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Electrical Discussion of preventative/corrective maintenance and other technical issues regarding your coach's electrical system.

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  #11  
Old 05-28-2009
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Although the process is correct, I doubt everyone will be driving 8' long copper ground rods in the earth to test the shell of a bus. I merely use an extention cord plugged into my Resident power.

NOTE - VERIFY THE POWER YOU'RE PLUGGED INTO IS CORRECTLY WIRED FIRST!

If it is you can merely use the ground (round hole) on the extention cord for a ground referrence to test your bus.
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  #12  
Old 05-28-2009
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Wow, what a wealth of knowledge here. I am going to go threw each scenario again this weekend and i will let everyone know what I came up with or will end up taking my coach over to a friends house who is a master electrician and see if we can track it down.
I was not using a hand buffer on the ladder when I got the shock. It was the old elbow grease way by hand waxing but the extension cord was hooked to the shore power cable from the coach to the house plug in my garage. I tell you I had heard about a HOT SKIN before and I can tell you now it lights up your life for a milisecond. I will be back in touch everyone this weekend
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  #13  
Old 05-29-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rtpn60 View Post
Steve,
Take an ohm meter and measure your coach's shore power cord between nuetral and ground. Set the ohm meter on it's lowest scale. You should NOT see any connectivity. If you do, start turning your breakers off one at a time until you do see an "open". When that occurs you've narrowed down the incorrect wiring by circuit and have eliminated a lot of work. If you have trouble finding things on that breaker you can buy a device at Home Depot to plug into outlets and can trace the power to breakers by an audible receiver. This device only works with all the power on to the coach.
I am in the process of hunting down a couple of white/ground shorts myself.
The above is not quite correct as the white is not run thru the breaker and flipping it will not isolate the conductivity. Check your inlet to the coach first. If you have a "short" or conductivity between white and green, then disconnect all 120 power and pull the face off the breaker panel. Confirm between the white and ground buss bars, then start pulling white wires off the bus bar. when you get an open circuit, you have identified the culprit. Track down the associated hot and disconnect it from the breaker. Now start hunting the problem in the circuit.
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  #14  
Old 05-29-2009
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Thanx for the correction John, you are absolutely correct. In my haste I was trying to address the possibility of having an outlet wired wrong and looking for a hot lead on the common terminal. I'd still do that test to find out, and it only takes a minute longer to rule that out.

Then as you said, it's time to hit the bus bar and start removing those wires as you inspect your meter. If you use the extention cord method you can have your meter there with you for imediate results, saves a lot of frustrations. I like to set the meter for an audible tone so I can work without having to see the meter, just listen for the connectivity tone.

Again, Thanx for catching that.
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  #15  
Old 05-29-2009
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I may be misunderstanding you but you can simply check for conductivity between white and ground buss without connecting the extension cord without having any risk of shock. You still get immediate results by pulling white wires off the buss bar. No current needed to check this conductivity.
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  #16  
Old 05-29-2009
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On my boat that was tripping the GFCI (a sign of white/ground connection) the water heater element corroded and was shorting thru the tank water to the grounded case. On my coach the block heater was one source. I am still hunting for the other. Unfortunately, it is on the fridge circuit so I need to pull out the fridge...
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  #17  
Old 05-29-2009
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John, for clarification there are several tests to perform. To test the Ground/Nuetral issue you can read continuity between those circuits on your power cord as you mentioned.

But if that checks ok the next test is to measure your shell to ground, that is where the extension cord method comes into play. If for some reason your coach is not grounded properly your shell could power up to leathal levels. That is why I go through the breakers one at a time to find the bad circuit and aid in troubleshooting.

All good tests, and all needed for safety. Your Ground & Nuetral may not be shorted together and you can still have an electrically charged shell. Sorry if I mixed some of my thoughts together.
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78FC35SB & 83FC35SB Wanderlodge - "Putz'n Around"
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  #18  
Old 06-23-2010
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Some food for thought :

The longer the extension cord, the higher the resistance.

A longer/smaller extension cord in this case will cause you to get a bigger shock when you make a path to ground with your body.

I'm going to bet that one of the points of failure in this scenario was a miswired house outlet, or house supply. There are other ways to get hot current onto the neutral.

An improperly wired appliance plugged into the bus can also tie ground and neutral together.

Sounds to me that your house outlet was definitely wired backwards with hot/neutral. If this was just a ground/neutral leak you would have gotten a 'tingle', not a heavy shock.
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  #19  
Old 06-23-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGallaty View Post
Some food for thought :

The longer the extension cord, the higher the resistance.

A longer/smaller extension cord in this case will cause you to get a bigger shock when you make a path to ground with your body.

I'm going to bet that one of the points of failure in this scenario was a miswired house outlet, or house supply. There are other ways to get hot current onto the neutral.

An improperly wired appliance plugged into the bus can also tie ground and neutral together.

Sounds to me that your house outlet was definitely wired backwards with hot/neutral. If this was just a ground/neutral leak you would have gotten a 'tingle', not a heavy shock.
P. Did you notice you are replying to a thread that has been dead for over a year?
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  #20  
Old 06-23-2010
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It's a sticky, and I hadn't seen anyone else post that so I thought I'd contribute. I figure some newbie will come along who got shocked and read this, and I wanted that info out there.
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