Testing the integrity of the electrical connection before plugging into the RV - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Problem Solving | Owners helping each other
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 05-30-2018, 09:45 AM   #1
Member
 
labearit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Prairieville, Louisiana
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA (August, 2017)
Posts: 35
Testing the integrity of the electrical connection before plugging into the RV

There are many helpful posts regarding surge protectors--both internal to the RV and those used inline between the power pole and the RV electrical cord. Our 2017 Escape 5.0TA has the surge protection on-board which I understand works great. We tend to be "electrician" challenged so I am not looking for a multi-meter solution.

I am curious if there is a recommended device that could be plugged into the power pole to test the integrity of the power supply before plugging the RV electrical cord into the service. Given our RV has surge protection already, I am not interested in the devices I've seen that test the power, but also act as an inline surge protector. I'd like to be able to plug in a device to the poll, determine/identify if there are any issues and, if clean, unplug the testing device, then plug in my RV electrical plug. Ideally, this device would be less expensive than the inline surge protectors yet likely more expensive than a basic multi-meter.

I apologize if this particular topic was addressed within any of those posts, but I appreciate any guidance.

Thanks!
__________________

labearit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 09:50 AM   #2
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chilliwack, British Columbia
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 20,477
Your onboard Progressive EMS will perform that function, it will not allow any "dirty" electricity to enter your trailer. If the electric is dirty you will see an error code on the remote read out, otherwise, after 2 minutes, you will hear a clump as the electric is allowed to enter the circuits.
In addition, afterwards it protects you from over/under voltage spikes which can happen.
__________________

__________________
Jim
"Never in doubt,..... often wrong!"
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 09:53 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Jim Bennett's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 14,403
I just let the inboard EMS do it's job.

If you were concerned that it was not working properly, you could use a multi - meter as well, checking voltage from hot to neutral, that the ground is in fact connected to ground, and the neutral bonded to ground.
__________________
2017 Escape 5.0 TA
2015 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost
2009 Escape 19 (previous)
ďMost folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.Ē ó Abraham Lincoln
Jim Bennett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 10:17 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
tdf-texas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Baytown, Texas
Trailer: 2017 21' Escape - since 1/9/2017
Posts: 1,557
I understand you are "not looking for a multi-meter solution" but that is the best and easiest way to check an outlet.

Voltage hot to neutral, voltage hot to ground, voltage neutral to ground - if the readings match the diagram below, you are good to go!

Nine bucks for a meter.
https://www.amazon.com/AstroAI-Digit...ords=voltmeter
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20-30_Amp_120V-metered.jpg (132.6 KB, 41 views)
__________________
If It Isnít Perfect, It Isnít Finished
tdf-texas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 10:40 AM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Trailer: Oliver 23
Posts: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by labearit View Post
I am curious if there is a recommended device that could be plugged into the power pole to test the integrity of the power supply before plugging the RV electrical cord into the service.
I had the same concern, and I found a website that shows how to make a simple circuit tester and voltage tester. www.myrv.us/electric/Pg/tester_30amp.htm
I got all of the parts from Amazon for under $20.
David S is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 11:34 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
sclifrickson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Port Townsend, Washington
Trailer: 2010 17B ďMATTĒ, then 2017 19 ďLillyĒ
Posts: 1,518
Testing the integrity of the electrical connection before plugging into the RV

As stated above, your onboard EMS will do everything you need. The error codes are cryptic though, and you need to look in the manual to decipher them. But then again, do you really? If EMS says itís bad, itís bad, and does it really matter which flavor of bad?

The other thing about the EMS is the 2 minute time delay. You just have to be patient for that.

On the other hand, if you really want something quick and easy to see if an outlet is wired right, you could get one of these. Itís small, portable and will work anywhere, including in your house. To make it work with a 30A RV plug requires an adapter, which can be a handy thing to have on occasion anyway.

Sperry Instruments GFI6302 GFCI Outlet/Receptacle Tester, Standard 120V AC Outlets, 7 Visual Indication/Wiring Legend, Home & Professional Use, Yellow & Black https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000RUL2UU..._DkSdBb8H3W2P8

Epicord RV Power Cord Electric Plug Adapter Triangle (30M15F) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CQKSNTQ..._VoSdBbEGFG2VS

Edit: Note that this will only tell you if things are wired right, but not if the voltage is off, or if itís clean. But your EMS will do all that. Itís much more than a simple surge suppressor.
__________________
💩-p+☕️+n
sclifrickson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 12:20 PM   #7
Site Team
 
rbryan4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Canyon Lake, Texas
Trailer: 2015 19 "Past Tents", 2018 F150 2.7L Ecoboost
Posts: 9,503
We got an EMS specifically so we would not have to test the power, or worry about surges or other issues. It makes additional devices unnecessary.

Having said that, I do keep a simple circuit tester in my toolbox, and it did come in handy once at a campground that had several sites with power problems. Our original site's power would not work and we had to move to another. The tester allowed me to check the power at other sites before I moved the trailer.
__________________
"You can't buy happiness, but you can buy an RV. And that is pretty close."
rbryan4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 12:37 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Alvin, Wisconsin
Trailer: Currently Shopping
Posts: 2,260
The only really safe method if you are overly concerned about power issues is to leave your trailer
UNPLUGGED from the utility or generator power source .
I suppose you could buy a scope meter ( Fluke makes a nice one) and spend your day watching the meter but I would get the Escape EMS and guit worrying
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 01:58 PM   #9
Member
 
labearit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Prairieville, Louisiana
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA (August, 2017)
Posts: 35
Thanks for all the responses. The forum was helpful once again.
labearit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 02:42 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
John in Santa Cruz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Mid Left Coast, California
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21
Posts: 1,753
I second(third?) the motion re the EMS, it does exactly what its supposed to.

one of my yard outlets doesn't have a ground, so if I've got the trailer plugged into that, the EMS displays E 02, and shuts off. if I switch the EMS off, then it self-bypasses and allows the power in anyways (as I know the voltage is good).
John in Santa Cruz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 03:55 PM   #11
Site Team
 
padlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Southwick, Massachusetts
Trailer: 5.0 TA #6, 2012 F150 EB
Posts: 6,037
A side note if I can. Camping during the Eclipse last summer in very hot humid weather on the TN/GA border. The very full out of the way forest service campground had electric but the EMS kept coming up with low voltage. With the weather what it was I said the heck with the EMS and turned it off so I could run the A/C, which I did, the whole week we were there.

Question, what damage can low voltage do?
__________________
Happy Motoring
Bob
padlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 03:59 PM   #12
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chilliwack, British Columbia
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 20,477
You can burn up your a/c motor and compressor, the brown outs in the summer are common AND the EMS was telling you, low voltage is bad, and was turning it off. Whether you did permanent damage is not known, but I would never bypass a safety switch, like putting pennies in old fuse block.
__________________
Jim
"Never in doubt,..... often wrong!"
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 04:15 PM   #13
Site Team
 
rbryan4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Canyon Lake, Texas
Trailer: 2015 19 "Past Tents", 2018 F150 2.7L Ecoboost
Posts: 9,503
Agree. Possible permanent damage to the air conditioner due to low voltage. I would not bypass the EMS. While a little transient undervoltage probably didn't harm it, you don't really know how low it was without measuring it.
__________________
"You can't buy happiness, but you can buy an RV. And that is pretty close."
rbryan4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 04:25 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Vermilye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Oswego, New York
Trailer: 2017 Escape 21, 2018 Ford F150
Posts: 3,576
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbryan4 View Post
Agree. Possible permanent damage to the air conditioner due to low voltage. I would not bypass the EMS. While a little transient undervoltage probably didn't harm it, you don't really know how low it was without measuring it.
Actually, whether you can safely bypass the EMS depends on the type of load. I agree that a device with a motor & compressor such as your AC is a problem on low voltage - it will draw more current to do the same amount of work, and likely overheat the wiring. Pure heating devices such as a toaster, hair dryer, your converter, on the other hand won't work as efficiently, but will not be damaged by low voltage.
__________________
Jon Vermilye My Travel Blog
Travel and Photo Web Page ... My Collection of RV Blogs 2018 F150 3.5EB, 2017 21
Vermilye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 04:27 PM   #15
Site Team
 
rbryan4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Canyon Lake, Texas
Trailer: 2015 19 "Past Tents", 2018 F150 2.7L Ecoboost
Posts: 9,503
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
Actually, whether you can safely bypass the EMS depends on the type of load. I agree that a device with a motor & compressor such as your AC is a problem on low voltage - it will draw more current to do the same amount of work, and likely overheat the wiring. Pure heating devices such as a toaster, hair dryer, your converter, on the other hand won't work as efficiently, but will not be damaged by low voltage.
Yes, correct. The Microwave is another example. My comment was specifically about the AC.
__________________
"You can't buy happiness, but you can buy an RV. And that is pretty close."
rbryan4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 05:52 PM   #16
Site Team
 
Donna D.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 8,655
I spent my entire adult life working hard. I'm now into EASY. I got the EMS during Ten Forward's build to make my camping experience a 'bit' easier. When I went through orientation, Christine told me to hookup to power, then sit down and relax for a couple of minutes. That's EASY to do
__________________
Donna D.
Ten Forward
2014 Escape 5.0TA
Donna D. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 06:26 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
Iowa Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 4,493
We had 208 voltage motors on pool pumps. They would run down to 192 volts in “brown out” situations, then the protector would kick them out. In a developing areawhere there were all new big houses, we would get this problem on hot days. These were three phase US Motors. After that first season we had them factory rewired to run down to 178. No further problems. You don’t want to have a pool pump burn up on a 90 degree day in an affluent area and you don’t want to damage equipment you bought to enjoy and earned the money by babysitting someone else’s equipment for 30 years. That’s my feelings anyway. I never
circumvent safety or protection devices.
I’d hate to have a repair cut into my beer budget.
Iowa Dave
__________________
Strike while the iron is hot. Live every day as if it were your last and one day you will be right.
Dave
Iowa Dave is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 07:47 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
rubicon327's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Burlington Twp., New Jersey
Trailer: 2010 Escape 19
Posts: 3,520
Most appliances are rated nominal 115V +/- 10%. Accordingly, my Fujitsu mini-split A/C is rated down to 103.5V. The EMS cuts out at 104V. This is a perfect marriage. The overhead Dometic A/C units should be the same or very close. I personally wouldn’t bypass the EMS in a low voltage condition unless I could measure and knew it wasn’t too far below 104. The risk is still that it could drop further and you wouldn’t know.
rubicon327 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 08:03 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
rubicon327's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Burlington Twp., New Jersey
Trailer: 2010 Escape 19
Posts: 3,520
Quote:
Originally Posted by sclifrickson View Post
The other thing about the EMS is the 2 minute time delay. You just have to be patient for that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
When I went through orientation, Christine told me to hookup to power, then sit down and relax for a couple of minutes. That's EASY to do
I realize it’s not too big a deal if you are busy doing other things but I think it is unfortunate that ETI removes the internal jumper which makes you wait 2:16 for power. I installed my own EMS (same PI HW30C unit as Escape option) and the factory default with jumper in place is 15 seconds. The ONLY reason for the longer delay is to protect A/C system compressors from too quick a restart after a shutdown. My mini-split has built in protection and the factory option Dometic Penguin units have similar.

Direct from EMS manual:
“• Time Delay for A/C Compressor: If AC power is interrupted or the EMS detects a fault condition, the built in time delay is activated. There are two settings on the EMS: one is 136 seconds (02:16), and the other is 15 seconds. Consult your air conditioner manual to see if it has a time delay built in. If so, use the 15 second delay, if not, use the 136-seconds delay. The factory setting is 15 seconds.”
rubicon327 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-2018, 10:12 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Notasulga, Alabama
Trailer: 2010 EggCamper (#083); 2017 Escape 21 (#053); 2016 F-150 5.0L FX4
Posts: 1,759
On a somewhat related note, we carry a 50 amp to 30 amp adapter just in case the shoreline pedestal power is fine but the 30 amp outlet happens to be corrupted (https://www.campingworld.com/power-g...-to-30a-female). We've used it once and loaned it out once to a neighboring camper. It's a handy thing to have - just in case.
__________________

War Eagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:37 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×