RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-25-2005, 07:29 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
2005 30' Classic S/O
Centerville , Utah
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 29
Images: 1
Breaker Popping

I have my coach stored inside in a commercial storage unit which has 15 amp electrical service. I would like to "plug-in" occasionally to allow the batteries to charge, but when I do, the breaker immediately trips on the 15 amp ground-fault plug in my storage unit. Yet I have no problem with the breaker when I use it for other electrical loads - even an electric space heater which has a pretty high current draw.

I have never had any problems with breaker trip anywhere else. When I have the coach at my home, I routinely "plug-in" to a 15 amp receptacle for battery charge, refrigerator, etc., and have no problem. Any suggestions on why this is happening?

tomriley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2005, 08:15 PM   #2
4 Rivet Member
2019 28' International
Leonardtown , Maryland
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 262
Images: 3
Ground Fault

Pick up a circuit tester which plugs into your electrical outlet. This tester is realitive inexpensive and is avaliable at Wal-mart. It will let you check the outlets you are pluging into and determine if they are wired properly. You may find that the Netrual and Hi side are reversed. The tester knows.

Rebee - WBCCI #1325
2002 Classic Ltd 30'
2007 Dodge 2500, 6.7 Cummins
Rebee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2005, 03:32 PM   #3
2 Rivet Member
Loren's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 76

The GFI is not popping due to high current. A GFI works by comparing the current through the hot (black) wire to the current through the neutral (white) wire. If these currents are not the same then it means that current is leaking to ground somewhere, a Ground Fault. This will cause the GFI to trip.

I had the same problem with my 1997 Airstream. I thought it would take a long time to track down the problem, but I lucked out. In my case, there was a screw inside the trailer's main 120 volt circuit breaker panel that had pinched a wire when it was installed at the factory. Eventually, that screw head had worn through the wire's insulation to the point that current was leaking to ground through the screw and the aluminum trailer.

To find the problem, start by turning off all the circuit breakers in the trailer. See if the GFI trips with this condition. If not, turn circuits back on, one at a time, until you find the faulty circuit. Then check everything (light fixtures, receptacles, switches, etc.) on that circuit until you find the problem.

If the GFI trips with all the circuits turned off, then the problem is between the power cord plug and the circuit breaker box. Check those items.

From what I have read, the power cord is often a problem, particularly the plug that attaches to the external power receptacle.

With any luck, your short will be in a fixture and not in a wire itself. That's more likely than a wire problem and a lot easier to find and to repair.

Good luck finding the problem. Do not ignore this. It could be a serious safety hazard.

2012 New Horizons Travel Trailer (formerly an Airstream owner)
2008 Dodge 2500 diesel with Equal-i-zer hitch.
Loren is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2005, 05:17 PM   #4
Rivet Master
1963 19' Globetrotter
Currently Looking...
Moline , Illinois
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 654
If this doesn't happen anywhere else check the power supply that is coming to you from the storage facility. You might not be the one with the electrical problem.
63air is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2005, 06:31 PM   #5
2 Rivet Member
2005 30' Classic S/O
Centerville , Utah
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 29
Images: 1
Breaker Popping

Thanks for your replys. However, it appears that I have a ground fault problem in the trailer. Not only does it pop the breaker on GFI receptacles, but I have found that I occasionally get a pretty good electrical "shock" when I touch any metal on the trailer while standing on the ground, especially when the ground surface is wet. Guess I'll add this to my never-ending list of problems for the dealer and Airstream to solve.

I am so disappointed in this Airstream trailer that I may decide to sell it in favor of SOB. I ordered it in Jan 05 and took delivery E/O Feb. Since then, the trailer has been in repair more than half the time, and has yet to be without problems. We have taken about 4 or 5 short trips during that time, and each time we return with a long list of problems.

During the past 30 years, I have owned 9 or 10 RV's - everything from small travel trailers to two different diesel pushers. With none of them did I have even a fraction of the problems that I have experienced with this "lemon." Based on my experience, I am astonished that Airstream is still successful in marketing their products as "top-of-the-line, high quality units."

Thanks for letting me vent my frustrations.

tomriley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2005, 07:11 PM   #6
Remember Burma Shave!
driftwood's Avatar
2006 19' Safari
2000 25' Safari
1985 25' Sovereign
Fort Myers , SW.Florida
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 510
Images: 35
Rivet Shocking !

On you shocking situation, here is a recent thread
NORM #3305

"... there is nothing you can't fix yourself ...
... if you're handy ...
... with a check book! ..."
driftwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2005, 12:55 AM   #7
2 Rivet Member
Loren's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 76

I know how you feel about the quality (or lack thereof) of your Airstream. I've been very disappointed with mine as well. I got rid of an excellent Holiday Rambler to "trade up" to the Airstream. I'm also very disappointed with the quality of service I have gotten from the Airstream Factory Service Center. But I digress as well.

Did you or your mechanic find the problem? If it's outside his area of expertise, I'm sure a qualified home electrician could track it down for you.

Is the trailer fixed yet?

2012 New Horizons Travel Trailer (formerly an Airstream owner)
2008 Dodge 2500 diesel with Equal-i-zer hitch.
Loren is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2005, 09:31 PM   #8
2 Rivet Member
1974 25' Tradewind
Yelm , Washington
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 84
Ground Fault Interrupter is what GFI stands for. When one of these receptacles is hot, any appliance plugged into it has energized parts the stand erect with a kind of field or ions not unlike a magnetic field.

When the appliance falls towards water (which is ground) the breaker or reset inside the receptacle is turned off prior to the current actually coming into contact with the water. This forgoes the split second it would take for the submerged appliance to send the short signal all the way back to the distribution panel. In this case nano seconds save lives.

It is, in my humble opinion, less likely a manufacturing error, than a moisture or sensitivity problem at the receptacle. These receptacle's are touchy and you might try replacing it first (about 6 bucks). The other possibility is, these receptacle's like water, even small amounts of moisture or condensation about as much as cats do. If the inside of the receptacle box gets moist or if the panel is moist or if the receptacle is overly sensitive the will short and send a mild sizzling (low to moderate volt) short into any metal object.

I would suspect the red eyed pirate with the one black patch before all else.

Hope this helps
"It takes a village to raise a silver twinkie."

-Jim Phillips
JimmyJames is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2006, 07:16 PM   #9
4 Rivet Member
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 307
I have the exact same problem. When it rains, I get much condensation, and that particular breaker trips.
Justice - When you get what you deserve. Mercy - When you don't get what you deserve
Grace - When you get what you don't deserve
ipso_facto is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
A/C blowing the breaker Chuck Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 13 07-08-2003 11:52 AM
'90 Land Yacht Breaker Location leomarcotte General Motorhome Topics 1 05-14-2003 04:34 AM
Converter Breaker? Sav'h Steve Electrical - Systems, Generators, Batteries & Solar 7 11-18-2002 09:45 AM
Should I replace the fuse box with a breaker panel? Andy R Electrical - Systems, Generators, Batteries & Solar 2 09-13-2002 11:21 PM
New circuit breaker strip FrankR Electrical - Systems, Generators, Batteries & Solar 0 03-27-2002 11:25 PM

Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:46 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.