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Old 05-25-2010, 03:14 PM   #1
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Elec. Steps won't retract

Hey guys. I'm in Foley Al. We just had a huge storm . A lot of lightning. I
started the engine to pull in the slides to dump water off the toppers. The
steps did not retract when I started the engine and will not retract with the
step switch off as well , of course I opened and closed the door with the engine
running and with the engine off and the step switch off.

The 20 amp step motor fuse and the 3 amp step switch fuse are both good.

Any ideas on what to do next would be appreciated.


Thanks Cliff
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Old 05-25-2010, 03:52 PM   #2
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WD40 over every moving joint then push. Last time mine were out for 3 months and would not retract when it was time to leave. I took the nut off on the motor, WD40ed the joints use a block of wood and a hammer. It got things moving but it was hard to line up the bolt & nut, but I finally got it to work.
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Old 05-25-2010, 04:21 PM   #3
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...The 20 amp step motor fuse and the 3 amp step switch fuse are both good.

Any ideas on what to do next would be appreciated.


Thanks Cliff [/QUOTE]


The drive on my electric steps is a Ford power window drive. Some of them have an internal overload circuit that requires power to be removed for it to reset. The way the steps in a motorhome are usually wired, there is always power on the unit.

Try removing the connector on the drive unit, and then reseating it. Make sure you're completely out of the way the steps travel, they may retract as soon as you plug the unit back in!
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Old 05-25-2010, 04:53 PM   #4
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Mine got intermitten on my last coach. Finally had to unbolt steps and tie up as they would not retract. There was a circuit board controlling and it went bad. Had to replace. Circuit board was underneath where the steps are. Try as above first and disconnect all power, perhaps put coach in storage mode. Leave disconnected for at least 5 minutes then retry.
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Old 05-25-2010, 04:56 PM   #5
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Cliff, are you at Bella Terra by chance? I will be there on Thursday. I have seen a mobile RV fixit guy there before. If you get in a real jam, perhaps he can help.
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Old 05-25-2010, 06:07 PM   #6
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Hi Cliff,
After doing the lubricating and the steps still will not retract, consider starting by checking for power at the plug to the control board/motor. When you find where to power loss is you'll have found the guilty component. If you find no power to the control board or motor, replace the fuses that you already checked. I know they checked good, just replace them. (This is another long story). Lastly, make sure the ground wire is good, tight and no rust.
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Old 05-25-2010, 06:14 PM   #7
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I did not realize our steps were not retracting until I got out a CG recently. Figured it was going to be a lubrication problem or fuse problem. I kept looking and figured there was something not right - the bracket that holds a small magnet was loose. I found a couple of small magnets in my junk drawer and cranked the engine. When the magnets were placed in the right area, the steps retracted. Same thing when I removed the magnets. A trip to the hardware store, a $2 magnetic latch and a little altering repaired the steps just fine. Did I mention I used a strip of duct tape to hold the magnet in place?
Make sure the magnetic switch is complete. My magnet had lost off.
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Old 05-25-2010, 06:26 PM   #8
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Ours started working when it felt like it on one trip so I had to disconnect the steps from the motor and tie it up when moving and use wood blocks when parked. Had it checked when home and the circuit board under the coach was the culprit. Nice place to put a circuit board.
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Old 05-25-2010, 08:39 PM   #9
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I'm with Doc, it's probably the mag switch by the door. Put a jumper across the switch or better yet replace it with an on/off switch until you can get a replacement. You can find the mag switches on the internet cheaper than you can get them at Camping World.
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Old 05-26-2010, 06:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roboniko View Post
Cliff, are you at Bella Terra by chance? I will be there on Thursday. I have seen a mobile RV fixit guy there before. If you get in a real jam, perhaps he can help.
Hi Tim. I am at Bella terra ( site 28 ) till Mon. Elvis will be in the house on Fri. nite, Stop by when you get here.

Back to the steps. I retested this morning and lo and behold they're working. I had done the unplug ,wait a few minutes and replugged yesterday. maybe they dried out over nite. I'll wait untill next time to have checked out as I don't think a tech can do any diagnostics if it's working now. Can they??
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:29 AM   #11
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Now missing magnets are a real problem when they happen (which is not often) since it's a magentic switch that commands the steps to open.. I have a manual override on mine

A common cause is motor freeze up. Sometiems thunkin the motor a few times with a rubber mallet or hammer handle will free it up.

NOTE: do not get in the way of the steps. and have the door (in this case) OPEN when you tunk.. Then get out of the way even farther and close the door.

I finally re-indexed my motor, (Took transmission apart, repositioned a gear, added some lubricant, re-assembled) this is not for the faint of heart and if you try it lay a ground cloth down first cause there is a small part that likes to go roll about.
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Old 05-27-2010, 01:43 PM   #12
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Use any magnet and see if you can get them to close by placing a magnet on the magnet sensor on the door jamb. If they retract then the problem is with the door magnet. Clean all of the electrical connections and treat with dielectric grease. take off the ground wire and clean the metal and and reattach. Last and more expensive, have someone replace the "brain". Cost me just over $300.
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Old 05-27-2010, 07:29 PM   #13
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You did not mention the manufacturer of your electric step, if you do so someone maybe able to give you the trouble shooting instructions from thier step manual. There is a way to bypass the control module and apply power directly to the motor, in the retract and deploy directions, which will isolate the problem to either your motor or control circuitry. But without knowing the step manufacturer we cannot tell you what wires to jumper from the plug to your controller and the plug to your motor.

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Old 05-27-2010, 07:34 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spikester View Post
You did not mention the manufacturer of your electric step, if you do so someone maybe able to give you the trouble shooting instructions from thier step manual. There is a way to bypass the control module and apply power directly to the motor, in the retract and deploy directions, which will isolate the problem to either your motor or control circuitry. But without knowing the step manufacturer we cannot tell you what wires to jumper from the plug to your controller and the plug to your motor.

Spike
Sorry. It's a 2 step Kwikee.
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