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Old 07-28-2021, 10:09 AM   #1
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2008 SportsCoach Encore -- Door Steps

Coach: 2008 Coachmen SportsCoach Encore 40 QSM on the Freightliner chassis

Problem: Out of the blue my automatic door steps have stopped working. The coach has been parked for a couple of months.

One day the steps were working exactly as expected; the next day they were retracted and wouldn't extend for love nor money.

Lippert has a wonderful manual and troubleshooting guide. Using it, I did a little troubleshooting and it didn't take long to discover that the "hot" +12V line coming in had no juice. The manual says this is protected by a 20-25 amp fuse or breaker. I'm guessing I've got a bad fuse somewhere.

Here's the real problem: I have crawled in, around, and under this beast and can't find the fuse that feeds the steps.
- There's a fuse panel under the driver's side window; it has the fuses for the step's ignition-on line, and the step light. But not for the step's main 12V for the motor.
- There's a fuse panel under the bed for accessories, but nothing for the steps.
- There's an electrical panel back in the bay with the inverter, but no fuses there.

Is there a fuse panel somewhere I've not yet discovered?

This is driving me nuts; I can't for the life of me find the fuse panel that provides the 12V to the door steps. Chasing the wires to their power source is nigh on impossible, since Coachmen chose to enwrap small bundles of wire into larger bundles of wire into even larger bundles of wire and there's no easy way to know where the small bundle exits.

Any advice on finding the wayward fuse box will be much appreciated!
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Old 07-28-2021, 12:55 PM   #2
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On my 08 Tiffin with a Freightliner chassis the fuses for the kwickee electric step are located driver side in a outside compartment ~below the driver seat. There are 3 fuses on my coach. Hope this helps.
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Old 07-29-2021, 05:07 AM   #3
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I think the one you mention is similar to the one I have under my driver's window. But that's not where my problem is.

An electrician friend says he will bring a wire trace tool over in a day or two and we'll see if we can track it down that way.

Worst case I guess I can just run a new circuit from the panel you mention; there are several unused slots available there. ;-)

Thanks for the reply.
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Old 07-30-2021, 08:39 AM   #4
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Tap the end of the motor with a hammer - make sure you're well out of the way. Many, many, many old steps stop working due to a dirty commutator. If the motor deploys (or retracts - whichever) when you tap it, you should change the motor.

I used to spend hours testing the fuses, going through the formal testing procedures and then read about tapping the motor. Voila, the motor moved as soon as the mechanical shock made the brushes make contact with the dirty commutator. I went so far as to clean/polish the commutator - and got an additional few months out of the steps so that I could order and replacement motor and do the job at my convenience...

Of course, sometimes it's a blown fuse or corroded fuse holder or bad crimped wire...check your ground also - mine had been a self-tapping screw into a section of painted metal - removed the screw, scraped the paint, and made it right...
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Old 07-31-2021, 06:26 AM   #5
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Thanks, Domo. I've tried all the diagnostic tests in the manual by genning up a test harness (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08FHSVX3H) to the steps / motor / controller. It passed all tests, extends, retracts, etc...

The problem remains that the +12V (red) wire that provides the main source of power has 0V, so I'm as convinced as I can be that it's a fuse in a panel somewhere I can't find.

This weekend I plan to run to daylight and just run a new, fused, 12V line from an open slot in an existing fuse panel. At least, then I'll know where the fuse is! :-)
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