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Old 12-23-2009, 08:09 PM   #1
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Journey 12V Electrical, My senior moment

So, we arrive in Richmond, VA at home of relatives for Christmas. We level the rig and plug into their outside outlet. Everything works fine then I notice my fridge is not working (nothing on display). I then notice nothing displaying on the one-place panel, the furnace has quit and none of the 12V lights work. We have 120VAC everywhere.

So, thinking it must be something broke, I start checking all the 12 circuit breakers, battery connections, grounds, etc. Just can't figure out why nothing 12V works. I poke around under the front hood where the battery solenoid is.

Finally, I call a trusted and knowledgeable guy who once owned a coach like mine, Joe Kasunich (JoeK) to see if he has any ideas. Joe is a prince of a guy and very tech savvy. With my voltmeter in hand and cell phone to ear, he has me check the fuse near the house batteries...it checks OK. Then he has me check the battery solenoid in the front and there is voltage on both sides of that. Then, Joe asks if I have checked the battery disconnect switch on the dash?? The light bulb goes on and, sure enough, it is off. It seems the DW was switching the radio power switch from main to aux so the TV sound would work and inadvertently hit the adjacent battery disconnect switch.

So, all thoughts of spending hours trying to find some electrical gremlin followed by trying to find some critical RV electrical part on Christmas Eve vanished with the simple flip of a switch.

I never use the battery disconnect switch since we keep the rig stored with a shore line to keep the batteries charged. I just did not think it was a simple problem. My most recent senior moment.

Thanks, Joe.
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Old 12-23-2009, 08:28 PM   #2
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smlranger, A good friend of my family once told me that when in doubt "KISS". Thats short for "Keep It Simple Stupid". As I get older it seems to help.

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Old 12-23-2009, 09:09 PM   #3
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It can cause you fits when somehow a switch that is never used gets switched. We all have our story. On our new motorhome one of the first things I did was to disconnect the step switch, now when the ign is off the steps stay out. Bet you can guess why.
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Old 12-23-2009, 09:38 PM   #4
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The battery disconnect switch on our gas coach is in the stairwell and was accidently shut off a couple of times. I installed a drawer pull over the switch to prevent that in the future. I also installed a small clear plastic piece over the heated mirror switch in the driver's door for the same reason. May or may not work for you....

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Old 12-24-2009, 07:44 AM   #5
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I did the same thing, it was at Dease Lake,B.C. I had been wiping off some of the dust and apparently hit the disconnect switch by mistake. I think I tried every fuse,breaker and checked every wire in the electrical system before the little light came on in my brain. I am very careful when I clean around the switches now.
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Old 12-24-2009, 10:59 AM   #6
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I am reminded of the old comic.. TV repairman tool box in hand enters living room and says "Lady, I think I see your problem already" (plug, is about 2 feet from outlet)

I would llike to say I've never done this... I really would like to say that...... But .. Well I truly believe anyone who claims to never have done it is either very young or not very truthful.

From the cuss--some-more support desk at the local comptuer palce

Caller: The screen just went dark

(The tech and customer chat a while and finally)

Tech: Can you check to see if it's plugged in.

Caller: I'll try but it is kind of dark back there just now

Tech: Well can you turn on a light

Caller: No there is a power failure in the building.

Tech: BANG BANG BANG BANG (Sound if him banging his head against the wall)
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Old 12-24-2009, 11:07 AM   #7
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I have learned ...

I have learned to check that switch "first" when everything 12V is dead ... my wife has bumped that switch more than once when she closes the drapes at night ...

I also learned that if the refrigerator light does not come on when I open the door that we forgot to turn the fridge back on after our last fueling (we always turn the fridge off if there are gasoline pumps at the island)
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Old 12-24-2009, 06:22 PM   #8
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I am happy to hear that you attacked the issue with the vengence of an Electrical Engineer. Ignoring the simple checks first. You did exactly what I would have done, grabbed the volt meter, start checking and trying to keep temper under control.
Have a Merry Christmas and a safe journey home.
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