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Old 06-28-2011, 11:56 AM   #1
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1979 31' Sovereign
Bells , Tennessee
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 2
Lights over bed won't turn on - '79 Sovereign

Hi, New member here, I have a 79 Sovereign and the lights over the bed won't turn on. I checked the fuses and they are fine, and the bulbs and switches are ok too. They worked as of 2 days ago. The fuses have been blowing, but each time i changed it out, the lights would work for a while (month or so), but now they won't. Has anyone had this problem before, or do you know how I should begin to troubleshoot? I'm pretty handy with tools, but am hesitant to tear into things without having a recommended starting place. Any help is appreciated.

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Old 06-28-2011, 12:57 PM   #2
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1985 31' Excella
Fresno , Texas
Join Date: Apr 2011
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I believe the light you are talking about are florescent. The electronic ballast is probably bad. I recently had a fire in a '85 but I don't have fuses I had auto resetting ckt bkrs. It burned the Plexiglas out of the skylight and the light fixture globe, lots of smoke damage and damaged the ceiling center section. If you have florescent lights you can cut all that electronics out and put some led ribbon strips in its place.

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Old 06-28-2011, 12:58 PM   #3
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1974 31' Sovereign
Ottawa , ON
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 11,220
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the dreaded purple (or is it yellow?) syndrome again?

Perhaps time to inspect the leads connecting the the 12V fuse panel. On your fuse panel, which, if your '79 is like my '74, you will find attached to the face of the Univolt, look carefully at the right side wires coming into the panel.

The two upper ones on the right (purple and yellow) side may be loose, corroded, or both.

If such is the case, cleaning and tightening will be a temporary fix, because what could be happening is that the metal of the terminals is increasing in resistance as it loses it's temper.

If I'm right, change the fusebox, and while you're at it, the Univolt, too. You will be pleased to not hear the hum it likely makes any more, as a side benefit.

[Edit: all bets are off if it's a fluorescent, all my internal lighting is regular bulbs]
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
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Old 06-30-2011, 02:46 PM   #4
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1979 31' Sovereign
Bells , Tennessee
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 2
Thank you for the advice. Wires and connections look good--will keep looking. Maybe fuse panel is next.
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Old 06-30-2011, 02:59 PM   #5
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Air79 from what you describe about how the problem has been progressing i would suspect the switch for the lights. You say the fuses will last for about a month before blowing. If it was a dead short the fuse would blow immediately. If the switch is worn it will heat up and possibly arc causing increased resisitance which will increase the load on the circuit eventually overloading the circuit and the fuse will blow. Now you say the fuse is good but the lights won't come on, that would be the symptom if the switch was bad. Try removing the switch from the circuit and connect a jumper from the hot lead to the light wire, if the light works and the fuse doesn't blow you have your answer.
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Old 06-30-2011, 03:07 PM   #6
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1972 29' Ambassador
Weatherford , Texas
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Fuse?? or...

Just reading the posts, I would have to think that we are talking about 12 volt lights? If we are, then I would start at the bulb or wires near the bulb and work backwards. Just get a light tester with a poker and ground clip and see if there is power at the light, then backtrack all the way to the fuse. It almost sounds as if a wire has burned out somewhere between the fuse panel and the light.

On the otherhand, if it is plug in 120 power, don't try the above recommendation. Instead check with a proper power tester.


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