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Old 05-05-2013, 08:21 PM   #1
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Power Step - Electrical Problem 02 Storm

Greetings,
I'm having trouble getting my Kwikee power step to work. I've checked as many of the electrical components/wires as possible but still can't get it to work. If I can't figure it out I'm going to have to admit defeat and (GASP!!!) take it to Camping World to see if they can fix it.

What I know:
- I have both the Fleetwood wiring diagram as well as the Kwikee troubleshooting guide and have used them to track/trace wires.
- Both coach and chassis battery solenoids work when switched on.
- Chassis battery is good and coach batteries are new.
- 20A step fuse under hood is good and is getting power.
- +12V constant voltage to step is on (red wire in step harness)
- +12V key on voltage to step is on (yellow wire in step harness)
- Magnetic door sensor works
- NO power to (blue - marked 132) wire going to step switch on wall with key. (SEE PICTURES ATTACHED)
- There is an unused brown wire (marked 603) that has +12V next to the switch as well as a black wire.
- When I connected the powered brown wire to the step switch the indicator light came on but the step did not move. The step did not make any noise either.
- When I gave up and took the RV back to storage, the step switch indicator light came on (with switch on) and got brighter when the door was opened but the step did not move or make any noise.

What I don't know:
- I understand there is (should be) a 5A inline fuse before the step switch but I have traced the blue power wire down the wall, under the floor, and into the main harness along the frame and can not find it... The blue wire then goes forward, across to the drivers side and forward over the wheel well and up to the fuse board... I traced the wire until it went across to the left side and where I could on the left side and could not find a fuse. Since the indicator light on the switch came on with engine running one time, I wouldn't think the fuse (if it exists) is faulty.

Has anyone experienced anything like this? Any suggestions are appreciated. If you happen to hit on the solution, I'll be forever grateful - and owe you a beer or 6...

THANK YOU!!!
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:18 AM   #2
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I think the blue wire to step switch is for the switch light. I think this comes from the step module, a little black box that controls the steps. Have you checked for power to the motor? If you have power, the motor is the same as a late '90s ford Taurus left front window motor. Hope this helps a little
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Old 05-06-2013, 07:08 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply.

stink,
I think you're technically correct - the blue wire does power the indicator light on the switch but I also think that when it is turned on it prompts the step into action.

As for 'hot' wires at the step - the constant +12V is hot, as is the wire that comes on with the ignition key. The problem is that the wire that is supposed to be hot when the wall switch is on (blue wire is +12V, black is ground, light blue w/ white stripes are 'load' that go to the step wiring) are not. The strange thing is that when I bypassed the blue wire and powered that terminal on the switch with a known +12V source, the indicator light would come on but the steps still didn't work.

I'll have to look at the diagram again but I don't think the step will work (w/ key off) unless the wall switch has power and is turned on.

I'm wondering now if I just have a controller problem - and perhaps can't read the schematic....
I'm usually a good problem solver (even w/ electrical) so I don't think I'm misreading the schematics though.

Thanks!
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Old 05-06-2013, 08:18 AM   #4
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Power Step - Electrical Problem

Neo,

I don't think you have an electrical problem. I think your problem is a mechanical problem with the lift motor. I am new to the forums and didn't see what year RV you have and don't have a signature yet so bear with me on that. There are three basic motors for Kwikee steps and all of them are subject to failure. There are the early permanent magnet motors, mostly Ford window lift motors, motors by AM in Oregon and the new propritary motors.

Easy test to see if it's the motor, disconnect the motor lead and linkage, unbolt the entire motor assembly and lay it on the step. Actuate the controller by opening and closing the door while having a voltmeter attached to the leads. If you get 12VDC from the motor leads, the electrical is good. It is quite common for the motor to appear to operate normally in this position but, when reconnected to the step it probably won't operate or will only operate for a day or two.

If you post the year of your rig and a photo of your motor assembly clearly showing the motor, I could probably tell you what motor you need. There are a lot of part numbers floating around for the motors used in Taurus lifts, I haven't had much luck using them but I do have a good number for a Ford pickup lift motor. AM motors have a phenolic gear body, the can be ordered directly from AM in Oregon. I believe it is AM Equipment but I'm not sure. There is a new motor specifically made for Kwikee's new owners and I'm not sure where to buy one of those. I'm not sure how you can ontact me directly or how the chat feature works but I will check back and see if you need more help.

I see you have an '02 Bounder so most likely you have a Ford lift motor.
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Old 05-06-2013, 09:07 AM   #5
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FP,
Thanks for the reply. I think I'll pull the connector to the motor and see if it has voltage to it like you suggested. I don't think I need to take the motor off to test this. If i remember correctly, the Ford motors are hot on one wire when running one way and hot on the other when running the other way. Ground is always through the motor housing.

This is our 3rd summer owning this RV and the step has been 'unpredictable' the whole time. It almost never works when I get in and turn on the coach and chassis batteries. Once I get it home and plugged into shore power, it usually works. It has never not worked at a campground when the rv is plugged in to 120V.

This spring, that all changed when (as expected) it didn't work when I put the chassis and coach batteries back in it and brought it home to de-winterize it. I was surprised that it didn't work when I plugged it in to 120V though.
Maybe it has been running on borrowed time and finally gave up...
I had a window motor in a Ford product just quit - no warning whatsoever so I know it happens.

THANKS!
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:08 PM   #6
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You guys amaze me. So helpful to each other. I don't know much about anything, so I cannot be of a lot of help. Neo102470 I also have a 2002 Storm. Bought it March 5, 2013. Have been trying to get all the cob webs taken care of because of long-term storage. Care to share the details of your Storm? Will be glad to share my MH details.
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Old 05-09-2013, 12:28 AM   #7
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Ours

quite working also last season, the neighbor took the switch apart @ the steps and it was full of crud, he cleaned it up and they have worked ever since.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:24 AM   #8
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I've been tempted to take my switch at the steps apart too but I can't find any current running to it - and I assume that there should be. No current to the 'basement' light either. I'm going to go under the step and see if I can get it to actuate manually - just to see if the motor is alright. If the motor is ok, I may take a look at the inside of the switch.

As for details of my Storm. I'm the 3rd owner. The second owner bought it to live in when his lake house burned down so he could still enjoy the lake while his house was rebuilt. He didn't drive it much so it had 17k miles when we bought it in 2010. It has just over 22k now. Other than that, it has the blue/tan interior, no slide outs (it's a 30H), Ford F53 chassis and 6.8 V10 engine. I put an inverter in it and ran a 120V line up to a plug I installed in the panel under the sink (next to the propane sensor) - to power the tv, etc while i drive if the kids want to watch it and I don't want to run the generator...
I have never gotten 8 mpg but the previous owner says it's possible. For this reason, and the fact that we have 10 nice state parks within 60 miles of us, we've never taken it more than 200 miles from home.

Now if I can just get the step to work...
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Old 05-09-2013, 11:26 AM   #9
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neo102470, Our motor homes are very similar. We are the second owners of our Fleetwood, model 30H with no slide outs. The color schemes are the same as yours as is the Chassis and the Triton V10 Ford motor. The unit has 10K miles on it. The original owner purchased it to live in, (he is in the Navy) but after 30 days his wife refused to live in it, so it has been in storage most of its life.
We have experienced some problems due to the long period it was stored. We have replaced dry rotted tires, resealed roof and replaced vents, had Samsung recall done on the microwave. Have had to completely overhaul genset. It's back in shop now. It quits running after a few minutes. Replaced carburetor, fuel pump, PCB, filters and lines. The person doing the work is exceptionally well qualified, so he will get it fixed eventually. So far I have spent $1,100. on the generator repair work, including replacing the two original 6V coach batteries. We have also upgraded to a Voyager Color back up system and purchased a GM1518 Satellite Antenna, to mesh with direct tv service.
We purchased the MH to spend time camping with our married children and grand children. Beautiful state parks and camping areas in our part of SE Oklahoma, none very far from home. The important thing is "OUR ELECTRIC STEPS WORK JUST FINE".
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Old 05-09-2013, 12:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herb matlock View Post
neo102470, Our motor homes are very similar. We are the second owners of our Fleetwood, model 30H with no slide outs. The color schemes are the same as yours as is the Chassis and the Triton V10 Ford motor. The unit has 10K miles on it. The original owner purchased it to live in, (he is in the Navy) but after 30 days his wife refused to live in it, so it has been in storage most of its life.
We have experienced some problems due to the long period it was stored. We have replaced dry rotted tires, resealed roof and replaced vents, had Samsung recall done on the microwave. Have had to completely overhaul genset. It's back in shop now. It quits running after a few minutes. Replaced carburetor, fuel pump, PCB, filters and lines. The person doing the work is exceptionally well qualified, so he will get it fixed eventually. So far I have spent $1,100. on the generator repair work, including replacing the two original 6V coach batteries. We have also upgraded to a Voyager Color back up system and purchased a GM1518 Satellite Antenna, to mesh with direct tv service.
We purchased the MH to spend time camping with our married children and grand children. Beautiful state parks and camping areas in our part of SE Oklahoma, none very far from home. The important thing is "OUR ELECTRIC STEPS WORK JUST FINE".
We replaced the tires last spring and the 6V's a couple weeks ago. Our generator still seems to run fine (@ ~200 hrs on the meter) but did die in transit (while running the rear AC) last year a couple times. I did some cleaning of the carb and it's been fine since. The PO of our MH was a mechanic so he did some very extensive maintenance on it (changed transmission oil, etc) - but neglected to refill the 6V batteries. It took me over a gallon of water to fill them when i checked them the first time. Luckily we don't go off grid so as long as the interior light work we were fine - until it was suggested that bad batteries might be to blame for my step issue.
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Old 05-09-2013, 12:46 PM   #11
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Simplest thing to do to get you on the right track is to disconnect the 2 wires running to the motor under the steps. Run 2 jumpers from the motor to the battery (or any car battery) ... add a 10 amp or so fuse if you want some safety factor. Motor should run steps out or in ... reverse leads to run in other direction. This will at least tell you the condition of motor and gears. Most of this is in the troubleshooting guide.
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:15 PM   #12
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Simplest thing to do to get you on the right track is to disconnect the 2 wires running to the motor under the steps. Run 2 jumpers from the motor to the battery (or any car battery) ... add a 10 amp or so fuse if you want some safety factor. Motor should run steps out or in ... reverse leads to run in other direction. This will at least tell you the condition of motor and gears. Most of this is in the troubleshooting guide.
I'm going to do exactly that this weekend. If the steps don't run this way, I'll replace the motor, if they do run, I'll keep my appointment at Camping World...
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Old 05-10-2013, 11:57 AM   #13
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Steps Now Work

I want to thank all who provided suggestions and advice relative to fixing the step problem on my 2003 Fleetwood Storm. Initially, the suggestions relative to tapping the step gears and degreasing and lubricating the steps worked for about one week. Then the steps quit working again. I then followed up on locating the driver-side window motor (1995 Ford Taurus) from my local O'reilly Auto Parts store - their service was great - they helped me identify the right motor online and then had it in their store for pick-up by 4 pm the same day. I installed it yesterday and it works great. Final cost $43.95
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:28 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by New2this View Post
I want to thank all who provided suggestions and advice relative to fixing the step problem on my 2003 Fleetwood Storm. Initially, the suggestions relative to tapping the step gears and degreasing and lubricating the steps worked for about one week. Then the steps quit working again. I then followed up on locating the driver-side window motor (1995 Ford Taurus) from my local O'reilly Auto Parts store - their service was great - they helped me identify the right motor online and then had it in their store for pick-up by 4 pm the same day. I installed it yesterday and it works great. Final cost $43.95
I'm crossing my fingers that my issue will also be solved this weekend...
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