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Old 02-14-2010, 12:32 PM   #1
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Transfer switch failed

We're plugged into 50 amp shore power and when we got up yesterday, the Powerline Energy Management System (EMS) was showing that we only had 30 amp incoming and was displaying current amps used. I checked and had 120v through the pedestal and on each leg coming out of the Progressive Energy EMS-LCHW50. When I opened up the transfer switch I could smell burned wires and could see where the insulation was burned completely off one wire. We certainly dodged a bullet and were very lucky that we didn't have a serious electrical fire!

We had a Todd Engineering power switch Model PS245L with a lifetime warranty, but I understand they are out of business so now I am looking for a suitable replacement. Any suggestions about the best one to buy and where to get it? Any ideas about what caused the problem and should I be looking for something else that failed.
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Old 02-14-2010, 01:30 PM   #2
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I'll see if I can get an answer for you early this week from my resources.
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Old 02-15-2010, 04:26 AM   #3
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Probably the burning issue was from loose electrical connections. The higher the amperage, the higher the heat generated. This will cause wire and component damage. Any 50 amp transfer switch should work as a replacement. Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:47 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martind4 View Post
We had a Todd Engineering power switch Model PS245L with a lifetime warranty, but I understand they are out of business so now I am looking for a suitable replacement.
I hope this helps you, "

"Todd Engineering went out of business several years ago. A suitable replacement is a Parallax ATS501BP."

Now if nothing else, the Parallax part number should give you a good cross reference number. Good luck!
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Old 02-16-2010, 09:03 PM   #5
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I found an Esco 50 amp transfer switch from a local dealer and installed it yesterday. The other choice was an Iota but I liked the Esco better because it had a metal case, pricier but more substantial. The whole process took a couple of hours and I'm happy with the way everything went together. After examing the damage from the burned wires, which was confined to the switch innards, I'm convinced that I had a loose connection that overheated. Like others have said, I plan to put this on the checklist for annual inspection. I also put the system under a heavy load, ran it for awhile, and then checked all the connections with an infared thermometer to identify any hot spots. Didn't find any.

Thanks for all your help and suggestions. This started out as a pretty scary experience, probably worse because of the unknowns involved, but now I wouldn't hesitate to do it again if necessary.
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Old 02-17-2010, 04:20 AM   #6
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Denny, glad you got it fixed and working well. Good luck and keep us posted.
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