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Old 09-29-2008, 12:49 PM   #1
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We have a 1997 Safari Class A with an Onan 6.3 propane genset. Lately when we have been running it, certain appliances will lose power and then regain power. It's mainly been the microwave and kitchen outlet that we've noticed. Sometimes while using the microwave, we've had it shut off 5 or 6 different times, but it's always regained power shortly after.

But today the microwave/ kitchen outlet will not power on when the genset is running. It has power from the inverter, but as soon as the transfer switch cycles power to the gen, we have no power there.

The funny thing is that we still have power in other places. The fridge runs on shore ,and I can even run both AC units, but still nothing to the micro.

I've checked the genset breakers, main breakers, and any fuses I could find and still nothing.
Any ideas?
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Old 09-29-2008, 12:49 PM   #2
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We have a 1997 Safari Class A with an Onan 6.3 propane genset. Lately when we have been running it, certain appliances will lose power and then regain power. It's mainly been the microwave and kitchen outlet that we've noticed. Sometimes while using the microwave, we've had it shut off 5 or 6 different times, but it's always regained power shortly after.

But today the microwave/ kitchen outlet will not power on when the genset is running. It has power from the inverter, but as soon as the transfer switch cycles power to the gen, we have no power there.

The funny thing is that we still have power in other places. The fridge runs on shore ,and I can even run both AC units, but still nothing to the micro.

I've checked the genset breakers, main breakers, and any fuses I could find and still nothing.
Any ideas?
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Old 09-29-2008, 01:36 PM   #3
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From what I can tell we have 2 GFCI outlets, one in the kitchen and one in the bathroom. The kitchen outlet is the one that is not working when the generator is on.

The test button on the outlet in the bathroom will not work until the generator is on, then it will test and reset and the outlet will work.

The test button on the outlet in the kitchen works correctly and resets when the inverter is on, but when we turn the generator on, the test button no longer works and there is no power.
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Old 09-29-2008, 05:01 PM   #4
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Well that is certainly a strange one.

Your generator probably has two output circuits, each with its own circuit breaker right on the genset. Have you reset the generator breakers? It may be that you are supplying power to only one side of your load center, i.e. one of the generator breakers is tripped.

If that doesn't do it, how are you checking for power on the kitchen outlet - a voltmeter or just by plugging something in to see if it works? I'm wonder if the problem is low or high voltage from the generator or perhaps even a reversed hot & neutral.
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Old 09-29-2008, 07:58 PM   #5
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I have reset the gen. breakers several times. I'm checking power just based on the fact that nothing plugged in works.

I'm doubting anything involving reversed wiring or such, being that It's worked perfect ever since we got it. Although....

Not too long before this started happening our 4 12v coach batteries died and I replaced them with 4 6v batteries. And then 2 days ago the chassis batteries literally exploded the moment I tried to start the engine. So I replaced those yesterday.

There were quite a few wires going to the chassis batteries, so I guess it's possible I could of reinstalled on of those yesterday, but the problem was happening for a few weeks prior.
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Old 09-29-2008, 08:00 PM   #6
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And to add a bit of an update...

Today I tried a few different things and nothing seemed to work. But I started the gen. and let it fun for several minutes, and the power to the circuit that was previously out came back on..But it did cut in and out again as it did before it went out completely.
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Old 09-29-2008, 10:29 PM   #7
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OK... I am not going to research right now BUT is it possible that it has something to do with not having the same voltage as the previous batteries?? I am not sure - but it sounds like you cut your batteries in half!


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Old 09-29-2008, 10:58 PM   #8
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You're going to have to test this with a systematic approach. If you're not familiar with and comfortable working with electric, then have a gen shop test it for you.

1) Are house batteries charged
2) Monitor generator output for proper voltage, Hz, and amperage output (both mains)
3) Make sure transfer/switch gear works properly (both mains)
4) Monitor voltage and amperage at breaker box (both mains)
5) Determine what circuits are on the inverter
6) Monitor inverter input voltage and amperage
7) Monitor inverter output voltage and amperage
8) Monitor individual breakers

Don't know if gen has been serviced or how many hours are on it but line noise may cause this problem. Check the brushes for wear.
Line noise may also cause GFI to trip.
Best to disconnect shore power before/when running generator
If microwave is on inverter (and inverter is on) then it shouldn't loose power, if it does, inverter is not doing its job, setup correctly or battery voltage is abnormal.

As to batteries exploding, this may happen if they froze, had dead/shorted cell(s), were gassing/out of water, etc.

Going to 6v batteries they are connected in series (to make 12v) and in parallel to boost Amp-hrs. Make sure this was done correctly.
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