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Old 08-06-2011, 06:14 AM   #1
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Converter??? Or something else.....

I have a 2005 Wilderness camper. It is on a seasonal lot where I am hooked up to electricity. I do not have a battery in it. Several times in the past week, my hard-wired lights go out, but all of my electrical outlets continue to work. I have no idea what the issue is, but am wondering if it could possibly be a converter going bad????? It doesn't seem like it's anything specific causing it to go off. I usually turn the main breaker inside my camper off, then back on and it has always solved the issue at least temporarily. I bought the camper new and I've kept it on a seasonal lot year around since I bought it. I just started having the issue this year. Any ideas?
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:02 AM   #2
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I am assuming that when you speak of "hard wired" lights, you are talking about your 12 Volt DC lights and not any 120 Volt AC lights, yes or no?

Your 12 Volt DC lights are driven by your converter which changes or converts 120 Volt AC to 12 Volt DC. Your electrical outlets are 120 Volt AC only.

Every RV electrical system is a little different so it would help with some additional information as to fuses you have checked and circuit breakers that have been checked previously.

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Old 08-06-2011, 02:41 PM   #3
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I usually turn the main breaker inside my camper off, then back on and it has always solved the issue at least temporarily.
It sounds like a tripped breaker is more likely your problem. Which suggests an overload somewhere. That doesn't rule out the converter, just makes it less likely to be the problem. But as Richard pointed out, you really haven't given enough information for anyone to give you a good diagnosis.

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Old 08-06-2011, 04:25 PM   #4
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Normally a standard convertor will not work correctly without a battery to act as a filter for the 12VDC. If you have been operating without a battery for a long time your convertor might have a fatal disease-so to speak. JMO.
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Old 08-06-2011, 04:33 PM   #5
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Mine was the converter. I had a similar issue. Started by tripping the breaker, then it quit all together. This all happened over the course of about a week. Was on a trip to St. Louis. Was plugged into shore power and mysteriously lost sound on the TV. Found the breaker tripped, and everything was fine for a while. Then this started occuring more often until it finally died and did not put out 12VDC any more.
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Old 08-07-2011, 05:08 AM   #6
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Yes, it's my 12 volt dc lights. It doesn't actually trip the breaker when they go out, I just loose all 12volt lights, but my outlets continue to work. The only way I have been able to get them to come back on within a reasenable amount of time, is to shut the main breaker off and turn it back on. I have been a seasonal camper for 6 years, and have not had a battery in my camper since the day I bought it, so I've done nothing different as far as that goes. One of the guys at the campground checked all my wiring going to my main electrical panel along with all of the fuses in the box and they were all working properly.
Thanks for your help, it's much appreciated.
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:30 AM   #7
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Sure does sound like something is wrong with your converter. If there are any reset buttons on the outside of the converter, I would try to reset those to see if there are any changes or improvements to the performance. Otherwise it looks like a trip to the RV service center to look at the converter is next.

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Old 08-08-2011, 10:54 AM   #8
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Before I got the MH I had a 5th wheel that was not putting out DC.

Since you don't have a battery I suggest you buy one and make sure the converter is working by by checking the Bat voltage while charging and make sure it is above 13 V.

If it isn't above 13 then you may have to slide out the converter and inspect the power resistors to see if they are burnt. Check with ohmmeter. On mine I found cold solder joints on the power resistor and a simple re-soldering solved the problem.
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Old 08-08-2011, 11:02 AM   #9
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Normally a standard convertor will not work correctly without a battery to act as a filter for the 12VDC. If you have been operating without a battery for a long time your convertor might have a fatal disease-so to speak. JMO.
Ray is right on. You are never supposed to run a converter without a battery. Just put in a cheap battery to act as a sink for your converter.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:02 PM   #10
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Ray is right on. You are never supposed to run a converter without a battery. Just put in a cheap battery to act as a sink for your converter.

Normally I would agree with you on the older converters... but recently, I bought a new Progressive Dynamics converter 9280 and was surprised to find in the instructions that no battery was needed. I guess the newer converters 12 volt outputs are better filtered then they used to be. But still, I believe a battery is a good idea especially in a 5 year old converter.
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