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Old 03-22-2024, 03:33 PM   #1
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Power Issue

Hi, just had solar and new lithium batteries installed. Solar worked great. Went back to mooch power from house and nothing happen. I checked power to all cords, all ends including plug end going into rig, receptacle, all have 120 volts. Works fine on batteries but inverter shows no AC.

I have a Jayco Northpoint 50amp service.

What could be the problem?
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Old 03-22-2024, 07:18 PM   #2
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Do you have a generator? If so, does it power the rig? Does the power feed go through a surge protector?

The 50 amp power feed into the rig goes through a transfer switch which switches power from shore to generator. Many times these have been known to have loose or burnt contacts. I would unplug and pop the cover off the transfer switch and make sure everything is clean and tight.

The transfer switch would be a good place to measure the power coming into the rig but you should not attempt this unless you are good at measuring higher voltages. With 50 amp service you will basically have 240 volts inside this switch (2 - 120 volt separate legs). This could kill you.

The inverter converts 12 volts to 120 volts. It has nothing to do with shore power coming in. Am I reading your problem incorrectly? Are you missing all 120 volts inside the rig when plugged in?
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Old 03-22-2024, 07:29 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimD View Post
Do you have a generator? If so, does it power the rig? Does the power feed go through a surge protector?

The 50 amp power feed into the rig goes through a transfer switch which switches power from shore to generator. Many times these have been known to have loose or burnt contacts. I would unplug and pop the cover off the transfer switch and make sure everything is clean and tight.

The transfer switch would be a good place to measure the power coming into the rig but you should not attempt this unless you are good at measuring higher voltages. With 50 amp service you will basically have 240 volts inside this switch (2 - 120 volt separate legs). This could kill you.

The inverter converts 12 volts to 120 volts. It has nothing to do with shore power coming in. Am I reading your problem incorrectly? Are you missing all 120 volts inside the rig when plugged in?
Yes, partly. In both situations, mooch power or generator firing up the inverter screen shows no AC power, just blank.

I noticed there wasn’t any draw on the generator.
So what does that tell you?

Could my female receptacle where I plug my shore power cord into be bad?

As far as the transfer switch, I believe the installer removed most or all of the wires from it and made connections inside a new junction box with 2 new heavy lines on some or all, I’m not sure. Maybe the wire nut connections are not tighter?
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Old 03-22-2024, 08:03 PM   #4
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The only time an inverter will show an AC power is when it is creating it. When plugged in or on generator, the inverter is not used. Its output will go through its own separate transfer switch that feeds certain power outlets. This switch will select either shore/generator power OR inverter power.

I don't know if there is something in your rig that keeps the inverter from powering on. Typically when an inverter has a good source of 12 volts feeding it and it is turned on, it will produce an output which should display on its screen. Even if it is producing 120 volts it wouldn't be feeding the outlets if shore power was available. The inverter will not display 120 volts coming in from shore power, only its created voltage.

Your shore power cord end should not affect the generator supplying power as they are totally separate.

If someone removed the transfer switch and hard wired connections they could have created a very dangerous situation. Maybe the switch failed and they just mickey moused the connection by wiring everything together. This could mean that the generator is receiving power from your shore power connection. Holy crap!

At this point you may want to have a knowledgeable person take a peek at the wiring. It sounds like your 12 volt system may be working OK since you said the solar powered things OK. The 12 volt system is completely separate from the 120 volt system, which feeds the microwave and air conditioners. The TV will probably get power from EITHER shore/generator power OR inverter.

Side note - very old rigs may not have an automatic transfer switch and require you to manually switch something. My old camper required moving the shore power plug from a socket, which was connected to the generator, and then plugging it into the shore power.

Maybe someone with your exact rig can tell us if you are suppose to have an automatic transfer switch or not.
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Old 03-22-2024, 09:43 PM   #5
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Does it have an inverter switch at the control area of the rig? Our Alante has one to turn it on or off.
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Old 03-23-2024, 07:11 AM   #6
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Power issue continues

So I checked that all my power cords are hot and the female receptacle that the shore power goes into is hot, all good there. So itís something inside as noted.

Yes, the installer took 2 of the 3 wires that was in the transfer box and made new connections along with others in a new junction box placed along side it. I visually checked those connections and they seem fine, I didnít use a meter as I donít know what is what.

There is still one wire going into the transfer switch that worked fine prior to new install.
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Old 03-23-2024, 07:19 AM   #7
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Power issues more pictures

Note the red box on display. This is with solar and mooch power plugged in.
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Old 03-23-2024, 07:37 AM   #8
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The only time an inverter will show an AC power is when it is creating it. When plugged in or on generator, the inverter is not used. Its output will go through its own separate transfer switch that feeds certain power outlets. This switch will select either shore/generator power OR inverter power.

I don't know if there is something in your rig that keeps the inverter from powering on. Typically when an inverter has a good source of 12 volts feeding it and it is turned on, it will produce an output which should display on its screen. Even if it is producing 120 volts it wouldn't be feeding the outlets if shore power was available. The inverter will not display 120 volts coming in from shore power, only its created voltage.

Your shore power cord end should not affect the generator supplying power as they are totally separate.

If someone removed the transfer switch and hard wired connections they could have created a very dangerous situation. Maybe the switch failed and they just mickey moused the connection by wiring everything together. This could mean that the generator is receiving power from your shore power connection. Holy crap!

At this point you may want to have a knowledgeable person take a peek at the wiring. It sounds like your 12 volt system may be working OK since you said the solar powered things OK. The 12 volt system is completely separate from the 120 volt system, which feeds the microwave and air conditioners. The TV will probably get power from EITHER shore/generator power OR inverter.

Side note - very old rigs may not have an automatic transfer switch and require you to manually switch something. My old camper required moving the shore power plug from a socket, which was connected to the generator, and then plugging it into the shore power.

Maybe someone with your exact rig can tell us if you are suppose to have an automatic transfer switch or not.
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Old 03-23-2024, 08:53 AM   #9
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Hard to know without being able to meter out the wiring but it looks like the transfer switch has been bypassed and that should not have been touched during a solar install. X2 on getting someone out to look at this. These are very complicated systems and not something you would want to tackle without a thorough understanding of how all of the different systems work together.
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Old 03-23-2024, 10:09 AM   #10
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So I checked that all my power cords are hot and the female receptacle that the shore power goes into is hot, all good there. So itís something inside as noted.

Yes, the installer took 2 of the 3 wires that was in the transfer box and made new connections along with others in a new junction box placed along side it. I visually checked those connections and they seem fine, I didnít use a meter as I donít know what is what.

There is still one wire going into the transfer switch that worked fine prior to new install.
As a retired Sr. Electrical Design Engineer I can tell you without any doubt that the box with the blue wire nuts is not NEC compliant. There is not enough required space in that box for the splices. RV’s are required to meet NEC requirements. The article for RV’s is 551.
What are the two conductors that are bare stranded wire in the lower right of the picture from or to? That is a safety problem and may be your issue as well.
You need a real electrician to look at what this guy did. For your safety.
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Old 03-23-2024, 10:38 AM   #11
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Danger Will Robinson, Danger!!!!

Whoever did that modification created an unsafe condition. It is possible they wired everything together and left the generator out of the equation. No way to know what they did.

I would have a professional reconnect the transfer switch properly and see what your problem is.

As mentioned, the solar install should not have touched the 120 volt side of things, period. Solar is 12 volts ONLY.
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Old 03-23-2024, 10:51 AM   #12
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Jklen, What is that supposed to be in picture in post #8? I’m thinking it is supposed to be an ATS. But there is nothing there that is functional. You can not have a transfer switch do anything with only one cable coming to it.
Get a real electrician, keep track of the costs, and get your money back from the guy that did this! Small claims court.
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Old 04-21-2024, 06:15 PM   #13
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Wire nuts on a moving vehicle?

I would replace those with something like Posi-Tap connectors.
Vibration would work wires apart.
Did the installer twist the wires really good before installing the nuts?
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