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Old 08-24-2009, 02:06 PM   #1
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Thumbs down Xantrex converter problems...



Been trying to replace the OEM converter on our 03 Classic with the Xatrex XADC 60a.

Two strikes so far.

The first failed after three days of boondocking. It started by charging at a constant 13.7v and never went into float mode, after two days it wasn't charging at all. (not fun spending two weeks trying to keep the new Lifelines charged with the genset,pita.)

Randy at Best Converter sent me a replacement unit.

Installed the replacement, it trips both the trailer circuit breaker and the dedicated 30a line on the house when plugged in directly. ( I should NOT have been holding it when I plugged it in....ZAP)
Randy suggests replacing the trailer breaker....but if it also trips the house breaker I don't see the point. Also said to try the Xantrex CS line but it's a busy signal all day.

Anyone have similar problems or have any suggestions.

FWIW..re-installed the Parallax and it's working ok, if ain't broke,fix it 'til it is.
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Old 08-24-2009, 02:28 PM   #2
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Bob, what a bummer! Our OEM converter works fine, but having seen so many threads about converters, I have developed a floating anxiety about ours (along with the Marathon tires, possible future corrosion, etc., etc.).

Perhaps it's my ignorance, but it seems to me converters aren't new technology and should work right if they aren't made cheaply.

Good luck.

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Old 08-24-2009, 05:03 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
.....

Randy at Best Converter sent me a replacement unit.

Installed the replacement, it trips both the trailer circuit breaker and the dedicated 30a line on the house when plugged in directly. ( I should NOT have been holding it when I plugged it in....ZAP)
Randy suggests replacing the trailer breaker....but if it also trips the house breaker I don't see the point. Also said to try the Xantrex CS line but it's a busy signal all day.

Anyone have similar problems or have any suggestions.
FWIW, I purchased a Xantrex from Randy and it works great.

One suggestion - the unit I received had no power cord hooked up to it - I had to wire it in. I think I would first explore the wiring of the 110 cord into the junction box inside the unit. The instructions on the Xantrex I received were not extremely clear on just how to do that.

The wiring on the Airstreams are sort of positive and neutral specific (and NOT neutral to ground) - the leads may have somehow been reversed (or worse, the ground inside the Xantrex wired into the positive).
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Old 08-24-2009, 05:41 PM   #4
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Dennis,

I got the corded version, plugs into the ac outlet under the front couch.

After I removed it and got zapped when I plugged into the house 30a outlet I thought the same thing about being wired wrong from the factory. I was thinking about replacing the cord but don't want to void the warranty, there's no color code in the manual and of-course the colors on the converter aren't the usual green, black, white.

The factory cs line was busy all afternoon, so no help there.
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Old 08-24-2009, 08:57 PM   #5
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can you do a continuity test from the cord to the case?
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Old 08-24-2009, 10:58 PM   #6
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can you do a continuity test from the cord to the case?
Well I could, but not without some dis-assembly and wire probing, not something I want to do until I find out more from Best Converter.

This sure gets old after awhile, I hope it's not just more chineez cr@p.
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Old 08-30-2009, 11:36 AM   #7
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FWIW...

Called the factory Friday,
Don't know where the zantrex tech assistance is located but it is almost as frustrating as trying to get computer help you can understand.

The "associate" informed me I would have to return the unit at my expense, after testing they would let know me if it is a covered failure, turn-around time at least 4+ weeks. Which in this area just about puts me into next Spring.

The OEM converter is back in Cloudsplitter, will probably finish this Season with it.
Randy told me that money back and re-try later is not going to happen, and that he cannot take back a "used" unit.
Looks like I'm dealing with the factory now.

Live & learn.......
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Old 08-30-2009, 11:54 AM   #8
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I may be 40 or 50 years behind the times, but it seems to me a converter is a step down transformer with a rectifier to clean up the output, then a lot of 12 v. branch circuits plus a 120v. side to a bunch of 120 v. branch circuits. I suppose you can add electronics to do this or some of this. Add a three stage charger—another technology that has been around for a while. Why should something so simple to me have so many problems?

I read constantly of converter problems. I suppose a lot of them are old converters—transformers wear out, connections go bad, bouncing around doesn't help. But new ones seem to have problems too.

Calling all converter experts—what are the good ones? What companies make it simple to deal with a problem so people like Bob don't go crazy?

Gene
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Old 08-30-2009, 03:36 PM   #9
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Robert,

Very sad to hear about the Xantrex problem. We also replaced our Parallax recently, and have had no problems yet. The unit was chosen largely based on good reports on Airforums. Hope you get some help and satisfaction.
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Old 08-30-2009, 04:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Randy told me that money back and re-try later is not going to happen, and that he cannot take back a "used" unit. :
He won't take back a "used" unit that was defective from the start?

I was thinking of upgrading my converter, but I just changed my mind.
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Old 08-31-2009, 05:13 AM   #11
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[QUOTE=Wayne&Sam;741727]He won't take back a "used" unit that was defective from the start?
QUOTE]

That is pretty much SOP as far as electrical components are concerned, once they are "over the counter" you are dealing with the factory. The original failed unit was replaced in a timely manner.
My real concern is two failures in a row after hearing such "glowing" reports on the Forums. Do I really want to replace it in kind?

It's only been after the fact that some negative reports have come to light.

Understand that these are MY experiences with this brand, others may vary.
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“After all these years the reason I continue to love Thanksgiving.....I still sit at the kids table.”
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Sandra wanted to go to Cleveland on vacation,
but I’m the Husband, so we went to Cleveland.
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Old 08-31-2009, 05:28 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
That is pretty much SOP as far as electrical components are concerned, once they are "over the counter" you are dealing with the factory.
I can understand that if the unit worked fine out of the box but failed during the warrantee period. I guess that's what happened to the first unit, but they replaced it. DOA should be replaced without question, if for no other reason than to avoid bad PR like this!
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Old 08-31-2009, 06:03 AM   #13
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I can understand that if the unit worked fine out of the box but failed during the warrantee period. I guess that's what happened to the first unit, but they replaced it. DOA should be replaced without question, if for no other reason than to avoid bad PR like this!
It was Best Converter that replaced the first unit no questions.

Kind'a between a rock and a hard place now dealing with the factory.
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“After all these years the reason I continue to love Thanksgiving.....I still sit at the kids table.”
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Sandra wanted to go to Cleveland on vacation,
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Old 09-07-2009, 11:23 AM   #14
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Bob,
Remember but they were backordered at the factory and us but I have them now. You were going to call me that Monday and I was going to try and find you a loner until Xantrex or I got them back in stock. If I remember, the Xantrex tech told you they would also replace it but would not have them until the first week of Oct. I got them in last week.
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