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Old 08-20-2014, 07:42 PM   #1
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Help! Newbie trying to get battery to power lights and outlets in 2005 Jayco 21J

Hi All-
My husband and I just purchased a used 2005 Jay Feather 21J. The previous owners never used a battery. We purchased a marine/RV battery and have hooked it up. The switches on the different tank display panel are lit red. (2 of the 3 switches). All I want is to be able to turn on the overhead lights. I've read that a battery would run these lights. Is there some switch somewhere that I don't know about that might have been switched when the trailer was winterized last year-(it hasn't been used since or hasn't been de-winterized). I looked at the fuse panel, they are all in the "on" position. I pressed and depressed the GFCI button.
Can anyone help, or suggest a website or book that I could read to learn about our new trailer. Like travel trailers for Dummies?
Thank you!
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:17 PM   #2
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Welcome to JOF

There's an in-line fuse on the positive cable near the battery that you'll want to check. You say switches on the panel are lit so chances are the fuse is OK but check it to be sure. The overhead light each have switches on them, have you tried flipping those? There's a fuse panel inside the trailer - buy some auto fuses (5, 10 & 20 amp) and change them out with new. If nothing comes on, you may have a problem with the converter. The converter charges the battery when on shore power and distributes the 12V power to the trailer

I'd be concerned the prior owner didn't use a battery as it kind of a requirement when towing.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:25 PM   #3
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Your overhead lights are on a 12 volt circuit and the battery should power those lights when connected properly. Also, your power convertor should make DC power available to the overhead lights circuit when the shore power cable is plugged in? Do you know if the overhead lights work when you're shore power is connected? The GFCI is on an AC circuit and would have nothing to do with the overhead lights.

The internet is full of RV electrical sites with diagrams and advice. A search will find many. I would start by asking Jayco to supply you with a 12 volt electrical schematic for your TT. You will need to give them your VIN. You can trace the circuit the overhead lights are on (there might be other devices on the same circuit) and look for a faulty connection.

If you have a meter or test light (ask a neighbor if you don't) you would first find out if the circuit is being powered at the beginning, and then work your way toward the lights checking each connection for power along the way. The solutions for that kind of problem are usually very inexpensive, but hard to find. Good luck.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:31 PM   #4
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Hi-
Yes checked the 30 amp fuse. When we unplug and then plug the fuse back in we hear a click on the right side of the trailer near the heating element? We also tried a new fuse. I flipped all switches and checked light bulbs. I located the fuse panel and noticed that out of the 12 spots for fuses, there were several empty (labelled as optional) and that the rest of the fuses were 15 amp, although the breaker switches were not all 15, some were 20. Could this be the problem?
If there is a problem with the power converter, would the trailer still be able to function properly using the power cord at a campground?
Thank you so very much!
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:34 PM   #5
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Previous owners said it worked at the campground absolutely fine.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:36 PM   #6
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Just to clarify my last response: Meaning when the shore power is plugged in, they said it worked.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:51 PM   #7
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If they work with the shore power cable plugged in, then the circuit is okay. The power convertor is changing the AC voltage it's receiving from the shore cable into DC voltage and supplying that circuit. When you connect a battery the DC voltage is supplied from the battery, and the power convertor charges the battery. Those things happen as a function of the power convertor.

I would contact the power convertor manufacturer for technical assistance.

Edit: I would verify they worked with the shore cable power cable plugged in first. You can plug into an outlet in your house with an adapter.
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marescott View Post
Previous owners said it worked at the campground absolutely fine.
... probably did. I keep my battery on a charger in the garage when I'm home. And when I'm in the TT, I plug the shore power cable in and the 12 volt appliances (including the overhead lights) work fine.
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:47 PM   #9
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What wires do you have hooked to the battery? White is your ground that goes to the neg and black goes to positive. Outlets do not run off your battery...only when you are plugged in to shore power.
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:47 PM   #10
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Also ckeck the in fuse by the battery.
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