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Old 01-04-2014, 05:55 PM   #1
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1976 31' Sovereign
Astatula , Florida
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Scare light and Overdoor light don't work

My wife purchased me a 31' 1976 International for Christmas to re-do as a man cave. Scare light and the over door light don't light. There are three switches on the airstream on the inside wall. One turns on the light over the sink, the one next to it doesnt do anything, and the one on the other side of the window on the same wall doesnt do anything either.

I checked the circuit breakers in the back under the sink, and they all seem to be fine. The fuses as well all seem okay.

Not sure what to look at next?
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Old 01-04-2014, 10:52 PM   #2
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You will get some detailed input on the switches for your trailer but I believe the switches that don't work next to the door and across the other side are the ones that effect these lights. I had a 72 tradewind with the same issues. First I would take the covers off the switches and then use a voltmeter to check for 12 volts coming into the switch. One wire should be hot and the other pin of the meter should be ground which is any metal on the trailer. I had a bad switch which is pretty cheap plastic inside. The light over the door often gets corroded as the housing is prone to leak. Once you know there is power going through the switch then check for power at the lightbulb base and use the trailer body for the ground. Of course you should check out the bulb itself. The scare light switch and bulb can have the same issues so check for 12 volts going into the switch and then out of it. If that tests good then you'll need to check for power at the bulb. I actually found there was no 12v at my switch and had to pull a new wire from another wire that was hot to the bulb housing. You'll be proud of yourself when you get them both working.
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Old 01-12-2014, 07:46 AM   #3
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chasing electricity

Quote:
Originally Posted by WorkofArt View Post
My wife purchased me a 31' 1976 International for Christmas to re-do as a man cave. Scare light and the over door light don't light. There are three switches on the airstream on the inside wall. One turns on the light over the sink, the one next to it doesnt do anything, and the one on the other side of the window on the same wall doesnt do anything either.

I checked the circuit breakers in the back under the sink, and they all seem to be fine. The fuses as well all seem okay.

Not sure what to look at next?
WorkofArt

For starters I would not assume anything about those fuses. I have done the same thing in the past, and spent hours chasing a problem only to fine it was a fuse that looked good but was not. If you don't have test light I would get one. The kind that has the grounding plug and light in the handle allows you to check it by going from one side of the fuse then the other. Those glass (buss) fuses can look good, but not be good, if they are old.

Also, what RichHog suggests is chasing electricity and is what you will have to do. Good places to check.

Two notes about those switches. Some Airstream s along those years used a rocker switch for the outside lights. That switch turned on "one light" or the other. It was an ''either or thing', you could not have both of them (outside lights) on at the same time. When the switch was in the middle both lights are off. Not sure about yours but don't over look it. The other thing, if you find your problem is one of those switches they are NLA no-longer-available. You will have to use one of those plastic plates where the switch snaps into it.
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Old 01-12-2014, 08:08 AM   #4
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Two points:

1) I didn't see any mention of bulb checking? (I might have missed that)

2) On our '74, if you are inside the trailer facing the door, on the other side of the statck windows (further to the left) are one or two switches behind the curtain. That is where our scare light turns on from.
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Old 01-16-2014, 02:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aage View Post
Two points:

1) I didn't see any mention of bulb checking? (I might have missed that)

2) On our '74, if you are inside the trailer facing the door, on the other side of the statck windows (further to the left) are one or two switches behind the curtain. That is where our scare light turns on from.
as previously mentioned
1st Look for Burned out bulbs
(when replacing Bulbs best to coat base with Di-electric grease to retard Corrosion, available most auto parts stores)
2nd Check for socket corrosion / poor or corroded Grounds.
then go to bad switch check.
Note: a 12volt light up test probe is a good way to test 12v components available most auto parts stores.
Tip: wrap all but the tip with electrical tape to lessen the chance of blowing fuses by shorting probe to ground when testing components.
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Old 02-04-2014, 04:36 AM   #6
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We have a 76 Sovereign and only external light I have found is the one over the entry door.

Just wondering where is the scare light light? Or was this a factory "option"?
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Old 02-04-2014, 04:45 AM   #7
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Our switch in '76 was also behind curtains sort of in the corner. Hard to find, made no sense to me, but there it was. One of the switches by the door operates center ceiling light but switch on the light had to be turned on for door switch to have any effect.
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:13 PM   #8
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Interesting I have two switches by the door. One turns on the outside light over the door and the other turns on the galley light over the sink. They are both kind of behind curtain.

Basically are you guys referring to the light under the aluminum shade directly over the door as a scare light?
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:26 PM   #9
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Interesting I have two switches by the door. One turns on the outside light over the door and the other turns on the galley light over the sink. They are both kind of behind curtain.

Basically are you guys referring to the light under the aluminum shade directly over the door as a scare light?
The scare light is round, in a 76 Sovereign it was typically placed on the end cap to the right of the window by the door.... Sometimes they were omitted
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:57 PM   #10
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the scare light switch is farther to the left than the doorway light switch and the one for the light over the galley sink.

Check behind the curtains, it's left of the 'stack' windows.
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Old 02-06-2014, 06:57 AM   #11
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You'd probably know it if you had a scare light. Look at the pictures on this page - one has a scare light just in front of the front side window.
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Old 02-06-2014, 08:44 PM   #12
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OK, I understand now. I don't have one. I was thinking for a bit there that it might have been where a CB antenna mount with spring base is now mounted (by a previous owner) to the right of the front window and below the running lights but it is not.
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Old 03-02-2014, 09:52 AM   #13
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We have a 72 Land Yacht and are finally wrapping up our renovation so we can hit the road. We put in a new bulb in the light over the door and it works; however, it never turns off...there is a white wire and a black wire at the light -the black wire at the light is hot. After removing the switch cover I found a white wire and a red wire-neither of them hot. The black wire does not come down to the switch. Any suggestions? Our scare light works fine.
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Old 03-03-2014, 05:31 AM   #14
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The Red wire should be the hot for the over the door and over sink switches the white should go to the left hand of the two switches next to door and the black should be Body Ground @ the Fixture . if you pull the red wire and light stays on the PO or someone seriously rewired
and if those Reds are Not hot Check Fuses.
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