Some repairs needed before using camper trailer!

westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,142 ✭✭✭✭
Was talking to my neighbour last night about putting a solar panel or 2 on his camper trailer. He was thinking it might solve his problem.... PROBLEM? what problem? SO he shows me the ''new'' 7 prong connector and the BUBBLED UP  cable casing...
WHAT CAUSED THAT ? OH I had a new cable put on this spring before we used the trailer this year...

The cable was bubbled/blistered  for at least 4 feet and it ran under his propane tanks, which are now blackened....
Should I take it back to the installer?  YES but first you need to have an idea of where the potential DEAD SHORT can be .  That is a lot of current to do  that!

Was it running off the batteries?    NO, it was on shore power and the batteries were disconnected...

The trailer is ~ 10 = YEARS OLD and they have never had any issues with it till the cable was replaced..
I suggested that it might be a malfunction in the CONVERTER. Neighbour:  What's that?

We are headed out today but thought I would see what other ideas all you  other readers might have... 
thanks for any suggestions on sleuthing this puzzle...


 
KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
West Chilcotin, BC, Canada

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,359 admin
    Was the trailer connected to shore power and the tow vehicle connected or not?

    I sort of sounds like a "battery isolator" failed in the tow vehicle and the tow vehicle was "sinking current" -- Working on the tow vehicle, starting tow vehicle, etc... With batteries disconnected in the RV, it would be the 120 vac to 12 vdc converter supplying enough current to cook the cable (check the truck cabling too) supplying the truck power...

    Another possibility would be if the connector was miss-wired (i.e., +batt from RV connected to -frame ground in tow vehicle).

    The other direction would be if the tow vehicle was supplying lots of current to the RV... Like somebody was running a heavy DC load or AC inverter (especially if the RV batteries are not connected).

    In general, it is hard to get over 10 amps flowing down that cable with 1-2 volt drop (i.e., 14.0 volts in two vehicle, 12.0 volts in RV charging battery bank).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,142 ✭✭✭✭
    thanks Bill, my thoughts were running along the line of a faulty Converter with endless Grid Amps heating the cable.  When I get back I'll double check about the tow vehicle still being connected but IIRC he said the trailer was only plugged in to mains power after the batteries were disconnected...

    If not mis-wired , there is the slight possibility of a short in the cab or plug...

    more later.


     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,359 admin
    On a related issue.

    Check the dc voltage on the converter with no batteries connected. My old trailer would hit an average of 17 VDC with no batteries connected.

    Led lighting and dc powered radios would probably die or risk dieing at those voltages.

    Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike_smike_s Registered Users Posts: 79 ✭✭
    Was it running off the batteries?    NO, it was on shore power and the batteries were disconnected... 

    Other than the smallest camper trailers, most have electric brakes. If there's no battery, they're going to try to pull power through the cable. Of course, if it has electric brakes, it shouldn't be towed without a battery anyway - the breakaway switch won't do a thing without a battery present.
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