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RV Electrical Problems – Get the Monkey Off Your Back!

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Many people do not understand that an RV has more than one electrical system! I always thought there were two electrical systems in an RV: the 12-volt and the 120-volt. But I missed the fact that there are two 12-volt systems.

Knowledge is Power!

This was one of the first lessons, one of many in my RV life.  It taught me when RV electrical problems arise, I need a basic understanding of RV electrical systems!

rv electrical problems

Imagine you are enjoying a nice evening in the RV: the AC unit is cranking, the convection oven is cooking the evening meal, the electric water heater element just kicked on because the wife is in the shower, and all of a sudden, it gets awfully quiet in the RV.

What happened?  RV electrical problems may have popped up because of these possible situations: Did the water heater kick on and send the electrical system into overload? Did the RV park’s power cut out?  Did your EMS unit shut the power down because it detected a problem?  Did the AC unit and the convection oven restart together?  What should you do?  Here comes the purple monkey!

rv electrical problems

What is a purple monkey?  It’s a big hairy problem that does not seem to have an immediate answer due to a distortion of the facts.  And it climbs on your back and laughs at you while you panic!  If you don’t have at least a basic understanding of how RV electrical problems can arise, then the purple monkey may visit you quite often!

How to Avoid RV Electrical Problems!

The best way to avoid RV electrical problems is to understand the three electrical systems that you have in your RV.  Once you understand how they work together, you will be able to diagnose problems that arise.  By learning how they work together, you can remain comfortable in your home on wheels.

The 3 Electrical Systems in Your RV

Chassis 12 Volt System: This is the power from the chassis batteries that run the exterior running lights, the stop lights, and the turn signals of the RV.  On a trailer or 5th wheel, this power comes through the 7-way pin connector that attaches to the tow vehicle.  On a motorized RV, this power comes from the batteries attached to the alternator, just like in a car.

RV 12 Volt System: These are the deep cycle batteries that power all the 12-volt lights, the circuit boards of the RV appliances, the fresh water pump, the propane detector, the slide outs, and the leveling jacks. In order to keep the batteries charged, just like the alternator does in a car, the RV has a converter that takes 120 volts and converts that to 12 volts to charge the deep cycle batteries.

House 120 Volt System: Just like in a “sticks and bricks” home, 120-volt alternating current is needed to power the air conditioner units, the microwave, the electric heating element in the water heater and refrigerator, the wall receptacles, the converter, and any other 120 volt accessories the RV may have.

Most electrical products have labels to tell you what kind of electrical requirements they need and use: volts, amps, and watts.  Do you know what these are and how to figure out what your maximum usage is in your RV?  If you don’t, the big purple monkey may visit you!  So, let me get the monkey off your back!

rv electrical problems

What are Volts, Amps, and Watts?

Most RV Electrical Problems occur because RVers don’t understand the relationship between volts, amps, and watts!  It is very easy to overload an RV such that you are tripping the breaker in the main panel or even for the appliance itself.

So what is a Volt?  Very simply, it is the push that electricity has through the wires of your 12-volt or 120-volt RV electrical system.  In comparison, it is like water pressure to a water system.

rv electrical problems

So how about an Amp?  Amperage is the flow of electricity.  Amperage is the same as electricity as gallons of water flow to a water system.  The size and length of the wire determine how much amperage there can be.

If you try to flow too many amps through a small or underrated wire, what happens?  It gets hot, right?  The resistance to flow equals restriction, and therefore heat builds up.  The wire will overheat and melt its casing, possibly causing a fire.

rv electrical problems

Then, what are Watts?  A watt is the power the electricity has.  If you know that you have 120 volts going into your RV, and you have 30 amp main service inside that RV, then if you multiply the 120 volts times the 30 amps, you get 3600 watts.  So what does that mean to you?

RV Electrical Problems

Real-Life Example

Mr. and Mrs. Smith, and the kids, hook up their travel trailer and head out for the weekend. They had it plugged in at home and had all the electrical items running before they left. They unplugged the RV and hit the road. The electric water heater was on, the air conditioner unit was running, the converter was charging the batteries, and the fridge was set to be on electric when plugged in.  Oh, and this is a 120 volt / 30 amp electrical system.

So what happened when Mr. and Mrs. Smith got to their destination and plugged in their RV?  Remember, everything was left on!  Let’s examine the load on the system:

  1. Air Conditioner at 20 amps x 120 volts = 2,400 watts
  2. Electric Water Heater at 12 amps x 120 volts = 1,440 watts
  3. Converter at 7 amps x 120 volts = 840 watts
  4. Dometic Fridge at 120 volts x 4 amps = 480 watts

for a Grand Total of 5,160 watts

All those appliances were still switched on and were calling for power because the RV was hot inside, the hot water had cooled off, the fridge needed to keep cooling and was switching from propane, and the batteries needed charging.  

After a few minutes of being plugged in, the Smiths were sitting without AC, hot water, and ice-cold beer because the breaker tripped. Perhaps it was the main breaker in the RV, or perhaps the breaker at the electrical pedestal.

They only had 3,600 watts available to use, at most!  And when an air condition first kicks on, it requires approximately another 500 watts.

How Could This Have Been Avoided?

Some RV Electrical No Noes!

  • The lesson from the example above is don’t unplug your RV without allowing your appliances to cycle off before shutting off the main power. Be sure to turn off your major amp drawing items, and you will avoid tripping breakers when you get to your next destination.  Turn them back on when you need them, and not all at once, especially on a 30 amp RV!
  • Don’t plug your RV into a 15 amp outlet using an adapter, and then try and run your Air conditioner unit.  You will ruin the AC and burn up your wiring. That may be okay to just run the converter to keep batteries charged, but that’s about it!
  • Don’t plug into an RV park electrical pedestal without checking the power source.  If you don’t know how to use a voltmeter, learn or get an electrical management device. These are designed to plug into the RV park’s electrical pedestal and detect any electrical issues before you plug in.
rv surge protector
  • Don’t run all electrical appliances in your RV unless you know for sure what the power requirements are, based on a 30 or 50 amp RV electrical system.  That is 3,600 watts or 12,000 watts of total available power.

Would you like to know more about solving electrical issues?  How about all the other issues that come up in your RV?  Would you like to be able to fix 80% of the RV issues that are easy to find, and easy to fix, by yourself?

Would you like to save yourself thousands of dollars from the many repairs that will be needed over the years?  What about time off the road because you are waiting for someone else to solve your problem?

rv electrical problems

Jump over to my page that explains about an RV technician course that could help you get the purple monkey off your back!  You can learn how to handle issues similar to these like a pro!  You can attend this 5-day course live or take the home study course.

rv maintenance

Would you like more information about either the 5-day live course or the home study course?  Please visit my Contact Us page and I will get back to you as soon as I can!

Thank you!!

Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question before you go!

Here’s wishing you happy adventures as you enjoy the RV lifestyle!

Howard and Pam


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    • KG on August 18, 2023 at 7:34 PM
    • Reply

    I’m having an issue with my Lippert stabilizers in my 2014 Rockwood.
    I took the motor off and checked it on a bench with 12VDC and it works – the switch seems to be ok as well.
    When I check my power at the trailer – my battery is fine at 12.7 VDC, but I found I am only getting 6.8 volts at both the front & rear switches… do I have a short somewhere causing the issue?

    1. Check your chassis grounding to that system.

    • Bob Telless on August 15, 2023 at 4:10 PM
    • Reply

    My 2021 Coachman Freedom Express travel trailer was mistakenly plugged into a 220 volt outlet, it of courses burnt out the convertor and the control board for the refridgerator. I replaced both but still have no ac power for the refridgerator. Is something else bad? The unit does work on LP gas.

    1. Hi Bob! You may want to check your candy cane heating element to see if it was damaged in the over voltage situation.

    • Vlad on July 16, 2023 at 5:44 PM
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    I have a problem with the ceiling lights in my 2014 Jayco Greyhawk motorhome. Everything else is working from battery or shore power. All fuses are good, both batteries are new. When checked voltage on wires that come to the ceiling light fixture and I found that both wires have 12.5 volts. Any suggestions or ideas??

    1. Vlad, have tried taking a separate 12-volt source to the light to be sure it is not the problem?

    • Larry on August 2, 2022 at 11:48 PM
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    I have a 2006 Class A Four Winds Hurricane. All of the lights seemed to work correctly independantly. Both turning signals, brake lights, running lights. ( I never checked the back up lights.) But, when i turned on my head lights my right turning signal would stop working. I checked all of the bulbs, I cleaned off all of the contacts and ground wires. Still nothing changed. I ran a jumper wire from the right rear light ground plug to a frame bolt after grinding the surface rust off the frame. Still nothing changed. The turning signal bulb was working by it self and all the bulb filiments looked find, but i put in a new turning signal bulb . Now that turning signal isn’t working at all (even without headlights) and either is the left one. My jumper ground was fairly light gauge wire, but it didn’t have any effect anyway. Frustrated.

    1. Hi Larry!

      If this RV is on the Ford F53 chassis, I would look for a commercial Ford dealer that services that chassis and have them diagnose that for you. There are too many issues that could be present in that electrical system to diagnose without seeing it.

    • Michael Schmuhl on July 8, 2022 at 5:23 PM
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    We own a 2015 Coachman Freedom Express. For the past 3 years as we travel down the road the “check trailer connection” comes on. The first time we checked it only to find the trailer connected. We had a new plug intstalled this year and the problem still exists. I have sprayed contact cleaner on the plug and the reciever on the truck. Nothing has worked as yet. It doesn’t matter what kind of road we are on. Sometimes on bumpy roads the alarm won’t come on until we get on a smooth portion of road. Other times it is reversed. There is no consistency to when the alarm will come on. Also, almost immediately when the alarm comes on the “trailer connected” notice comes on. Any help you can give will be greatly appreciated. Thanks

    1. Hi Michael!

      If you have not already, you may need to trace the electrical connections to the plug to see if there is a loose connection elsewhere.

    • Paul T on March 11, 2022 at 5:35 PM
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    I recently replaced the 8-12v house batteries on our 2016 Newmar Mountain Aire, not because of any issues, just because we plan to use the MH quite a bit this year and they were close to 7 years old. Before starting the process, I unplugged the 50 amp AC plug, flipped off all breakers in the house breaker box, disconnected the batteries with the disconnect switch and disconnected the chassis batteries with their disconnect switch (this is a Freightliner Chassis). I also took a picture and made a diagram of the battery wiring, then proceeded to remove the old batteries by removing the negative battery cables first, then the positive cables last. Upon installation of the new batteries, the cables were connected positive first and then negative. I’m certain that the wiring is correct.
    I then proceeded to re-engage the house batteries with the connect switch, plugged the RV into AC power, turned all house breakers back on and turned the chassis batteries back on. The AC powered components (fridge, microwave, dishwasher, washer and dryer) all work fine when plugged in or with the Genset running but none of them work when not connected to AC power. Also, the Silverleaf control panel always shows house batteries at 0 volts. The in-line fuses from the battery cables to the inverter are good. I suspect the inverter (a Xantrex Freedom version) maybe needs to be reset and I’ve done that at the inverter with no change. The pop out breakers on the front of the inverter are not popped and haven’t been. I’ve spoken with Newmar who referred me to Silverleaf who referred me to Xantrex. Silverleaf says that the inverter is not communicating with the Silverleaf system and Xantrex says that they have no idea how to reset it through the Silverleaf system. The batteries do seem to be charging through the inverter though as they remain fully charged. And I don’t live close to a Newmar dealer so it’s a road trip to go that route. So, before I hit the road, can you think of something I’ve missed?
    Thank you for your feedback.

    1. Hi Paul, an interesting turn of events!

      What is the battery voltage with the shore power on and the inverter/converter operating? If you are getting between 13.2 DCV and 14.2 DCV then I would suspect the converter is charging and it’s a Silverleaf issue. If nothing works with the inverter providing the AC voltage, then it has to be an issue with the Xantrex.

    • John Douglas Stone on March 3, 2022 at 8:18 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard.

    Excellent website. Thanks for sharing your expertise.

    My 2002 Winnie Journey DL 39 has been resting for several years at my home. We’re about to put it back on the road, and I am chasing a 12vdc demon. I have good 240vac on the shoreline @50amps. All 120vac circuits in the RV are functioning properly. I charged the house batteries in the shop, and they held 12vdc. I installed them back in the RV and they were still good at 12vdc – but before I connected the main battery cables (red and black) to the parallel-wired house batteries, I checked incoming voltage on the main cables and read nearly 18 volts from the converter. I assumed that was the normal recharge current from the converter to the house batteries. None of my documents show a test-value for converter-to-batteries recharge current. After the reconnect, the inside monitor panel also confirmed 12vdc for both house batteries and chassis batteries.

    I left the RV for three hours. I did not have any 12 vac appliances running with the possible exception of the Norcold frig, but it has multiple power options and I had selected the AC option. When I returned, none of the 12vac systems worked. I verified the battery interrupt dash-mounted switch was in the ON position. The entire inside power panel was dark. There was no reading at all for house battery voltage, but chassis batteries still read 12vdc. With a voltmeter I checked each house battery and got 3 to 4 volts. I then read the recharge voltage on the house battery main cables, and now had only 7 – 8 volts dc. I hooked up a trickle charger and everything appears to be recharging … but the jury is still out. At last check the house batteries are only back to around 8-9 vdc now – but still charging.

    This is not the first dead battery situation I have had over the past few weeks. I suspected the converter at first, but when I found 18 volts on the recharge lines, I naturally had second thoughts about the converter. BTW the converter has a fuse, and it’s good.

    Any ideas? Is there a proper test-voltage for converter recharging output?

    Should I just get a hand crank and make the kids turn it for power?

    Thanks Howard

    John D. Stone
    San Angelo, Texas

    1. Hi John!

      Thanks for stopping by! How old are those batteries? Perhaps load testing them for possible replacement might be a good idea. Batteries Plus or Auto Zone may be able to do that for you.

    • Miguel on January 30, 2022 at 5:18 PM
    • Reply


    I have a issue on my 2001 Tiffin Allegro bus diesel 35 , that does not make senses.

    Just bought unit 1 month ago and was driving from Texas to Massachusetts and this happened.

    The chassis batteries that are brand new, discharge while the coach is running (driving on the road) only. I notices first that my automatic stairs were slow coming in and then the wipers starting to move slow after a few stops. I took to the dealer on my way up to Mass. and they checked batteries and they do hold a charge. Waited a full day and they checked everything to make sure nothing was draining batteries, and batteries were fine after 1day sitting. I figured that I leave the generator on make sure it would keep batteries charged on my back home, luckily after 9 hours and only 1/2 hr from my home, I notices wipers were dead again. , I hooked up to my 50 amp power station at my home for a day , and it’s holding charge again, even after a week of no use. The problem is decently when the coach is on the road. Any Ideas?

    Thank you for any input.

    1. How is your alternator? During travel chassis batteries should be around 14 volts.

    • Mark on November 9, 2021 at 11:50 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 2013 Tiffin Phaeton and the jacks, chassis a/c, backup camera, and slide outs do not have power with the key in the ON position. I have had this happen before about a year ago, but then they started working again. I have checked the fuses, but they are good.

    1. loose connection?

    • Sharon Dixon on November 7, 2021 at 1:49 AM
    • Reply

    Could really use some help with electrical issue. My husband and I are older (62 & 59). We recently purchased a Jayco 1992 Eagle 5th wheel to live in. My husband has cancer so by downsizing I could quit working to take care of him and we live off his SS. Parked in family land and setting it up to be stationary with septic tank, water lune, etc. Electric pole is supposed to be installed this coming week and will have a 30amp plug as well as two regular house plugs. There was not a battery in rv when we purchased. Owner said they didn’t use only shots power. For the past two weeks,we’ve just been plugged into house with extension cord so could have lights , radio, cell phone, etc. Do have propane so can cook on stove. The hot water heater is propane with the electronic ignition. When we tried to turn on, nothing happens. I bought a multi meter today so I can check but I figure without battery and not plugged into 30 amp, not even 12v to light. My question is that we didn’t think we needed to buy battery based on what we’d been told but reading your article plus questions and answers leads me to think we do so can run water heater, fridge and furnace. Am I correct? Since we’ll be plugged in can I get away with a cheaper battery for now and then replace with better one in future? We’ve already had a couple unexpected expenses and the well is dry right now. Lol. What would you suggest? From what you’ve said, I’m afraid we would damage converter without battery and/or not sure if these appliances would work without one.


    1. Yes, you do need a battery in the system to have things run properly. The converter cannot handle the load by itself.

    • Kevin on November 6, 2021 at 4:41 PM
    • Reply

    AC socket to my microwave works fine under shore power, but nor under genny power.
    All other AC sockets work okay on genny? What the hec?

    1. Do you have an inverter in this RV?

    • Dean Swanson on October 5, 2021 at 6:29 PM
    • Reply

    I read thru most of the problems here and did not find a similar one. We are full timers, and at one RV park connected to shore power our DC power just quit. We called a mobile RV repair firm, and after testing all fuses, verifying that the house batteries were charged and putting out power, checking the input and output of the converter, checking fuses and the control panel and for loose connections, they had no clue. The step slide and the slide out worked during this time, but nothing else DC powered. That was a $180 bill with no results. We drove to our next destination and our DC power worked, but the slide out wouldn’t extend, but the DC power was back on.

    We took it to an RV repair business, and they diagnosed a bad controller for the slide out, and our DC power wasn’t working when they tested it. We ordered the controller and I pulled it into the control panel, and the slide out works fine, but they too could not find what was wrong with the DC power. We woke up the next morning and the DC power was functioning again.

    After having two certified, experienced RV repair techs troubleshoot our problem with no results, our DC power will quit unexpectedly when we’re parked and connected to shore power, and then it will come back online unexpectedly. The gap between working and not working can be 1/2 hour to 5 hours, and anything in between. It’s never been longer than that. We do have an EMS, but I believe they only apply to AC power.

    When I started typing this I had no DC power. Just now the battery disconnect switch light came on and the DC power is back online.

    It’s getting expensive to pay for DC diagnostics multiple times only to find no one can determine the problem.

    Any ideas or suggestions on what to have the next tech we try to have help us would be greatly appreciated.

    1. I would start with the batteries and look for loose connections from the wiring that leaves the batteries going to the fuse panel.

    • Roy on October 2, 2021 at 6:00 PM
    • Reply

    Great information here. I have a 2005 Coachmen Catalina 734FKS travel trailer. Used it all summer for visiting guests and everything worked fine. It’s currently plugged into a 20 amp garage outlet and I realize this is only temporary until I can set up a dedicated line. The A/C is used sparingly. Today, I discovered 3 of the 12v lights in the kitchen do not work (they are all under the kitchen cabinets. The bulbs are OK and the fuses in the 12 volt panel all check OK. I tested the connections at each light and there is no voltage. I have been checking different websites for possible answers and am stumped. Seems odd that all three lights would be bad. Maybe they have a common ground somewhere? I have not checked any wiring under the trailer yet. I did confirm the battery is charged and there are other 12 volts lights working. Any ideas?

    1. I would chase the voltage from the fuse panel through that circuit and see where the voltage drops. There may be a loose wire somewhere.

    • Gwen Martin on September 7, 2021 at 5:47 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard!
    First, I’m glad I found this site. Second, I hope you can shed some light on a few electrical problems we have going on.
    We just purchased a 96 Winnebago LUXOR. We love it!! But the outlets have a mind of their own…some work than don’t work.
    More importantly, the other day we pressure washed. We were going down the road and the exterior fans above the dash literally just stopped. The power window button on the driver’s door doesn’t work and the hydraulic level system, also located on driver’s door doesn’t work anymore. The only thing I can think of is when I rinsed the wheel well on the driver’s side I knocked something loose. My husband has checked the fuses, the wiring and no luck yet. What do you suggest?

    1. Hi Gwen! When it comes to electrical issues like these, they are most commonly due to loose connections. So, your husband is going to have to trace the individual circuits to the affected areas and use a VOM to check continuity between the fuse box and the items that are not working. He can also check for voltage at the fuse box for those same circuits. It’s a slow process, but that is what a technician would have to do. For an RV that is 25 years old, this is expected. Oh, and by the way, and in my opinion, never pressure wash your RV at high pressure. That can create many issues including sealant issues.

    • RaeAnn Burk on September 6, 2021 at 11:51 AM
    • Reply

    Good morning…I had an issue of my plug to power melting but yet my breakers did not flip …this is concerning to me as to why they did not?
    Thank you

    1. Hi RaeAnn!

      It sounds like you may have a 30 amp RV. If so, that is only 3600 watts of power, not much to overload. Breakers trip for sudden electrical events but will let power through if you exceed that 3600 watts. When that happens, it’s like trying to put too much water pressure through a thin wall hose, it will burst. In electrical terms, when you pass more electrical demand than the wiring is designed for, heat is created and things melt. So, if you are mindful of the number of watts are being consumed by the devices you have on, then you can avoid this problem in the future. Happy RV travels!!

    • Cathy Langstaff on September 1, 2021 at 11:13 AM
    • Reply

    Hi. We have a 24 foot 2000 Mallard trailer. It has worked in mint condition for us the past 7 years of owning it. We had a short power outage 2 nights ago and then yesterday we lost the use of all the kitchen area plugs. We have checked the breaker and fuse panel. Is there a surge protection button or switch located somewhere. We have not been able to locate one.

    1. Hi Cathy! Did you look for the GFCI in the bathroom or kitchen? That may have tripped and cut the power to the receptacles it protects.

    • Norman Florez on August 18, 2021 at 2:44 PM
    • Reply

    I have a new 2022 Thor 31C Hurricane 50 amp. I’m unable to use both portable Honda generators to work on my RV. 2000W and 3000W 30amp. The board monitor says Faulty shore power when connected. I then used a new 2022 3800W 30 amp Champion Gen. Still same problem of not allowing electrical power from portable Gen. to RV source. I plug the RV into a regular outdoor house 20amp plug and everything works great.

    1. Try grounding the generator. Some models require that. The RV is looking for an established ground.

    • Dexter on August 11, 2021 at 7:53 AM
    • Reply

    My main power switch “red” light wont turn off. I use to press it to turn it off and hear a clicking sound. That sound is no longer there and it will not turn off now. Please help! I just dont want that bulb to burn the plastic on the switch.

    1. 12 VDC Chassis battery switch on a motor home? If so, the switch may need to be replaced.

    • Cynthia on June 5, 2021 at 5:15 AM
    • Reply

    We have a class a 50amp toy hauler RV. We keep burning through our house batteries. Just recently we noticed that the negative wire for the power converter was not attached. Could that have been the reason for the other batteries going bad?
    Currently we have own the RV for 4 years and it never seemed like the converter worked, but I just recently found a switch on it to turn it on. So I guess it has been off this whole time.

    1. If the converter was not working that would affect the ability of the batteries to be charged.

    • Bill Edwards on May 31, 2021 at 7:07 AM
    • Reply

    Our EMS and 30 amp power cord were fried at a campground power pedestal. The campground maintenance person told us it was from “feedback” from our trailer. He based this on plugging his Camco surge protector into the receptacle and getting no faults. Is it possible for a trailer to give feedback to a pedestal and damage the cord and EMS? We had been plugged into the pedestal for 24 hours after having an RV tech install a 12v exhaust fan behind our fridge.

    1. Hi Bill!

      There are two things that would create that situation: too much load on the 30 amp system (exceeding 3600 watts of power while plugged in) and poor wiring in the RV park pedestal.

    • mike ellis on April 11, 2021 at 5:01 PM
    • Reply

    hi there i have a 1999 hitch hiker 2 fifth wheel and a 1998 roadrunner fifth both are 30 amp trailers and in the 1999 hitchhiker the outside porch lights do not work so i was woundering if there was a fuse panle some where i hae not looked and it has both brand new batties in it……………

    and in the 1998 roadrunner all my 110 outlets work but the one in the slide out i have checked all the gfi in the trailer there all good and i have no power to the inverter outlet and the brakers all good none are poped and so i was wounding bout that to

    thank you much

    1. Mike, there is a 12-volt fuse panel located somewhere in the RV. But, I don’t specifically know where. As far as the outlets that are not working, I would look for a reset button on the inverter.

    • Debra on April 9, 2021 at 5:00 PM
    • Reply

    Hello we have a 1996 south wind storm rv changed out the 2 6 volt golf cart batteries now we have no tv and no radio no steps to go in and out and no generator why is that? I am so troubled thank you for your time


    1. Did you hook the batteries up in series/parallel in order to create the necessary 12.6 static voltage?

    • Ashley on April 1, 2021 at 2:35 PM
    • Reply

    We Have a 2005 open Road 5th Wheel and since we have had it the vent fans one in the restroom and one over the bed along with two reading lights that are right above our heads in bed do not work we have checked the fuses that are in the fans and they seem to be fine. all the other lights in the trailer are working fine including the bathroom light any ideas ?

    1. Ashley, did you check the fuse that supports that circuit? The fuse panel where that is located will most likely be in the same area as your 120-volt circuit breaker panel.

    • HF Smith on March 23, 2021 at 10:44 PM
    • Reply

    Howard: I appreciate what you are doing . I just got a 2000 Coachman Santara class A and the user manuals are really useless manuals. The big issue is I cannot find things.

    Currently I have a water pump that is not working. I have no idea where it is. Its power will come from the coach fuse block and I have no idea where it is either.

    Georgie Boy sold out to Forrest River but gave them no information about what they had done prior to the buy-out so us early Coachmen owners are left hung out to dry.

    I can use all the help I can get.


    1. Hi Lin!

      If you don’t see the water pump in an outside storage or plumbing bay, it is probably located inside the RV behind or under an access panel. Look around where plumbing is located and see if you can find the access panel. Also, look by the location where the freshwater tank is located.

    • Jennifer Redding on March 13, 2021 at 1:10 PM
    • Reply

    What’s the procedure when the cord from my 5th wheel is plugged into my 2000 Honda generator and I want to use my AC unit or microwave and I start up my 5500 Onan? Is there a converter that bypasses the Honda generator? Or do I have to unplug from small generator and plug back into the main plug unto the 5th wheel? My 5th wheel has an actual outlet that the cord must be plugged into for the 5500 Onan to work. So I usually just have my 2000 Honda plugged in for lights ect, but when I want to use the AC or microwave I have to go and unplug from the small generator and plug it back into the 5th wheel. Am I missing something?]I have a 2018 PCW blazen. Thank you!

    1. No Jennifer, that sounds right. You don’t have a transfer switch in that unit. You are it.

    • Nancy L Hensher on December 27, 2020 at 1:46 AM
    • Reply

    I had to replace my old rv bathroom ven/fan with a new one. There were only 2 wires on the old . The new one has only 2 , one black, 1 white. On making the switch I have no power to the fan plus my porch light , the light over my stove & none in my bedroom lights. What did I do ? I rembered to turn off the power . I hooked the wires the way the were before. Somebody said something about ground wires but I don’t understand what that means. Can you please help?

    1. Nancy, have you checked your fuses to that circuit?

    • Ted on November 5, 2020 at 2:56 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 21ft class c rv. Last weekend I purchased a 2000 watt inverter and I hooked it to my batteries positive and negative and the separate ground lug on the inverter to the vehicles frame. As soon as I hooked up the ground to the frame the wire got hot and burned up into the inverter with smoke and all. The wire was 4 Guage ofc. What could be causing this? I cant attempt another inverter install until its fixed therefore I’ve got no power!

    1. Did you hook up the inverter based on the manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to grounding for that connection?

    • Kim on November 4, 2020 at 12:16 PM
    • Reply

    So if the park where I live had electrical problems at my box and the 30 and 50 amp plugs where both burned inside the power box and caused my cord going to my trailer to catch on fire then can it do damage to my electrical in my rv? I have lost 2 ac unit, 2 puck lights and now because I haven’t used it, my fireplace and my ground plug pops all the time and so does my breakers I’m on 50 amps

    1. If there are problems with the RV pedestal there certainly can be issues that could arise with the RV electrical system.

    • Brian on November 2, 2020 at 2:47 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, I have a 2009 Keystone Laredo 5th wheel. I am currently having an electrical issue. First off, The deep cycle batteries are fresh and fully charged, plugged inti a heavy duty extension cord, 30 amp outlet. Last time I had it plugged in next to the house, everything worked fine. Now , all that works is the ceiling fan, fireplace, and all 110 outlets. No power to the slides or awing, a/c unit, interior lights. My guess is my inverter is the problem. Your thoughts?

    1. Hi Brian!

      Your slideouts, awning, and interior lights operate off the 12 VDC power. If those are nor working, even though you say you have fresh batteries, there is still an issue. DO you have an inverter or a converter in the 5th wheel. Even if the batteries are fresh, some slides will not work unless plugged into shore power so the converter is charging the batteries to give them enough amp to run the motors. As far as your other AC circuits, I would start tracing voltage from the electrical panel, both in and out of each branch circuit that is problematic to see where voltage is lost.

    • Jay Mundinger on October 1, 2020 at 2:28 PM
    • Reply

    Great site as I’m a first time rv owner. Working through and electrical issue now. Cabin batteries power everything except the one place control panel that has no power as I connected the volt meter to the suggested pins to the wiring Thoughts as all fuses look good? Jay

    1. Hi Jay!

      Did you check the appropriate fuse for continuity with your voltmeter? Sometimes they look good but may not be. If the fuse is okay and there is no voltage at the harness that connects to the control panel, I would start tracing the wiring to see if there is a loose connection as it travels towards a power source.

        • Andy Harley on October 25, 2020 at 12:12 PM
        • Reply

        Got one for you. We’ve had our 5th wheel set up on property for 1 year. Got new home and electricians hooked up power from our service meter to the new home. During the process we still had the RV plugged in. There was a flicker then a spike in the power. Was setting at my desk and the box fan I had on went from 1,000 rpm to what seemd like 15,000 rpm briefly. We stayed in the rv for another 2 days things seemed normal. Now we went in to use the microwave and it will only come on if the air conditioner is turned on, and vise versa. The refer also will not work unless the AC is on. The fan is now only running at one high rpm speed. Not sure about hot water heater, yet. Maybe our inverter is fried and has fused every thing together? Is this possible? And how? No breakers ever tripped. Very confusing.
        Thanks for any help or suggestions you may offer.

        1. Sounds like a voltage spike! You may want to check your electrical panel to be sure nothing was fried. If your inverter is controlling your fridge then what you are describing makes sense. It may not work once unhooked from shore power. You might want to check your converter as well. If it is not charging your battery you will soon have 12VDC problems.

          Going forward you may want to be using an EMS unit to protect your RV against such issues.

      • Marie DesMarais on October 16, 2020 at 12:23 PM
      • Reply

      Hi Howard,
      We’ve taken our 2018 class c motorhome to 2 different dealerships in the last 2 months. Both say there is nothing wrong. Today we had our motorhome winterized and the man who did it, have had him for years and he did work at an rv place, told us something is wrong with our electrical system. Even though we had the motorhome plugged into our 15 amp home current, he could not get our interior lights to work or the water pump for the potable water. The house batteries were dead. (We’ve plugged the motorhome into
      many of our totally working home outlets with the same results).

      We could have fried something earlier this year when we found a burnt discoloration at our extension cord and the 15/30 amp adapter.

      However, when we drive the motorhome, the batteries become fully charged and everything works. Also, when we are plugged into 30 amp at an rv park, everything electrical works.

      Do you have any ideas as to what’s wrong? We would so appreciate your opinions. Thank you! Marie and Hap

      1. It sounds like the source and equipment you are plugging into at home needs to be verified for proper voltage, polarity, and grounding. A 15 amp circuit is not recommended for the RV. There are lots of things that want to run unless you have all branch circuit breakers off. Just the refrigerator and converter running could melt your extension cord. If you want to plug in at home get a qualified electrician that knows RVs to install a 30 amp plugin for you.

        • Catherine Elledge on October 24, 2020 at 6:05 PM
        • Reply

        Pilgrim Open Road 2005 Electric panel buzzing… no flipped breakers…however when I flip the converter (15amp) breaker off it stops. After leaving it off over night my batteries went dead I guess as the frig shut off. Is it the converter or the breaker? Lived in it for 5 years now… first time having an issue. I’m learning as I go… hope someone can give me some insight. Thanks in advance.

        1. Hi Catherine!

          It is cheaper to replace the breaker first to see if that is the problem. I suspect it is the converter, but start with the easy first and go from there.

    • Don on September 22, 2020 at 11:36 AM
    • Reply

    2008 Puma 18db has refrigerator issue. I first thought i had a level problem that caused refrig to immediately light CHECK lite and not to cool but when checking i was turning on a overhead light then finally realized that unless a overhead light was on the refrig CHECK light came on and when door opened the inside light was off like no AC, found this out when lights turned off at night that refrig quit working. we now have to keep a overhead light on at night. What could cause this interaction between AV and dc system?

    1. Hi Don!

      Here’s the thing, your lights in the ceiling are 12 volts. The light in the fridge operates on 12 volts as does the circuit board that controls the fridge assuming it is an RV refrigerator. I am surprised that they wired the fridge 12-volt power to a lighting circuit. See if you can find another 12-volt direct circuit to join the fridge to and that will solve your issue.

    • Charity on September 21, 2020 at 11:51 PM
    • Reply

    I recently purchased a 2011 Fleetwood Encounter. I have been having issues with powering my RV. The generator runs fine on its own. But when I plug it into the RV plug to power the RV, it will run for 2-3 minutes then shut down. I have more than enough fuel in the fuel tank, spark plugs are good, air filter is clean. I can’t figure out why this is happening.

    1. Is this for an external generator or the one in the RV? How many output watts is it?

    • Richard s Morgan on September 21, 2020 at 6:28 PM
    • Reply

    hi i have a 2008 keystone cougar when i turn on the air conditioner I get a hot skin condition .What would be the cause of this . Would there be a common problem

    1. Hi Richard!

      If the power supplied to the AC has no way back through the neutral wire, or ground if the neutral has failed, then that would tell me to check those two sources to see if you have good connections both in your electrical panel as well as in the AC unit on the roof.

      Start there and let us know what you find. These are serious issues when they occur!

    • Bonnie Kupp on September 16, 2020 at 9:06 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2005 Beaver Monterey. Arrived at park plugged in power. Half hour later clicking noise started coming from transfer switch. Stopped for a while and then started again and kept going. Unplugged power and had park check power at the post which was ok. Clicking starts when power connected from coach so left it unplugged. Any ideas why this is happening?

    1. Hi Bonnie!

      You may have an issue with your transfer switch. Try with the generator and see if it does the same thing.

    • john palmer on August 29, 2020 at 11:12 AM
    • Reply

    rv was plugged into 110 volt shore power. when I plugged tow vwhicle into 7 pin connector, melted aux. power socket 4 and melted wires under tow vehicle. nothing said not to plug into both at same time???

    1. Hi John!

      I am thinking you may have an RV Hot Skin condition. AC voltage is leaking to the chassis and increased voltage to your plug melting the wires.

    • Troy on August 16, 2020 at 1:42 PM
    • Reply

    2001 Coleman Fleetwood pop-up
    The running lights come on the trailer after disconnecting vehicle and plugging in 115v at home or at camp. The lights might be on for hours or go out by themselves when they feel like it. Bad ground somewhere? The first time I plugged in it was plugged in for weeks and never did it. Then went camping and it started.
    Any thoughts?

    1. Hi Troy!

      I would start with the 7-pin cord and work back into the trailer. it is a short in the 12-volt chassis system.

        • Troy on August 18, 2020 at 12:37 AM
        • Reply

        Thanks ! I’ll start the search

        • Steve on August 28, 2020 at 6:29 PM
        • Reply

        We are plugged into the shore box. Powere flickered on and off 2 times. Power was on for about 20 seconds and then off. Now, nothing. Neighbors say they have power. What could the problem be? Have been here for 5 days. Everything was fine until now

        1. Hi Steve!

          Reset the breaker at the pedestal. If it does not let power through then it needs to be replaced (check with a voltmeter) If power passes through check your main breaker in the RV.

          • Sabrina M Lovejoy on September 5, 2020 at 8:16 PM
          • Reply

          I have a 1995 coachmen Catalina my uncle plugged it in to a 220v and heard 3 pops it was unplugged right away found out one thing that popped was my converter so I replaced it and my air conditioner heater and clock on microwave doesn’t work can I get some help on this please

            • Howard on September 10, 2020 at 7:44 AM

            It is likely that anything inside that needs electricity to work, and that has electronics in it, will need to be replaced. All circuit boards subjected to 220 volts will no longer be functional.

    • Allison on August 13, 2020 at 9:32 AM
    • Reply

    We plugged in a toaster and seem to have blew a fuse but the fuses are all fine. The ac and microwave don’t work and we can’t figure out the problem

    1. Hi Allison!

      I would check two things: the breakers in the electrical panel that controls those circuits, and the GFCI that also protects the kitchen outlets. The breakers may look fine but may need to be flipped off and then back on again. If you have a voltmeter, you could check the voltage out of the breaker to be sure that it has not gone bad.

    • Pam on August 3, 2020 at 7:17 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 29ft Thor windsport. The water heater will not work in electric or propane. I used my volt meter and the water heater is not getting any power. I have already checked all the fuses. I can not find where the relay is. I called Thor and they said it sounds like a loose wire in the relay. Unfortunately he didn’t know where the relay was so I could check. Any ideas?

    1. Hi Pam!

      Is this an Atwood, Suburban, or Truma water heater?

    • Eric on June 26, 2020 at 2:45 PM
    • Reply

    Hi, I’m in an RV park and the power keeps going out, about every 7 minutes, for a couple of seconds each time. I have 2 airxcel units. Models 48254c869 – 15,000 Btu’s and 48253c969 – 13,500 Btu’s. Both are 2019 model year. Do you know if these units would be protected from the power losses, or am I risking damage to the compressors, by continuing to run them?

    1. Hi Eric!

      Those power glitches are probably not doing your AC units any good. Does this happen to everyone in the park or just you? If not then maybe there is a problem with your pedestal.

      • Dennis on September 22, 2020 at 6:18 AM
      • Reply

      I have a 31′ travel trailer and my ceiling lights only in the living room stop working. I put a fuse in the breaker box and it keeps blowing fuses. I tried new switch and still blowing fuses. Have any suggestions

      1. Hi Dennis!

        It sounds like you have a short in that circuit. You may need to get a voltmeter and check wire continuity on your positive and negative wires to see if you have a crossover somewhere in that circuit. You may also have a problem with the wiring behind the fuse box.

    • bill on June 22, 2020 at 9:51 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2006 Ragen fifth wheel toy hauler. I cannot get 110v power in the unit from either the generator or the shoreline power. The microwave and a/c unit was working earlier in the day off the generator, and off shoreline power before we went camping. It was when we returned that we could not get power to the a/c or microwave from either source. Any help you could give us would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Hi Bill!

      The device that controls power from the generator and the shore power is the transfer switch. If that is not working properly power will not be able to enter the coach. If this is just isolated circuits I would suggest using a voltmeter to trace power from the electrical panel to see if there is voltage to those appliances.

    • Kelly on June 21, 2020 at 6:24 PM
    • Reply

    We just bought a 1990 Fleetwood Jamboree Rallye. Our first time out. Everything worked fine when we left the house. We couldn’t use the plug ins along the way, but we figured you weren’t supposed to unless you were running generator or plugged in. When we stopped for the night, our plug ins didn’t work. Brought it home, plugged in and still can’t get it to work. I checked fuses, nothing. Notices the GCF wasn’t working, so my husband replaced it. Still didn’t work. Any suggestions?? Also my husband tried to charge his phone in cigarette lighter. Could that have blown a fuse in panel under steering wheel and would that have affected the plug ins? Thank yoy

    1. Hi Kelly!

      I would take a voltmeter and start at
      the electrical panel where the breaker feeds those receptacles. Trace to see if you have voltage. I think you will find your problem doing it that way.

    • Vince on March 29, 2020 at 5:04 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard
    My name is Vince, I live in my sisters R.V.
    I have a couple of electrical problems.
    (1) the washer and dryer are on the same circuit breaker as the fire place in the living room. The circuit breaker is not tripped but neither one are working.
    (2) the furnace quit working the other night. The thermostat lights up but the blower motor does not come on.
    How would you diagnose these two problems.

    1. Hi Vince!

      The first place I would start with the W/D and fireplace is to take a plug tester and test the plugs these unit are plugged into. That is the only way to know if it is the appliance or the electrical circuit they are plugged into.

      For the furnace, I would check to see that you have enough 12 VDC power to run the furnace. Check your battery voltage to be sure you have at least 12.6 VDC. From there check your electrical connections at the furnace.

      Let us know how it turns out!

    • Jen on February 25, 2020 at 8:12 AM
    • Reply

    The jack stabilizer alarm is on – how can we disconnect until we can have the jack fixed. We are on the road. 2016 Thor class c 25 ft

    1. Hi Jen!

      In your 12-volt fuse panel, there may be a fuse for the alarm that you can remove to silence it. The fuse panel may be inside the RV, or it may be outside.

    • Jill on February 3, 2020 at 5:01 PM
    • Reply

    We just bought a 1999 30 foot Fleetwood Flair. Brought it home, plugged it in and started working on refurbishing. After a week, lights started dimming. A day later, we have no interior lights. For some reason, outlets work. It had the original batteries so we replaced them—no change. Took the converter out. It was fried. Replaced it and still nothing. Now it won’t even start. We are absolutely beside ourselves. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Jill!

      I am sure that given its age that modifications have been made to the electrical system. If you have a voltmeter start at the house batteries and chase the voltage from there into the RV. You should be reading 12.6 volts at the batteries if they are good. Check all house fuses and power into the 12-volt fuse panel. Start there and let us know what you find.

    • Lisa Sills on January 27, 2020 at 11:56 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard and Pam
    I am very new to having an RV, we have a 2019 Jayco Eagle RSTS, and what we have happening is our lights keep going dim to completely out. Now if we push on the fuses everything goes back fine but we have to keep doing this and it is more and more frequent. Any suggestions?

    Thanks so much

    1. Hi Lisa!

      It sounds like you may have some loose wiring in the fuse panel area. I would suggest checking all fuse connections and the wiring to them to see if there is a loose connection.

    • Mike Lee on January 15, 2020 at 10:03 PM
    • Reply

    Hi we have a 2018 Jayco Eagle 355 MBQS.
    With a residential refrigerator. Everything has worked fine the last 2 years. I plugged in a griddle to the plug beside my stove. As it heated up the power went out. I’m sure it was because of the power draw. Now the refrigerator, tv, an a few outlets along that wall will not work. They have low voltage. I also think all these that are out are associated with my inverter. Xantrex freedom Inverter. My inverter has no GFCI on it. The one in the RV I reset. A breaker was tripped and I reset it and tested them all. what should I check next?

    1. There should also be a breaker to the inverter. Did you check that? There may be a thermal overload fuse for the inverter if it is set up as a pass-through circuit to the fridge.

        • Carol on April 4, 2020 at 12:48 PM
        • Reply

        I am having a similar issue. I’ve had no issues except for occasional breaker trips and learned how to not overload. I was using an electric tea kettle I’ve used many time with just the TV on and half of the electricity went out. Now just a few outlets, the heat pumps, and convection oven work. Most outlets and TVs do not work. So I think one legs is out, but not sure what exactly that means or how to fix it. Any suggestions? Thank you!

        1. Hi Carol!

          The best way to trace electricity is to have a voltmeter and trace voltage from the breaker panel to the affected circuits. This is not something that should be attempted by anyone that has not done electrical work before because having the cover off the 120-volt electrical panel when the shore power is plugged in can be dangerous. But it is also necessary to be able to trace circuits.

          The quickest way to try and solve the problem is replace the breaker that controls those circuits and see if the breaker is bad. They can fail. If that is not the issue, then tracing voltage is the next option.

            • Rich on June 5, 2020 at 12:07 AM

            Hi, so enjoy your comments and teachings.
            2002 Allegro Bay, 8.1 Votex Cheve.
            Problem: House batts only charge when running engine. Ck’d output at converter/charger and get 13.6 volts. Ck’d power at batt charger solenoid on fire wall and get 13.5 volts there. House batts are new but will not stay charged from shore power or generator. Don’t know where to go from here. . Any suggestions.?
            Thanks, Rich at

            • Howard on June 6, 2020 at 10:11 AM

            Hi Rich!

            With shore power plugged in, what is your DC voltage reading at the batteries?

    • Kyle Dunnam on January 8, 2020 at 6:47 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, I have a fifth wheel that has been sitting without power for about 1 year. I went the other day and put a generator on the unit 50
    Amp and the ac units will not run the refrigerator, the fireplace and some plugs. Could this be due to the batteries being fully discharged?? If so how do I check and fix this problem?

    1. Hi Kyle!

      What is your house battery voltage right now? If the battery is below 12 volts that may be part of your problem. As long as your are hooked to 50 amp power, and the converter is working, it may bring your battery back to life.

      As far as the plugs, a GFCI may be tripped and just needs to be reset, or one of the branch circuits has a tripped breaker.

      Check it out and let us know what you find.

    • Andrea Selvera on January 4, 2020 at 9:07 PM
    • Reply

    Hey Howard!
    We just bought our first motorhome a 1999 pace arrow. Have an issue with the lights. All the lights but two on the slight out won’t work but if you switch to auxiliary battery they work but the bedroom lights don’t. Your advice would be great full thanks!

    1. Hi Andrea!

      When you say “if you switch to auxiliary battery they work”, which battery are you referring to? What’s the situation when you are plugged into shore power versus not plugged in? How is your fuse for the bedroom light circuit?

    • Tammy Beavers on November 19, 2019 at 12:47 PM
    • Reply

    Hi, we are new RVers. Purchased a 1997 Itasco motor home. We purchased 2 new batteries but are finding something keeping them drained. Even when we turn the switch off. It has just been parked at a mechanics shop. He was not certain what was draining the 2 brand new batteries. We are trying to figure this out and hopefully sell this RV and purchase a class C. This one is huge and scares me!?

    1. Hi Tammy!

      When you say the batteries are draining can you clarify what voltage you are reading from the new batteries in that state and after what period of time?

    • Patty on November 11, 2019 at 9:59 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 2008 Forest River Cedar Creek 34′ fifth wheel, 50 amp. I lost power to all of my outlets in my bedroom, bathroom , and kitchen. The GFCI has been checked and replaced just for good measure. The electrician has checked the 15 amp breaker, all outlets replaced all outlets. He has checked coverter. Inverter might be bad but it is only for refrigerator when not plugged in and on the road. He has checked the fuse panel, checked all wires behind breaker box. Breaker is a double 15 am breaker. One side runs fridge and other side runs outlets. No problems with fridge. Also ceiling light and fan also stopped working. He checked them out and they were good. Dont think they stopped working at the same time as outlets though. I think the stopped working a few weeks before. My electrician is thinking he will need to start taking out wall panels and ceiling. Any ideas at all would be appreciated. Batteries were showing charged. I dont want my walls ripped into. Also, I am living full time in this RV and I have a 100 amp meter service at the pole and the Pedestal is 50 amp service at RV

    1. Hi Patty!

      Did the electrician check voltage from the load side of the breaker to the first receptacle in the circuit to see if there was voltage at the wiring coming into the receptacle? Instead of ripping out walls continuity of the wiring from receptacle to receptacle could also be checked.

    • Ann White on October 26, 2019 at 10:32 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard!
    I have a perplexing one for you! I recently purchased a 2017 Lakota Charger Living Quarters horse trailer. It has a 13,500 Dometic ac. When plugged into shore power it runs fine. (although it did pop a campground breaker in over 100 degree heat). I bought a new Westinghouse 4500 inverter generator. It overloads as soon as the compressor comes on. Took it to a reputable trailer dealer and their tech said that it must be an internal problem with the generator. The generator runs my friend’s trailer with the same air fine. I went ahead and returned the generator and got a new one. Same problem. Now what?

    1. Hi Ann!

      From the information that you have shared, the only conclusion that I can come up with is the problem is with the AC unit. I would check the starter capacitor and evaluate for possible replacement. When the AC compressor first kicks on, it draws more amps till it settles in. 120-volt shore power can handle the excess load most times (you did mention tripping the breaker once) but generators when hit with a sudden excess load like a compressor kicking on, will shudder under load or even kick-off.

      There are numerous videos online to test the compressor capacitor. Be careful as the capacitor must be discharged for safety.

    • Gene on October 8, 2019 at 8:51 PM
    • Reply

    Hopefully you can help us out. We are senior citizens with not much electrical knowledge. We have our 5th wheel Jayco on a permanent site. We discovered that our battery had blown out and we replaced it with a new battery last week . Now coming back to the camper our water heater did not work and our AC did not work. We checked the breakers and the fuses and they seemed to be fine. We had called for help to hook up the battery and we connected the white wire to negative and the others to the positive. The battery seems to be fine. Do you have any help for us please?

    1. Hi Gene!

      If I were there I would take a voltmeter, check the battery voltage, and then trace that back to the 12-volt fuse panel to be sure voltage is available to each branch circuit, especially the water heater and the AC unit. Fuses may appear okay but the only way to know is to check continuity of each one with a voltmeter.

      If your battery blew out it is possible your converter is bad, so putting a new battery in will solve the problem for a few days, but if the battery is not being charged by the converter then the voltage will drop to the point where the 12-volt control boards of appliances will not work due to low voltage.

      I hope that helps!

    • Kerrin on September 30, 2019 at 4:03 PM
    • Reply

    Hello! We have a 2011 Durango by KZ 3557 5th wheel. We lost power to the TV, fireplace, fridge and a few outlets. We have checked all breakers and GFI. The GFI in the bathroom works (tests and resets with no issues). The RV repair place has told us it will be a minimum of 5 weeks until they can come check it out. We are full time as of right now and need to resolve this issue sooner than later. We have scoured the cabinets, outside, and everywhere we can look and there is not another GFI (even removed the fireplace). If there is any ideas you have please let me know. Thanks!

    1. Hi Kerrin!

      Do you have a voltmeter? I would start at the electrical panel, with the cover off (be careful!!), and use the voltmeter to check if you have AC voltage going in and out of the branch circuits that feed power to the affected areas. Circuit breakers do fail. If that is okay then you are going to have to chase wiring from the electrical panel to where it terminates at the affected areas.

      Check that out and let us know how it goes!

    • Jay on September 29, 2019 at 1:20 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2006 Chevy Express RV chassis with a 2007 Fleetwood Jamobree coach.
    I was having intermittent tail light & all running lights not working. Now I have no tail lights or running lights. The brake lights do not seem to be affected.
    Checked fuses…..and seem to have power to the brown wire to the rear bumper….now what? Awaiting your suggestions

    1. Hi Jay!

      How are the light fixtures themselves? Any corrosion? Lose lamps or connections? Also, you could have a loose or corroded wire connection somewhere in the loop.

    • albert pain on September 24, 2019 at 8:53 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, my problem with my 2003 Rexhall American Clipper is that I have lost my 12 volts to my radio, backup camera, and starting power to my generator. I have checked all fuses and they are all good. I was wondering if you knew if they were on a common circuit from a relay? I am scratching my head and can’t figure out where the power comes from. Your expertise would be much abliged.
    Thanks, Terry

    1. Hi Albert!

      From my past experience, I can say that chassis fuses are elusive. There is usually more than just one fuse box. Have you found them all? Our best source has been the manufacturer’s electrical schematics to see exactly where the fuse/fuses are that control those three items. If there is a relay of some kind, then those schematics will help you find that as well.

      Happy hunting!!

    • Brian on September 5, 2019 at 9:44 AM
    • Reply

    I bought a class C RV (30 amp) last fall. It needed some work, which I have chipped away at, but the most frustrating problem is one I can’t figure out. When we are plugged into shore power, the AC will cut out, microwave stops working and the lights dim. It happens at seemingly random times. I believe this is the converter reducing the voltage due to a low battery, but the previous owner said he had just put a brand new battery in it.

    1. Hi Brian!

      Does this happen when you have been plugged into shore power at different locations, not just one?

        • Brian on September 5, 2019 at 3:12 PM
        • Reply

        Yes. It has happened at home and at various campgrounds.

    2. Hi Brian!

      The first place I would start at is to look for a loose connection, or possibly a few, between the shore power cord and the inside electrical panel. Pull the cover off the electrical box and be sure all wires are tight. Be sure the breakers are secure. Also be sure your 12-volt fuse connections are secure as well. If you can get to your converter also check its connections as well.

      Be sure you are not exceeding your 3,600 watts of allotment on a 30 amp service at any one time. An AC unit and a microwave on at the same time with the converter running could certainly create long term electrical issues. So, check your wiring and connections, see where things are at and let us know what you find!

        • Brian on September 6, 2019 at 10:58 AM
        • Reply

        I was going to ask this in a separate thread, but since it may be related, I’ll lay it out there. We were loading up to leave on a trip and when I opened one of the bottom hatches to load camp chairs, I got a mild shock–presumably 12V. I have not been able to recreate the situation so I can start pulling fuses to locate the circuit since then. I’ll look for obvious frayed or loose wires, but if it’s buried in a wall or under the floor, what’s the best way to chase down a short?

        1. Hi Brian!

          We call that an RV hot skin. It may actually be coming from the 120 volt electrical system. Take a volt meter and touch the read lead to the latch and the black lead to ground. If there is voltage there in excess of five volts I would be concerned!

          To find the circuit creating the problem, turn off all breakers and see if it goes away. If so, turn on each breaker separately and see which branch circuit creates the voltage at that latch. Then you can go after the wiring that may be creating the problem.

          Let us know what you find!

            • Brian on September 9, 2019 at 4:04 PM

            Unfortunately, it only happened once. I have never been able to replicate the situation. This is the only time in my life I’ve ever wished I could get shocked (except those little electrodes the chiropractor uses, but I digress)!

            • Howard on September 9, 2019 at 7:24 PM

            Okay! If it happens again you now have a way to check to see how much voltage is there and how to fix it.

    • Mark Buechter on September 1, 2019 at 7:48 PM
    • Reply

    I have had a 1989 Fleetwood Jamboree Rallye for about 7 years, and it seems to eat batteries. We only use this RV about 15-20 nights a year but every year I’m having to replace the “house” battery. Is something wrong with my converter? Or am I doing something wrong? The system does not have a master ON/OFF switch, and I leave the battery connected while it’s in storage. Thanks, Mark

    1. Hi Mark!

      While your RV is plugged into shore power, measure the voltage at the house battery. If it reads 13.2 volts, or more, then your converter is working. Even if the battery has no intrinsic load while in storage, the voltage will still drop over time if uncharged, but it should not go below a level where you should have to replace it every year.

      Let us know how it goes!

    • Ben Hamelin on August 22, 2019 at 3:20 PM
    • Reply

    I have a classA , Diesel 40 ft Damon Escaper 2004..
    My electrical problem is that I have electrical power to my main double 50Amp (squareD) breaker so my air cond, and washer/dryer and inverter works but I am not getting any electrical current to , micro wave, wall outlets etc, futher more my sub breaker disconnect has no power I even removed the breaker to see if I was getting any current to that breaker , who I figure gives the juice to the household breakers and I have no electricity entering that double 30amp breaker.
    Can you help me out.

    1. Hi Ben!

      Are you testing the voltage with a voltmeter? I don’t know the setup of your panel but it almost sounds like one side of the electrical panel is not energized from the two-pole 50 amp breaker?

    • Sacha on August 6, 2019 at 9:23 PM
    • Reply

    Hello! We just purchased a 1999 fifth wheel that was always plugged in to the electrical system at a trailer park. We brought the trailer home, lowered the front legs and moved out the 3 slides without a problem. But there is no power to lights, fridge, etc. Everything will work from our generator only. Is this a converter problem?

    1. Hi Sacha!

      What is the current voltage reading on the house battery/batteries? If the batteries are weak even with the converter operational you could still have a problem. But, the converter may also be the problem. Check battery voltage with the shore power plugged in and not plugged in. There should be a higher reading with the shore power on, and at least a half volt.

        • Sacha on August 7, 2019 at 4:17 PM
        • Reply

        Hi Howard,
        We are using a fully charged, brand new battery. The slide outs and the front jacks continue to work and have power, but nothing else, no lights, etc. We have tested the reset switch and there is power going through the relay.

        1. Hi Sacha!

          You say things work when the generator is used. Is that an internal generator mounted in the 5th wheel? It worked when plugged into shore power, and with a generator, but not with just the batteries for the internal systems? If the batteries are new, that makes no sense. Check your 12-volt power at the internal fuse panel without the generator running.

            • Sacha on August 8, 2019 at 5:03 PM

            Hi Howard, we are not using an internal generator. Yes, everything works perfectly with shore power and plugged into our generator, but nothing except the slide outs and front jacks work when using just the new batteries.
            There is absolutely no power at the fuse panel when the generator is not running or the trailer is not plugged in.

            • Howard on August 8, 2019 at 9:38 PM

            Hi Sacha!

            Based on what you are telling me there is a disconnect between the batteries (if they are reading 12.6 volts) and the inside 12-volt fuse panel when not plugged in. I would get a voltmeter and trace DC voltage into the RV from the batteries, through the converter, and towards the fuse panel. Somewhere in that line of power, you have an issue.

          • Bill terry on December 29, 2020 at 3:09 PM
          • Reply

          Howard, I have a2008 newmar essex all electric coach. I had a new magnum 2812 inverter installed yesterday and now have no ac power. The magnum remote says low battery. I talked to magnum technical support and was told the inverter will not start until I have 8or9 volts power. Checked the batteries and they all show between 7.3 and 6.2 volts. Checked the inverter and have no power to it. All batteries are new agm’s, purchased from Napa about four months ago. We have some dc power but no ac power inside coach. Any ideas? Thanks.

            • Howard on December 29, 2020 at 8:12 PM

            Bill, are the batteries hooked up properly in series and parallel so that the output voltage is about 12.6 volts?

    • Julie on August 5, 2019 at 7:59 AM
    • Reply

    I turned the microwave on last night, which have done many times and after about 20 seconds we lost power to the entire 5th wheel. We checked and there is power to the pole. We also checked the breakers and GFI’s. The lights will work from the battery, but that is all.

    Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Julie!

      What type of RV do you have, motorhome or towable? Is it a 50 amp or 30 amp electrical service?

    • Geoff on August 2, 2019 at 1:47 AM
    • Reply


    Can I get some help. We have a travel trailer that seems to be having a power problem. when on batteries only, everything works as it should however, as soon as we try to pull in the awing, it struggles. but the biggest issue comes when we hit the slide in button, as soon as this is pressed, all power cuts out. I have replaced the batteries (100% charged) and checked all fuses, relays and reviewed the wiring in the fuse panel to make sure nothing was being jumped and lastly checked all the wiring at the front of the unit. All appears to be good.
    Any suggestions as to what my issue maybe?

    1. Hi Geoff!

      What is the voltage at the batteries when you are unplugged from shore power? What about the voltage of the batteries when you are plugged in? Does the slideout quit when you are plugged into shore power or does it operate normally?

    • Sharon on July 21, 2019 at 1:03 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,
    Thanks for your reply. My husband said he could not get a reading on any of the breakers. We just received a new 15 & 20 amp, so will replace those and let you know the outcome.

    1. Thanks, Sharon! Let us know how it turns out!

    • Sharon on July 19, 2019 at 5:14 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,
    We have a 2004 Hitchhiker II 34.5 RLTG 5th wheel. The 110 outlets in the slides, the rear of the trailer and the bedroom & washer/dryer are not working. Those with the GFI’s in the kitchen & bathroom, and outside plug by front door work. My husband has replaced all the recepticles, and 2 15 amp breakers in right side of panel. We have checked numerous sites and read your posts, but don’t know what else to check. We cannot find any other GFI’s outside. All other electrical is working. We are plugged into a 30 amp box in an RV park. Any ideas where to go from here?

    1. Hi Sharon!

      Is there voltage coming out of the 15 amp breakers that were replaced? Using a voltmeter I would check that at the electrical panel. If voltage is leaving the breaker then you are going to have to trace the wiring to the slideout and areas where you have lost power. There may be a junction box under the frame of the RV that has a severed connection, or perhaps there is a break in a wire.

    • Scott Schaffer on July 15, 2019 at 12:59 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 2004 Dutchman Sport that we bought new. A few years after we bought the trailer we noticed that after pulling the trailer the truck battery would die. It will charge back up and did just fine as long as we didn’t pull the trailer again. As soon as we do another trip, it does the same thing. It does this for a few years then we had to replace the alternator on the truck. The mechanic says it was just the alternator on the truck that died but I have replaced 3 alternators in 2 different trucks and the same issue happens. The only constant now is the trailer. Any ideas on the possible problems or where to start looking.

    1. Hi Scott!

      Is the truck alternator a high output one? What is the condition and age of your truck battery?

    • virgil handlon on July 13, 2019 at 4:21 PM
    • Reply

    i have elect coming out of all the breakers but the only thing in camper that works is microwave ,no lights or the refg or ac .

    1. Hi Virgil!

      The systems you mentioned require 12-volts to run the lights, fridge, and AC. The fridge and AC have a 12-volt control board that controls their operation. Do you have 12-volt power? If so, what is your battery voltage?

    • Scott Carlson on July 7, 2019 at 10:10 PM
    • Reply


    Say I have a 2003 Coleman Tent trailer with power problems. I’ve replaced (problems existed before replacement) power converter, propane leak detector, deep cycle battery, and small circuit breaker just off battery. The lights work off shore power but not off battery. I get approximately 3 volts at lights inside trailer when using battery power. I’ve jumped a wire from battery pos to red input of converter . . . same issue. I jumped a wire from neg to white neutral on converter…. same issue. I cleaned ground wire and still cannot get/find issue. Please help.

    1. Hi Scott!

      What battery voltage do you get right at the battery terminals with the shore power on and the shore power off?

        • Scott Carlson on July 11, 2019 at 6:47 PM
        • Reply

        Hey Howard…thanks for the reply

        I have 12.8V on the battery terminals with and without shore power when all wires hooked up.

        I’ve also tested the wire coming off the battery at the circuit breaker just off the battery and followed that into the trailer where it goes into power converter. . .always 3.3ish volts. I do notice a little greenish corrosion on the connectors for that wire (the white wire loom connectors near trailer tongue as well as near converter). As above, I replaced the converter as well as the propane leak detector bc the detector kept beeping – – kinda faintly – – last year.

        When on shore, all reads fine so I cannot think what would be wrong from the battery backwards.



        1. Hi Scott!

          Your converter should be the first issue you address before investigating further. 12.8 volts is good for a battery that is not hooked to shore power. When connected to shore power you should read between 13.4 to 14.2 volts as the converter should be operating and charging the battery. Clean up the corrosion, check that the converter is operational and all fuses are okay and see what voltage you have at your 12-volt fuse panel that feeds all branch circuits.

    • Lisa Headley on June 30, 2019 at 7:13 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard
    I have a 2010 montana 5th wheel while its hooked up to 115v at home it trips the gcfi after about 24hrs. Also while we were camping and hooked up to 50 amps running ac, tv and lights they all went out and came back on right away a few times the last 2 days (which was hot 90’s). What do you think is causing it?

    1. Hi Lisa!

      The first place I would start looking is for a loose wire connection between the shore power cord plug head connection all the way to the inside 120-volt electrical panel. You may have either a loose hot or neutral wire somewhere.

    • barry a barrett on June 25, 2019 at 5:24 PM
    • Reply

    06 Monaco Diplomat, Cummins 400 ISL. The Alt chg light and bell came on. New altenator changed last week because dash gauge only showed 12 amps being put out and light/bell were on. Everything was fine for 200 miles. Light/bell came back on and wont stop. Dash gauge putting out 13.4 amps when engine running. House batteries 6 mo ths old, tested individually at 7.2, 7.2, 7.4 and 7.4 volts. Chassis batteries are 6 mo ths old and tested at 14.4 and 14.6 volts. Everything else is working fine, just the bell and light are constantly on. Not sure what to check next. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Barry!

      Did you install the new alternator?

    • Randall B. Howard on June 14, 2019 at 10:30 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard. A strange problem here. Only started after I changed the oil in my Emerald gen set. Generator acts as if there is low voltage to starter switch, requiring several jogs to start. Then only runs with switch held down, dying if switch is released. BUT if I plug shore cable into my small running Honda, it starts up and runs like normal. Everything seems to be running fine, but no matter how long I leave the Onan running, just as soon as I turn it off, it goes back to the original problem. Thanks!

    1. Hi Randall!

      Okay, two issues: you just changed the oil and shore power.

      Since the oil change did you accidently hit a wire that has created this situation. It is interesting when you remove shore power and provide another source you are fine. I would check the pedestal you are plugging into for proper voltage, grounding, etc. Your 12-volt system is used to start the generator. How is your battery voltage? Is your converter functioning properly? Weak batteries and a weak converter could make it difficult to get the generator started.

    • Jim on June 13, 2019 at 5:17 PM
    • Reply

    Hey Howard! I have a 2013 Bighorn 5th that loses 12volt to the kitchen lights and fridge in wet, windy weather. Never blows a fuse and it all comes back a day or two after the storm. All other 12 volt lights and fans etc away from the kitchen continue to work. I saw somewhere that the fridge electrical panel behind the cover outside could be the culprit?

    1. Hi Jim!

      The only thing that I can think of since you mentioned it is water related is that wherever the water intrusion is located it is adding resistance to that 12-volt circuit and cutting out, or there are rusted connections that are contributing to the cause. Have you checked for wet areas around the fridge area after a rainstorm? It could also be from a sealant issue on the roof.

        • Jim on June 18, 2019 at 2:46 PM
        • Reply

        I haven’t been able to find any obviously wet areas, or even damp. But it’s happened again. Big rainstorm overnight and no 12v power to the middle slides. The rest of the rig is fine. No change if I pull the slides in either. I was hoping to see a flicker or something. It’s not a dead short or there’d be a blown fuse. Love these intermittent issues!

        1. Hi Jim!

          This is one of these “scratch your head issues.” Kind of like flushing the toilet and the TV goes off.

          If the issue is in the slideouts, and we have a 12-volt issue, and the wiring enters the outside slide walls from the underside, let’s look there. Have you investigated what is going on underneath the slide out where the wiring enters the slide box?

          Have you tried taking a hose to simulate the rain, and focus on certain areas to see if you can isolate the problem?

    • Bob on June 12, 2019 at 6:17 PM
    • Reply

    Hi we have a 05 timber lodge (used)and we plug the camper in to a 30 amp generator and The Only thing that works is all the Plugs and the microwave? We are new to this does this sound common?

    1. Hi Bob!

      If your appliances are not working then you need to check the 12-volt house battery. RV appliances need 12 volts in order for the control boards to function and turn them on.

        • Bob on June 13, 2019 at 5:57 PM
        • Reply

        Ok we got a new batt and put it on today and now only plugs, microwave, and one slide out have power but nothing else!?
        No lights, no a/c, no fridge etc. I feel like giving up on this Sucker!

        1. Have you checked your 12-volt fuses, Bob? They may be located near your 120-volt electrical panel.

            • Bob on June 13, 2019 at 6:55 PM

            Yes don’t see any blown fuses.

            • Howard on June 13, 2019 at 7:17 PM

            In cases like this Bob, I take a voltmeter and start at the batteries and check for voltage to the 12-volt fuse panel. If you have voltage there, but no voltage leaving then it’s either a fuse issue or loose connections. Also, with the RV plugged in you should be measuring over 13 volts as the converter should be charging the batteries. If not then you also have a converter issue and the battery will die again.

            • Bob on June 13, 2019 at 10:12 PM

            Thank you Howard! We will check those things out Tomorrow!

            • Howard on June 14, 2019 at 10:40 AM

            Keep us posted, Bob!

    • Noel W Chadwick on June 5, 2019 at 3:15 PM
    • Reply

    I have a problem with 1996 Class C 29′ MinnieWinnie. 12 volt system is not operating (except the generator). I replaced the battery disconnect relay and solenoid but did not help. Just purchased new batteries as old ones had a dead short this spring after being stored all winter.

    1. Hi Noel!

      If you have 12.6 volts of battery power and you have nothing in the 12-volt system that is working in the RV, then I would be checking the fuses to be sure they are all functional. Report back and supply us with a little more info if you can.

        • Noel W Chadwick on June 5, 2019 at 9:34 PM
        • Reply

        Fuses all ok. If I plug into 110 volt everything works fine – both DC and AC. Had a friend (retired engineer – smarther than me) have a look – used tester, etc. Can’t find anything wrong. 🙁

        1. Hi Noel!

          Using a voltmeter, is there 12.6 volts at the 12-volt fuse panel? This would be measuring the voltage coming into the 12-volt fuse panel.

    • John on June 5, 2019 at 12:45 AM
    • Reply

    Hey Howard I’m having a real power issue with my camper. It’s a 2009 puma 26rlss bumper camper. And I keep randomly blowing the 30amp fuse at the breaker box before plug in. I’ve changed my shore power plug end. The plug in the receptical. Put in a new battery and put in new battery terminals. I thought it might have been the battery because the convertor fan started to pulsate before I had this issue. But alas, it didnt fix my issue. With my main breaker on and my gfi breaker on it pops the fuse. Took about 4 hours before it popped. Then I tried the main and the gen breakers on and it tripped within 20 minutes. It’s been on for about an hour now with only the main breaker on and still hasn’t tripped…. yet… any tips/tricks would be lovely. Thank you!

    1. Hi John!

      I am not sure if you are referring to the 12-volt system, the 120-volt system, or both. I am thinking the 120-volt system. If you have all the branch circuits off and the 30 amp breaker does not trip, then you need to find the branch circuit that does trip it. So, flip each one on individually and see if that immediately trips the main breaker. Your 30 amp breaker may just need to be replaced. With all that you have going on this may be a process of elimination thing.

    • Cathy on June 4, 2019 at 12:28 AM
    • Reply

    Hi…I have a 32′ Jag bumper pull 2006…i am having a fuse issue. It looks as if, accoding to labeled box the fuse for converter keeps blowing. I pulled rhe double breaker out and replaced bac and now both fuses blow immediately when main power is flipped on. I have no cabin lights, working refrigerator or radio. I currently live in it due to loosing everything in hurricane harvey. I am currently pulled into 30 amp line to house.

    1. Hi Cathy!

      Sorry to hear that! It sounds like your converter may have issues. Have you replaced the fuses with the exact same amp rating as were originally being used? One thing you could do for now is to turn off the 120-volt converter branch circuit and place a battery charger on the battery to get you back up and running.

      Your problem may be the converter or it may be a short in that circuit.

    • Daphne Gilpin on May 16, 2019 at 12:53 PM
    • Reply

    Thanks for explaining that we should try to understand the difference between volts, amps, and watts so we don’t overload the breaker. My husband and I bought a used RV that we want to have fixed up soon; I’ve been looking for tips about proper RV maintenance so we can keep it in good shape after the repairs are done. I’m glad I read your article because now I better understand how to prevent problems with the RVs electrical system.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting Daphne!

    • william chambers on May 10, 2019 at 9:42 PM
    • Reply

    my ac runs for 20min then trips breaker , replace breaker. check out compresser,conpacitor, convertor, and battery all seems ok. everything works. iturn everything off except the ac same thing. could the control relay causing this

    1. Hi William!

      Do me a favor. Check the power at your RV pedestal. Check the hot leg to the ground and the hot leg to the neutral. Do this under load. The breaker could be bad. Start with the power source and let’s go from there. If the power source is inadequate then it could create the problems you are having. We see this a lot, including for ourselves!

    • Dave Fichter on May 7, 2019 at 7:44 PM
    • Reply

    In trying to find out why the exhaust fan in the RV range hood wasn’t working I had to ultimately take the unit down and test the power all the way to the fan motor. I found that the white wire has what appears to be an in line diode which had some “charring” on it. I replaced this section with the same gauge wire that does not have an in line diode and the fan now works. Two questions:

    1. Can I leave this fix as is without an in line diode?
    2. If not, any idea where I can find a replacement wire with the in line diode, or can I make my own with some wire and a diode? Of course I have no idea what type or size the existing diode is, so I would appreciate any help you could give me in finding that out.

    I have sent an email to the range hood manufacturer and am awaiting their response, but I thought I would look for an independent opinion.



    1. Hi Dave!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing!

      I would repair the range hood as it was manufactured. I hope the manufacturer will be able to take care of you and ship the needed parts. I would also ask about the possible reasons for the charring of the replaced part.

    • javier on May 5, 2019 at 3:07 PM
    • Reply

    I hope you can understand my question.
    I have a travel trailer and everything was working fine for 3 years, I have it plug in in a mobile home park and its never been connected to the battery.
    but now all the lights sometimes they work sometimes they don’t work at all. sometimes they go dim, my ac turn off by it self even if its in on position.
    the only things that are working all the time are all the outlets, the microwave and the fridge. sometimes to turn the ac and the lights on I have to plug a small electric heather in any of the outlets or I have to turn the microwave on and everything will work fine for 1 hour or 2 and they turn off again .
    do you think its the converter box or the distribution panel.

    1. Hi Javier!

      Without a house battery, the converter is doing all the work for the 12-volt house system. Over time it can fail. It is not designed to solely provide the 12-volt house power. The battery is the piggy bank and also cleans up the power provided by the converter.

      You may have damaged it. If you don’t have enough voltage things like water heaters, AC’s, lights, the furnace, the fridge will not work without ample 12-volt power to run the control circuits. Check your voltage at the fuse panel and see if you are getting 12 volts or more.

    • joel godard on May 4, 2019 at 6:46 PM
    • Reply

    good night Howard,

    My Wiper motor stop in the beginning of spring , i bought another one but it still doesn t work , i put the two motor on a electrical bench test and they work very well both…
    i ve test if i have voltage on the plug in ,

    my problem is that i dont have the 12 volts vehicule electrical drawing to locate the fuse or fuse relay on my RV Coachmen Mirada class A 2004


    1. Hi Joel!

      If you don’t have power at the wiper motor plugin then you have to trace it backward. The fuse would be my first choice. I would think the fuse box for the chassis system would be located up front somewhere. I can’t say I remember where it is located even though I have been in that vintage of RV.

    • Jeff on April 25, 2019 at 8:30 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 2001 Fleetwood wilderness 727x and last night I had to replace the battery. I replaced it with a deep cycle battery with a lead acid 690cca everstart 24dc battery and at first the microwave powered up and the fridge was getting cold and then all of a sudden they both had lost power. Ive checked the breakers and they are all good. Just wondered if you had any idea.

    Thank you

    1. Hi Jeff!

      If you put a 24-volt battery in your RV you may have blown all the fuses. The battery should be 12-volts for the RV house battery system.

    • Ronald Hendricks on April 10, 2019 at 7:37 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2016 travel trailer and I’m having trouble with the lights over my dining table and recliners. They are both on the same 12 volt fuse and they have blown the fuse twice and I have changed it twice, each time with the same size fuse. However when it blows the fuse the lights over the recliners are completely off BUT the ones over the dining table come on very dimly. When I replace the fuse they all work fine. What could be causing this problem? Thanks in advance, Ron H.

    1. Hi Ron!

      To me, it sounds like you have a wire or connection that is creating a short. These can be difficult to find. I would take the LED lights out and check the wiring for continuity. Also, perhaps before you do that, get to the 12-volt fuse panel and remove it so you can check the connections behind to be sure there is no loose wiring in that location.

      Let us know how it turns out!

    • Ted Koeth on April 1, 2019 at 8:34 AM
    • Reply

    Good morning Robert.

    I have a 2015 Tiffin Breeze 32. Having an odd issue at our seasonal site in FL.

    Our EMS is detecting intermittent high frequency – error code E7. This has been going on for a while though until a few days ago had not occurred for two months!

    The power company and park electrician say all is good in connections and box.

    Last Thurs it happened again, cutting power off six times in two hours. Since then has occurred randomly 0-2 times a day.

    I put the EMS on neighbors site for a while when the issue was happening on my pole and no codes.

    I have also seen it continue if my portable EMS is plugged in but my RV not connected.

    RV electrical and charging systems all seem to be fine. No issues.

    Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Ted!

      Suggestion? Yes, head north . . . LOL!

      No just kidding with you! In this case, I would pull out my voltmeter and check frequency at the pedestal you are plugged into when this happens. It may only take a few seconds for this condition to occur and then bounce back. Based on my experience working in RV parks, it is unlikely that the frequency of electrical flow would be high at just one pedestal, but stranger things I guess. It is possible that your EMS is malfunctioning. I have had my Progressive Industries unit give wrong readings when it was exposed to the elements for a number of years.

      By plugging into another pedestal when the issue happens, you are resetting the unit. I think the voltmeter that can read AC frequency for you would be more telling.

      The other thing you can try is to replace the breaker that controls the outlet you are plugged into. That never hurts. You have to eliminate all possibilities. This is usually the cure for low voltage on one leg of a 50 amp service.

      Let us know how it turns out! This is a head scratcher.

        • Ted Koeth on April 1, 2019 at 9:01 AM
        • Reply

        Thank you.

        Frustrating with such an intermittent issue.

        I’ve asked park to come replace breaker and plug with new to at least eliminate that.

        I found a note on Progressive site that says E7 errors at dawn and dusk can relate to street lights or others that come on automatically at sundown!

        1. Interesting note Ted.

          I have never experienced that one and we have been in lots of RV parks over the past nine years that we have been using our progressive unit. I do know that the next one we buy will be the Surge Guard 34950 due to expanded features, especially the load side protection feature ( )

          Happy travels!!

    • Robert Webb on March 24, 2019 at 6:25 PM
    • Reply

    When I hooked back up my house battery I reversed the polarity. Right behind the battery I found a 15amp fuse that tripped so I replaced it, then I found in my converter there were three 25 amp fuses that all said “reverse polarity” all burnt so I replaced them. I check all other s and all breakers were not tripped. Everything is working except for the Inverter and the AC/Heat. The thermostat doesn’t even turn on……..generator works, microwave, fridge, water pump, and all lights work. Help!!!!!

    1. Hi Robert!

      It sounds like you still have a fuse or fuses that are blown. If this is a larger diesel pusher there can be more fuse blocks that have fuses related to the house 12-volt electrical system. We had an issue arise on a 45-footer that wound up being a 5 amp fuse in a fuse panel located in the engine compartment. The fuse was behind a relay. The only way we found it was from the wiring diagram book that the RV, fortunately, had onboard.

      You may have to get out a voltmeter and start checking voltages from the batteries to the fuse blocks to see where you lose power.

    • Delayne on March 11, 2019 at 6:22 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard…thanks SO much for all your great words of wisdom and your willingness to help out a fellow RVer. Here’s our situation: Have a 2017 Thor Aria class A motor home; arrived at a luxury RV park over the weekend and plugged into the 50-Amp shore power. The two air conditioners worked great pumping out cold air and we had plenty of light all throughout the motor home; however, we quickly found none of our appliances were working (microwave, stovetop, refrigerator) and especially that none of the outlets had power. All DC items were working without a problem.

    We tried resetting the GFIC in the bathroom, but no change; we tripped and reset all AC breakers one at a time, no change; we disconnected from shore power and then started up the generator — and still no change. Not sure if this is a purple monkey, but on our RV control panel, for some reason it shows our Dryer is pulling Amps — even though the dryer is powered OFF and even turned the breaker off for the Dryer. How does the control panel still show it’s drawing power?

    A brief call to a Thor technician said it’s either the Automatic Transfer Switch or the Inverter breaker. I think I’m in over my head on exactly what I’m looking for at this point. All issues seem to point back to the main power source (of course) so does this sound like a potential breaker may need to be replaced? Or could the whole inverter box need to be replaced? This motor home is less than 2 years old so I am hopeful this is really a simple fix that we’re overlooking.

    Your time and expertise are so greatly appreciated!

    1. Hi Delayne!

      Let’s start at the source and have you check the breaker and plug at the RV pedestal. If you have a voltmeter, check the voltage coming out of the RV pedestal that you are plugging into. Check voltage to the neutral on each leg and then the voltage to ground. You should be around 120 volts on both legs. If you can, also check the same under load. Just wiggle the plug out enough to get your meter leads on the same plug pins and see if you get the same readings.

      Let me know what you find.

    • Jodie ODonnell on March 9, 2019 at 9:51 PM
    • Reply

    Can an RV 30 or 50amp plug cause electrical problems in RVs such as fridge to burn out, lights flickering, converters burning out?? or would this be more of a problem inside the rv with wiring or just over loaded with portable electric heaters??
    Any help would be greatly appreciated

    1. Hi Jodie!

      We have seen 50 amp plugs with loose wire strands on the hot legs create a 240-volt voltage measurement inside the RV. If you feel you have a problem with the shore power cord or the plug head, I would replace it.

      I would start there and see if the conditions you are experiencing go away.

    • Carol Royer on March 5, 2019 at 7:56 PM
    • Reply

    Howard, I’ve been plugged into my mom’s electric for year now and no problems. I use an outlet in her bedroom that is seldom used.
    My problem started this morning when the batheoom GFCI tripped. I reset it to no avail. I turned off all power, reset the GFCI but when I flipped the double 15 amp breaker the GFCI tripped. I changed out the breaker and problem was still there. So I changed out the GFCI outlet making sure ground, line and load wires were connected correctly. Flipped the power on and all went well until I flipped the double 15 again. Puzzled now. I don’t think it is the converter as the batteries are charged and no lights dimming. I’m a 65 year old divorced girl trying to do this on my own…..hep me, hep me lol

    1. Hi Carol!

      I would start at the source and see if the outlet you are plugging into is working properly. Perhaps try another outlet and see if the same situation occurs.

      Power source: double 15 amp breaker?? What type of unit is this? 30 amp service?

    • Al on March 5, 2019 at 12:18 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2002 Dynamax Isata Sport 220 and is 30 amps the situation is when plugged into the land line everything works, when using the generator if I hold the rocker switch while start the generator I have to hold the switch until the generator runs for a few minutes and all is well. When trying to us just the house batteries nothing works, I have charged the batteries to full charge their are 2 12 volt batteries is a series and still nothing works

    1. Hi Al!

      The batteries need to be in parallel, not series.

    • Eric Gossard on February 20, 2019 at 9:52 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,. Why the 4 prong plug on the AC in? (Grand Junction 34trg). Are RV hook-ups 220? The plug adaptor that I have for this is a 3 blade to 50 amp 125/250 vac.. but the black wire is split into two blades on the larger plug. Why? Thank you I really have a mess here. I live in the trailer now, and temps get down to the teens here.

    1. Hi Eric!

      The RV is 120 volts, not 240. The four prong plug is set up with the left and right prongs for 120-volt power, the upper prong is the neutral, and the bottom rounder prong is the ground. 50 amps are fed through each 120-volt leg. Once you understand that I think the adapters you have will make more sense. If you are trying to reduce the 50 amp service down to 30 amps, please be sure to use an RV rated adapter so as to get the best result and not do damage to the RV’s electrical system (

    • Steve Overton on February 2, 2019 at 3:59 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2007 sportscoach elite that I am living in in Florida and have been to four different rv parks with no issues. The one I am in now I was at a temporary site on 30 amp with no issues I moved to the spot I have rented for the month and I have checked the 50 amp service and have good power. Problem is I have no power to run any appliances or ac units or w/h. My 110 outlets work and I have tv’s working. Any ideas as to why I have no 110 for appliances etc. GFI swithces are good and I have checked all breakers but no luck. Started my generator but it does not supply power either. IDEAS?

    1. Hi Steve!

      Since you have no electrical service for either shore power or generator power for some 120-volt circuits, I would check your voltage out of your transfer switch as well as the electrical panel using a voltmeter.

    • Nathan Granneman on February 1, 2019 at 9:00 PM
    • Reply

    I have some general questions. If you use the RV battery to drain and the lights slowly dim off will that damage anything in the circuitry. What about with use of the slider, ie can you damage anything if you use a battery that is almost draianged?

    1. Hi Nathan!

      If you have weak batteries and try to use your 12-volt accessories, they will eventually not work but you won’t do damage. However, why would you do that knowing that is the case?

      If your batteries are weak and you try to engage the slideouts they will either not work or operation will fail during execution.

      Recommendation? If you suspect your batteries are weak, have them tested for possible replacement. No sense damaging your converter.

    • Steve Fedarcyk on January 31, 2019 at 6:49 AM
    • Reply

    2000 Onan Emerald Plus 5kW generator. No voltage to the electric gasoline pump, so the only way to run it is to have my hand block 90% of the airflow to the carb (just so you know that it will run). Butterfly choke runs properly, so it must be fuel delivery. Working the hot wire back, it simply runs back to a maze of wires in the control box – no breakers, fuses, etc. Replaced the relay just for grins. Any idea?

    1. Hi Steve!

      If you have enough fuel in the main gas tank but no voltage to the gasoline pump that sounds like your problem. I don’t have experience with that particular situation but I think you are on the right track starting with checking for power at the pump and tracing that to the source of where that power is coming from. I know it’s frustrating when you come to a rats nest of wires.

      This guide may help you out:

      I would try the circuit board first. Check out page three. It seems to concur with your mention of the circuit board replacement.

      Good luck and keep us posted!

    • Kyle Odom on January 22, 2019 at 2:03 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,

    We have a 2012 Flagstaff. The 12V lights are not working. The radio, ceiling exhaust fan, A/C, and heating all work. I’ve check all fuses and they are good. I’ve flipped all breakers. However, when I checked the 12V fuse receptors with a volt meter (with fuse removed obviously) only two show power. I also note that one is a 40amp fuse with no red light to the side (converter maybe?), but the other which runs the radio and fan, has a little red light that comes on when the fuse is pulled. None of the other red lights came on when the fuses were pulled. Please note that it matters not if I’m plugged into 120 or just off the 12V battery. Any ideas are appreciated. Thanks.

    1. Hi Kyle!

      I would use a volt meter and chase voltage from the fuse panel to the light switch to the lights to see where you lose 12-volt cuts power.

        • Kyle Odom on January 23, 2019 at 8:40 AM
        • Reply

        Thank you. I’ll give it a shot and let you know.

        1. Sounds good!

    • Peter Perez on January 21, 2019 at 6:16 PM
    • Reply

    I just purchased a new Coleman travel trailer with LED lighting through out the cabin. During my first trip I noticed one of the lights blinking after several hours of being on. When I took the plastic cover off to inspect the bulb I noticed that the metal portion of the fixture was extremely hot (hot enough to blister my wife’s fingertip). The lighting runs on 12 volt system. I became suspicious about the other lamps and checked a couple at random and found them to be hot after a few hours of being on. Has anyone experienced heating of LED light fixtures? I was under the impression that 12 V LED lights ran cooler than incandescent 12 V bulbs.

    1. Hi Peter!

      Since the unit is new, I would take it back to the dealer and have them check with the manufacturer to see what they have to say about the situation. Since it is under warranty, take advantage of it!

    • Charlotte Miller on January 14, 2019 at 6:09 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2006 cardinal forest river fifth wheel I live in an RV park everything is working fine but all of a sudden the the living room and the master room stopped working then both ACS stopped working and now my electrical wire heater stopped working and I’m at a loss to figure out what’s going on we checked all fuses even replaced to breaker boxes and still can’t figure out the problem

    1. I would check the park power, namely the breaker voltage, load side, with the RV plugged in and under load.

    • Kayla Cox on January 12, 2019 at 5:48 AM
    • Reply

    Hello, I don’t have any idea if your still answering but I saw that you responded less than a year ago so thought I would try. My husband, baby and I just bought the Catalina bunk house legacy edition travel trailer a week ago and picked it up today. We got it from a town 2 1/2 hours away from where we’ve parked it.
    In November, we were victims on the Camp Fire in Northern California and we lost our home. We’ve had to get a travel trailer to be able to go back to our town.
    By the time we got it back to where we parked it, it was dark. We hooked it up to power through our friends house and everything went fine for hours. The heater was in auto, were not running any appliances and we even turned off the fridge because we’re not using it yet. Only heater and lights. This worked great for hours. Then, randomly the lights we had in dimmed really low for a bit. Almost to being off. Lasted for a few full minutes. Then, when the heater cycled off, they got bright again.
    I am pretty sure the heater is propane and the lights are from the house were hooked up to. We have no appliances turned on or even plugged in. We turned off the heater completely so I’m not sure if it would do it again, but we definitely are going to have to use the heater with a baby. Do you know what this could be?
    I’m sorry for the grammer/writing. I’m doing this in a phone after a very long day. Thank you so much

    1. Hi Kayla!

      It sounds to me like your 12-volt house batteries are weak. It may be that your converter is not working (it charges your house batteries) or your batteries need to be replaced. At 11.5 volts things stop working, especially appliance control boards.

    • Kmadl on December 31, 2018 at 11:28 AM
    • Reply

    My wife is staying in our 94 Fleetwood Flair 33’ motorhome, working away from home.
    When we first parked and connected site power 30 amps, all was good. After a few months she noticed lights start failing. Now there is one failed light in the living area and all lights past the galey are out. Checked wiring and double light closest to AC works and messing with that wire I got the outhrr light to work, temporarily in the living area and the batgroom & hall lights, but then I flicked on one of the bed lights and they flicked back off. Replaced blown fuse, but no good since. Bulbs good, inverter putting out 13.75vdc and I rechecked wiring connections. Trojan T-105 6v deep cycle batteries were low on liquid and only getting about 4v/each. Took just under 1 gal distilled water to fill. There have been freezing temps, overnight, at least. It has been a few days since refilling the batteries, but no change has been observed. Looking at battery replacement.

    1. Hi Kmadl!

      Sounds to me like you have an issue with the light wiring. A 1994 RV, at this point, will have lots of corrosion in the system due to heating, cooling, and humidity. I would check the continuity of each wire from light to light. the connectors may also need to be replaced and the light fixture connections cleaned, and perhaps the bulb connectors too.

    • Dallas Orona on December 27, 2018 at 10:19 AM
    • Reply

    Hello good sir,my fifth wheel encountered a lightning strike(not sure directly but at least right next trip all breakers at main power source coming to rv and all breakers inside rv,the receptacles breaker will not reset neither will the water heater breaker.i have no heat or AC.only two plugs work and I guess they were both gfi.pretty sure my converter is fried.just replaced last year too.if I replace again will it fix my recepticles problem?heat and or a/c??

    1. Hi Dallas!

      It sounds like the lightning strike may have damaged your entire 120-volt electrical system. It may have also affected your 12-volt system as well. Your control boards in each appliance may be fried as well given the AC and water heater are not functioning.

      You are going to have to start at the shore power cord and work your way from there into the RV. You should check for fried wires, bad breakers, and replace as needed. You may have to also replace your GFCI outlet/outlets if you have more than one.

      Once you have your 120-volt system functioning again you can focus on your appliances to see if they may be damaged as well. Just replacing your converter will not solve all your problems but you may have to replace it too. Check the fuses first.

      Good luck!!

    • Angela Nulty on November 25, 2018 at 7:48 AM
    • Reply

    We have a 2017 Newmar Canyo Star. During a recent return trip from TN and during a very heavy rain our radio, dash air and camera went off and on several times. And happened again on a return from Newmar in northern Indiana. Have not noticed any issues when hooked to shore power. What should I check before I head out again?

    1. Hi Angela!

      When things go on and off, weather-related or not, to me that indicates a loose connection somewhere between the power source and the item using the power. Since the items you mentioned are part of the 12-volt chassis electrical system, and that the there are three of them, I would check for a loose fuse connection and a loose wiring harness that controls those items. It will be tricky as the wiring underneath the dash is very condensed. But, this is exactly what an RV dealership would do but at a steep hourly rate, so dig in and save yourself some money.

      If you need to, call Newmar and see if you can get some wiring diagrams from them. Happy hunting and good luck!!

    • Ron on November 1, 2018 at 8:40 PM
    • Reply

    I added a second house battery to my 2017 thor freedom elite and every thing works fine 12v, generator/110 but when I try to start my chassis motor the truck runs awhile then dies and makes a solenoid clicking sound I removed the added batt and get the same I even swapped the old batt with new and still the same Im wondering if there is a fuse to reset or my solenoid has went out. Baffled and in the desert

    1. Hi Ron!

      I am assuming that your RV is on the Ford chassis. I would contact them directly with this issue. You may still be under warranty and they should be able to coach you through the process of getting back to where the RV should be.

    • Bill Mcgoff on October 27, 2018 at 12:25 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, I have class A Coachman deisel,40 ft not plugged in. Plug up tow car and all turn signals work till I turn on headlights, then green turn signal both of them come on, turn signal on right blinks but left one blinks also faintly. Hazards do not come on and brake lights are very dim. Running lights do not come on. Hope that’s good enough to give me your opinion on what’s wrong.

    1. Hi Bill!

      If I were you I would buy a 7-pin plug tester (about $10) on Amazon and check the 7-pin connector on the motorhome. It is handy to have! If that checks out then it is an issue with your tow vehicle. If not then you may have some crossed wires somewhere in the system. This is where I would start investigating the problem.

    • John on October 14, 2018 at 5:11 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard,

    I am having power issues with my trailer and I came across your page. I must say you are nothing short of an expert! I wonder if you may be able to help with my problem? I purchased a brand new battery and hooked everything up and it all worked perfectly. One night there was a storm while I was hooked up to shore power which resulted in a power surge and my circuit board on my converter fried. Absolutely nothing worked (obviously).

    I ordered a new one, hooked it up and I was only able to get chassis power from the 7-pin connector. I used a voltmeter and the battery was totally flat (I have removed it to charge it). I also used my voltmeter and the DC voltage seemed to start at .5 volts then drop down to zero.

    My question…will charging the battery solve my problem is is there something else I’m missing?

    Again, thank you so much for what you’re doing here! We need more people in the world sharing their knowledge and helping each other out. Take care!


    1. Hi John!

      Thanks for the kind words!

      If you are plugged into shore power with the repaired converter operational, your voltage reading at the battery should be at least 13.2 volts. If that is not the case then the converter may have other issues than just the circuit board (I am assuming the fuses are good). If the converter is good then you should have the 12-volt house system working as the battery is just the piggy bank for the system.

    • Randy Aiken on October 7, 2018 at 8:40 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard,
    I have a 2007 Keystone NRG 26 foot Toy Hauler. It’s up on the mountain right now and I just returned home after spending the weekend.
    When the generator is on, the heater blower will blow very fast and strong and then all of the sudden go much slower and weaker. Sometimes it will switch back and forth every 10 minutes or so, and then other times it will bump up and down frequently many times per minute.
    I had a voltmeter and the holding the voltmeter on the output of the converter (going into the fuse panel) when it would do this situation, I would see 14.1 volts when the blower was running strong, and 11.9 volts when the blower would slow down. The Fridge light would also dim and bright with the furnace fan. The lights inside the trailer are all LED so they don’t dim and bright but any incandescent light (such as fridge light) would dim and bright.
    I think the converter is bad or on it’s way out. It’s a WFCO WF-8955AN-P.
    In reading some other threads on the internet, I saw that one guy had one of his two batteries that was dead was the cause of this. I did not check the batteries while I was up there.
    Does this sound like the converter (glad to order one and take it up next week and replace it) or should I not purchase anything and check the batteries first? Two batteries. OPtima BLue tops. At least 5 years old.
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Randy!

      From what you are telling me I would have the batteries load tested for possible replacement.

    • Stephen on September 7, 2018 at 8:39 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard,
    We have a ‘06 Fleetwood Mallard. Never had a problem with the electrical before, but recently at a campground in Virginia, we had the shore cord where it connects to the romex in the junction box under our bed overheated And melted the wire nuts. We fixed it and moved sites but it happened again. We only run our ac and everything else is on propane. I haven’t had a chance to check the voltage at the pedestal. Today we tried to run out Nuwave oven with the ac off and the power cord started to heat up. Do you think it is the campgrounds pedestal or something wrong with our electrical?

    1. Hi Stephen!

      What voltage are you reading at the pedestal? Is this a 30 or 50 amp RV? What does the plug head of your shore power cord look like?

    • Jeffrey on September 7, 2018 at 7:48 PM
    • Reply

    i but if i plug in it trips my gfis had a short in my dog bone when it rained. every time i plug into my house it trips my gfi in the house but not the fifth wheel. i replaced the dog bone and 15 amp fuses. its not the gfi in the camper either, I replaced that also. So why is it tripping the gfi in the house every time i try to plug in . Is there another short somewhere. Also my breaker did not trip but the gfi in the bathroom tripped in the rain caused short.

    1. Hi Jeff!

      Try turning the main breaker off in the RV and then plug into the home receptacle. If it does not trip, then try each branch circuit separately to see if you can narrow down the culprit.

    • Joy goetzke on September 5, 2018 at 5:58 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, we have a 2016 Shasta revere 30 foot travel trailer. Both the air conditioner and heater stopped working the same day! I thought it might be a fuse so I checked and changed them. I thought a breaker might have been tripped but it wasn’t . I thought I might have a bad thermostat so I changed to a new digital model. The thermastat says it is 80 degrees but the air and heat won’t go on. Any suggestions greatly appreciated ?


    1. Hi Joy!

      Have you checked your batteries? Get a voltmeter and see if you have 12.6 volts. When plugged into shore power you should see a higher reading. If you discover a voltage that is any lower than 11.5 volts, the circuit boards that run those appliances will not function.

      Also, I hope you bought the thermostat from the manufacturer of the AC unit. You can’t just go to Home Depot and buy anything. That thermostat has to communicate with the control board in the AC unit. If it can’t the AC unit will not operate.

    • Barbara on September 4, 2018 at 1:35 PM
    • Reply

    We are having high voltage issues. We have a hard wired electronic management system in our new 2018 toyhauler. It is a 50 amp trailer which is plugged into a 30 amp service. The EMS keeps shutting off our electric (several times a night) most nights we are there with a high voltage fault. We vacationed at a different campground and we were plugged into a 50 amp service and our electric never went out. This past labor day weekend our power was out Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights going off and on several times from 12 midnight to about 6 am. Does not happen in the day time. Monday night we did not loose power – not sure why but the campground was empty. Campground manager talked with his electrician and he said that the EMS box was shorting out and to stop using it. He also said that if there was high voltage coming into the campground, his main breakers would be going off. I don’t believe that is the problem since we did not have any issues when we were away and I don’t want to stop using the EMS as it will probably damage our electronics. My husband uses a Cpap machine so not having electricity at night is a big problem. We also camp in the winter and would not have any heat. Please help in trying to figure out what the cause of high voltage would be. Thanks

    1. Hi Barbara!

      I have seen this happen at RV parks if there was a grounding or neutral issue. If you can, try plugging into the pedestal next door using a 50-amp extension cord. If the power stays on then maybe you can get them to fix your electrical pedestal.

      Also, check with the EMS manufacturer to be sure you can plug into 30-amp power with that setup. Since you stated 50-amp service works fine, but 30-amp does not, the EMS may be confused because it is looking for two legs of 120-volt and you are only giving it one. Also, be sure you are not exceeding the 3600 watts that you are allotted for a 30-amp service. Does your EMS sense more than a 30-amp draw and shut down due to that?

    • Randy on August 28, 2018 at 6:54 PM
    • Reply

    Was wandering if there’s a way to kill the power to my electric stabilizer jacks n tongue jack, after unhooking and setting up, to avoid misuse and vandalism also I have light switch in pass thru storage compartment, can I come off of it and install a receptacle

    1. Hi Randy!

      If you can locate the 12-volt wire that supplies power to these items I would install a cutoff switch in a lockable bin. I am not sure what you are asking in regards to the receptacle. Are you referring to 120-volt power?

    • Anthony R on August 25, 2018 at 10:22 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard
    I have a 2000 National Tradewinds that I purchased about three months ago and the problem is that I have 4 deep cycle batteries and on battery power only the outlets for the tv in the front and the outlet in the bathroom work. With 50 amp at the campground or when the generator is running everything works fine. All fuses and breakers are good. I checked the batteries and the water level is good.

    1. Hi Anthony!

      I think what you are telling me is that when you are on battery power only, and the inverter is on, the only plugs that have AC voltage are the TV outlet and the bathroom outlet.

      That sounds right. Depending on the wattage of the inverter, RV manufacturers run inverted power to only a few outlets. The larger the inverter, the more outlets may be provided.

    • Cody on August 25, 2018 at 3:00 PM
    • Reply

    I’m working on a 1994 coachman Santara motor home. All of the electrical power has stopped working and I can’t find the fuse panel. Any idea where it might be located?

    1. Hi Cody!

      Where have you looked for it already?

    • Jennifer on August 17, 2018 at 3:41 PM
    • Reply

    The ac in our 2008 Rockwood ultralight stopped blowing and the microwave lost power. Cycled the breakers, checked the GFCI, and replaced fuses. The ac comes on and hums but never blows. The microwave has zero power whatsoever. Everything else works fine. When I pull those two fuses, the red light indicator does not come on showing a blown fuse.

    I’m so lost. Anything else I can check?

    1. Hi Jennifer!

      There could be many issues with what is going on here. If I were there I would be pulling out a voltmeter and start checking voltage at the main panel and at the appliances. The AC may have failed and created an issue that took out the microwave. I am just guessing. Again, a voltmeter would tell a lot.

    • Carolyn Kiddy on August 15, 2018 at 11:25 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard
    I have a Coachman RV 30ft pull behind. When the air shuts off the refrigerator shuts off also. Even though the thermostat is set and on auto, I have to reset the breaker to the air. Bought a new breaker, no change. Need help asap someone lives in the rv. Any advice

    1. Hi Carolyn!

      It sounds like you may be having an electrical issue with the AC unit. Since both the fridge and AC unit both need 12-volt and 120-volt power to operate, it could be either one of those systems that are causing the problem. Given the numerous possibilities, it might be best to seek out a professional to do some hands-on investigation of your RV.

    • Ken on August 12, 2018 at 2:41 AM
    • Reply

    Hi I am having issues with my DC power my DC is powering everything I have but the control panel the test panel is non-functional it works when connected to AC

    I also at the moment my refrigerator is not working.. going to do a couple tests on that on the electrical side I was wondering if the two issues were connected


    1. Hi Ken! I would check your batteries. If things work when plugged in your batteries may be holding volts but not amps. The fridge needs 12-volt power to run the control board. If there is no strong 12-volt source, it will not work!

    • Teddy staggs on July 29, 2018 at 9:32 PM
    • Reply

    What happens if you are plugged in to electric
    Outlet and electricity goes out and you crank your generator
    What happens when electricity comes back on
    And you still have generator running???

    1. Hi Teddy! Great question.

      If your RV has a transfer switch it will decide which power source to use and shore power is the first choice. That being said, they do fail. I never have the shore power plugged in when the generator is running, just in case that happens.

      Some RV’s have auto transfer switches that turn on the generator when the power goes out and back off when the power returns.

    • gord on July 27, 2018 at 9:04 AM
    • Reply

    I really need your help, I have a 2008 class c gulfstream Yellowstone cruiser on a e450 ford chassis. All of the rv
    shops are busy and of course two days before vacation the rig decides to act up. DVD player, fluorescent light ,fantastic fan another fluorescent light all decide not to work. so I kinda figured they were on the same circuit so I checked the fuses appeared to be all good circuit breaker switches were good as well. So I ran a live wire from a working light to the first light that wasn’t and bingo everything worked. But from here I really don’t know where to begin. Have you ever ran into this before and if so can you advise this old canuk.

    1. Hi Gord!

      It sounds like a wire has become severed or disconnected between the working light and the one that is not. I would run a continuity test on the wires from the working light to the non-working light. If there is no continuity then you are going to have to run a new wire, or try and attach a new wire to the old one and pull it through to re-join the working fixture. Depending on the structure of the RV roof, this could be easy or very difficult.

    • Rudy on July 16, 2018 at 10:38 AM
    • Reply

    On my 2000 Viking pop up trailer, when opening it for the first time this year using only DC power none of the interior lights or appliances worked. I discovered that the 30 amp fuse at the battery leads was blown. I tried several times to replace the fuse but kept blowing fuses. I was wondering if it is possible that I have the battery leads reversed and if there is an easy way to determine this.
    Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks Rudy

    1. Hi Rudy!

      It sounds like you have a short in the system, possibly between the fuse panel and the batteries. If the wires are color coded, and we usually see red and black wires, be sure the red wire is to the positive battery terminal and the black wire is to the negative terminal.

    • Joicelyn Springer on July 4, 2018 at 3:44 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 1997 catalina travel trailer. I have been forced to down grade due to financial issues. I am retired now and take care of my schizophrenic sister. The dometic refridgerator in my unit has never worked since I have had it. The power lights come on But nothing happens. A sweet boy that lives here who is wounded veteran looked in the back said there was no 5amp fuse. I’m assuming without that it won’t work on shore power. My landlord told me to flip the switch to turn on my hot water heater and the wires started burning so I have been hating bath water on the stove. When I first moved in the whole left side of my trailer didn’t have power to the electrical outlets on that side. I was fooling with the buttons on the gfi outlet one day and suddenly that side started working. After a bad rainstorm one day that side went out again. A couple days later I pushed the button and they started working again. My first question is if I can come up with enough money for the 5amp fuse for the refridgerator might that make it start working again.? As far as the wires to the hot water heater I’m sure I will have to try and find an RV tech for that but hard to come up with the money required for that. The main thing is I only have room for small fridge that doesn’t have a freezer in it and have to buy 20lb bag of ice every couple of days. So main thing is trying to get this refrigerator working. If it is o.k. electrical setting it doesn’t also require the gas to work as well does it ?

    1. Sorry to hear of ALL your issues with your trailer. Given what you are experiencing I would recommend you seek the assistance of a mobile RV tech, or a very knowledgeable friend so that repairs are done correctly for your safety.

    • James Durtschi on July 1, 2018 at 9:37 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2002 McKenzie Lakota 32ft 5th wheel. when I’m plugged into shore power everything works. When i’m on battery only, none of my 12 volt stuff except the slideouts work. ???

    1. Hi James!

      With no shore power and everything inside the unit off, what is your battery voltage?

    • Christopher Keeton on June 28, 2018 at 3:09 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard, I have a 2001 Georgie Boy pursuit. We were camping all was well and the front AC reached the set temperature and went off. Suddenly the lights flickered and lost power to everything but the air conditioners. Checked breaker box and no tripped breakers. Started rv and got lights back killed it no lights. We were hooked up to 50 amp shore power. Any ideas?

    1. Hi Chris!

      I would check your house batteries to see if you have close to or at 12.6 volts.

    • Davis S Tucker on June 15, 2018 at 4:38 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard

    I am considering the home course. I have a “custom” RV called the Beerliner – google it – it’s cool.

    Well, actually it is not always cool. I have one ac that I can run without going through the inverter. Is there any reason I shouldn’t run both AC’s direct from a fuse box powered by the generators or shore power and skip the inverter all together?

    1. Hi Davis!

      That is very unusual to run an AC unit on an inverter. Do you have a massive battery bank and inverter, perhaps a 3k watt? Shore power or generator would save your batteries.

        • Davis S Tucker on June 19, 2018 at 11:41 AM
        • Reply

        I use a Xantrex Freedom 3000 but do not have a massive battery bank (only 2 deep cell) but have room for more. This is a custom job that was built out and wired by non-RV pros but general tradesmen in construction, electrical work etc.

        It appears the rear of the bus which is all major equipment for a commercial food truck application is running directly to the fuse box.

        I imagine I could rewire the Ac’s (in the lounge-front area of bus) to run directly off the geni/fuse box as well. Do I just need to trace the wiring for the Ac’s back to the inverter?

        Any recommendations are welcome.



        1. Hi Davis!

          Yes, if you can trace the wiring from the unit to the inverter and reroute it to your 120-volt panel, that would allow you to use the generator or shore power to run the AC units.

          Have fun!

    • George Ohmer on June 14, 2018 at 12:03 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2017 Coleman 1705 RB. All electrical works fine while plugged in. When unplugged, the motorized lift is operational but nothing inside the camper. I checked the 10 v fuse that is near the battery compartment…it was blown so I replaced it. I put a trickle charger on the battery overnight and it showed fully charged this morning. I still have no 12v power inside the camper. All breakers and fuses are good inside the electrical box inside the camper. What do I check next? Thanks!

    1. Hi George!

      I think at this point you need to start at the battery with a voltmeter and trace from there into the RV, to the fuse panel to see if somewhere along the way you lose your 12.6 volts of power coming from the fully charged battery.

      Let us know how it turns out!

    • Lawrence on June 14, 2018 at 2:50 AM
    • Reply

    I have a Heartland Sundance 33k…. my electricity is limited, meaning I can’t run lights and a/c at the same time actually lights are dim by them self or flicker. I do believe the 12v battery is bad, but I figured since it was plugged in to the box, that it wouldn’t matter.
    Do you have any idea where I should start??

    1. Hi Lawrence!

      I would check your battery first. If it is bad, replace it. The battery, along with the converter, runs your lights and AC control board. Without power to the board, the AC unit will not turn on even though you are plugged in. The 12-volt electrical system powers the thermostat that communicates with the AC control board.

    • Adam on June 13, 2018 at 5:30 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2008 open range and recently the monitor panel that shows tank and battery levels stopped working. Wondering if there could be an inline fuse that might feed the little control board? Thanks.

    1. Hi Adam!

      I would check all your 12-volt house system fuses for continuity to see if they are all good. If that is the case I would then look for a loose wire to that control panel. I would doubt that all the lights just stopped working at the same time so power is the logical first place to start. Put a voltmeter on the wire leads to be sure there either is or is not power to the control board.

        • Adam on June 14, 2018 at 1:46 PM
        • Reply

        Thanks for the quick reply Howard. I checked voltage and the board and from positive to negative I have 12 volts. I checked the little switches and they are working also. Not sure what else to do.

        1. Hi Adam!

          If you have power to the board then perhaps the board needs replacement?

    • Doug on June 12, 2018 at 11:45 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard

    I have a brand new Puma 38DBS on a permanent site 50 amp service, last week when we got to the camper no power was on, found a loose wire in the 50 amp extender, plugged into the camp ground panel direct and power came back on except for all the 12v. After checking found the converter board fried so I hooked up a trickle charger to get lights to work and other parts. Until the new board arrives can i leave the charger on the battery set at 2amps slow charge (my daughter lives in the camper all summer) seems to be working right now. The only things we found not working are the fireplace and the subwoofer panel, do you think these will come back when the new board is installed. Also the hot water (12 gallon cap.) does not seem to last long is this related to the converter board issue. Thanks in advance

    1. Hi Doug!

      From what you are telling me it sounds like you had a 120-volt spike that may have not only taken out the converter but the fireplace and subwoofer too. If the water heater is acting up as well when using electric it may be related to this issue as well. You may also have an issue with the control board of the water heater.

      Let us know how it turns out after you replace the converter board.

    • Greg on June 9, 2018 at 12:56 PM
    • Reply

    Here is a strange one. When I unplug my rv from my tow vehicle the rv exterior lights stay on. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance,

    1. Hi Greg!

      I would start by checking the cord and plug end that you attach to your tow vehicle. There is a wire in their that has power from the house batteries. You may have a short that is allowing the clearance and tail lights to be getting power.

        • William on September 17, 2019 at 9:05 AM
        • Reply

        Did you find out what the problem was?I’m having almost same issue I unplug from truck and my one tail light stay on

        1. Hi William!

          What happens when you plug into your truck? Does the light go out or stay lit?

    • Micki Morris on June 8, 2018 at 1:00 PM
    • Reply

    my husband turned on A/C while running on a generator and everything shut down. Now we have no 120 in the whole camper, what could this be??? None of the breakers are tripped adn GFI outlet did not blow

    1. Hi Micki!

      Is this a trailer or a motorhome? If it is a motorhome does it have a transfer switch? Does the RV work on shore power? Do you have a voltmeter to be able to trace the 120-volt system if needed?

    • James on June 7, 2018 at 8:19 PM
    • Reply

    Hi there. Great page and blog. We plan on snowbirding at a park that has 50 and 30 amp breakers on each pedestal. The fifth will use the 50 and was wondering if you see any problem running a 30 A cord to a storage shed subpanel that then supplies a couple of 15 A circuits. Shed will have fridge, clothes washer and a couple of workbench outlets. Alternatively will just run a 15A heavy duty extension to the pedestal and use a Camco 15 to 30 adapter.

    1. Anything is possible James! You did not say if you already have the 5th wheel. If not you may enjoy a park model trailer a whole lot more if you are going to keep returning to the same location. All the things you mentioned are more appropriately mixed in with the living situation needs you are looking for.

  1. I have 2000 Montana 5th wheel.
    My problem is while running the air, the 110 lights dim each time the compressor kicks on. The air kept up on a very hot weekend. When it was time to leave I noticed the cord that was plugged into the post at the campsite was very hot. Is my 18 year old ac going bad? Converter?

    1. Hi Bryon!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      What was the voltage and frequency of the AC shore power?

    • Roy on May 26, 2018 at 8:16 AM
    • Reply

    Howard. We have a 2018 Jayco Seneca Super C……..A REAL LEMON! My most current issue is when we attempt to put the jacks down I get the error code of no power. I then turn the ignition on and get the error code the ignition is on. Once I hook up to shore power for about 15 minutes they decide to work. Once we leave the camp site and raise the jacks, while driving I get all these alarms and lights flashing as if the jacks are going down. After about an hour this stops and the power light blinks.

    Jayco is of no help so I turn to you.



    1. Hi Roy!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      The only time I have seen issues like this with hydraulic leveling systems is because it is a voltage issue. The hydraulic pump runs on the 12-volt system of either the house or chassis batteries. That you said that the jacks work fine once you are plugged into shore power and freak out when not, indicates to me that your house batteries (run the lights, water pump, fans, etc) are possibly the issue.

      Now if this is a 2018 model it is hard to believe that the batteries are having issues, but you never know. I would check the voltage of the batteries with the converter on and then the converter off. If those batteries are significantly below 12.6 volts, and very quickly after removing sore power, I would have the batteries checked. I would also check voltage at the batteries outside and then the voltage at the fuse panel inside. Maybe there is some voltage drop that could be causing the problem.

      Start there and let us know what you find. There are certainly other possibilities here but these are my first thoughts.

    • Carlin on May 26, 2018 at 6:20 AM
    • Reply

    Hey Howard-you’re the man!
    Hope this hasn’t been answered. I have a Boler1300. Recently did some upgrades. Just one of the new lights (2stage strip led) is flickering when on 110/v, fine on battery. Is it an issue with the bulb in the light fixture itself or the “2stage” factor? I thought i read somewhere that dimming and stage lights are touchy in an rv system. The other 2 (constant 1stage) lights are fine.. fan is fine,outdoor light fine.
    Many Thanks!

    1. Hi Carlin!

      I would not consider myself an LED light expert, but have some knowledge of them based on personal experience, but not dimmable or staged.

      There must be something in the 120-volt electrical circuit that is upsetting that light. Have you tried another light in its place? Maybe it’s the light?

    • Jessica on May 23, 2018 at 7:51 PM
    • Reply

    We have a 2017 wildwood travel trailer. The drivers side tail light break light and turn single are are working. We replaced the bulb but still nothing any idea of what to try next. This is our first camper we have had it for a year now but no issues so we are kinda new to working on campers.

    1. Greetings Jessica!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      Where I would start with your trailer issues is to be sure you are receiving power from the tow vehicle. Check the 7-pin plugin and be sure all seven pins are sending a signal through the trailers 7-pin connector. Then, be sure the trailers 7-pin connector is making good contact with the tow vehicles plugin. If all that is okay you are going to have to trace the wiring from the plug to the light to be sure everything is connected.

      Let us know how it turns out!

    • Richard on May 21, 2018 at 12:33 PM
    • Reply

    I have an ’08 Monaco signature and recently changed the chassis batteries. The house batteries had been changed months back and are ok. Something happened after or during the installation to cause my dash to be dead. The speedometer and tach are ranges other than zero. My generator will not start but the RV engine starts and runs fine. The generator slide will not extend to even allow a code to be detected. No hydraulics for leveling or slides. I have no breakers tripped or fuses that I can find to be blown. I have in the past had service performed and a big boy relay had to be changed but the symptoms were unknown or not known to be similar. Could this be my problem or can you advise more checks.

    1. Hi Richard!

      Based on what you are sharing, and since it happened after installing new batteries, I would have to go with fuses or a relay that has blown in the changeover. It can happen if the proper installation procedure is not followed. Have you checked your fuses for continuity with a volt-ohm meter? Sometimes they can look good but actually be bad. With the voltmeter, you could also trace the wiring to see where you lose the 12-volt power.

    • Elyse on May 21, 2018 at 5:41 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,

    Great site you have! I need to live in my 1969 Overlander Airstream while I am renovating it this summer. It was partially gutted when I bought it. So far I have re-installed the toilet, city water supply, and vent pipes. For now I will bypass the hot water heater. I also tested the propane and managed to light the stove. Now on to basic electrical supply. Can I plug it in and just run the 110 v AC system without using the 12v DC system? There are no batteries or converter. All of the 12 volt lights except in the vanity were torn out. I have taped all the wire ends. I know I won’t be able to run the fans or the heater. I am also wondering if I can run the fridge on gas mode if I get the pilot light lit?



    1. Hi Elyse!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      Yes, you can just run off the 120-volt electrical system as long as everything else attached to it is capped off. You can run the fridge on propane but you will need a 12-volt source for that as the fridge control board requires it. With no converter or battery, I don’t think that would be an option that way. There may be some creative solutions but I had better not share my opinions here and create problems for you.

    • JK on May 7, 2018 at 11:40 AM
    • Reply

    Hi there. We have a 2017 Heartland Resort, bought new in July 2016. We only use it in the spring and summertime and the RV is stationary, we don’t pull it anywhere. Everything worked fine when we closed it up last fall. We opened it up for the year this past Friday afternoon. Everything seemed fine until Saturday night when we started to lose power, starting with the TV antenna, then the radio, lights, etc. Checked the battery and it was dead. Everything on the 120 still worked fine. We swapped out the battery to get us through the night. We think that it comes down to the converter. All the fuses are fine but the fan doesn’t run. The fan does come on for a second or two when the battery is reconnected, but that’s it. We are leaning toward a defect with the converter. But, I question whether there could be something else. Our park changed out all the electrical over the winter. There are new 50 amp poles and plugs. Could there have been a surge of some sort when we plugged in that damaged something? None of the breakers tripped and no fuses were bad. Could it just be that the converter is faulty and changing that will fix the problem?

    1. Hi Janelle!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      I would focus on the converter first. To see it is charging the batteries, check the voltage of the batteries with the converter off. Then turn shore power on and check the battery voltage with it on. If it is working you should see at least a 1/2 a volt of difference between those two readings. If not then the converter will need service or replacement.

      Report back and let us know what you find and we’ll go from there!

    • Brad Thom on May 6, 2018 at 7:03 PM
    • Reply

    Everything runs perfect off the generator. When plugged into shore power or running on batteries, if anything is plugged in to an outlet in the coach, the gfci on the inverter tripps killing all the coach outlets. Any thoughts on a possible problem?

    1. Thanks for stopping by our website Brad!

      This info may help you! Please visit:

    • Derek on April 14, 2018 at 11:52 PM
    • Reply

    Hey Howard

    We bought a 2005 40’ clear vue towards the end of last season. The trailer is on a site and from what I have been told has been there since new. As we were only able to use the trailer for the last 2months of the season I didn’t get a lot of time to look into this issue. Problem is with the circuit the fridge is on with now it has a few other items on with it but I’ve had the breaker trip a couple times even when we weren’t use those other items. Also one of the last weeks before closing down for the year I guess the had a good storm and killed the power well I guess when the power came back on it again tripped but I was not around to reset the breaker.
    Do you think I have a bad breaker
    Should the fridge be on it’s own circuit like in a house what are your thoughts as I’d like to figure this out so I can leave food up there and not have to worry about it going bad
    The site is 30amp and that is the only breaker that trips


    1. Thanks for stopping by Derek!

      I would start by replacing the 120-volt breaker and see if that solves the problem.

      RV Manufacturers each design their RV’s to their own specifications. Whether or not they devote one circuit to the fridge is up to them. I know in my experience that is not always the case.

      There can be many reasons why this is happening, but start with the basics and try a new breaker.

    • Jim Hanley on April 9, 2018 at 11:02 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,

    We have a 1999 Thor Infinity and are experiencing an issue with some but not all of the 12 Volt chassis battery accessories. The following functions have ceased to work: the power steps, power mirrors, as well as the 12 volt fans over the driver and passenger seats. I am unable to verify if the mirror heat is working, although the indicator light on that particular switch illuminates when turned on. Other accessories work fine such as the cigarette lighter and the radio. Not sure if this is relevant but I have 4 coach batteries hooked up in a series/parallel configuration that I bought last spring. I am embarrassed to say that when installing them I hooked two up incorrectly (I still believe a negative terminal had a red cap!) and had a fire and had to replace two of them. I have checked wiring in the engine compartment for obvious damage but all looks OK. Since there has also been a longer ongoing issue with the AUX start (bad isolator solenoid?) I was drawn to check the Battery Control Center. I noticed in my manual that the fuses for the accessories that aren’t working are all located in close proximity to each other. I have checked voltages and I definitely have power leaving on the step motor lead. Also when I turn my key to accessory I have power at the corresponding location indicating that the ignition relay is OK. Just wondering if you have seen a situation similar to this and can provide some advice and/or suggestions. Thanks so much! Jim

    1. Thanks for stopping by our website Jim!

      My first thought would be to check the 12-volt chassis fuses but it seems as though you have done that (I check them for continuity).

      My next suggestion would be to look for loose/corroded wires and 12 volt power at the accessories that are not working.

      Happy hunting!

    • Bobbie Jo on April 7, 2018 at 4:01 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,
    I own a 2010 Keystone Laredo fifth wheel and live in it full time for about 5 weeks now. Week one my converter blew after plugging into an outdated power source. After replacing it, I thought all was well except for the 30 amp main breaker flipping a few times here and there, mainly when the AC and microwave were on at the same time but not always. Last night the AC & 2 tv’s where the only extra things using power and out of nowhere the power went out. I went to the breaker box expected to find the same one flipped but it wasn’t. I did skim through the info above but unlike Brett I am still in the dark about whats wrong and how to handle it. I hope I’ve explained this enough that you might know what the problem is, I just didn’t want to give any unnecessary details. Unfortunately I cant afford a repair service.

    1. Hi Bobbie Jo!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      When the power went out last night, if it was not the 30 amp main breaker, what was the cause? Are you still without power?

    • Brett Sears on April 2, 2018 at 12:30 PM
    • Reply

    I haven’t even finished the article yet but I had to immediately stop to THANK YOU!! for this simple, easily understood explanation of electricity. In my whole life (a long time, okay!), this is a new and unhoped-for delight!
    I did have some practical experience with it from sticking my screwdriver into a receptacle not remembering to first shut off the breaker…at least I knew what a breaker was! But to suddenly be enabled, in five minutes, to get the whole watts and amps and volts thing—why did this take my whole life to get this explanation? Believe me I’ve asked! So really, Thank you! very much! and now I’ll go finish the article, lol.

    1. Hi Brett!

      Thank you for stopping by our website!

      I a happy to hear the information I provided allowed you to better understand electrical concepts! It is really important information to know when living in an RV. I have more information like this available at

    • SANDY STURGEON on March 28, 2018 at 11:44 AM
    • Reply

    We purchased a 2011 Coachman Mirada motorhome. We cannot find the breaker orfuse panel that controls the inside lights,appliances, ac ect. The manual we have does not show where it is either, Do you have any suggestions?

    1. Hi Sandy!

      Thank you for visiting our website!

      As RV inspectors we do find it hard sometimes to find the 120-volt electrical panel. This may have a combo unit that also includes the 12-volt system as well as the converter that charges your house batteries. The first place I would look is under and around the bed frame. If not their check inside a cabinet in the bathroom. Depending on your floorplan they sometimes hide them in the closet.

      Keep looking in every cabinet and in the lower spaces. You’ll find it! They can’t hide it too much. You have to have access to reset the breakers and to work on it when needed.

    2. Also Sandy, there is a recall on certain 2011 Coachman’s that I’ll share with you in case that has not been dealt with, or hopefully you are not affected.


    • Fran Muench on March 23, 2018 at 6:54 PM
    • Reply

    My husband and I have a 4 year old living quarters horse trailer. There is a constant buzzing noise back by the main electric box where the shore power and generator power switch is located. It doesn’t matter whether we’re using land power or generator. If different light switches are flipped the buzz tone changes. This happens with only lights on and/or if we’re using appliances (always one at a time, no a/c or appliance is used at the same time). The manufacturer changed out the transformer and that lasted about a year. It’s buzzing again. Can you help?

    1. Hi Fran!

      Thanks for stopping by our website.

      Based on what you are telling me, and that the lights have an effect on the tone of the hum, I am thinking that if your lights are on your 12-volt system, the noise might be your converter. If you have a converter/inverter combo, it could be that. When you say transformer being replaced I was thinking perhaps you meant the transfer switch?

      See if you can get to where the sound of the hum is to isolate the affected component.

    • Jim McManus on March 14, 2018 at 4:58 PM
    • Reply

    Hi. I have a 2007 Pleasureway Excel. I bought it about 3 yrs ago and have experienced chassis battery problems from the beginning. The chassis battery consistently dies and needs to be replaced. I replaced a 2 yr old battery today and all I get is a clicking sound under the hood and the red security light flashing on the dash. Nothing when I turn the key. We have had people look at it and nobody seems to know what’s up with it. Help.

    1. Hi Jim!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      In this case Jim, I would get back to the chassis manufacturer and present the problem to them. It sounds like you have a parasitic load somewhere that drains the battery.

      As far as your new battery install today, be sure all connections are as they were before you removed the old one. You may want to check your manual for what the red security light means. When reinstalling the new battery did you create a spark that may have taken out a fuse?

    • angel on March 5, 2018 at 9:01 AM
    • Reply

    hello. 2004 explorer travel trailer
    all electric works fine when i hook up to the pole at the rv park then shuts off after 20 minutes
    what could cause this?

    1. Angel, you need to tell me a little more information about what was going on in the RV at the time the power went out before I can even begin to answer that question. Does this happen at every RV park you go to? Is this just at one park? What was running inside when it happens? 30 amp or 50 amp? And so on.

    • Larry on March 4, 2018 at 12:32 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 15 amp fuse labeled “fans” that keeps blowing . What does this run, and where do I start looking
    for the problem. This is a 2012 Heartland Sundance 5th wheel.


    1. Greetings Larry!

      Thank you for stopping by our website!

      If this is a 12-volt fuse for the interior systems of the RV, and it is labeled “fans”, I would look at your ceiling fans. If the fuse is currently blown and the ceiling fans are not working, you may have a short between the fuse and the fan units.

    • gary christiansen on February 6, 2018 at 1:53 PM
    • Reply

    The electric side of our Dometic refrigerator shut the system down. After about 2 hours it came back on and I switched over to LP and it is working fine. I imagine that the heater unit overheated and shut the system down. If so, would this indicate a faulty heater and I need to replace it or could this be something else?

    1. Hi Gary!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      If the unit shuts down on either electric or propane, the ECO (emergency cutoff) switch on the burner assembly would be responsible for that. And, it would have to be reset manually. The only way it would come back on by itself is after overheating would be if you have an auxiliary unit like the ARP that some manufacturers or owners have installed. It would do that.

      So, if it shut off and restarted on its own, I don’t think it was from overheating, especially this time of year, but to a loose connection, a circuit board problem, or the element is failing. The simplest thing you could do at this point is to check your connections in the backside of the fridge to be sure all is secure and there is no corrosion, then keep an eye on it.

      Let us know how things progress!

    • Kellon Pitts on January 27, 2018 at 9:52 AM
    • Reply

    Great information, thank you very much.

    1. Thanks, Kellon!

    • JACQUES GREGOIRE on January 26, 2018 at 9:58 AM
    • Reply

    Hi, have a little problem with my electrical watching tv and it shout down by it self put in on again few minutes later both tv shout down but the power is still on check the braker everything or good. Power shoutdown only for this could it be my braker or something else sorry for my english writing i’m french so some words are probably not writing good it’s our first fifthwheel rv and it’s the first time it hapen it shoutdown lot of time during watching the tv thanks you for your help

    1. Hi Jacques!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      The only time I have seen what you are describing is with Jensen TV’s. Are these TV’s plugged into a 120-volt receptacle in your RV, or are they 12-volt TV’s? If they are 120-volt TV’s, voltage fluctuations could trip them off. That both are doing this would to me not indicate that it’s just a TV going bad. If they are 12-volt TV’s there are few things that can cause this to happen: 12-volt house batteries are going bad, the converter is not charging them as it should, or possibly both.

      We had a case where the batteries were bad and when another 12-volt device was used, it shut off the TV.

      Perhaps a little more info and we can narrow it down?

    • Patti on January 13, 2018 at 4:16 PM
    • Reply

    Hi. I have a 2006 Holiday Rambler RV. Worked perfect 6 months ago. Went out today to just make sure all was ok. Plugged it into home 110 outlet. The slide or none of the lights will work. Outlets and microwave will work. We have checked fuses and breakers. Had it plugged in the same way last time we had it out for cleaning. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Patti!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      From what you are telling me it sounds like you are having issues with your 12-volt coach batteries. These are the ones that run your interior lights, appliance control boards, water pump, slideouts, etc.

      If you stay plugged in for a while your converter may charge those batteries and things may start working. I am assuming that you did not disconnect the main battery cutoff. If you did that the same symptoms would be occurring.

      Start with your batteries and check to see if you have at least 12.6 volts. If so then you need to see why you do not have voltage inside. Check your battery cutoff switches, your 12-volt fuses, etc.

      Keep us posted! Hopefully, it’s something simple!!

    • Kathy on December 29, 2017 at 2:59 PM
    • Reply

    Howard where is a battery disconnect switch normally located on a 5th wheel camper

    1. Hi Kathy!

      In my experience, by the batteries, if the RV manufacturer included a battery disconnect switch.

    • Glen price on December 26, 2017 at 1:22 AM
    • Reply

    Hi I have a 2007 Fleetwood travel trailer, the has a problem with power getting to the lights for some reason or another and also charging the battery is there some kind of relay that works between the 12 volt system in the hundred twenty volt system because when I flip the breaker the lights will get bright for a bit and then dim back out again and that and I heard some kind a sound coming from somewhere that sounds like it might be a relay kicking out?

    1. Greetings Glen!

      If your battery is not charging, and you are hearing clicking and momentary brightness of lights, that tells me your converter is trying to kick on but not staying on. That is the clicking you are hearing.

      Your converter may be part of your 12-volt and 120-volt interior electrical panel, or it may be located in another location. It sounds like it may need to be serviced or replaced. Trace the clicking sound to help locate where your converter is located.

    • ken kaahanui on December 19, 2017 at 8:29 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 2005 Fleetwood Revolution LE Class A. in the early AM I get a battery fault light saying batt at 10.5v at the same time the gen is attempting to start but can’t because of low batt. (conditions: outside temp in the 40’s, coach propane heater running.) observed: while gen was trying to start house lights dim from draw.
    in order to start gen had to use the combine switch, started gen but after a few minutes observed gen RPM’s increase and amp usage meter went up then gen stopped. I did a restart using the combiner switch and everything appears normal with gen running.
    condition has happen twice before, the second time I replaced the start batteries. A little over a week later the same problem occurred.
    I’m now thinking that maybe one or all of the coach batt’s are faulting somehow.
    a little more background: we’re in quartzsite az and during the winter it has been very cold, have had to run the heaters all night on a thermostat. I can’t help but think that has something to do with the problem.
    Your thoughts would be appreciated.

    1. Hi Ken!

      I am guessing you are not on shore power, therefore your batteries are not being charged while running your 12-volt house system. If so, running the furnace, or furnaces, all night will certainly drain your batteries even if they are new. Batteries running motors apply a lot more load then do other 12-volt systems in your RV. Try checking your coach battery voltage early in the evening. Then, while the furnace is running observe changes for a few hours to confirm this is where the voltage draw is coming from.

      Keep us posted!

    • John Hori on December 19, 2017 at 1:22 AM
    • Reply

    Hello. I have a 2009 Fleetwood Discovery 40k and have somehow lost power to the 3 slide out switches and the control panel to the power leveling jacks. Two of the slide out switches are located in the overhead control panel while one is on the wall in the bedroom in back. None of these have any 12v power. The power leveling jack control panel in the overhead control panel also has no 12v power. Both of these systems are made by Lippert. I have checked the fuses labeled for each of these systems including a couple in the wiring harness for the slide out pump and all are ok. Not sure if it’s related, but both driver and passenger side mounted electric mirrors also do not operate. They act like there is no power. The house batteries are fully charged. Any ideas? Thanks for your help.

    1. Hi John!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      Depending on the RV manufacturer, the systems you mentioned are controlled by the 12-volt chassis battery system. Be sure you have adequate voltage and amps. Even if the engine is running but the batteries are weak, you may not have enough amps to run jacks or slides. The other issue could be a fuse that you may not have located yet.

      When issues like this occur I always suggest starting with the basics. Be sure you have power to them before going farther.

        • John Hori on December 19, 2017 at 3:37 PM
        • Reply

        Hi Howard! Thanks for the quick reply. There appears to power to the motor for the slides as I had a tech come out and he bypassed the switches somehow with 12 v power and moved the slides out so we could at least live int the RV. I don’t think he tried the same with the levelers. Is there a cutoff that engages if the air brakes are not engaged when parked and in neutral? I’m thinking that since the levelers are up, the slide switches are disconnected automatically for safety. I’m also wondering if the levelers won’t operate if there is a circuit that thinks the brakes are not engaged, even though they are in this case.

        The tech has been talking with Fleetwood tech support and they are thinking that there may be a bad fuse/relay under the dashboard. Any further thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

        1. Hi John!

          Yes, there are definitely motorized RV’s that require the parking brake to be engaged before you can deploy the jacks and slideouts.

          Since you have an RV Tech on the case, and talking to Fleetwood, the problem should be solved soon.

          Best wishes and Merry Christmas!

    • Jody on December 8, 2017 at 12:18 AM
    • Reply

    Hello: We have a 91 Dodge Roadtrek – we bought led bulbs & they worked great on 12 volt but now we are in an RV park & plugged into AC – within 20 minutes, 2 of them were smoking, melted & shattered in pieces – we put the old bulbs back in only had 1 on but within 20 minutes, it burned out – we have unplugged from power & now everything is good – we have been plugged in before in other places & this did not happen – why now?

    1. Greetings Jody!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      Do you have an EMS (electrical management system) in use for your RV when you plug in RV park power? If not, I would recommend one.

      From what you are telling me if it only happened this one time at the RV park you are at, something with the electrical pedestal has increased voltage in your DC system, enough to create too much of a flow of electrons, thereby exceeding the allowable voltage of the bulbs you are using. Without being there that is the only conclusion I can draw.

      If you are able to measure electrical output at the pedestal it is going to be hard for you to know if this is the case.

    • Hannah on November 28, 2017 at 6:00 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard, my husband and I have an 05 Keystone Outback, which is currently hooked up to campground power source. Everything works fine but I’ve just noticed that the main light switch, which controls four lights in the kitchen and living room, gets pretty warm to the touch after it has been on for an hour or so. Just the switch gets hot, not the switch cover or the little wiring box behind it. I’m not very knowledgeable about travel trailers as this is the first one I’ve owned. Should I be concerned about this?

    1. Hi Hannah!

      I would try replacing the switch and see if that improves performance.

    • Allen on November 21, 2017 at 11:26 AM
    • Reply

    Travel trailer plugged into the campsites 30 amp and the battery on. When the heater is in use, the lights flicker or a portion of them go completely out. I turn the battery off and this issue goes away. Is this normal or a sign of something wrong? Thank you.

    1. Hi Allen!

      I am assuming you are talking about the RV’s propane furnace. Are the lights LED? From what you are telling me the battery is the issue, even though the evidence sounds completely opposite to what would be expected. Can you tell me what the battery voltage is with the converter on, charging the battery, and then the converter turned off? Also, how is the wiring going to the converter and fuse box? Are all connections solid, especially the negative terminal to the chassis?

    • Chris on November 18, 2017 at 8:09 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 2014 Shadow Cruiser and as soon as I connect to shore power it trips the pedestal’s 30 amp breaker (even with all the breakers in the rv off). Between ground and one of the terminals on the rv side I have 0.6 ohms of resistance. Any ideas where to start troubleshooting?

    1. Hi Chris!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      What I would try would be to turn all your breakers off in your 120-volt electrical panel except for the 30 amp main. Then plug in the RV and see if it trips the breaker. If not, turn each breaker on and off and see which one might trip the breaker at the pedestal. You could also try plugging into another pedestal and see if the same thing happens. Having worked in RV parks for years I can tell you that the pedestal breakers do fail due to oversue, especially the 30 amp breaker. If you have a 50 to 30 reducer you could try plugging your RV into the 50 amp breaker and see if it also trips that one.

      Try these options and let us know what happens.

        • Chris on November 18, 2017 at 2:30 PM
        • Reply

        I tried with just the main breaker on and pedestal still tripped. This is my permanent site and everything was fine one day and 2 days later it started tripping. My rv is 50 amp and I use a 50 to 30 reducer to connect to the pedestal which only has 30 amp and a regular 110 outlet. I saw the park employee replace the 30 amp breaker and that wasn’t the problem. I think I have a short somewhere since its tripping with all the breakers inside turned off.

        1. Hi Chris!

          Since the branch circuits are not to blame I would start with your plug and cord into the 120-volt electrical panel. You may have a hot to neutral or ground to hot short. If you check continuity between the hot leg against the ground or neutral leg and get continuity between the plug end and the electrical panel, you will have to replace your power cord, plug end, or adapter.

    • Diane Collingwood on November 7, 2017 at 8:45 PM
    • Reply

    got new microwave old one wasn;t heating very much, also new coffee pot. Had same trouble with new stuff. Park owners said people are using electric heaters and as i am close to the end of the power lines, tough. they said same problems last year. Everything else works. I moved here as a permanent place, now I dont know what to do. Very small town with not much option. We are metered by the park and pay for electric. It takes about 4 – 5 minutes to make a cup of water hot enough for coffee. Doo I need to change parks. Senior disabled lady, so this is difficult for me. Thanks for the great info page.

    1. Hi Diane!

      Check the voltage output at the electrical pedestal and see what your voltage is. If you are at the end of the line and are getting a little over 100 volts, that could be your problem.

    • Lori on November 5, 2017 at 9:12 PM
    • Reply

    Hi I really hope you can help me, we are stumped. We have a 35 ft KZ toyhauler with 50 amp service. We were camping this weekend hooked to a generator like usual and our power kept going on and off. We had the air shut off and were just running lights and my husbands cpap machine. It varied in both quick succession and longer periods. We have a 50 to 30 amp conversion between the power cord and the generator. We also have noticed that our battery isn’t staying charged long after unhooking from a power supply lately and think we might need a new battery as well. We are just hoping maybe you can give us some direction. My husband is an electrician but is stumped when it comes to this issue with the camper. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    1. Hi Lori!

      Are you sure the generator is working as it should? Check that with a voltmeter to be sure it is providing around 120 volts with a frequency of 60 hz.

        • Lori on November 6, 2017 at 9:45 AM
        • Reply

        We went home and got our second generator to switch it over so I would guess it wouldn’t be an issue with both of our generators at the same time, but I will have my husband check to make sure this afternoon after work.

          • Lori on November 7, 2017 at 1:25 PM
          • Reply

          My husband checked the 2nd generator last night with his voltmeter and the output was perfect. We ordered another 50amp to 30 amp connector to see if that is the issue as well, we really don’t know what else it could be.

            • Howard on November 7, 2017 at 9:09 PM

            That is one of the next logical places to start at Lori! Also, if that does not work, check the power cord plug head.

    • linda on October 30, 2017 at 9:12 PM
    • Reply

    THANKS SO MUCH !! I really appreciate it.
    Batteries are brand new.

    1. Thanks, Linda. Let us know how it turns out!

    • linda on October 30, 2017 at 1:22 AM
    • Reply

    Also the 2 batteries look brand new.

    1. Hi Linda!

      If you are reading no voltage on the batteries, then one or two things are happening: the batteries are not being charged or they are bad, and the converter that is supposed to be charging them is not functioning properly. All the systems you mentioned that are not working are because they require 12-volt power. Even though you are plugged into shore power, your fridge needs 12 volts to runs the internal control board.

      Your batteries, with the RV being plugged into shore power, should be at 13.2 – 14.2 volts because they should be charged from the converter. If you are reading no voltage on the batteries, you might want to check if they are hooked up right, check the converter to see if it is getting power or needs a fuse replacement and go from there.

      I hope that helps!

    • linda on October 29, 2017 at 9:32 PM
    • Reply

    I got “0” reading on both batteries.

    • Linda on October 29, 2017 at 8:15 PM
    • Reply

    Hey! Thanks so much for responding so quickly.

    Do you mean on the 2 outside batteries?
    (I don’t know but he told me they only about 6mths old.)

    How is the checking done? Red on one and black on one pole?Can I use the typical voltage meter I used to check the extension cord from the house (which was 125)?

    1. Yes, Linda, the two batteries that feed the 12-volt house system. You can read them with a voltmeter as long as it reads DC voltage. Check the positive and negative terminals of each battery and let me know what you get.

    • Linda on October 28, 2017 at 1:29 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,
    I have asked so many RVer’s and online RV sources but I can’t get an answer. After reading your info on rv electricity, I bet you will know what’s going on with my trailer’s electricity. Finding someone to come to my trailer has been impossible. I’m up on a mountain plugged into a residential home and I really don’t want to unhook and drive to a dealer.

    This is my first ever trailer. It’s an Aljo 2007 model 228 LTD(see parts below). I’ve read through all the paperwork I have which is all separate manufacturers so there’s no explanation of how it works together.

    I’ve been living in it for the past month with no 12v power to cabin lights, pump, etc. When I first got it from a private owner the 12v lasted for about a week. They told me they put a trickle charge on it before I picked it up. Don’t know what that means. During that week I had the fridge (on propane) and all other 12v was working including the propane/CO2 detector which then started the “end of life” beep. I took that out and got new same brand. Installed it but now has no power to detector. Then my fridge was getting warm, no cabin lights etc. My friend found the 5amp fridge’s fuse was blown. I changed it but still no fridge.

    The owner told me that he couldn’t get the fridge to switch to electric . He didn’t know why.
    In that initial week of use all the fuses would light if one was pulled. Now no light if I pull one. ALL are good I pulled and checked and not burned out. Circuit breakers all work- thank goodness.

    I thought when I was hooked to electricity everything would still work. I read they’re fuses all over the place on RVs I didn’t know if there was something I missed. If you could narrow it down I may get an RV familiar friend to help with it.

    These are the models I have for things in the trailer:
    >SafeTAlert model 35-742 WT
    >DOMESTIC Refrigerator gas or electric, RM2652 2.7 amps serial 64305229 product#921 14 41-43
    >World Friendship Co.Power Converter- model WF 8935AN w/Plastic
    panel input 120v 60Hz 30AMP
    converter input 105-130VAC 600 watts
    output: 13.6vdc 35AMP includes charging and load
    Any help will be greatly appreciated !

    1. Hi Linda! What is your current battery voltage while plugged into shore power?

    • Brandon on October 24, 2017 at 3:34 PM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard,

    Plugged into a 50 amp my lights in the morning when its cold go in and out and I can hear my converter kicking off and on. When its warm outside all is fine. I just bought a new battery and tested and is keeping a 13 volt charge.
    Does this sound like the converter is gong bad?Also sometimes when i turn on most of the lights the converter will cycle off and on.

    1. 13.0 volts is low for a new battery being charged by the converter. Yes, I would investigate the converter further.

    • Chuck Smith on October 22, 2017 at 10:40 PM
    • Reply

    We have a 2005 HR Ambassador. Have been at an RV park plugged to shorepower for over a month. Had a severe lightning storm last night. Today, I noticed that one leg of 120AC power in the RV is running off the inverter. The other leg is working fine on shore power. Check incoming power and it shows 120-124 on both branches.

    1. I shut off all the AC Breakers, waited 30sec and turned them back on, no change.

    2. I used a dogbone to connect the 30a shorepower to the RV, and the EMS system showed 50a instead of 30. one branch of power still running off inverter instead of AC.

    3. Disconnected shore power, shut off all AC breakers, disconnected house and chassis batteries and solar. Waited 60sec, reconnected batteries and solar, turned breakers on, reconnected shore power to 50A. No change.

    4. Reset the inverter (MagnaSine2000) by holding in power button until reset. No change.

    5. Started genset, everything worked fine and batteries started charging. Turned off generator, and same branch went back to inverter power.

    Thought perhaps the main breaker feeding the affected side was bad, but with everything working when the generator is on that seems to defeat that idea. Any ideas? My next step is to open the breaker panel and start checking with the voltmeter but am going to wait for daylight.

    Thanks in advance.

    1. I would start by looking at the transfer switch first and see what that looks like.

    • KRISTIAN on October 16, 2017 at 6:46 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,

    I just recently purchased a 92′ Layton Skyline 5th Wheel. I just moved it into a RV/Camper Park and went to plug into the 30AMP socket provided for the spot I am renting at the RV park. When I plugged in I got nothing. I do have power coming from the battery (the interior lights are working, my landing gear works, and the pop out tried to start moving but my battery was too dead) but none from the 30AMP outlet. What could be stopping me from getting power from the 30AMP outlet?
    This may sound really stupid but I cannot find my breakers that are inside my 5th wheel…. Where could those be located? I was told by my father there should be a switch in the 5th wheel that will allow the power from the 30AMP outlet to charge the battery… Is that false?

    I apologize for asking so many questions at once. My wife is pregnant and we live in Alaska so it is getting very cold and dark really fast.

    Thankyou for your time!

    1. Greetings Kristian!

      If I were there I would take a voltmeter and check the electrical pedestal the RV is plugged into to see if there is actually voltage available there. If there is around 120 volts at the pedestal, then you will have the find the 120-volt electrical panel inside the RV t be sure the main 30 amp breaker is on (flip off and back on again) and the same with all the branch circuits. Where is that panel located? It could be in a cabinet in the RV, under the bed, etc. Just keep looking, it’s there. You will recognize it by the residential type looking breakers. And yes, there is a converter that charges your battery that is attached to your 20-volt electrical system.

    • Maria on October 15, 2017 at 11:53 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard, are battery was dead, replaced battery. The new battery draining all lights went dim again. Then n the tech said it was the converter. Then installed a new converter to have the battery draining again and somehow the electrical outside plug fried. As no lights etc. They installed another converter which was a loaner trying to get our new converter refunded. After one month the battery is draining as the lights don’t work as I’m in the dark. We took out the refrigerator because it is dead and lost all my food. Some of our lights went out only one in the kitchen. But now everything is out. What is causing my converter to not work and my battery dying. Help. 🙂 Maria

    1. Hi Maria!

      Has anyone checked the electrical pedestal you are plugged into to see if you have correct voltage, grounding, and polarity? You did not mention 30 or 50 amp, but that may be a good place to start. When electrical items are failing, the source of the power should be the first thing to check.

    • Craig A. Cobb on October 4, 2017 at 12:43 PM
    • Reply

    30 minutes after plugging in we lost power in our rv. Campground power was good. Surge protector showed power was being sent to the unit. We checked and reset all GFC outlets and still nothing. Turned main breaker off then back on. We get power for a few second then off again. Inverter?

    1. Hi, Craig?

      Are you sure park power is good? The reading from the electrical pedestal can read okay with no load, but under load, fail. Does the breaker switch feel easy to flip on and off? A failing breaker will be easy to reset compared to a properly working one.

    • Richi on September 30, 2017 at 8:48 AM
    • Reply

    We have a 2014 Flagstaff V-Line WKSS 30. Lately, the circuit breaker GFIC at the kitchen island has been popping off.
    At first, we thought it was an overload situation (too many small appliances in use at once). So, we became frugal with electrical load, keeping the load down. Now, with no load, the GFIC breaker trips with no apparent load at all. I have read that once a GFIC breaker trips too many times, it can become weak and trip too easily…like a hair trigger. From my description, what do you think the problem might be? Let me know if you need more info. Thank you. You have helped so many, I am hoping that you can help us. Regards

    1. Hi, Richie!

      Thanks for stopping in and for the kind words!

      Yes, GFCI’s will become ineffective after a while and trip unexpectedly. The easiest thing to do is remove the current one and find a similar model to replace it. Before you remove it, mark the wires and take a picture. That way you can install the new one properly. I have mixed up the line and load sides of the GFCI when I got in a hurry.

      Hopefully, that will solve your problem. Let us know!

    • Acker on September 29, 2017 at 8:41 AM
    • Reply

    Found my inverter down and the ac breaker thrown. Reset and it instantly throws. I assume inverter has a short circuit. Agree?

    1. Sounds like a good place to start looking.

  2. I just purchased a 1999 Thor Four Winds Infinity (Q30). The 2 lamps that are mounted behind the bed and the roof mounted fluorescent light (bedrooom) and the bathroom lights above the sink, and the fan vent (bathroom) were all working fine when i purchased the RV. The first night i had it, I plug the RV into the house and the kids were watching the TV in the bedroom and all the lights were working fine and the front A/C was on. Then the list of lights mentioned above went out (not the A/C). The next day I opened the fuse box and noticed that the 1 amp fuse was blown/melted and the plastic around the fuse holder was melted also. I replaced the one amp fuse and it worked for 10 seconds and blew again, no breakers were thrown. First time owner of a RV, so I don’t know much.
    Thank you

    1. Hi, Dan!

      Good explanation of your current situation! Okay, when things heat up and melt, what does that tell you? It’s kind of like trying to jook up a water hose to a faucet that has pressure that is way too high. The hose expands and burst: to much flow and not enough hose. If there is too much load on the wiring: too much flow needed to power the demand, the wiring will heat up and cause damage. So, are the light bulbs in the fixtures rated for them? does everything appear to be original or has a higher power consuming fixture been installed? Is the correct fuse in use for that circuit? Perhaps these are some items you can start investigating and then go from there.

    • Heather on September 28, 2017 at 9:32 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2017 28v Forest River Vengeance toy hauler. While hauling our bike, it tipped over and broke out my window, leaning out of the window. After we cleaned that up, we plugged into shore power at campground. Everything worked inside, then breaker tripped at shore power. Flipped breaker, everything came on. 30 minutes later everything shut off except lights. No appliances or outlets would work. Checked breakers and fuses, all check good. Checked outlets and found a loaded neutral at 124V. Even checked distribution panel, found all neutral worse at 124V. All hot wires 124V. Why would all of a sudden, I have 124V at neutral wires? Could the bike have knocked a neutral wire off 1 of outlets? Or a Powe surge? Please help.

    1. Hi, Heather!

      Are you saying that when you measure a neutral slot to a ground slot in a receptacle you read 124 volts?

    • Misti on September 27, 2017 at 7:37 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard. I’m desperate with longer nights coming.
    Bought a 2004 wildwood 5th wheel in April. Have been full time living in it which was made considerably easier with the addition of a bank of 4-6v batteries. I went 7 weeks with full lights, fridge and water pump before the batteries even drained down to %70. That same day, I went from 70-%0 and even after recharging the batteries to 100, I have no power to the trailer without being plugged into a generator and after unplugging I have very dim lights that fade within 1-2 minutes. I purchased a new inverter, double checked the wiring setup and am flat out of ideas. Any clue what could be happening?

    1. Hi, Misti!

      I would check your converter to see if it is charging your batteries as it should. Based on what you are telling me, I would check there first.

    • Jennifer H on September 24, 2017 at 3:05 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard:

    I went to winterize my camper (Dutchman Sportsmen) today and plugged the camper into an outlet. I have power to the microwave, but not to the lights or the water pump and heater. I do have the batteries unhooked. I have checked all of the inside fuses and none are blown. I have not checked the fridge or water heater yet. Do you have any ideas why I don’t have power to lights and water pump?

    1. Hi, Jennifer! Hook up the batteries and see what happens. The systems that are not working require 12-volt power. The converter can’t handle all the 12-volt load.

    • Gregory Smart on September 24, 2017 at 7:35 AM
    • Reply

    Thanks for your reply Howard.
    Just a follow up:
    Checked the transfer switch for continuity with an ohm meter,,,,,it was fine.
    Removed the power inlet and had to take the plug apart before I could see that
    the plug was melted around the blade connected to the black wire, Very subtle, but that was it!!



    1. Thanks for checking back Greg! Glad you found it!

    • Danielle on September 23, 2017 at 1:42 PM
    • Reply

    We juse towed our travel trailer home, everything was working this morning before we left the campground. We plugged it in as soon as we got home and now the ac, fridge, and microwave will not work.

    1. Hi, Danielle!

      Let’s start with the basics: is there power at the outlet you are plugging into? Are the breakers inside the RV tripped?

    • Gregory Smart on September 19, 2017 at 4:24 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,
    I have a Forest River Sunseeker 2300.
    When plugged into shore power the 110V outlets and appliances do not work.
    When the generator is turned on; everything works.
    A current sensor detected no power after the transfer switch when plugged into shore power.
    Visually inspected the transfer switch (WFCO T30) no obvious damage.
    Any ideas?

    1. Hi Gregory!

      When plugged into shore power, have you taken a voltmeter and checked for voltage at the point the wires come into the main breaker? If you have no voltage there then trace back to the point where you do read voltage. That will probably be your transfer switch.

    • Dwain Osborne on September 18, 2017 at 5:53 PM
    • Reply

    why does my generator go into overload when i run only the a/c in my travel trailer ?? the a/c is 13,500 btu and the 1 generator was honda 3000 and the other one is a predator 3500. it does it to both generators.

    1. Hi, Dwayne!

      Does the AC unit work okay when plugged into 30 amp shore power (3600 watts)? What are voltage and frequency values generated by both generators? Let me know and we’ll go from there.

    • TONY WILLIAMS on September 17, 2017 at 2:19 PM
    • Reply

    My question is: How can I turn on the “side dock” lights and the “rear dock” lights without trying to start the engine? We have a 1997 Holiday Rambler Imperial. There are two “side docks” (one on each side) and a “rear dock”. I thought when I turn the ignition key to “accessories” and press their buttons that they would come on when needed in the dark. It didn’t happen. I had to turn the ignition key to the right as if starting the engine. It made a very loud whistling noise, not good. Can anyone help me? (PLEASE) My cell phone number is (559) 307-3241. Feel free to call anytime. My name is Tony. My email is:

    1. Hi, Tony!

      These side dock lights should run off the house batteries, not the chassis batteries. If they are not working, you might check to see if the bulbs, or the fuse that protects them, are good.

    • Nadine Edmunds on September 16, 2017 at 3:58 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, I wonder if you could point us in the right direction. We have a fifth wheel that is currently being stored. We were in there cleaning today. We had the generator running, the AC unit turned on. We turned the generator off and back on again… Now the AC/furnace will not turn on, no power at all, no fan blowing. The AC is on a twin breaker with the ceiling fan which also does not have power now. Everything else is running. No breakers are tripped, we tried each one, just in case. No fuses are blown, we looked at each one. The AC and the ceiling fan are on the twin breaker, like I said, so we are thinking that this is, most likely, a bad breaker? Is there anything else we should check? Thank you so much for your help!

    1. Hi, Nadine!

      It sounds like you have given this problem some thought. If the AC and fan are the only non-functioning item, and you have reset the breaker with no result, try replacing that first. If that does not work then something may have suffered an electrical failure in the surge of restarting the generator, if the RV was plugged in, and the generator not grounded.

      So, try that and let us know if that fixes the problem.

    • Bill Cowie on September 10, 2017 at 9:58 PM
    • Reply

    Hello, Great blog! I seem to have cut my power cord from the trailer to my truck, 7 prong. (sharp turn and cut between the hitches) Bought a new one and installed it. one turn flasher worked and the other didn’t cleaned it all up and tried again with no luck. I took out the bulb in the back of the trailer and when i turned it around it went on, but it is not in properly and won’t stay in. I tried it a bunch and eventually none of the tail lights work. I’ve checked and replaced the 30 amp fuse by the batteries (it is a 25′ 2015 Prowler trailer). Now I’m stumped, I believe I shorted out somewhere but can not find where? Any idea what I can do? Thank you!

    1. Hi, Bill!

      I never had this happen with our 5th wheel but have had friends who did. Sorry to hear that!

      What I would do if I was troubleshooting this is to have a power source for the 7-pin connection, and then, using a volt meter measure to see where you have 12-volts and where you don’t. That will help you to diagnose the problem.

    • Ivy Fitzwater on September 9, 2017 at 1:13 PM
    • Reply

    Great information! I am new to full timing and have a problem. Everything works, except the outlet to the built in microwave is dead. We removed it and plugged it in elsewhere and it works fine. No thrown breakers or dead fuses. Microwave has its own breaker switch. Have reset all GFI and the breakers. Any idea what it can be?

    1. Hi, Ivy!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      Does the RV have an inverter and if so does the inverter power the microwave? What I would do at this point is to check the voltage reading on the output side of the microwave breaker and see if there is the appropriate voltage there. If so, then somewhere between the breaker and the outlet there is a disconnect. Pull the outlet from the wall and check the wiring on the backside. It is possible that one of the wires has come loose.

      Keep us posted!

    • Larry Grace on September 9, 2017 at 6:48 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 32′ 2006 Durango 5th wheel trailer. I had it plugged into a 30 amp breaker at home. The other afternoon when I got home the breakers were tripped. I reset the breakers and check with my meter and they are hot on the outlet post but nothing is working, no lights, no refrigerator, no AC, what could be wrong here. Hope you can shed some insight on my problem, because I am totally confused.

    1. Greetings Larry!

      The 30 amp receptacle that you plugged into: can you get me a voltage reading between the two upper slots? The reason I ask is that in residential applications these plugs are wired for 240-volt applications. If you plugged into that you will have likely fried everything inside the RV and that is why the breakers were tripped and now nothing is working. If the receptacle is 120-volt service then we will have to look elsewhere, but let’s start with that.

    • Sherri on September 6, 2017 at 9:11 AM
    • Reply

    Good Morning Howard.

    I did see your response to a fellow RVer that was getting power to all the outlets and appliances but no lights. I am having the same issue. Everything works in my trailer except my lights will go off Sporadically and then they will come back on sometimes 15 minutes later and sometimes not until the next day. We have of course checked the breaker and turned them off and then on again. Sometimes this works, but mostly not. You mentioned that it may be a dropped wire. What does that mean? We have a 2004 Rockwood 31 foot.

    Do you have any other ideas of what is going on?

    1. Greetings Sherri!

      Your 12-volt house battery system controls your lights in the trailer, not the 120-volt system, other than the converter that is running on 120 volts, charges the batteries that power the lights. So, that being said, of the lights come on and off sporadically, to me that means there is a fuse problem or a loose (dropped) wire. I would start at the 12-volt fuse panel and wiggle the fuses when the lights go out to see if one or two of them bring the lights back on. Once you find the fuse, take a pair of needle nose pliers and tighten up the fuse holder and for peace of mind, replace the fuse. There is also a chance that wires behind the fuse panel could be loose too. I have seen that happen. Try that and let us know what you find.

    • Rich overman on September 2, 2017 at 3:40 PM
    • Reply

    I have a 2007 dutchman and the power went out in a rain storm there was no lightning with the storm the power came back on and now i have the right side brake light on all the time i have pulled all the fuses shut off the 120 volt breakers and it stays on pluged into my truck or regular power what am i missing that is causing this

    1. Hi, Rich!

      Are you saying that with all the 12-volt fuses pulled, the tow vehicle unplugged from the trailer 7-pin connector, and the 120-volt power unplugged, the brake light stays on?

    • Chris on August 28, 2017 at 4:43 PM
    • Reply


    I hope you are still around and able to help me out. So my trailer has been working fine since I purchased it last year, however we always camped at a fully serviced site plugged in. This past weekend I camped with out electric hookup and took my 3000 Honda generator. When we got to the site, I tried to set up without plugging in my trailer first, so using the battery on the trailer to lower the front jack etc. But the only thing that worked in the entire trailer was the front jack. Not a light, slide nothing. So I powered up the generator and everything worked fine. I ran the generator the entire night and the next day I tried using just the battery again for small stuff like lights and running the fridge and hot water tank off propane……not a gig. Now, I can still use my front jack which is wired directly to my battery and it had lots of juice to go up and down all day……..I hooked up jumper cables from my truck battery and ran it to the trailer battery and still no change…….if my converter was toast wouldn’t the power still not work if I hooked my Generator up? What’s the problem here, do u think? By the way it’s a 2016 30 foot Forest River Salem.

    1. Hi, Chris!

      What you are describing sounds like a battery that just does not have enough amps to handle the load unless plugged into shore power with the converter helping it out. I would have the deep cycle house battery load tested to see if it is as it should be. Given you have use of 12-volt components while plugged in indicates the converter is working.

        • Chris on August 28, 2017 at 10:13 PM
        • Reply


        Thanks for the quick reply, so even though the battery will power my front jack all day long, you still think it’s not strong enough to power anything else eh? Ok I will have it load tested tomorrow, am I able to charge this as boy up or is it a goner of it doesn’t pass a load test?

        1. Hi again Chris!

          I am basing my response on what you are telling me and previous experience with issues like these. Unfortunately, even though your RV is a 2016, the battery may be older than that. There are services that say they can make a battery like new again but I have no personal experience with them. Just charging the battery will not bring it back to life. After awhile they just loose their ability to provide voltage pressure and flow. Keep us posted on your progress.

            • Chris on August 28, 2017 at 10:59 PM

            Ok I will get it load tested tomorrow,
            Thanks you very much!!

            • John Brand on August 30, 2017 at 9:26 AM

            How do I post here??
            I have a 2008 sandstorm. With two 6. Volt new batteries. When I turn on generator the 30 amp fuse got so hot it melted plastic around it?? Overheating fuse area???? What’s causing this?

            • Howard on August 30, 2017 at 12:03 PM

            Hi, John!

            Can you send me a picture of what you are describing to

    • Tony on August 23, 2017 at 10:39 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard, I have a 2004 ford phoenix cruiser that the starting battery dies all the time. We replaced the battery with a brand new one and it still gets drained from something. My question is, does that battery run anything else other than your typical headlights, radio, dome lights, etc. If it does, do you have any suggestions to look at. And also is the starting battery and the battery in the back connected together. Thank you for your help.

    1. Hi, Tony!

      My experience with Class C’s on the Ford chassis is this: The chassis battery only runs starter, lights, ignition, nothing in the house system of the RV, that is handled by the house batteries. Now, when the engine is running the house batteries are charged by the alternator. When the RV is parked, and the chassis battery gets weak, there may be a button on the dash that allows the house batteries to link to the chassis battery to provide additional volts, if needed.

      What are the situations in which the battery gets run down? Is this when you are parked and plugged into shore power or is it while the vehicle sits unplugged? If it’s the latter it is possible the link between the house and chassis battery, handled by relays, may be feeding the house system and running it down, especially if the house batteries are older. Just a thought. If the volts can travel from house to chassis, they sure can go the other way as all the batteries seek equilibrium.

      You may want to check with Phoenix Cruiser for their thoughts.

    • Brandon Roberts on August 20, 2017 at 10:40 AM
    • Reply

    Good morning.

    1996 National Tropical motorhome

    So today I was cooking eggs on a plugged in skillet, making coffee, running the domestic fridge, running the AC, and a box fan.

    Suddenly everything died…I’ve flipped all the breakers unplugged most everything and reconnected the motorhome…

    Still no power at all!!!

    What is wrong?

    1. Hi, Brandon!

      When should I show up for breakfast? LOL

      If this happened to me I would reset the breaker at the pedestal and check to see that the power cord was not damaged. If the plug gets hot things can melt and prevent voltage from getting into the RV. If that is okay, reset the main breaker in the 120-volt electrical panel and check to see that the branch circuits are okay. If you still don’t have power, I would try unplugging the RV and run the generator to see if that works. If not then you may have a problem with your transfer switch. Let us know how it turns out.

    • Jake on August 14, 2017 at 5:56 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard
    2003 fifth wheel Dutchmen
    Problem is my GFI rec. they work from master bedroom, then up to front wall of kitchen. Rest are dead. Everything else works too I might add. Have checked everything I know
    Any help would be greatly appreciated
    Thanks in advance

    1. Hi, Jake

      How many actual GFCI’s do you have, where are they located, and do you know what receptacles are downstream from them?

    • Mike on August 11, 2017 at 10:25 AM
    • Reply

    I own a 1984 Barth and had to replace the old electric Kwikee step with a new Kwikee electric step. The wires were the same colors so I attached them (had the old diagram for wiring and the new instructions wiring appeared to work in same set up) everything works except in reverse.
    The step will go in when you open the door, the step light will turn on when you shut the door.

    1. Hi, Mike!

      Have you tried switching the wires?

    • Deb on August 5, 2017 at 9:20 AM
    • Reply

    the aux start feed (asf) 10 amp the beaker blows weather it is on shore power or if the RV is running.

    1. Hi, Deb!

      Is there a relay switch attached to this circuit? Follow the wiring from that fuse and see where it goes, if you can. My guess is this electrical system allows the house batteries to start the RV in case the chassis batteries fail. This system can allow a link between the other electrical systems in the RV. Look for a switch on the dash too. Check if the switch has gone bad.

      This may be one of those issues Deb where what you are trying to diagnose is not easy to access, nor easy to fix, depending on skill set. You may have to hire the services of a qualified RV technician to assist.

        • Deb on August 6, 2017 at 5:13 PM
        • Reply

        Hi Howard,
        I did try to get a technician out to the house but local camper place didn’t work on motor homes only tow behinds go figure. I did follow the wire and it was wrapped around some other things I straighten it and it works. I am just going to replace this wire cause I figure all I did was make the wires make a connection if it gets shifted or moved it probably will not work but at least the Jacks are raised and I can drive it 2hrs down the road to dealer where we got it if it needs other work. I need to get furnace checked and gas scares me so the dealer will do that for me. You were right tough it is very hard to trace these wires. Thanks for all you do and info you give us.

        1. Thank you. Best Wishes Deb!

    • todd on August 5, 2017 at 9:00 AM
    • Reply

    hi I have an 84 Shasta class c just bought it everything worked fine off shore power from my home the night before.shut everything down went to plug it in next day lights no outlets ac fridge etc.i have not tried the generator or does it have a not concerned with that just want to use it in back yard for now.if I run a jumpeer cord to one of the outlets I have power to all lights and outlets and stove ac or fridge.there is power going to breakers from 30 amp cord but low power where it hooks in to them.could it be the breaker?

    1. Hi, Todd!

      If you are saying that plugged into shore power, when inside the 120-volt electrical panel of the RV, you have voltage coming into the panel but not coming out of the main 30 amp breaker that is feeding the branch circuits, then I would try replacing the 30 amp main breaker.

    • Deb on August 4, 2017 at 7:20 PM
    • Reply

    It is the Aux start feed ASF the chart says.

    • Deb on August 4, 2017 at 11:29 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,
    I have no power to my radio and Jacks back up camera not sure what else I did find that under my hood the 80amp breaker and 120amp breaker the arms were no longer connected so I replaced those. also i have a 10amp fuse that blows as soon as I put a new one in. A few months ago I had a friend staying in the rv and the shore plug got wet and melted. i replaced the plug and everything worked that she needed. she never used radio jacks etc.. so i am not sure when they quit working. I can not figure out why the fuse blows before i even get it pushed the whole way in. Hope this helps. I have a 2002 ford gulfstream motor home.

    1. Hi, Deb!

      Sorry to hear that!

      Some of the items you mentioned are working off your 12-volt chassis electrical system. The 10 amp fuse that blows as soon as you try to put in a new one, what does that fuse operate?

      The shore power cord issue, whether created from moisture or over consumption, is a separate electrical system from the 12-volt chassis electrical system. I am not sure that issues with it would affect your chassis electrical system that way.

    • Richard Rocha on August 2, 2017 at 9:09 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard I replaced a LED bulb in one of the 12 volt ceiling lights and 4 of the ceiling lights will not go on. There are 8 lights on the ceiling and 7 were working before replacing one that wasn’t. BTW the light with the replaced bulb is working. Checked all 4 lights by putting them into fixture that was working all good. Been told these are daisy chained what do I check now?

    1. Hi, Richard!

      I was recently sitting with some clients inside their new RV while at the dealership. The service manager offered to replace an led light that was not working. He put a new led in and the other lights went off. Upon further investigation, he found that a fuse had blown in the process. So, this sounds a lot like your situation. Did you check the fuse/fuses that support all these lights? Let’s start there!

    • Billy Polk on July 31, 2017 at 11:30 PM
    • Reply

    Hi howard so my rec work on my camper aswell as my tv and microwave when pluged in to shore power but my ac lights and fridge wont come on did i loose my power converter?

    1. Hi, Billy!

      What is the current voltage of your 12-volt house battery? If the converter is not charging it to a level of at least 13.2 volts, then either your converter or battery, possibly both are in need of repair or replacement.

    • Vicki Nickels on July 30, 2017 at 8:40 PM
    • Reply

    Just bought a 2016 Nash and we are having problems with the electrical. Worked at home, went camping and nothing works. Reset the GIF, loomed at everything we could think of. Everything was off when we left home. Gave up for the night. 6 hours later all came on. Next day it went off for about 5 min. did it again, and has not come back on. Generator hooked up doesn’t do anything except turn on the microwave. Plugging into the truck doesn’t do anything. Everything is dead

    1. Hi, Vicki!

      If everything worked at home but does not work at the campground, one would have to conclude there are some problems that have been created at the RV Park pedestal. I would have the park check your breaker and go from there. If you don’t have an EMS unit you might want to invest in one!

    • John on July 28, 2017 at 4:07 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,

    My RV has been plugged in since January and haven’t had an issue until this morning. All the breakers are fine I tripped them anyway to make sure. The battery terminals are all good and everything is plugged in. All I had running was the fridge and a fan. Any ideas?

    1. Hi, John!

      What’s the issue?

        • John on July 28, 2017 at 10:28 PM
        • Reply

        Nothing is working. Batteries won’t charge and lights are very dim.

        1. Hi, John!

          If you have a volt meter, can you tell me the voltage of your house batteries with the RV plugged into shore power, and then with the shore power off? Based on what you are telling me I want to see if your converter is working. These readings will help to uncover that issue.

    • Casey on July 27, 2017 at 4:44 AM
    • Reply

    So I have a 2015 Grand Design. The power is kicking off with some of our appliances. Everything will be running great then all of a sudden the furnace stops working. I flick the breaker and it will start up again. The washer will read “no Water”, flick the breaker and it’ll work again. A DVD got stuck in the DVD player, flicked the breaker.. any idea why this is happening? We’re on a 50 amp.

    1. Hi, Casey!

      When the furnace stops working, what breaker are you referring to? Same with the washer and DVD player.

    • Ron on July 25, 2017 at 10:25 PM
    • Reply


    There are some question like mine but can not find answer.
    My power problem. All works on 120V, unplug 120v then nothing works on battery when it should.
    check ground at battery, good. Voltage at converter/charger only 0.5 volts, Disconnect power wire at converter and at fuse block and have 12 volts. When power wire is connected to fuse block voltage drops to 0.5. Remove all fuse except one for a light and get 8 volts.
    Do fuse board/blocks fail??

    1. Hi, Ron!

      What is the voltage at the battery, with the 120-volt power and the converter on, everything as it should be, then at the battery with the 120-volt power off? Take these readings one right after the other. Let me know what you get.

    • Tori v on July 22, 2017 at 11:09 PM
    • Reply

    Hey ! I bleached my roof ( trying to get it ready for putting a sealant , then hosed it all off , as i was hosing it off my son told me all the power went out , i have it hooked up to the side of the house I’m very fully aware of not turning on the microwave and not turning the hot water heater on while the AC is running so nothing else is on but the AC and the TV which normally is always fine so I get down and I realize the little cabinet that is on the bumper of my RV is an old RV it’s a 1986 Chevrolet or GM aluminum light lol and anyways the cabinet or the little compartment where the big black power cord is usually stored and where the cord comes from the whole thing was halfway filled up with water where the cord comes from so there’s a little box that has the outlet that looks like a dryer or washer prong type and then the thick black power cord comes out of the box well it was halfway under water and now my electric will not come on how do I go about this what do you think I’m going to need to replace this is my first time owning an RV I wanted to save up and not have to pay rent so I can buy a house next year so I’m having a lot of issues LOL and I know nothing about it

    1. Hi, Tory!

      Sorry to hear that! I would get the water out of the box, let it completely dry out, check your breakers inside the RV as well as the breaker to the outlet the RV is plugged into, and go from there. I am sure something has tripped which cut the power when everything got wet.

    • Larry on July 19, 2017 at 1:09 PM
    • Reply

    My trailers lights are dim inside and when I turn on the living area lights or the porch light the marker lights on the trailer come on . the side one is brighter than the rear, if I turn any of the other lights on separetly this doesn’t happen but does seem to be back feeding because at the 7 pin plug I have 4 connections with power instead of just the one (blue one)
    All this happens not plugged into 120V only 0n 12V , could the inverter be bad ? everything works fine on 120V
    Fuse block issue ?
    travel light shorting ?
    Where do I start to test ?
    Thank You

    1. Hi, Larry!

      The marker lights run on the 12-volt DC chassis electrical system, and the interior lights run on the 12-volt DC house electrical system. Does this happen when the 7 pin is plugged into the tow vehicle or not?

    • Linda Fleeger on July 19, 2017 at 8:27 AM
    • Reply

    Help. 2000 Monaco Dynasty.
    The inverter ( under warranty) has an issue. We had it removed to return to xantrex repair. at the time of removal the RV tech connected wires and all of our 12v supply worked from the batteries.
    That lasted about 4 hours. Now no 12v works at all.
    The batteries read 12.6 and it’s been on a battery charger and they read over 14v

    As a side note when the original inverter died the tech connected wires and hubby says he installed some sort of cable and we had no problem with our 12v system while waiting for arrival and installation of the new inverter.
    We have checked everything we can think of and now we are desperate. Since we are fulltime we need that 12v working.
    What are we missing???
    It could be a month or more before the authorized xantrex service center gets our unit repaired and back to us.

    1. Hi, Linda!

      If the system worked for 4 hours and then stopped, that tells me something failed. Any fuses in the line you can check?

    • My name is Pete on July 17, 2017 at 4:32 PM
    • Reply

    Can the air conditioner breaker be put on its own separate breaker

    1. Hi, Pete!

      If you have room in the 120-volt electrical panel you can add an additional breaker just for the AC unit. If this is a 50 amp unit, be sure to balance the load on each leg if you separate the AC unit from its current position.

    • Patrick on July 13, 2017 at 4:47 PM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard! Thank you.

    There is no power, lights, fans or pumps that normally work on the 12v power. Even when I hooked up jumper cables to the batteries nothing else worked. On the other hand, the slide out is the only thing that doesn’t work on the generator.

    1. Hi, Patrick!

      If I have got this straight in my mind, from what you are telling me when the RV is hooked up to 120-volt power source, your 12-volt system works. That tells me the converter is working. Now, if there is a battery issue then that would be why the slide out does not work. It requires a lot of power to work which usually means the power from the converter and the 12-volt battery hooked to it.

      I would trace the wiring from your batteries to the converter to see if you lose the voltage. How many volts are you getting out of the new batteries right now? How are all the fuses in the 12-volt house system?

        • Patrick on July 18, 2017 at 9:24 AM
        • Reply

        Thanks for the help Howard, you pointed me in the right direction. There were two problems, batteries were bad and a loose connection. Even on shore power everything went dead before replacing the batteries. Once the batteries were replaced, everything worked on shore power only.

        I am not an electrician so after some research I was able to give names to what I found. Right below the batteries on a small busbar was 3 circuit breakers, they did not look like the circuit breakers I am used to. But I was able to verify I had 12.8 volts through the converter on the D/C side when it was plugged into shore power. With shore power off everything was dead inside the breaker box. I had 12.8 volts coming off the batteries and into this busbar. But I lost the voltage across the circuit breaker (looked like a 1″ cube with 2 posts) which was also loose on the side coming from the converter. When I plugged back into shore power I had 13.4 volts coming to that post but not going into the battery. I figured this circuit was bad from the loose connection but when I went to remove this circuit I bumped the black button on the bottom and heard a mechanical click that sounded just like a GFI, I then beat my head against the camper realizing that was it, a little black button that didn’t look like a reset button. Hooked everything up and it works.

        I am an industrial mechanic, not an electrician, and reading through this blog and teaching myself how to use a volt meter through you tube videos was able to find the ridiculously simple problem. So, Thank you!

    • Patrick on July 13, 2017 at 12:18 AM
    • Reply

    Hello, I read a similar problem earlier on. I have a 2015 Heartland prowler travel trailer. Pulled to camp and got nothing from the batteries, it was plugged into shore power at home before we left. Plugged in generator and everything but slide out works. Put jumper cables on batteries and slide out worked, but they still wouldn’t charge, even from jumper cables. Replaced the batteries and slide out works but nothing else unless the generator is on. Slide out tells me batteries took something out or were a symptom of something else. Trailer won’t switch to battery power even with new batteries.

    1. Hi, Patrick!

      When you say “slide out works but nothing else,” what items are you referring to?

    • Adrienne on July 11, 2017 at 2:58 PM
    • Reply

    have a 38 ft 5th wheel. We were parked in a field using a generator and then both the DC and AC starting working at the same time. Next thing we know my surge protector blew out black smoke. Then the air-conditioner stopped working as well as the microwave and the hot water heater stopped heating up. We have solar cells on the roof that go to two batteries for the DC. Now that we have packed up and moved when we plugged into the parks pedestal nothing works but sparks flew out of an outlet in the bedroom. Our fan is dead don’t know what else has been fried…. any thought about how to fix this? we are only on our 2 week of a 12 week trip. yes I know that I dont know much about electricity but my husband is too stubborn to ask.

    1. Hi, Adrienne!

      Since the use of the generator caused the problem, I can only assume that something is wrong with the generator since it caused things to smoke. In this case, I would recommend a qualified RV technician take a look at your situation. A hands-on approach would be best to prevent a possible electrical fire.

      Best of luck!!

    • Craig on July 9, 2017 at 9:20 PM
    • Reply

    Just bought my first camper a 2006 19ft Salem. When we plug it in the 30 amp connection at the campground everything works. When I turn on the AC all appliances go out and wall outlets stop. AC also does not work and when I turn AC off everything comes back on. I test it at home with 110 everything works ok but AC not very cold. Thanks for your help

    1. Hi, Craig!

      Did this only happen at one campground?

    • Wes on July 6, 2017 at 4:17 PM
    • Reply

    my onan 4000 generator will not even turn over unless I have the Chassis engine running. It will not even make a click. All of the 12 V house works as well as the Chassis 12 V. I did put a meter on 1 side of the starter solenoid (not sure if that is the correct term) and there is no DC voltage until the chassis engine is running.

    1. Hi, Wes!

      What is the condition of your 12-volt house batteries? How old are they and what static voltage do you get out of them without shore power?

    • Mike Bennett on July 6, 2017 at 3:27 PM
    • Reply

    This is happening while not plugged into shore power !! Yes battery charges when plugged in !! Main battery for chassis has a blade disconnect on it !! I’m assuming the tv antenna booster is in cabinet with a receptical to plug a 12 volt tv into there is a switch on the receptacle !!

    1. Yes, Mike! The TV antenna booster should have a button or switch on it to turn that off when not in use. That is another source that bleeds volts out of the 12-volt house battery system. If the battery cut-off switch is available for the house batteries I would shut that off or disconnect the leads.

    • Mike on July 6, 2017 at 12:07 PM
    • Reply

    Howard , I’ve recently purchased a1995 Dutchmen 31’ft on a Ford E350 chassis my auxiliary battery which I just purchased and charged fully before installing going dead while RV is not in use volts dropping from 12 to about 9.5 in a couple of days !! Checked to make sure all breakers and lights are off only thing I find is losing leak detector light is on showing it is operating and if I turn the fan switch for the AC from off to any of the settings it clicks like there is power on at AC unit ??? Any input would be greatly appreciated and thanks in advance !!

    1. Hi, Mike!

      Is this happening while you are not plugged into shore power? Does the battery charge while plugged in? Do you have a main battery cut off switch? Also, is the TV antenna booster off? The AC thermostat is run by your 12-volt system so hearing clicking is a good sign.

        • Mike Bennett on July 6, 2017 at 4:00 PM
        • Reply

        Thank you for your help I thought I would go ahead and put a cut off switch on the house battery as well do not know exactly what the blade switch is for on the battery for the engine and chassis functions !!

    • Eric L on July 4, 2017 at 12:45 AM
    • Reply

    Hello Howard, i have a 2017 forest river flagstaff on its first outing as I type this. All was fine until i plugged in a walmart fan into the outdoor kitchen plug. It worked for awhile then that plug, and the two plugs that power the tv went out. Fuses are fine, i flipped all the breakers, and reset the gfci, solid green, still no power to 3 those 3 plugs. Everything else still works. Should i replace the plug that i had that fan plugged into?

    1. Hi, Eric!

      Since you are under the factory warranty, I would suggest you take it back to the dealership! There could be some bigger issues here.

    • Eric on July 3, 2017 at 9:20 PM
    • Reply

    I have 2008 fleetwood tioga. When on house battery the water pump runs and the switch dims then the lights go off and back on. The status board shows my house batter as fully charged. Once I hook up to shore power I don’t have the issue. Any ideas?

    1. Hi, Eric!

      Could you tell me the voltage of the batteries while the RV is unplugged from shore power and the water pump is running?

    • Jim H on June 29, 2017 at 2:23 PM
    • Reply

    Hi! I have an older model (1991?) Fleetwood 29ft pull behind camper. My problem is I trip breakers at the AC source where I am plugged in to when I run much of anything electrical in the camper. It started with the AC and I thought it was a bad unit as it was original and old, I replaced the AC unit with a brand new unit. It still throws breakers. I can’t even run the heat strip on the new unit without it tripping the breaker. Any ideas where to start? The camper is in fair condition but very old and I don’t want to spend a ton of money on it, it isn’t worth it, but I’m willing to troubleshoot and replace some components…. I’m just not sure where to start? Thank you in advance for any suggestions you may have!

    1. Hi, Jim!

      What happens when you turn off all the branch circuit breakers at the main electrical panel? How about the main breaker at the panel? Then, does it still trip the breaker at the AC source?

    • Karl on June 28, 2017 at 11:47 AM
    • Reply

    Great information. Here is my issue. I have a 2012 Sunline Trailer. All was great when stored. Battery removed and stored. Put battery in and nothing works. I plugged it in to shore power my home and I get 110 out of outlets but the battery gets drawn down to 4.7v and nothing etc the 110 stuff works any Idea where to check 1st

    1. Hi, Karl!

      How old is that battery? Is it original? If it is, at five years old, even though you keep it charged, it could be ready for replacement.

    • Kelly on June 26, 2017 at 7:23 AM
    • Reply

    Hi Howard,

    Might be a long shot but hoping I get a reply.

    I’m an electrician.

    My inlaws arrived in their 30ft RV with a ton of electrical issues. They recently had some body work repairs finished on the RV and shortly after hit the road.

    Got here hooked up to 30A shore power. Everything in the panel is fine. 120V at all breakers and relays. But, no AC at fridge, microwave, some general purpose plugs and house batteries not being charged. I’ve put in quite a few hours opening things up and getting at hard to access junction boxes underneath appliances and drawers but can’t find the break….

    Panel is under the bed but have not traced everything from there to first locations.just wondering if you have any tips or advice that might make my hunt go a bit faster? It’s 330am and my father in law just started up the rig in our yard (residential neighbourhood) to charge the batteries cause he low level alarm was going off. This is going to drive me bonkers.

    1. Hi, Kelly!

      It seems to me that tracing voltages under load, starting at the 120-volt electrical panel is going to be the only way to find where you are dropping voltage. Check voltage into the main breaker, voltage out, voltage out of each branch circuit, and then best you can tell to the first receptacle in line from there.

      I don’t know the extent of the bodywork repairs but I have to think something happened to create that situation which may have also created others. Focus on the repaired areas to see if there are severed electrical lines or junction box?

      This is basically the same thing you would do when you trace these issues in regular residential electrical systems. No shortcuts that I am aware of.

    • Don on June 24, 2017 at 1:53 PM
    • Reply

    I have an old 1984 Rockwood class C motor home, when I turn on the generator if I turn on any lights or plug into the 12 V accessory the light bulbs blow immediately and it burns up anything plugged into the 12 volt power point. Do you have any idea how to resolve this issue?
    Thank you

    1. Hi, Don!

      Strange situation! But when it comes to RV’s, anything is possible.

      The only thing I can think that would make this situation occur when only the generator is running, and not when plugged into shore power, is somehow the AC voltage created by the generator is leaking into the 12-volt system. I am not sure how this could happen other than wires have crossed and when the generator runs you get this occurrence.

      Also, what voltage is the generator creating when running and at what frequency?

    • Cale on June 22, 2017 at 11:28 AM
    • Reply

    I have a 15k. Btu dometic ac. A week or 2 ago, the ac went out. Installed new one, it worked perfect for 1 week. Ac just stopped running after I adjusted the thermostat. So I began checking power. All breakers are functioning and have 120 going out of them. All fuses are good. I metered each wire of the thermostat and all were in spec. The control box(in the ac) clicks when you turn the ac or fan on but nothing happens. I checked the 120 wires going into the ac box and I have no 120. So I have power coming out of the breaker, I should have power at the ac correct? Or does this run elsewhere before it goes to the ac. I do not think I have an inverter as I don’t have a generator. But I’m not 100% sure. It’s a 2010 keystone montana mountaineer. Thanks.

    1. Hi, Cale!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      Can you tell me what your DC battery voltage is when you are trying to get the AC unit to operate? Just making sure their is enough voltage to run the circuit board that controls the operation of the AC Unit.

      Also, just for grins, try another breaker in place of the one currently in use. Even of you have to borrow one from another circuit, let’s eliminate the possibility. You should be able to read voltage at the 120-volt junction box for the AC unit if plugged into shore power and the circuit breaker is good.

    • Sheila M Weckman on June 21, 2017 at 8:00 PM
    • Reply

    I have a Rockwood Mini lite by Forest River, it is on our vacation lot. The temps have been very hot. Tonight I had the crock pot on and my husband turned the air on in the heat of the day and forgot to close the door, so the air was working hard and not cooling. At dinner time everything shut down. My husband checked all fuses and breakers, they were all ok. The city checked everything from the poke to the camper and said it was our camper. Where do we go from here? I am having trouble finding info on line. Yesterday the power went out for a couple minutes and came back on. Today absolutely nothing for hours so far.

    1. Hi, Sheila!

      Your situation as explained sounds more like problems with the power pole than your RV. Weak breakers can give the symptoms you are describing. I don’t think you have an inline electrical management system unless it is an external plugin unit. Those, if sensing low voltage at the pedestal will not allow power through to the RV. Now, you were running an AC unit and a crock pot. Both of these units on at the same time, possibly for hours, running constantly, could get you very near your maximum usage of 3600 watts.

      Could you have melted something inside the electrical panel? Could a breaker have malfunctioned? Might be worth a look!

      The trick with these kinds of issues is to start with the basics. Is the power at the pedestal truly okay? A breaker can test fine when not under load, but as soon as there is load it can malfunction.

      From there you have to venture inside the RV and verify that 120-volts is coming into the electrical box. If so, turn everything off that uses 120 volts and see if the receptacles have 120-volts coming to them. Then turn things on. If the power cuts out you may have a breaker issue somewhere.

      Just my two cents worth based on what you are telling me, Sheila.

    • Brad on June 21, 2017 at 10:37 AM
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    Need a little help. Have a 1998 Terry by Fleetwood. Everything works except my batteries do not charge while I am on shore power. I thought maybe it was my charge comverter but I also noticed a 40amp breaker in line in my manual. Any idea where they would hide this?

    1. Hi, Brad!

      I am thinking you may be referring to a 40 amp fuse? You can usually find these on the back of the Converter.

    • John Foley on June 19, 2017 at 5:04 PM
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    My AC quit during the night and the heat woke us up. The generator was still running but none of the appliances were working no clock on microwave everything down except the 12 volt lights. The next day I giggled the cord and got it going again only to quit shortly after. Bought a new pigtail and had the main cord checked to see if it was ok and both were carrying a charge from the generator. I even swapped out generators still to no avail. We had the push out extended and needed to get it back in so asked my wife to giggle the cord on the exterior an the electric would come back on for a few seconds and after several try’s I could get it back in. I knew when the electric would come back as I could see the battery charge spike to full for a second or two then go completely dark not even the empty battery diode would come on. Any ideas on what could be the problem and how to fix ? Thinking it might be a short in the rv receptical or wiring.
    Thanks John

    1. Hi, John!

      From what you are explaining and have tried, it does sound like the internal wiring at the RV shore power cord’s plugin receptacle.

    • Jeff on June 17, 2017 at 10:46 PM
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    First, let me say I have owned several campers/rvs of different makes/models. Just recently bought a used truck camper and took it out for the first time this weekend. Similar situation as you described in your article above. Had truck camper plugged in at home (using convert plug . for 20 to 30 amp), no problems. Even the air conditioner worked but I didn’t leave it on long as I know that is not good to do on a converter plug. Loaded up and went to camp ground. Plugged the unit in and click… breaker on pedestal kicked out. Tried several times to reset. Went to RV store and bought a new 30 amp power cord thinking my power cord must be shot. (noticed previous owner had tapped the end so that was a clue). Bring it to the campground and plug it in. Same result. Shut off all breakers in the camper. Plugged it in, everything ok. Switched on each breaker one by one, when I get the last break, the pedestal break kicks out. Not sure what the last breaker was as it wasn’t labeled. Figured we can live without it for the night. Few minutes later, pedestal breaker kicks out. Tried the game again, switching off breakers then turning on one by one. Works until last breaker. Leave last breaker off, works for a few minutes. Move to another pedestal, same situation. Decided to call it quits and came home. Plug it in at home, no problems. Even the AC works.
    The guy at the campground (State Park), said I must have a short and that the campground electrical system is grounded so it will catch those issues where as my outlet at home probably isn’t. That just doesn’t sound right to me. The campground pedestal looks like it needs to be updated. The breakers felt loose when I reset them, easy to trip, and the 20 amp plug was so loose the converter plug wouldn’t stay in the socket when I tried to use it, just fell right out.

    So, any ideas? Do I have a short somewhere? Is it my camper or the campground?
    Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi, Jeff!

      Thanks for stopping by our website!

      I think your assessment is probably right based on your description of the parks electrical pedestal. Loose breakers that are overused can yield the results you experienced. I have replaced many as an RV park maintenance work camper with these same symptoms!

      See how it works next time you take the camper out.

    • Justin Wood on June 17, 2017 at 10:28 PM
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    Help! I bought a used 2006 Coachmen trailer. The previous owner said the single 12 volt house battery wouldn’t stay charged. I installed two 6v house batteries in series and upgraded all lights to LEDs to give us more ampere-hours off-grid. I just discovered that plugging in to shore power heats up the positive battery lead so much it smokes! When I remove the inline fuse and connect each socket to a multimeter I measure a 13 amp D.C. draw with nothing turned on! Unplugging the shore power, there is still an 0.1 amp draw across the fuse gap. What could it be?

    1. Hi, Justin!

      First off, is the wiring for your new batteries up to the task? If things are heating up that tells me the wiring to the batteries may need to be upgraded. Also, is the converter able to handle charging the new setup? Also, these are deep cycle batteries that you installed, right? Just want to be sure.

        • Justin Wood on June 21, 2017 at 12:01 PM
        • Reply

        Hi Howard. Thanks for the response. The batteries I installed are Duracell SLIGC115 high capacity golf cart batteries.

        I installed an inline fuse holder so I could use a 25 Amp fuse. The wire of the fuse holder is a smaller gauge than the battery connection cables. I’m guessing it’s only about 12 AWG.

        Since the trailer wiring already has an auto-reset 50A thermal breaker, do I need the fuse holder I added? Anytime I add a fuse, it sparks.

        What do you think could cause a 13 amp draw from the batteries when I plug in to shore power?

        1. Hi, Justin!

          It does not sound like your added fuse is needed if you already have the re-settable fuse.

          As far as your 13 amp “draw” when you plug into shore power, that sounds a little backward. I would expect just the opposite. When you plug in, your converter will kick on and should then be charging the batteries, not create a load on them. Not sure what’s going on there!

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