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Old 05-25-2013, 10:56 PM   #1
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1979 31' Sovereign
Stephenville , Texas
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Univolt gone...I think? What to replace it with...

Ho'kay...so...

I plug in my '79 today and I throws the GFI breaker on the shore. I flip all of the breakers in the bathroom off and narrow it down. The GFI outside would not throw provided the Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter breaker is not on. Im hoping the GFCI breaker is just faulty.

Does it provide power to the univolt?

All of the power plugs in the trailer still work as does the AC, just not the lights. Thats what has me think its the univolt. Would trowing the breaker on the shore side be a symptom of a bad univolt? I plan on buying a new CGFI to test it all, as it would be the cheapest thing to troubleshoot.

But lets just say the univolt is bad, what is the best replacement for it? I want something I can just drop in and not have to do any, or a whole lot of, modification to make it work. Im going to be living in the trailer within a week and need something I can just drop in and move on with my day.
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Old 05-26-2013, 12:03 AM   #2
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Whether or not you'll need (slight, easy) modifications depends on whether your '79 has the 12V fuses as an integral part of the Univolt, or in a separate panel.

If they're separate, and you don't mind dealing with old-school glass fuses, it should be a pretty easy swap. A new 45- or 60-amp converter will probably just have a 120V plug and the +/- 12V outputs, with integral fuses. If you don't have a separate fuse block, you'll need to install one, and move the 12v supply lines for each circuit from the univolt to the new block. I *THINK* by '79 they had a fuse block that was independent of the converter. Making your gauge in the control panel work with a new converter is another matter, but since I have no central control panel I haven't studied that.
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Old 05-26-2013, 02:24 AM   #3
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1978 28' Ambassador
Morada , California
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We replaced our Univolt with a new 3-way, 45 amp converter/charger from Randy @ BestConverter - Converters, Inverters, Electrical Supplies, Electronics

He's up on Airstream Univolt replacements and can recommend a solution for your rig...

I'd check out a new 3-way unit that will switch to 'float' mode to keep your batteries in good condition...
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Old 05-26-2013, 12:20 PM   #4
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1979 31' Sovereign
Stephenville , Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKB_SATX View Post
Whether or not you'll need (slight, easy) modifications depends on whether your '79 has the 12V fuses as an integral part of the Univolt, or in a separate panel.

If they're separate, and you don't mind dealing with old-school glass fuses, it should be a pretty easy swap. A new 45- or 60-amp converter will probably just have a 120V plug and the +/- 12V outputs, with integral fuses. If you don't have a separate fuse block, you'll need to install one, and move the 12v supply lines for each circuit from the univolt to the new block. I *THINK* by '79 they had a fuse block that was independent of the converter. Making your gauge in the control panel work with a new converter is another matter, but since I have no central control panel I haven't studied that.
The fuse box is separate. Its located above the univolt and below the front window of the trailer. I dont mind glass fuses at all.


InladRV has this on their page...Inland RV Center Inc.


Anyone have any objections to using one of these? Im not looking for anything special. Im not overhauling the trailer and upgrading with new and more lights. I also dont have or plan to use batteries anytime soon. For now Im going to be living in it, not traveling in it.
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Old 05-26-2013, 07:34 PM   #5
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If that's the output range you're looking for, I'd go with this one or this one and save a few dollars without sacrificing anything.

I have the 45-amp version of the first one and I'm quite happy with it.
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Old 05-26-2013, 08:24 PM   #6
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The Progressive Dynamics is at least assembled in the US and uses some US made parts. I don't believe the other converters can make that claim.
You may need to wire in a 120v outlet if you don't have one close by to plug the new converter into. Other than that, as I found out when I replaced my old Univolt, it's pretty easy and makes a big difference to your 12v system.
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