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Old 08-13-2016, 09:15 PM   #1
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Light problems!

1992 excella 34'

I've looked at other threads for clues and now realize electrical issues are pretty hard to diagnose. I am hoping the problem I'm having points to something obvious...

I've been plugged into shore power for 2 days now. We noticed last night that all the lights would go dim when we turned on the bathroom light. Now tonight half the lights won't even come on. The AC, however, will come on full blast without a problem, which seems odd since we apparently don't have enough power to turn on lights.

I should mention the light I'm using now is plugged in to an outlet. None of the built in lights that I've tried will turn on. Seems like it must be a 12v problem?? I have two brand new (3 mo old) batteries.

Thanks so much for any insight!
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:23 PM   #2
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For some reason the converter is not charging the batteries. Is the switch behind the sofa in the store position?
Check the breakers inside the trailer to see if one is tripped or turned off.
If no breaker is off, then check to see if the converter is plugged in.
If it's plugged in, check the exterior fuses on the converter. (two of them)
If the fuses on the converter are good, check the output at the converter.
If the converter is providing power and the connections to the converter are tight, check the connections to the battery.

Also check the breakers in the 12 volt panel. If one of the small black buttons is out further than the rest, push it in to reset it.
In my Excella, some of the breakers in the battery cables are mounted on the wall near the converter, not inside a panel. I can only see those by looking under the sofa with a flashlight.

ps: switch your fridge to 120v if you have not already. It will not work on propane when the batteries go down.
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:41 PM   #3
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Thanks, i will start going through your list now!
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:54 PM   #4
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I think I found the problem. The top breaker (in the box above the rear twin bed) had tripped so I reset it. I'm sure this happened 3 nights ago when we had our plug melt due to a bad outlet at a campground so our batteries have just been draining since then. It's been an interesting first few days in our airstream haha. I am going to go to bed and see if the batteries charge by morning. If not I will continue through the list above. Thanks again for your quick reply!
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:09 PM   #5
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Okay so this morning the batteries were still dead after resetting the breaker. We didn't have time to diagnose before packing up and leaving (we are currently in SD near mt Rushmore). However, when we got here the batteries were charged from our roughly 8 hour drive. Before I jump into figuring out where the problem is, does it narrow it down to know the batteries will charge from the 7-way but not from shore power? Thanks for any input, I am clueless about electrical stuff.
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Old 08-15-2016, 04:36 AM   #6
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Sounds like the converter may have been an additional casualty of the bad campground outlet.
Check to make sure the breaker for the converter is not tripped, and the switch for the converter is on, then check the outlet the converter is plugged into to make sure it has 120 volts. Then check to see if there are any fuses on the converter that are blown. If everything is good as far as power input, and you have no 12v output, your converter is probably toast.
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Old 08-15-2016, 08:04 AM   #7
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It's fixed! I'm not going to take the blame for this one but I WAS the last one to mess with the converter several days ago (before the campground outlet melting episode so I probably inadvertently saved it??😬&#128556 and POSSIBLY left it unplugged when I was done...😳

Thanks for everyone's help! We are really loving the airstream life and are learning a lot every day. Now to get the hot water working...
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