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Old 01-07-2007, 03:18 PM   #1
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After sitting through a tornado warning and lots of rain this evening, it was quietly raining with about 10 mph wind when just after dark out of nowhere came a tremendous explosion. Really scared our 8 yr old grandson, and didn't do much for the old folks and animals either! Wife was napping and said the whole bed jumped ...but knowing her nerves, that could just have been her. I was sitting on the couch looking out the passenger side which was downwind. As I came up off the couch to run for the hills, I heard the power center beep as it does when power is coming on, and saw 3-4 small fire balls drifting downward over the coach next to us.

Our power was off. When I went outside (probably not smart, but I wasn't the only one), I found the 50a breaker tripped on the power pole. I turned it on, but still no power ...checked the pole and it was dead. Back inside, I started the generator. We had one dead outlet circuit. I found the breaker for that circuit tripped inside, but turning it on did not restore power. The bedroom radio looks like it is on ...everything is lit up, but there
is no display, and you cannot turn it off. On the power center, everything appears normal except there are no lights in the charger indicator area that tells us the charger is in full charge, float, etc. Based on the house & chassis power displays, it was charging when I had the generator on. So far we have found nothing else that is affected. Hopefully we will be able to get shore power when the power to the pole is restored.

We have a SurgeGuard hardwired in the power compartment. If it is blown, will it still pass power when the power is restored to the pole, or will we be dead as far as shore power is concerned?

Looking around outside, I could see nothing close to us that looked like it had been hit. The only things taller than the motorhomes is a small tree about 30 yards to the left rear, and a light pole about 40 yards to the front. The tree looked normal, and the light was still lit on the pole. If it dries out tomorrow, guess I will go up on the roof and see if anything up there appears to have been the target...
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:18 PM   #2
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After sitting through a tornado warning and lots of rain this evening, it was quietly raining with about 10 mph wind when just after dark out of nowhere came a tremendous explosion. Really scared our 8 yr old grandson, and didn't do much for the old folks and animals either! Wife was napping and said the whole bed jumped ...but knowing her nerves, that could just have been her. I was sitting on the couch looking out the passenger side which was downwind. As I came up off the couch to run for the hills, I heard the power center beep as it does when power is coming on, and saw 3-4 small fire balls drifting downward over the coach next to us.

Our power was off. When I went outside (probably not smart, but I wasn't the only one), I found the 50a breaker tripped on the power pole. I turned it on, but still no power ...checked the pole and it was dead. Back inside, I started the generator. We had one dead outlet circuit. I found the breaker for that circuit tripped inside, but turning it on did not restore power. The bedroom radio looks like it is on ...everything is lit up, but there
is no display, and you cannot turn it off. On the power center, everything appears normal except there are no lights in the charger indicator area that tells us the charger is in full charge, float, etc. Based on the house & chassis power displays, it was charging when I had the generator on. So far we have found nothing else that is affected. Hopefully we will be able to get shore power when the power to the pole is restored.

We have a SurgeGuard hardwired in the power compartment. If it is blown, will it still pass power when the power is restored to the pole, or will we be dead as far as shore power is concerned?

Looking around outside, I could see nothing close to us that looked like it had been hit. The only things taller than the motorhomes is a small tree about 30 yards to the left rear, and a light pole about 40 yards to the front. The tree looked normal, and the light was still lit on the pole. If it dries out tomorrow, guess I will go up on the roof and see if anything up there appears to have been the target...
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:26 PM   #3
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Paul:

Scary for sure. Glad you guys are OK and certainly hope you have suffered no great damage to the coach electrics/electronics. I also have the hardwired surgeguard and it will be interersting to know if it will function normally when your shore power is restored.

No problems with TV's, satellite, microwave, etc? Just the rear radio??

Wonder if our motorhome insurance policies will cover necessary repairs in these cases????
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:30 PM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by AFChap:
We have a SurgeGuard hardwired in the power compartment. If it is blown, will it still pass power when the power is restored to the pole, or will we be dead as far as shore power is concerned?.. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Well that's good news indeed. If you took a lightning hit it's likely that your SurgeGuard either opened the circuit saving your equipment or it sacrificed itself in attenuating the lightning strike. Your SurgeGuard will function regardless if it's blown or not since you can by-pass the protection circuit with the key.

Once the power is restored observe the status LEDs and see if the energizing coil will lock in the unit.

The manner in which I installed my surge guard both the pedestal and the generator feed through the input of the SurgeGuard.

I can say without a doubt that we're glad that no one got hurt.
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:44 PM   #5
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">No problems with TV's, satellite, microwave, etc? Just the rear radio?? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
I would think if lightning struck the top of the coach, that the raised satellite dish would be the target ...it was up and in use at the time, but the control box, Dish tuner, and TV are all fine. So far, the rear radio, the one dead circuit, and dead charger indicator lights are the only problems we have noticed. Awaiting shore power restoration to see what more...
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Old 01-07-2007, 04:03 PM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">
Your SurgeGuard will function regardless if it's blown or not since you can by-pass the protection circuit with the key.

</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

There's your answer....
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Old 01-07-2007, 04:20 PM   #7
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The outlet that is not working. Is it on a GFI circuit? That could have tripped.
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Old 01-07-2007, 04:22 PM   #8
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by FrontRangeRVer:
There's your answer.... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Where have you been. I haven't seen you post in a while.
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Old 01-07-2007, 04:45 PM   #9
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Hi DriVer...I'm here...I read this forum daily...just looking for a chance to jump in...
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Old 01-07-2007, 04:51 PM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by FrontRangeRVer:
...just looking for a chance to jump in... </div></BLOCKQUOTE> Keepin' my eye on you!
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Old 01-07-2007, 06:43 PM   #11
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Once the power is restored observe the status LEDs and see if the energizing coil will lock in the unit. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
What is the energizing coil??? ..and what does it do?

We got power back. I checked the pole with my meter and it reads good. I found the Surgeguard showing power only on leg 2 with no other lights lit. Turning the bypass key made no difference. I pulled the 50a connection and plugged into 30a. I have seen this light indication one other time and cured it by smacking the Surgeguard, so I tried that. After several smacks, it clicked loudly went normal, then clicked and went back to only leg 2 lit. After a couple more attempts both legs stayed lit along with the delay light (which is supposed to flash during the testing delay, then go out. There was no delay ...it immediately connected power. I unplugged from the 30a and went back to 50a and have the same lights lit with normal power inside. The Surgeguard paperwork does not indicate these three lights constantly lit as either normal or error... Guess I'll call them tomorrow and see what it means.

The circuit that does not work is a GFCI circuit, but the GFCI is not tripped. But I also found that the test button will not function at all ...won't pop the breaker. So I am guessing that perhaps the GFCI plug is blown? If I remove the outlet and test the power leads and find there is power to the outlet, I will presume my guess is correct.

Still have no charger indicator lights other than "on" light. After being back on power for about an hour, the readout tells me house batteries are at 12.8 & engine batteries are at 13.6 WITH CHARGER ON. Right after reconnecting, the readout indicated 13.7 & 14.2 respectively. I presume that tells me the full charge & float functions of the charger are working even though there are no indicator lights.

It appears nothing else got zapped except for the rear radio.

All in all we are doing well ...the neighbor next to me (on other side from where I saw the fireballs floating in the air) is unable to get any power inside his coach. He doesn't have a SurgeGuard...
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Old 01-08-2007, 03:01 AM   #12
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It sould like the Surge Guard has been dammaged. You could turn off the main breakers and shut the inverter down and retry the pedastal power thru the Surge Guard. If the Surger Guard goes through its 2 minutes and 56 second diagnostic period and then connects it may be ok. It should not pass power immediately. Have you checked all of your 12 volt fuses? Glad you are ok and I think the Surge Guard saved a lot of the electronics.
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Old 01-08-2007, 04:27 AM   #13
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Whoa, glad y'all are ok.

Got no input for ya, but sure sounds like I ought to invest in a SurgeGuard.
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Old 01-08-2007, 05:43 AM   #14
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Trouble shouting guide for surgeguard.
http://www.surgeguard.com/Manuals/34560tbl_shooting.pdf
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