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Old 03-01-2019, 08:01 AM   #1
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Step not working

Hello all, I wondering if there is a way to manually lower and raise the power step on a Vista 31KE. We're on the road and I would rather work on it when I get home.

Thanks in advance
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Old 03-01-2019, 08:19 AM   #2
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I had this happen before. The tech at the manufacturer told me to hit the step motor with a rubber mallet - it will jog the motor enough to get it working again. I always kept the mallet by the door for this event (also could work for self defense).
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Old 03-01-2019, 08:38 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willide View Post
Hello all, I wondering if there is a way to manually lower and raise the power step on a Vista 31KE. We're on the road and I would rather work on it when I get home.

Thanks in advance
You can disconnect the linkage under the steps when extended. (Please disconnect all power before reaching under the steps.)
At that point they will freely move in and out and you will likely need a method of keeping them extended while in use. While in transit you can use something like a bungee cord to keep them secured.
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Old 03-01-2019, 10:02 AM   #4
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Thanks for the responses, tried the rubber mallet no dice. It started working a couple weeks ago for a day but hasn't worked since, i'm glad it fails in the up position. I for the life of me don't see how to disconnect the linkage but will look into it further when we get to Tucson Tuesday as we will be there for awhile.

Thanks to you both
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Old 03-01-2019, 03:21 PM   #5
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The reason for using the mallet is that the motor can get stuck between the windings/brushes and the armature of the motor. The idea is to jar the motor in order to make contact again. You might have to whack it a few times sharply. Of course it could also be a dead motor...........
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Old 03-01-2019, 03:56 PM   #6
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I've dealt with this... The motor self stops when it hits an obstruction. That is supposed to be at the end of travel (up or back). This can bind the pin that disengages the drive linkage (for a forced manual retract). So this might also bind enough to prevent deployment, or retract from starting. My gearbox was freezing up in cold weather. My motor was good and controller was sending signal just fine...So you might try assisting the movement (pull or push) while opening your door to signal motor start. Note the controller gives a 25 second 12v pulse to the motor. The motor stops itself when movement is obstructed.

With the right skills, you can hot wire the motor. 12V and ground to the terminals. Reverse polarity to reverse direction. Use all caution. Splice in parallel or use a proper connector/pigtail. If this sounds confusing, don't try it!

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Old 03-03-2019, 07:28 PM   #7
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Try shorting the magnetic reed switch with a key or screwdriver. If that works, replace the switch.
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Old 03-06-2019, 04:49 PM   #8
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When was the last time you lubricated the steps? You may simply have enough friction to make the controller think the steps have hit something. Lubricate all the pivot points on the side of the steps, then crawl under and lubricate the shafts by the motor.
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Old 03-06-2019, 05:20 PM   #9
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Use Castrol chain lube (motorcycle chain). It won't pick up dirt and lasts for 6 months or more. Watch it when you put it on as it has graphite and will stain your clothes if you lube them.
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Old 03-06-2019, 05:40 PM   #10
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I had this happen to me,it was a broken wire in the stair well . there is a switch there to control the stairs, check the wires.
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Old 03-06-2019, 11:28 PM   #11
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Many times its a bad ground to frame connection or lack of maintenance as the steps are supposed to be lubricated with what looks to my eye to be a white lithium or garage door track lubricant.

If you review the owners manual for the steps there should be information on pulling the pin to operate the steps manually which is where I found this information.
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Old 03-07-2019, 01:22 AM   #12
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On mine, the only way to manually operate the steps is to remove the motor. It is bolted under the top step, and has 3 or 4 screws holding it up.

It is easy to take off the motor.

I agree that it is very likely the magnetic switch on the screen door being broken, or maybe out of position just enough to stop working.

Good Luck!
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Old 03-10-2019, 02:15 PM   #13
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I had this happen 2 years ago on my SunStar. Something inside the motor broke. So all the banging did no good. I removed the motor (3 screws) followed the wires to a plug and used a bungee cord until I replaced. Here is an example of the step motor on Amazon $88:
https://www.amazon.com/Kwikee-379147.../dp/B005G21JP2
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Old 03-15-2019, 09:04 AM   #14
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Revive this a topic little: I cannot seem to get access to the swing-arm to remove the cotter pin to release the steps - to replace the motor?

It seems pretty well boxed in on my 2002 Sightseer...

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