Blowing breaker when pluging the trailer in - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-08-2009, 02:35 PM   #1
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Hi All
I have a 1972 13ft Burro when i plug it in to shore power I pop the shore power breaker. The furnace is unplugged so I think it is the fridge compressor.
Is this fixable? or should the fridge be replaced (I think it is original ) How would I test this theory?
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:04 PM   #2
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You have a short or the shore power panel has a GFI and your trailer is not wired to match the GFI.
White wire to silver screw/lug, black wire to brass screw/lug and green to ground. Check it out.

Some things 2 try.
Go to your power panel and turn the master switch off and replug. If things are OK then turn on one circuit at a time until u find the bad circuit.
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:20 PM   #3
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You have a short or the shore power panel has a GFI and your trailer is not wired to match the GFI.
White wire to silver screw/lug, black wire to brass screw/lug and green to ground. Check it out.

Some things 2 try.
Go to your power panel and turn the master switch off and replug. If things are OK then turn on one circuit at a time until u find the bad circuit.
Good advice, and very worth following. The possibility of a 110v wiring problem developing as our trailers bounce their way down the highway is much higher than in a house that stays put, but a second possibility does exist.

I have seen times when the shore power breaker has gone bad. Breaker switches are not designed to be used as on/off switches, but that's often how they're used at campground, and it can cause the breaker to trip much more easily, so if you're running in to this problem at one power post but not another, you've probably run into a bad breaker switch.
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Old 03-08-2009, 05:38 PM   #4
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Also, just for the sake of elimination, does it happen if the refrigerator is not on when you plug in?
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:15 PM   #5
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Hi All
I have a 1972 13ft Burro when i plug it in to shore power I pop the shore power breaker. The furnace is unplugged so I think it is the fridge compressor.
Is this fixable? or should the fridge be replaced (I think it is original ) How would I test this theory?
If you have a 1972 I doubt that it has a 120V compressor type refrigerator. Most trailers of that vintage used a 2 or 3 way ammonia cycle refrigerator that has either a 12V or 12V and 120V heat elements. If it uses 120V there will be an outlet in the refrigerator compartment. You can unplug the refrigerator there and see if you still trip the breaker.

Your furnace probably has a 12VDC blower so that is unlikely to cause a problem on the 120VAC side of things.

I would check out the converter/charger as the most likely culprit. Some of them decide to self-disassemble after a few years of bouncing down the road. Also check the 120V wiring to see if there is some damage, especially if the wiring is unprotected anywhere in the system.

Hoe this helps.

73
Orlen
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:51 PM   #6
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thanks all
some time in the recent past (within 5 years) the 110v was re wired and an air conditioner put in looks professional
the DC still looks original and I do not trust it at all never had a battery in the trailer. The fridge is 2 way 110 or DC
I recently moved on the outlet at the new house is ground fault the old house the reachable outlet was not. I hope it is the incompatibility with the ground fault.
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Old 03-09-2009, 04:05 AM   #7
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'Incompatibility' with the GFCI means there IS a fault somewhere...
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Old 03-09-2009, 06:21 AM   #8
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Also you could try plugging something like a drill into the shore outlet to see if it pops the breaker.... and then you know which end to start checking.
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Old 03-09-2009, 04:47 PM   #9
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'Incompatibility' with the GFCI means there IS a fault somewhere...
...or someone connected ground and neutral together inside the trailer.

Ground and neutral should only be bonded (connected together) in the MAIN service entrace panel, NOT inside your camper.

-- Dan Meyer
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Old 03-09-2009, 11:45 PM   #10
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Dan, I am not certain about this, but the older codes may have allowed it.

I have a friend whose house has a number of sub-main distribution panels in basement, well house and on dock, and they all have the grounds and neutrals bonded (About 10-12 years ago when he had a major remodel done after purchasing the house). I had advised him to fix that and today an electrician was there to do other work and my friend asked him to look into it. He advised that it met the code at the time it was done.

If part of the load's return is sneaking back on a ground lead, a GFCI would definitely see that as a fault and trip!
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