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Electrical: no 110v whole boondocking


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Electrical issue while boondocking:

Got to camp after a 5 hour drive, set everything up, all 12V systems are working just fine. Turned the inverter on to charge a friend's oxygen concentrator and ..... Nothing. No.power to any 110 outlets and the proven industries surge protector is black. 

Searched here and on FB group and tried all the solutions I could find:

Resetting the GFCI under dinette
Resetting the xantrex breaker under the street bed
Bypass the surge protector (effectively turned it off)
Reset all supplemental breakers under dinette

I’m stumped. I mean, we’ll survive without our morning lattes, but I would prefer to have 110V power!

Anything we’ve missed?  Batteries were fully charged when we left and running the fridge on DC barely made a dent (we have the platinum package). Zamp solar charge controller shows that the batteries are still charging in the waning Moab sun 

I'm stumped!

TIA
MaryBeth
Hull 953

 

EDIT. MYSTERY SOLVED

 

 

It suddenly occurred to me that because a red light came on when I tested the GFCI circuit, there actually was power to that outlet. I plug something into it and it worked! Plug something in outside and everything else works too! My problem was that I was relying on the microwave turning on and beeping at me when I turned on the inverter to indicate that all the systems were working. Turns out the microwave had come unplugged during travel and I didn’t have my usual signal that everything was working well.

Sorry for the bother. This was definitely operator error!

 

 

 

 

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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Just found this thread. It could be that something is disconnected in my transfer switch? 

If I can figure out how to remove the funky cover tomorrow, I'll poke around a bit. 

 

 

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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I'm a bit surprised that one of our more qualified electrical members hasn't chimed in on your initial question with help.

There are a number of reasons that are possible for your problem.  If you simply move the slide switch in your picture to the "bypass" position then you will feed electricity directly from the campground pedestal to your Ollie without protection.  If you decide to try this then I'd suggest that you turn off everything that you can - i.e. run the fridge on Propane, turn off the solar panels, turn off the air conditioner, unplug the microwave, and even turn off the furnace so that if there is a "problem" with the electricity being provided via that pedestal you don't ruin something and/or compound the issues you may be having.

Have you checked the pedestal for polarity, grounding, voltage regularity, etc.?  Have you checked your shore power cable - connections ends and for signs of wear?

Bill

2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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23 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

I'm a bit surprised that one of our more qualified electrical members hasn't chimed in on your initial question with help.

There are a number of reasons that are possible for your problem.  If you simply move the slide switch in your picture to the "bypass" position then you will feed electricity directly from the campground pedestal to your Ollie without protection.  If you decide to try this then I'd suggest that you turn off everything that you can - i.e. run the fridge on Propane, turn off the solar panels, turn off the air conditioner, unplug the microwave, and even turn off the furnace so that if there is a "problem" with the electricity being provided via that pedestal you don't ruin something and/or compound the issues you may be having.

Have you checked the pedestal for polarity, grounding, voltage regularity, etc.?  Have you checked your shore power cable - connections ends and for signs of wear?

Bill

Bill,

Thanks for the response. Hopefully the electrical gurus are all out camping!  🙂

I'm boondocking, so no pole power to worry about. Unless there's a ightning strike during my test of "bypass" there shouldn't be an issue. 

It's the"boondocking" part that has me so puzzled, and makes me now suspect the transfer switch. 12v systems are all fine, and unless I'm misunderstanding something, those aren't"fed" through the transfer switch, but pole power, and battery power headed to (from?)the inverter, are. 

 

mb

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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I apologize if I missed the fact that you are boondocking - of course there is no power pedestal.

This actually makes things a bit simpler.  The transfer switch should have nothing to do with your issues.  However, the inverter is central to getting you from 12 volts to the 120 volts you are looking for.  As far as I know, the surge suppressor doesn't come into play when you are using the inverter.  Therefore it would be normal for it to be blank.

I assume that you have tried to turn on your inverter via the remote switch.  But, have you tried turning it on via the "on/off" switch located on the inverter itself?

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20 minutes ago, VBistro said:

unless I'm misunderstanding something, those aren't"fed" through the transfer switch, but pole power, and battery power headed to (from?)the inverter, are

Unless the trailer is connected to an external power source with a cord, the transfer switch and the EMS aren't in the picture. You need to focus on the inverter. Check for 12V battery power at the input lugs, correct power settings, then AC output to/at the power distribution panel.

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45 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

I apologize if I missed the fact that you are boondocking - of course there is no power pedestal.

This actually makes things a bit simpler.  The transfer switch should have nothing to do with your issues.  However, the inverter is central to getting you from 12 volts to the 120 volts you are looking for.  As far as I know, the surge suppressor doesn't come into play when you are using the inverter.  Therefore it would be normal for it to be blank.

I assume that you have tried to turn on your inverter via the remote switch.  But, have you tried turning it on via the "on/off" switch located on the inverter itself?

The inverter turns on, but doesn't invert. In other words, there is power to the xantrex - it shows me the battery voltage, for example, but does not convert to 110v

375B2F65-C6FD-4003-AF63-4751D27EB464.jpeg

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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Does your inverter have a GFCI outlet that feeds the AC circuit?  Are you getting any output directly from the inverter?  My inverter mimicked failure by having a faulty GFCI outlet that is the outlet to the AC system.  The inverter was operating and thought everything was fine but the GFCI was not letting current flow.  Had to replace the inverter due to an inaccessible outlet inside the inverter.  Not a great design!  

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George and Gretchen


Gig Harbor, Wa.


Hull Number 178

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19 minutes ago, VBistro said:

The inverter turns on, but doesn't invert. In other words, there is power to the xantrex - it shows me the battery voltage, for example, but does not convert to 110v

375B2F65-C6FD-4003-AF63-4751D27EB464.jpeg

Load icon on the display indicates the inverter is outputting AC. When you test the GFCI under the dinette, are you sure it's actually resetting?

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OK - great - we are making progress!

I agree with bhncb - the inverter is actually working and producing AC (alternating current or 120 volts).  The GFCI he mentions is the next thing in the line to check.  Easy to do if you have one of THESE or THESE.  Lacking a tester then about all you can do is "trip" the GFCI and then reset the GFCI.  This is done via the two buttons located on the front of the GFCI outlet.  Make sure that you do this a couple of times - you should hear the GFCI "click" when you test it.

Bill

Bill

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3 hours ago, bhncb said:

Load icon on the display indicates the inverter is outputting AC. When you test the GFCI under the dinette, are you sure it's actually resetting?

I think.so!  When I hit the test button, it pops and a red light goes on. When I hit reset, it resets and the red light goes off. I can't remember ...is there a green light when it is actually working?  I have a niggling memory...

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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3 hours ago, topgun2 said:

OK - great - we are making progress!

I agree with bhncb - the inverter is actually working and producing AC (alternating current or 120 volts).  The GFCI he mentions is the next thing in the line to check.  Easy to do if you have one of THESE or THESE.  Lacking a tester then about all you can do is "trip" the GFCI and then reset the GFCI.  This is done via the two buttons located on the front of the GFCI outlet.  Make sure that you do this a couple of times - you should hear the GFCI "click" when you test it.

Bill

Bill

It definitely pops when I test it. And a red light goes on. Goes off when I reset. 

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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NEVER MIND!!!!

 

It suddenly occurred to me that because a red light came on when I tested the GFCI circuit, there actually was power to that outlet. I plug something into it and it worked! Plug something in outside and everything else works too! My problem was that I was relying on the microwave turning on and beeping at me when I turned on the inverter to indicate that all the systems were working. Turns out the microwave had come unplugged during travel and I didn’t have my usual signal that everything was working well.

Sorry for the bother. This was definitely operator error!

 

 

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MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

COKSMONESDTNUTWYmed.jpg

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No trouble - glad you got the "issue" figured out.

Many times "issues" can be solved in being able to see the forest for the trees or the trees for the forest.  We get so involved in the bottom line problem that we simply do not step back and think through the events or systems that are involved and then take a step by step approach to get to the end.  Certainly I'm as guilty of this as anyone!

Bill

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