What are these and why does everything still work?? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-03-2016, 08:19 PM   #1
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What are these and why does everything still work??

I took the cover off the converter and these 2 black things about the size of C batteries were laying in the converter. Its obvious they broke off the board from vibration or whatever.

So my question is what are they, what do they do, and why does everything still work fine??

Thanks again!!!
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Old 04-03-2016, 08:40 PM   #2
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They are capacitors. They're used to filter the power.


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Old 04-03-2016, 09:00 PM   #3
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Why does everything still work without them? Should I replace my converter? I do NOT use the converter to charge the battery - but I do use it for running everything on shore power.

Thanks!
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:13 PM   #4
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Without looking at your converter, there are a couple possibilities. Most likely those are output filter capacitors. They're wired in parallel across the output. Your unit will still work but you're have more noise in the system. Nothing to worry about if you're running lights and inductive loads like a water heater but you may have issues with components needing highly regulated power like some electronics.
They may also be input line filters. Those type protect your system from a line spike. Should be fine on normal shore power but I caution against running your converter off a generator.
Finally, they may be ground filters. Those are nice to haves and aren't really necessary.
My concern would be they didn't break clean and you have broken pieces of capacitor legs floating around your converter. If that happens they could short something and totally fry the unit.
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:19 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Keaner View Post
Without looking at your converter, there are a couple possibilities. Most likely those are output filter capacitors. They're wired in parallel across the output. Your unit will still work but you're have more noise in the system. Nothing to worry about if you're running lights and inductive loads like a water heater but you may have issues with components needing highly regulated power like some electronics.
They may also be input line filters. Those type protect your system from a line spike. Should be fine on normal shore power but I caution against running your converter off a generator.
Finally, they may be ground filters. Those are nice to haves and aren't really necessary.
My concern would be they didn't break clean and you have broken pieces of capacitor legs floating around your converter. If that happens they could short something and totally fry the unit.
Thanks!! My assumption is the fridge could be one of those delicate things! I sure dont want to hurt it. Maybe best to just change the converter out. I was just confused everything worked! Your explanation makes sense. Thanks!!
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:30 PM   #6
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There are lots of converters available on Amazon, I picked a 30amp unit up for $30.00.
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:35 PM   #7
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I would like to get a direct bolt in replacement - just hook up the 4 wires and go! I don't need it for battery charging - only power. Looks like I have research to do!
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:46 PM   #8
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Not sure a cheap China converter would be better than what you have. I would suggest a progressive industries unit which are very well made.


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Old 04-03-2016, 09:46 PM   #9
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Joe, I'm not familiar with the 2005 Casita electrical components. Are the 110vac circuit breakers, 12vdc fuses, and 110vac-to-12vdc converter all located in the same box? If so, then you are looking for more than a converter. What's the brand and model of your box?
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Old 04-03-2016, 10:52 PM   #10
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Thanks!! My assumption is the fridge could be one of those delicate things! I sure dont want to hurt it. Maybe best to just change the converter out. I was just confused everything worked! Your explanation makes sense. Thanks!!
There are folks out there that still can find and install components like that. Do you have any ham radio friends? I have ham friends that would make quick work of that. (Also, our sewing machine repair guy).

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Old 04-03-2016, 10:57 PM   #11
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I don't recommend using the Casita without them. They are electrolytic capacitors and are usually used to filter the DC after it's been converted from the AC. They contain a fluid in them that can dry out and short it out, or if they receive a heavy spike it will also damage them. The main problem is that your refrigerator's control board is powered by DC and if the DC is not filtered it can cause problems. The propane detector is also powered by DC. The battery acts like a filter capacitor too, but if they included the capacitors that fell out they are needed for a reason.
I would suggest you first take a picture of the converter. Then buy a roll of masking tape, put the tape on the wires like little flags and label them. Then remove the converter board.
Take the original capacitors to any electronics parts store or TV shop and buy new ones. Then check to see if there's are any electronics schools in your area and ask if they will solder them in for you. You can also take them to any TV shop and they'll put them in for you. It's a 30 second job. The converter is still good, just replace the capacitors.
I would also check the fuses, because if the capacitors caused a short, the fuse should have gone out. There might be a fuse with a larger amperage rating then what it should have. I'll be around if you have any other questions.
Happy Camping,
Marky


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Old 04-04-2016, 06:21 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Keaner View Post
...Nothing to worry about if you're running lights and inductive loads like a water heater but ...
It doesn't alter your advice one bit and may be a typo anyhow but for others reading through this topic just an observation, the water heater element is a resistive load. I'm probably showing my age but the water heater element is not unlike those little coffee cup immersion water heaters one would dip into a coffee cup to boil the water for coffee/tea. Resistive. (Still available it seems. An economical option for instant coffee or cup-of-soups.)

Motors and such are often inductive. Large induction motors often (and/or always?) need a capacitor.


There are inductive heaters, often used in heat treating metals and such, but the water heater element is resistive.
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Old 04-04-2016, 10:27 AM   #13
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I would just replace them. They appear to be 200 volt, 1200 micro-farad electrolytic capacitors. I can't tell if they are axial or radial lead from the picture but here a couple that should work (compare the terminals to the one's you have):

New Cornell Dubilier SLP122M200E4P3 Snap I Capacitor Alum Elec 1200uF 200V 20 | eBay

It should be a fairly easy repair but remember they are polarized. The board should be marked as to which are the negative and/or positive connection points. I would also secure them to the board with a cable tie or silicon adhesive to prevent this from happening again.

Best of luck!
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Old 04-04-2016, 10:34 AM   #14
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This is a dumb question I'm sure - but why do I even need a converter? Since I am charging my AGM with an external battery charger only - do I need the converter?

When on shorepower, I am on AC, and my DC stuff could run off the battery while the external charger keeps the battery charged. When boondocking, I'm 12v anyway.

I do understand the 12v wont work if my battery is turned off

So with an external charger - what is the advantage of even having a converter? Do I need it?
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