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Old 08-11-2018, 09:59 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
2019 30' International
Northridge , California
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 7
Arrgh! Brand new Airstream with electrical problems!

Brand spanking new International Signature 30RB. Literally just hooked it up to 30amp service to start playing with it for the first time. Did we break it already?!

Here are the symptoms: shore power plugged in (confirmed 120V 30A). Socket tester shows power to the shore powered sockets. Each air conditioner unit works when turned on (we turn them on separately, so only one on at a time). Microwave/convection oven does not work (we don't use it, but we know it doesn't work because the clock does not light up). The refrigerator will only use propane and will not kick over to shore power. If we enable the battery disconnect (set it to "store") then nothing but the shore powered sockets work.

We've flipped all the breakers a thousand times, made sure the GFCI is not tripped, checked all the fuses in the breaker box and even the 2 in the converter behind it. All fuses appear to be functional.

Does this sound familiar to anyone? We're going to drive it back to the dealer service center on Monday (spoke to them on the phone and they've been very helpful) but if we can fix it without having to lose a day of work driving 50 miles away then I would prefer to fix it myself!

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Old 08-11-2018, 10:11 PM   #2
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2019 30' Classic
Canfield , Ohio
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 649
Pull the converter and check all the wiring. My 27 had a few wires not tightened down. Water heater on electric did not work.

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Old 08-11-2018, 10:11 PM   #3
Rivet Master

2007 22' International CCD
Corona , California
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Arrgh! Brand new Airstream with electrical problems!

Get an inexpensive multimeter and pull and check fuses using the ohms scale. Fuses should show close to zero ohms. Use AC voltage scale to check outlets, etc. If you are not familiar with using a meter, I’d suggest finding a friend that is familiar, or hang in there and bug the dealer Monday...

I’m in Southern California, (city of Corona south of Anaheim) at the moment) but I suspect a bit too far away from you.
Rich, KE4GNK/AE, Overkill Engineering Dept.
'The Silver HamShack' ('07 International 22FB CCD 75th Anniversary)
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Old 08-11-2018, 10:26 PM   #4
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2000 25' Safari
1999 34' Excella
Davidson County, NC , Highlands County, FL
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If you look at electric schematic in the owners manual for any of the trailers with a 50 amp electric panel, they show the air conditioners on separate legs of the 240v service. If both AC units will run when using a 120v 30 amp service, then there was an error when the wire/beakers were installed. I think the front AC and the microwave should work while on 30 amp, but not the rear AC.

It is a 10 minute fix to snap the breakers into the correct positions, IF one knows which breakers are in the wrong spot.

add edit:
When looking at the schematic drawing in the owners manual, there is an "M" that separates the circuit numbers. The circuits on the left of the M are on one 120v leg, the circuit on the right are on the other 120v leg.
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Old 08-11-2018, 10:26 PM   #5
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2012 Avenue Coach
Corpus Christi , Texas
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When I welcomed you earlier today on another thread, I didn't realize you'd be posting so soon. But you will get help here (just probably not from me).
I don't have a 3-way fridge so I won't even venture a guess there.

However, on the non-working microwave, it may be normal. Let me explain. When you're hooked up to electricity, a power module allocates power by limiting use of some appliances while others are on. This keeps from overloading the circuits.

Your new model may be different from what I'm about to describe. See if you have a panel that shows power source as either "GEN", "20A", "30A" or "50A". On the other side of this panel will be a list of appliances that (depending on your power source) will be powered in a priority order. Generally, the Water Heater or A/C have first priority with the microwave on the bottom of the list. If one of the higher priority appliances is running, the microwave will not be given power. If no W/H or A/C is on, then after a few minutes for this module to figure that out, the microwave should beep and come on.

I don't think I'm explaining this clearly. Read you owner's manual I'm sure others will explain better. Good luck.
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Old 08-11-2018, 11:00 PM   #6
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Did everything work when you did the walkthrough and orientation at the dealer? I’m assuming it was plugged into 50 amp service at that time.
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Old 08-11-2018, 11:52 PM   #7
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OP said he was plugged into 30 AMP.

50 to 30 dogbone?

So IF the trailer is built for 50 amps and there is a limiter of some sort 1) tuen off both a/c units and try the mocrowave and the refrigerator on electric and if they don't work first check... are they plugged in? (Yes that could have happened.) Then go to the multi-meter and then drive back to the dealer.
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Old 08-12-2018, 07:59 AM   #8
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2018 28' Flying Cloud
Suwanee , Georgia
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 144
We had a somewhat similar problem on our maiden voyage. It was winter time, so the A/C wasn't switched on, so don't know if it would have worked or not, but the furnace fan and other 12v electrics shut off. Woke up with it darn cold in the Airstream.

Got it to work by turning the run/store switch on and off a few times. Apparently the solenoid that disconnects the batteries was self energizing.

Took it to the dealer who said Airstream wired it differently in 2018 compared to previous years and it's been problematic. They rewired the solenoid/relay to be like earlier trailers. Haven't had a problem since.

See post #3 in this thread:
Erik & Carol
Suwanee, Georgia
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Old 08-12-2018, 12:54 PM   #9
On Comet
2017 25' Flying Cloud
Santee , California
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 9
I don't know about the AC units as I have only one in my 25 ft Flying Cloud; however, I did run across the problem of the refrigerator working on propane but not AC.

Checked the breaker box, etc. Then I read in the refrigerator manual to check the AC outlet the refrigerator is plugged into (which is inside the compartment behind the refer, accessible via the lower outside vent hatch).

Plugged in a shop light and behold, no power! Then tested the rest of the AC outlets in the trailer and noticed the GFCI outlet in the bathroom had been tripped. Pushed the reset button and the refrigerator switched over to AC power on command. You might look there.
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Old 08-12-2018, 01:21 PM   #10
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Colfax , North Carolina
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The microwave and fridge 120v power are both on a GFCI circuit. If you don't see a breaker in the box with a small square white button, look at the outlet in the bathroom, and see if that is the GFCI breaker outlet. Make sure the trailer is plugged in to shore power, and push the "reset" button.
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Old 08-12-2018, 02:10 PM   #11
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2019 30' International
Northridge , California
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 7
Thanks all!

Our 2019 International 30 has no GFCI outlet reset buttons that I can find (bathroom and galley outlets don't have one) but instead the breaker box has a GCFI circuit with a white reset button on it. We've tried that a dozen times as well, sadly to no avail.

@Foiled Again & @Silver Comet - I will go and check the outlets where the microwave and fridge are plugged into. Didn't think to check those!

Side note: When we first got the trailer home (Day 1), we noticed the battery voltage readout said 12.6. As we played with the trailer for an hour or two it (quickly?) dropped to 12.0V.

Then yesterday (Day 2), we plugged into the 30A service for the first time. We spent about 6 hours checking if the appliances were working properly and trying to self-diagnose these issues we're having. During that time we noticed the battery dip a little to 11.9 or 11.8 but later we'll notice it's back up to 12.0. I assumed that shore power was charging it and keeping it around 12.0V.

In the evening we left the trailer plugged in to the 30A service in order to "charge the battery" for about an hour and a half. When we went back to check the readout was still 12.0V.

I'm surprised the battery didn't appear to get any charge. I was hoping for 12.1 or 12.2 after an hour and half. Was that too hopeful?! I'm not sure what to expect because this is our first trailer.
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Old 08-12-2018, 02:18 PM   #12
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2007 22' International CCD
Corona , California
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If the converter was actually working, the voltage should have come up above 12.0 in a hurry. This sounds like the converter is not getting AC power.
Rich, KE4GNK/AE, Overkill Engineering Dept.
'The Silver HamShack' ('07 International 22FB CCD 75th Anniversary)
Multiple Yaesu Ham Radios inside and many antennae sprouting from roof, ProPride hitch, Prodigy P2 controller.
2012 shortbed CrewMax 4x4 Toyota Tacoma TV with more antennae on it.
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Old 08-12-2018, 02:22 PM   #13
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2018 26' Flying Cloud
Morristown , Tennessee
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 267
Go back to your dealer, and ask for your check back.

Tell him he can have the check after a 6-hour walkthrough where they demonstrate every switch, circuit, door, drawer, curtain, fan, valve, drain, pump, appliance, and device, and after spending the night on the dealer lot while you do it again all by yourself. After you certify that everything, everything works, hand him the check, shake his hand, and leave with level of confidence in a fine product that works properly. If your dealer will not do this, get another dealer.
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Old 08-12-2018, 02:42 PM   #14
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2006 23' Safari SE
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Boulder City , Nevada
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Red... I feel your pain. When you purchase new and things are not operating as they should, you get that 'sick feeling'. I have had it in 2006 and repeat 2014, expecting a different outcome. It took several years to get the 2006 up and running 100%. When the trailer is 100%... you are content. It may take some time to get there.

I am almost finished getting the 2014 up and running 100% and now replacing the right side Dexter Brake assemblies. I do the work myself and the learning curve is steep, but necessary.

The batteries may already be damaged from the dealership lot. If the dealer needed to bring the jumper dolly over to supply 12 volt, your batteries may never hold a charge overnight. 12.2 volts is 60% charged. Hooked to shore power, 13.5v to 13.7v on our 2014 when charging.

I suspect that Dealers receive no compensation to fix problems BEFORE the Sale, but AFTER the Sale on Warranty.

A number of Airstreams on the lot in late 2014 had Fantastic Fans hanging to be replaced. The roll up window shades... not retracting... etc. Were the obvious interior observations at the time. The list then gets longer.

My wife and I went top to bottom on the 2014 before purchase, not realizing the batteries were already bad on the lot, sitting and not being maintained. Some 2014 and 2015 models on the lot we walked out of immediately. The problems exceeded my imagination... which is vivid.

Dealer Prep... only several dealers mentioned on the Forum have outstanding reputations for support. I would suggest possible new owners to seek them out. It is worth every Canadian or USA cent.

Find the Dealer's Check List and initials of the inspector. If they installed your Hitch... you had better have that checked sooner, than later.

Human Bean
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