appliences are pluged in. It sounds to me like your inverter fuse(s) are blowing because you are running to many high capacity appliences through the inverter, and I have recently found out that you don't have to, if you "map out" how your sockets are connected. You may even find that your existing inverter is adequite.

I hope this will make sense and that it will assist you.
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:34 PM   #4
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It is worth mentioning that I've had very good results from contacting the manufacturers of the components in my coach, often better than the local technical people or the coach manufacturer.

Try contacting the inverter manufacturer. They usually want the model and serial, so save yourself some trouble and keep them handy.

I have had good success with phoning and email. Good luck.
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:58 PM   #5
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Blow Dryer, Curling Iron, Electric Water Heater, Microwave, Coffee Pot, Ice Maker, Electric Oven, Roof AC units, electric space heater.

These are all high watt draw tools. More than two of these running at one time, especially when attached to the coach outlets could likely challenge and blow a 50A circuit.

Take note of what is currently running before starting the next tool.
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Old 12-14-2012, 04:42 PM   #6
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Thanks to all of you! We are getting a second opinion tomorrow. Really appreciate the input. I had no idea these things were so complicated, but I'm learning.....thanks to you guys Will definitely map out the non-inverter plugs. Several of them have labels that say inverter, so I assumed that I was using non-inverter plugs......RULE #1: NEVER assume anything about a motorhome!

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Old 12-14-2012, 08:22 PM   #7
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I am so glad you are getting a second opinion. Throwing 2K at a problem is not a good solution and is not your problem. As mentioned your usage is causing and issue and you could easily have a real electrical problem since you smelled smoke. If your AC panel is in your bedroom where you smelled the smoke it may be a matter of unplugging the shoreline cord, turning off the inverter, and tightening every screw down on the breakers. You also need to open your transfer switch to inspect and tighten those wires as well.

Here are some schematics to use as examples. Some circuits pass through the inverter. The microwave for example, but the washer does not. Putting an electrical device like a blow drier or floor heater on a circuit that passes through the inverter will exceed the breaker on the inverter quickly. As for the washer starting by itself, low voltage on that AC circuit could confuse the poor thing. It is a computer and brown outs do weird things. This is why the AC supply line to that circuit could be defective. If things got hot and caused wire connections to become poor this is the type of issue you would find.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 120V 40SKQ.pdf (81.9 KB, 51 views)
File Type: pdf 120V Block Diagram.pdf (104.2 KB, 43 views)
File Type: pdf 120V distribution panel with inverter2.pdf (96.1 KB, 57 views)
File Type: pdf 120V distribution panel.pdf (128.0 KB, 42 views)
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Old 12-16-2012, 07:26 PM   #8
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Second opinion of very experienced repair guy, says we do not need inverter/converter. Seems we had VERY loose connection on the BLACK hot leg of incoming 120 VAC in the breaker panel inside the coach. ALSO, he tells me we do not need to turn on the converter/inverter when we are hooked to shore power. So, it was a good day. So very glad I listened and got second opinion. Just should have done it before I ordered the new unit.

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Old 12-16-2012, 08:14 PM   #9
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While it is true you do not HAVE to turn on the converter/inverter when you are on shore power but it sure helps when the power stops in the middle of the night and you wake in the morning with a DEAD coach.
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Old 12-16-2012, 10:40 PM   #10
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Also

The inverter is also responsible for keeping your house batteries topped up and dependent on your set up once they are fully charged then your chassis batteries.
Dependent on your stay this may effect your departure and battery longevity.
There are numerous systems that draw "standby current" from your batteries.
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Old 12-17-2012, 04:46 AM   #11
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Glad you seemed to have found your problem. As to increasing your inverter size you may run into wire size issues with the larger inverter. Both with the cables from the battery bank as well as the wire from the inverter to the transfer switch.
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Old 12-17-2012, 07:03 PM   #12
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Just to keep the muddy water a bit clear. The converter portion is usually left alone. In other words, don't turn it off. It should come on automatically.

However, if referring to the INVERTER portion, I leave mine off too but you can leave it on in case power goes off and you don't want to miss recording something on the DVR for example.
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Old 12-17-2012, 07:22 PM   #13
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So you can leave your inverter/ converter off and it will still keep the batteries topped off?
My mate had his fry on his 48' Maritimo and the bill was $6500au
He was unimpressed.
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Old 12-18-2012, 12:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pawnotes View Post
Have ordered a Magnum MS 2812 and the remote.

What do you guys think? Do I have gremlins

I do not think you have an inverter problem at all. Read on.

I suspect you have a CONNECTION problem.. Now there are two issues here, both related..

You report issues when you plug in BIG items 1200 to 1500 watts,, I have had hot wire smell when plugging into a shore powered outlet (non-inverter) in my motor home with a space heater,, For this reason I installed special heavy duty outlets (Standard 15/20 amp duplex recpticals) with 12ga wire properly stripped and bent around a screw which was then properly tightened down. Some of the outlets in a motor home, if the connection is anything less than perfect, the big loads will heat up the wires.

i've also had wires burn up in my inverter junction box.. The inverter remained unharmed, but I had to re-dress the wires and re-connct them.. last time I soldered.

But I dont' think the inverter is bad.


Suggestion.. DO NOT plug the space heater into an inverter powered outlet, Either find one that is non-inverter, or do as I did and install special heavy duty 12ga feed outlets for them.

Among the last folks you want to come a calling are the Fire Dept (The medical examiner is the very last).
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