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Old 08-28-2012, 09:56 AM   #1
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National RV Owners Club
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Jacks won't run

I have a '98 Dolphin with Power Gear jacks. They have been working fine even until yesterday when parked in the driveway before this trip.

We are camping about 50 miles from home and when I pressed the front jacks down button, the motor started to run for a few seconds and then stopped. I turned the ignition off and powered up the jack control (the power light does come on), and tried again. Nothing. No sound or anything. I have cleaned just about every terminal I can find under the hood and the main chassis ground. No change.

I have the newer PG control board (1.5 years old), solid state with no fuses on the board.

If I press Jacks Down button, the Jacks Down light will come on and then go off within about 30 seconds as it would normally do if they had really been down.

Fortunately, this site is somewhat level and we are managing for now. Any suggestions would be appreciated like how to jumper to see if the pump motor is really working or if it could be something else.

Thanks,

John
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Old 08-28-2012, 10:20 AM   #2
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Check your fuses. I had a fuse that burned and it took me two days to find the fuse.
It was under the hood in one of the wires that was above the Jack motor.
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Old 08-28-2012, 10:35 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlieo View Post
Check your fuses. I had a fuse that burned and it took me two days to find the fuse.
It was under the hood in one of the wires that was above the Jack motor.
Thanks. I'll look there and under the dash to see if there are any in-line fuses I don't know about. The fuses in the main MH fuse box appear to be OK as they will lite a small LED if they are shorted. I have not pulled them all to see for sure however.

John
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Old 08-28-2012, 12:22 PM   #4
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The jack motor is wired up like an gas engine starter. The motor itself is very similar, and very near it there will be a "ford solenoid" that controls power to the motor.

You can jump that solenoid just like in the old days to hear the pmup run.
Nuttin will move tho unless you are also able to power one of the fluid solenoids.

If your panel's not lighting up, i'd work that end first tho.
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Old 08-29-2012, 08:42 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by JimM68 View Post
The jack motor is wired up like an gas engine starter. The motor itself is very similar, and very near it there will be a "ford solenoid" that controls power to the motor.

You can jump that solenoid just like in the old days to hear the pmup run.
Nuttin will move tho unless you are also able to power one of the fluid solenoids.

If your panel's not lighting up, i'd work that end first tho.
Thanks Jim,

I have limited Internet access as my laptop will only hold a charge for less than an hour and the Internet Access Point in this campground is a little walk away. So my replies are not immediate to some suggestions.

The panel does light up and I have accidentally touched the contacts on the solenoid when cleaning the terminals. Some major sparks but I did not leave it there to see if the motor will run. I'll try that today. I've cleaned every terminal including all the grounds that I can find. I don't see any other fuses except one and it is good.

I'll try the jump. I assume it won't hurt anything to do that. Do I need to have the ignition on and the Jack control on or does it matter when jumping the solenoid?

John
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Old 08-29-2012, 09:33 AM   #6
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Is this new board the one in the BCC or is this the touch pad board in the cab?

On my '99 Dolphin, the control board in the BCC has a self resetting 20 amp fuse. There is also a 20 amp fuse on the coaches 12v board for this circuit.

The touch pad board does have 5 non stardard fuses. I'm not sure where the problem lies, but it does sound like the jacks down fuse has blown in the touch pad.
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Old 08-29-2012, 09:39 AM   #7
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I know you have limited internet access but Power Gear is very quick to respond to emails to their very capable tech support guys. If you don't have success here , give them a shout. Their address is. info@powergearus.com .
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Old 08-29-2012, 09:41 AM   #8
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The jack motor solenoid on the one i played with was wired straight to the chassis battery, it didn't even have a fuse.

I wouldn't run it for long, without at least powering up the panel and holding down one of the extend switches. That thing makes a lot of pressure, with no where to go might be bad.
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:39 AM   #9
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Problem Solved!

I have fixed this issue but I don't know why the jacks ever worked before. I downloaded an instruction doc from Power Gear that detailed how to install the new 500731 control panel for the jacks. It replaced a number of obsolete panels of which my '98 version would have been one. BTW, I found this doc thru Google search, not the PG website. The PG website doesn't show you how to get these archived docs that I can see. http://support.powergearus.com/techdocs/3010001287.pdf

The dealer put the new control panel in before I picked up the rig in 2010. The jacks worked until the other day.

However, the diagram for the wiring in the doc shows one wire being re-routed from ground to pos on the solenoid. That wire was still to ground. I moved the wire to the pos terminal on the solenoid and "walla", everything works now.

The big question is how the heck did it work before? I did not change anything except clean every darn terminal I could find before I got the PG instructions. And yes I was sure to put them all back on the correct terminals when finished cleaning. I only took one loose at a time and cleaned it, then back on the post with nut.

Am a happy camper again.

Thanks for all the tips and responses.

John
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