What current should I get on the 12 volt receptacal - Page 2 - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 07-18-2015, 11:17 AM   #11
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OK, thinking about it some more, here's what to do.

Test the voltage on the output side of the fuse, where the screwdriver is pointing in the photo. 12 volts comes to one side of the fuse, through it and to the terminal with the setscrew. The individual wire carrying current to one circuit attaches here. Check the voltage. Even if you're not sure which is the outlet one, they all should have 12 volts. Gently wiggle the wire. The setscrew could have backed off and isn't making a good contact.

If you have 12 volts going out the wire to the outlets then the probable cause is a bad inline connector. ETI uses snap on connectors to split the wire to multiple locations. They pierce the insulation and shove a little blade of metal onto the wire. I don't like them and don't use them but they usually work OK and are quick and simple for a manufacturer to use.

Given your symptoms, including one outlet that's dead, it's possible a bad connector is the problem.

At any rate, first confirm that each terminal by the fuse has 12 volts.

Ron
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Old 07-18-2015, 11:40 AM   #12
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... At any rate, first confirm that each terminal by the fuse has 12 volts.Ron
I was fooled by a circuit that had a little voltage but not enough to do anything useful - except enough to light a small led! Turns out that the led in question was the fuse blown indicator on the fuse panel. Just enough current flows through the led to provide a weak voltage on whatever device/outlet is downstream. So easy to check, so easy to overlook...

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Old 07-18-2015, 12:16 PM   #13
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Know what you're saying. I sometimes use a big old fashioned 12 volt bulb for trouble shooting. If it glows brightly I move on. I've been tricked by fuses that look OK. I never accept a "looks OK", I test them by substituting a known good fuse or with a meter.

In this case, where a couple of outlets have low voltage and one has none I'm betting it's a poor connection somewhere after the power leaves the fuse terminal block.

Ron
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Old 07-18-2015, 12:47 PM   #14
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Thanks Ron and all for these responses. It looks like we have a Saturday project as soon as my daughter picks up our granddaughter who is here for a sleepover. Liz is WAY more mechanical than I am. This will be a joint project for us! Marriage togetherness in action.
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Old 07-18-2015, 12:59 PM   #15
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My issue with the "poor connection" theory is that the voltage lost across a high-resistance connection is proportional to the current. If you plug in a device that has low resistance (so will take a lot of current with the intended voltage), the high current means lots of voltage lost at the poor connection, and so not enough voltage at the socket. But a voltmeter is a very high resistance device, so very little current flows through it, and even with thousands of ohms of connection resistance the voltage measured at the socket should still be so close to the battery voltage that you can't see any difference in the readings.

Since it seems exceptionally unlikely that any outlet is wired directly to one of the (nominally) 6-volt batteries without going through the distribution panel, resistance is the obvious explanation... I just don't see how it is consistent with very low voltage when there is no load (current being drawn by the circuit).
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Old 07-18-2015, 01:14 PM   #16
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I see what you're saying Brian. Basically, if you had a muli-strand wire and all but one strand were broken, you'd still get full voltage. The problem would show up if you tried to draw any amount of amps in which case the single strand would burn up like a blown fuse.

I'm thinking that poor contact somewhere down the wire between the fuse terminal and the outlet there's a high resistance poor contact situation. In that case, wouldn't a high resistance drop the voltage?

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Old 07-18-2015, 01:22 PM   #17
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Thanks Ron and all for these responses. It looks like we have a Saturday project as soon as my daughter picks up our granddaughter who is here for a sleepover. Liz is WAY more mechanical than I am. This will be a joint project for us! Marriage togetherness in action.
Hi: LarryandLiz... Just as long as your "Saturday project" isn't a shock to your Marriage!!! There could be many negatives and few positives to it. Good luck!!! Alf
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Old 07-18-2015, 03:23 PM   #18
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So here we are in the trailer and don't know where to put the voltmeter probes.


Luckily we can use wifi on our driveway

Liz is making me edit all my "probe" comments
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Old 07-18-2015, 04:34 PM   #19
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I see what you're saying Brian. Basically, if you had a muli-strand wire and all but one strand were broken, you'd still get full voltage. The problem would show up if you tried to draw any amount of amps ...
Yes!

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I'm thinking that poor contact somewhere down the wire between the fuse terminal and the outlet there's a high resistance poor contact situation. In that case, wouldn't a high resistance drop the voltage?
Again, only if significant current is being drawn. If there is some load on the circuit - not just outlets with nothing plugged into them or a meter - then there could be enough current to cause the voltage drop, but that load (appliance, light, whatever) would also be getting the low voltage.
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Old 07-18-2015, 04:37 PM   #20
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OK, working from the photo.

Do you see, in the upper left area, the heavy black wire marked "Neg"? You can use that as your all purpose ground.

Pull one fuse, any fuse, and insert the probe into the left side recess where the blade of the fuse goes. You should have 12 volts. Put the pos. probe onto one of the screw heads that hold the wires in place. See if you have 12 volts at each terminal or only test the one for the outlets if you're sure which one it is.

This is presuming that you've pulled and checked the fuse is OK and better yet, substituted a new one or one from another socket that you know to be good.

Ron
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