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Old 04-07-2014, 09:38 PM   #1
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Electric Steps Wiring Mystery

Ours is a Jayco Seneca on a Kodiak chassis.

We got new chassis batteries, and when we got home, we discovered that our electric steps no longer worked. When we opened the coach door, the steps didn't extend.

I checked the fuses without learning anything, so I took it back to the repair shop.

They said they hadn't done anything to the steps. But they looked into it, and reported that the steps were wired so that they only extended when the ignition key was turned. (Which is nonsense. The steps have always worked fine without the key being in the ignition.) So, they said, they rewired for us, so that the steps extend when the key is off.

They demonstrated that the steps now work with the key off. Open the door, the steps come out. Close it (with the steps switch on) and the steps retract.

I have two fears.

First, my specific fear is that the steps will no longer retract when I start the motor. That's an important safety feature. I'll check it out tomorrow.

My second fear is more vague. Since we know (since the steps always worked with the key off before) that their diagnosis is weird and implausible, what might go wrong in the future as a result of their rewiring job?

Anybody got ideas or advice? Is there a wiring diagram available somewhere that can illuminate what probably happened?

Thanks,
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Old 04-08-2014, 07:48 AM   #2
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Do you have a step switch somewhere, is it turned on? If my step switch is off the steps won't extend. If it is on, they extend and retract with the door opening or closing. If extended, and I start engine to move they retract.
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Old 04-08-2014, 08:36 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by short kid View Post
Do you have a step switch somewhere, is it turned on? If my step switch is off the steps won't extend. If it is on, they extend and retract with the door opening or closing. If extended, and I start engine to move they retract.
What he said!
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Old 04-09-2014, 02:18 PM   #4
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I keep re-reading your post and cant help to think they fixed a problem that did not exist prior to changing the batteries. I am thinking they may have blown the fuse on the ignotion circuit while changing the batteries. This would cause your steps to not function as you said they did before the battery swap. Now, they may have defeated that by re-wiring something. Ughh, the problem is bad enough with all the wires and connections done properly, now throw in someones fix, it may be hard to diagnose.

I would want them to show me exactly what they did.

My system has an ignition power feed that comes from under the drivers side kick panel under the steering column and that connect has a 4amp fuse installed. When I blow this fuse (which has been twice now) the steps stop functioning correctly.

There are also fuses located at the steps, which you MUST be careful checking as they are in the path of the step and you could loose a body part if it is in the way and the steps move.

Hope yo can sort out what the shop did to "fix" it, so you can check it is all proper.
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Old 04-09-2014, 02:34 PM   #5
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I've been to visit my Seneca, and the steps do retract when the ignition key is turned.

So, functionally, I can't see that there is any problem at all. They're working normally.

Priority 1: If the ignition key is on, the steps retract.
Priority 2: If the door opens, the steps extend.
Priority 3: If the door closes and the steps are powered up, the steps retract.

The only worrisome thing is that the shop said they rewired them.

They said they didn't mess with the steps when they replaced the batteries, but they had to rewire the steps to get them to work again afterwards.

I like the fuse theory, but they say they didn't change any fuses.

Don't know what to think.
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Old 04-09-2014, 02:36 PM   #6
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Maybe there's a blown fuse, and they rewired to get around that. I like this theory.
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Old 04-10-2014, 07:19 AM   #7
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Thats what I was trying to say. If the ignition circuit fuse is blown, the steps will not retract when the ignition is on. If they did not know the location of the fuse, the mechanic not knowing how the system was wired, may opt to fix it by supplying a new ignition wire to the steps. I am not sure where the wires would be on the Seneca, like I said for the Ford E450, the fuse is behind the drivers kick panel under the steering column.

Might be worth looking for one. If you find a 4 or 5 amp blown fuse, you know they may have wired around it...
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:26 AM   #8
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I've checked all the fuses and circuit breakers in the fuse box. So, if this is the problem, it will have to be a fuse built into the steps.

Thanks so much for your help, guys.
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Old 04-11-2014, 07:04 AM   #9
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Wiploc, there seems to be fuses located in the strangest places in these RV's, not just in the panels. The fuse I refer to above is an inline fuse holder.
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Old 06-13-2016, 08:54 PM   #10
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I have spent a few hours online and underneath the stairs doing a lot of the testing with a voltmeter. I think the answer should be clear now but my skills for this sort of stuff are a bit limited including locating the specific fuses involved. Your help is appreciated.

2001 28 foot Jayco Designer C Class with Ford E450 V10

What happened- on trip the Kwikee Model 875 electric steps would not retract so I had to disconnect arm and manually raise and secure stairs.

Tests done

I tested with both the electric step button on/off and tried to get ignition safety switch to raise the steps as well. No clicks, sounds or movements.

-With voltmeter tested the main power to control box, good.
-Tested motor, works fine when using the wire tests from manual.
-Went through other test with white, yellow and brown wire.
- Pulled battery cable off of both batteries hoping controller would reset.
- Seems that it's not getting power from door switch.

Bottomline is I can't find any of the fuses, there isn't any underneath by the stairs and on the main fuse panel and engine compartment I have no clue which number of fuse to look for. Pulling all of them out is not an option. Help.
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