Go Back   iRV2 Forums > iRV2.com COMMUNITY FORUMS > iRV2.com General Discussion
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 10-23-2013, 02:12 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 6
Electrolysis on new RV

I purchased a new truck camper recently and after only three weeks of use, I see evidence of electrolysis on one of the outside aluminum panels.

The dealer has said he will contact the manufacturer to see if it will be covered by warranty. I'm presuming it will, but am worried that this is only the tip of the iceberg.

A few questions for you guys:

1. Am a right to be concerned that if they fix this problem, it could surface elsewhere? If not in a years time, perhaps in 2 or 3 years when it's out of warranty?

2. What would cause this electrolysis and how can it be prevented?

3. What are my options in dealing with the RV dealer that I purchased it from? Ask for a full refund? Get another camper? Get them to fix the one affected area and pray it doesn't happen again?

Thanks for any advice,
R
__________________

__________________
raztec is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 10-23-2013, 03:01 AM   #2
Community Moderator
 
RV Wizard's Avatar


 
Country Coach Owners Club
Appalachian Campers
Gulf Streamers Club
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Chattanooga, Tn.
Posts: 12,062
Hello and . We are glad to have you join us here and we look forward to reading of your adventures and experiences. I am sure you will enjoy the website and forums. Good luck. stay safe and keep us posted.
Electrolysis can be caused by several things. dissimilar metals in contact with each other, electrical backfeeds and chemical reactions. Do some home work as to how the camper is constructed since the skin is metal, (probably aluminum) make certain that fasteners are at least well coated to prevent electrolysis.
__________________

__________________
Mike, RVIA & RVSA Certified Master RV Technician
Amy, Dr. Assistant - Roxie & Mei Ling, four legs each
2000 Gulf Stream Scenic Cruiser 450 hp & 1330# torque
06 Saturn Vue, 06 Chevy Z71 4x4 & 2014 Corvette Z51 M7
RV Wizard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 05:00 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Shadowcatche's Avatar
 
iRV2 No Limits Club
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,219
I will second RV Wizard! We have an all aluminum frame trailer and I monitor the fasteners going into the frame some of which are stainless steel others i.e. bolts holding axle are gold anodized grade 8. More information, exactly what is having a problem and where do you live, next to an ocean...
__________________
Shadowcatche is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 09:26 AM   #4
Moderator Emeritus
 
Gary RVRoamer's Avatar


 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Silver Springs, FL. USA
Posts: 18,096
I would check for voltage between the frame/skin and earth ground. Even a small "leak" between hot and earth ground can cause rapid electrolysis. One quick check is to plug the RV into a GFCI outlet and see if the GFCI trips. Few 50A or 30A outlets are GFCI protected, but most outdoor 15A & 20A outlets are (required by electrical code for many years now).
__________________
Gary Brinck
Former owner of 2004 American Tradition
Home is in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
Summers in Black Mountain, NC
Gary RVRoamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2013, 11:21 PM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 6
I live near the Ocean. The camper is brand new. Went on a two week trip but it rained like crazy. Next thing I know this happened.



__________________
raztec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2013, 11:32 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Mr_D's Avatar
 
Solo Rvers Club
iRV2 No Limits Club
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Vancouver, WA
Posts: 28,535
Quote:
Originally Posted by raztec View Post
I live near the Ocean. The camper is brand new. Went on a two week trip but it rained like crazy. Next thing I know this happened.



That looks like water damage from an improperly installed/sealed romex wire not electrolysis. If the dealer or you installed that wire I don't see how the manufacturer would be responsible.
__________________
2009 45' Magna 630 w/Cummins ISX 650 HP/1950 Lbs Ft
Charter Good Sam Lifetime Member, FMCA, SKP
RV'ing since 1957, NRA Benefactor Life, towing '14 CR-V
Mr_D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2013, 02:39 AM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_D View Post
That looks like water damage from an improperly installed/sealed romex wire not electrolysis. If the dealer or you installed that wire I don't see how the manufacturer would be responsible.
Thanks for your input. What makes you think it's water damage?

The dealer says it's electrolysis. The bubbling is on the surface of an aluminum panel. They've checked for water leaks and found none.

As an addendum: The manufacturer has denied the warranty claim. However, the dealer has accepted that this is a defect of some sort and will fix the problem at their cost. I will keep you guys posted on the progress. They've yet to determine the cause of the problem.
__________________
raztec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2013, 03:46 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Langley. BC, Canada
Posts: 677
Was that Romex actually installed by the factory? If that's for 120 volts, it should have physical protection because it is exposed. If the wire just pokes through from the exterior to interior, how is it protected inside - will the insulation wear through, or is it adequately protected? I don't like the looks of that myself. What if the Romex jacket has worn through and the ground wire or neutral is in contact with the aluminum exterior? Add salt in the air from being near the ocean and you have a good recipe for electrolysis.

Odd that the electrolysis is near where the Romex is. If there is something causing electrolysis, I think you'd expect to find it elsewhere too. I'd be looking very closely everywhere just in case. If the peeling paint/electrolysis is localized to where the Romex is, I would say the two are related.

Usually when aluminum and steel are together or in close proximity, it's the steel that gets attacked. I had an early 60s sports car once with a steel chassis and aluminum body. I bought it for restoration and when I got it, most of the steel chassis was eaten away but the aluminum body was fine. To see peeling paint like that, I think you have something else going on besides electrolysis. Think of all the trailers out there with aluminum exteriors, including all the old vintage ones. You don't see them with the aluminum all eaten away.

If anyone does find the cause, it would be interesting to know what it was.

Why not just install a zinc sacrificial anode like on a boat and forget about it?
__________________
Gil & Deb & Dougal the Springer Spaniel
2014 KZ Spree 262RKS & Ford F250 supercab V10 4x4 LB
Langley, B.C.
myredracer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2013, 04:54 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Steve N Sal's Avatar
 
Newmar Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Michigan
Posts: 5,614
My biggest question would be, is why is that piece of romex or UF cable even sticking out of the camper?? In looking at those pictures it appears that someone had been digging at the molding in that location. It sure doesn't look like anything a factory would let out the door looking like that. Keep us informed and good luck, I hope they get it figured out for you.

By the way Welcome to the forum!
__________________
Steve & Sally / HiTee & Hudson Our Little Poms / Heidi & Houston Forever in our Hearts
04 NEWMAR MACA 3778 W22 / 05 PT Vert
Michigan (Summer) Michigan (Winter For Now)
Steve N Sal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2013, 09:51 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
spritz's Avatar


 
Vintage RV Owners Club
Fleetwood Owners Club
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: c above
Posts: 4,954
I can't believe that it would rust thru a hole in just 2 weeks. JMO
I agree with the romax wire hanging thru. I would never put it on the truck looking like that or a dealer letting it off his lot.
Puzzled
__________________
1982 Pace Arrow 30ft.
KarKaddy SS, Toad: 1999 Deville Concours
Lilly and Rubie Our 4 legged Kids & Tim & Joe
spritz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2013, 02:39 PM   #11
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by spritz View Post
I can't believe that it would rust thru a hole in just 2 weeks. JMO
I agree with the romax wire hanging thru. I would never put it on the truck looking like that or a dealer letting it off his lot.
Puzzled
That's the cable for the electric jack. It's factory installed apparently.

The manufacturer says it's likely water damage caused by a leak from the outside due to improperly maintained seals, which is the dealer's responsibility. That's why they've denied the warranty claim.

However, that still doesn't adequately explain the speed at which this damage occurred - a mere 2-3 weeks! That's why I'm thinking it might be an electric short as well.
__________________
raztec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2013, 03:44 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
BFlinn181's Avatar
 
Gulf Streamers Club
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,263
Quote:
Originally Posted by myredracer View Post
Was that Romex actually installed by the factory? If that's for 120 volts, it should have physical protection because it is exposed. If the wire just pokes through from the exterior to interior, how is it protected inside - will the insulation wear through, or is it adequately protected? I don't like the looks of that myself. What if the Romex jacket has worn through and the ground wire or neutral is in contact with the aluminum exterior? Add salt in the air from being near the ocean and you have a good recipe for electrolysis.


Why not just install a zinc sacrificial anode like on a boat and forget about it?
You're correct, electric current, dissimilar metals, salt water or deposits, they do make a perfect recipe for electrolysis. I'd use a multimeter to try and find a small current flow in the metal panels in that area. It could be a grounding issue with the skin serving as a ground path instead of a dedicated grounding wire between the camper and the truck.

I used to change out zincs on boats as a teenager for gas money. They work because the zinc is more electrically active than brass or bronze props, rudders, shafts and other metals in contact with the water. The camper isn't immersed in water (I hope) so putting a zinc on would not cause it to conduct zinc ions away in place of the aluminum.
__________________

Bob & Donna
'98 Gulf Stream Sun Voyager DP being pushed by a '00 Beetle TDI
BFlinn181 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2013, 06:28 PM   #13
Moderator Emeritus
 
TXiceman's Avatar


 
Vintage RV Owners Club
Texas Boomers Club
Oklahoma Boomers Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Full Time, TX Home Base
Posts: 17,150
Blog Entries: 21
I would be highly suspicious of that corner having been hit and a half-a-- repair was done. It certainly does not look professional.

Ken
__________________
Amateur Radio Operator (KE5DFR)|Full-Time! - 2012 6.7L Ford Crew Cab Dually -2013 HitchHiker Champagne 38RLRSB - Travel with one Standard Schnauzer and one small Timneh African Gray Parrot
TXiceman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2013, 06:44 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,232
Quote:
Originally Posted by TXiceman View Post
I would be highly suspicious of that corner having been hit and a half-a-- repair was done. It certainly does not look professional.

Ken
I agree, that looks like damage and repair.
__________________

__________________
jesilvas is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:46 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.