Burnt negative to ground wire on 1992 Scamp 13' - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-02-2020, 09:33 AM   #21
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Name: Gordon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisantica View Post
gordon2,
....
Yes, I think a whole re-wire is going to have to happen. I see some other melting in behind the insulation.
Just what I was afraid of. I would not put the new battery or the old converter online in that case. But whenever you do, be sure to have a master fuse very close (< 10 inches) to the battery and consider one on both positive and neg sides. positive for sure, with the neg side being extra insurance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lisantica View Post
Just as an FYI, this is my older 1992, it didn't have a propane leak...that is my newer 2008 that the hose was old/loose.
Opps... but still, the wiring is in a 28 year old camper.
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:40 AM   #22
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Here's the kicker.
I had the trailer plugged into my house current.
There was a small electric heater running from the outlet and the TV running from the outlet.
It didn't seem anything was running on 12V. There is no furnace in the Scamp and the refrigerator was off.
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:44 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
Opps... but still, the wiring is in a 28 year old camper.
Very true and this isn't the first time I've had wiring issues in this one.
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:04 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisantica View Post
Here's the kicker.
I had the trailer plugged into my house current.
There was a small electric heater running from the outlet and the TV running from the outlet.
It didn't seem anything was running on 12V. There is no furnace in the Scamp and the refrigerator was off.
Yes.. I kinda ignored that part about the shore power and heater running.. because there is almost no chance that had anything to do with it.
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:32 AM   #25
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Name: bob
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another though

Thinking about his farther I think I would have slept in the camper myself and left company to the house. There are just too many things to consider in a camper..

I continually read about people considering renting their trailer out! Just one more reason to not too!

bob
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:40 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by k0wtz View Post
Thinking about his farther I think I would have slept in the camper myself and left company to the house. There are just too many things to consider in a camper..

I continually read about people considering renting their trailer out! Just one more reason to not too!

bob
I should have slept in that trailer, but my company thought it would be fun and I didn't want to disappoint them.
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:52 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by lisantica View Post
I should have slept in that trailer, but my company thought it would be fun and I didn't want to disappoint them.
OK I read this thread all over again and still didn't say where you said someone else was staying in the camper... so thats news to me.

1. Did you ask your guests about it? Did they smell smoke? What did they use on the 12 volt side, or do that might have been related to this problem?

2. You are lucky no one got hurt. Basically your burnt wire was like the wires in your toaster which turns your bread a nice shade of brown, or burnt black if left too long. Hopefully there are appropriate detectors in the camper also, including a smoke alarm.
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:58 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
OK I read this thread all over again and still didn't say where you said someone else was staying in the camper... so thats news to me.

1. Did you ask your guests about it? Did they smell smoke? What did they use on the 12 volt side, or do that might have been related to this problem?

2. You are lucky no one got hurt. Basically your burnt wire was like the wires in your toaster which turns your bread a nice shade of brown, or burnt black if left too long. Hopefully there are appropriate detectors in the camper also, including a smoke alarm.
I had guests over during Thanksgiving week and various family and friends stayed in each of my trailers. Perhaps k0wtz remembered this.

Yes, I have a smoke alarm in the trailer. My guests didn't smell smoke, plus they didn't have any 12 volt accessories. It's possible they used the 12 volt lights though.
There is no odor in the Scamp either. I was in it with them as we took the bedding off of the bed to be washed.

This issue may not have happened that weekend, it was just the last time it was getting heavy use. I have gone out there and sit sometimes and turn on the 12V lights since that week.
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Old 02-02-2020, 11:26 AM   #29
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This electrical issue is MUCH larger than I can take on.
See photo below, this is behind the insulation under the front sofa.

I don't know if I should take it to my local RV shop, they charge around $100 per hour labor. Or if I should try and find a mobile RV repair person?
I don't mind paying, I just want to pay for excellent work.

On a side note: I just went and checked the fuse at the positive pole and it was not blown.
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Old 02-02-2020, 11:38 AM   #30
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If the 120 VAC side is OK then one option is to do a minimal re-wire of the 12 V DC side with the bare minimum of what you need. Maybe no fridge on 12 VDC, no water pump, no converter (use a separate charger instead). A few lights and a roof fan might be enough and is easy enough rewire. It would not even require a full fuse panel.

If you want all the bells and whistles, thats a bigger project. Time to get bids unless you want to trust it to a non-certified person (who might or might not do a proper job).

PS, can you ID or trace that wire?
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Old 02-02-2020, 11:42 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
If you want all the bells and whistles, thats a bigger project. Time to get bids unless you want to trust it to a non-certified person (who might or might not do a proper job).

PS, can you ID or trace that wire?
I haven't figured out what that wire is for.

I would definitely want a proper job and would pay extra for it, but I have found that sometimes shops don't take care in what they do.

I'm just in shock with the potential of how bad this issue is.

The burnt wire is right near the propane hose and even scorched it. Luckily I have had the propane off for a while....it only runs the stove which we haven't used in over a year or two.

There is no water pump in this unit. The wiring would be for:
1) lights
2) fan
3) fridge
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Old 02-02-2020, 02:05 PM   #32
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Name: Wayne & Barbara
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in our 2000 16 ft, we had a hot wire, fortunately caught it in time. Inside the right front closet where the wires from the battery came in, was a cheap crimp style connector. it caused a high resistance which got hot. enough to smell plastic burning. I got rid of the connector and soldered and taped the splice.
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Old 02-02-2020, 04:57 PM   #33
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1. If the first picture is (was) the only wire on the negative battery post then the chassis is used as the negative side of all 12v systems. No other way to get back to the battery.



2. That second burned wire indicates either a problem in whatever it feeds, or possibly it is chaffed against some part of the chassis. In either case that's serious and needs to be fixed before anything else.


3. The second burned wire either doesn't have a fuse, or the fuse is much too big. The fuse should go before the wire is that badly burned.



4. If that is your propane hose just above the second wire it needs to be replace also. It may not be burned through but being that hot (it looks discolored) damaged it. Don't take chances.



5. If you have any doubts about your ability to fix things get thee to a professional. Neither electricity nor propane is anything to mess with unless you know what you are doing.
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:58 PM   #34
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Agreed, this is going into the shop.
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Old 02-08-2020, 01:30 PM   #35
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Burnt negative

There is no current on a ground wire
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Old 02-08-2020, 01:32 PM   #36
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Grounded conductor

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlochbuie View Post
There is no current on a ground wire
This white wire is the grounded conductor and is the return path for the current.
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Old 02-08-2020, 02:16 PM   #37
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I had a few wires melt just like that on my new-to-me trailer. The (not-moulded) 7 pin plug filled with water and shorted. All the wires melted out about a foot from the battery and also 3" from the plug. The battery overheated and one cover blew off. The battery is on the tongue so less risk of fire, but right next to the propane tanks, so yikes!
The new wiring harness now has a fuse right at the battery.
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Old 02-08-2020, 02:59 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by johnlochbuie View Post
There is no current on a ground wire

In standard AC wiring there are three wires, hot, common, and ground. All current should flow from hot through the load and back to the source through the common. There should be little, if any, through the "ground" wire.


Here we are talking about DC wiring and a two pole battery. There are only two wires commonly called hot and ground, or positive and negative. In most automotive, including trailer, applications the negative side is tied to the chassis (ground) And the chassis carries the return current to the battery ground wire. Yes, there is current in the "ground" wire of DC circuits.
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Old 02-08-2020, 03:59 PM   #39
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The NEC limits the use of automatically / self resetting circuit breakers to specific applications with specific limitations ( Read life safety — fire suppression)
Automatically resetting breakers may be convenient but that convenience comes at a price
An automatic resetting overcurrent device will keep resetting until it destroys itself , associated wiring or the load being served .
If you want safe , reliable overcurrent protection , fuses would be my first choice .
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Old 02-08-2020, 07:56 PM   #40
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Poor connections can do this. Loose or corroded connections as several have already noted. In the trade we have a saying "loose wires start fires". The fuse didn't blow because there wasn't an overload. The loose connection got hot and melted the insulation off the wire but since the load is not over the rating of the fuse it will never blow.
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