How-to Electrical System Problems, Troubleshooting, Repair, & FAQS

110 Volt SystemsThe 110 volt outlets used in some RVs and camper trailers are prone to shorts because of the way they are installed. Some are merely clipped onto the wiring by cutting into the wires. These types are notorious for not working correctly. Replace these types of outlets with standard house types to put and end to loose connections. Since some of the walls are so thin a smaller receptacle box may be required for the outlet to fit flush in the walls. Ground fault interrupter outlets are another common cause of electrical problems. These are located in places where a possibility exists of someone touching them with wet hands. They automatically break the circuit when moisture comes in contact with the outlet to prevent shock to the person touching them. A simple reset button must be pressed for the circuit to once again be completed. On occasion they will need to be replaced or the other outlets on the line will not work either. Pay close attention to the instructions when replacing these GFIs.In older RVs and camper trailers you may still find fuses instead of circuit breakers used. Because of the advent of many new electrical devices these older type fuse systems may not provide enough amperage to handle a microwave or other high amp appliance without blowing a fuse or kicking a breaker. Simply replacing the fuse or breaker with a higher amp substitute may be all thats required. Replacement of the entire breaker box may be the only option remaining if this doesnt solve the problem.The newer RVs and camper trailers may have two RV A/C rooftop units which require more amperage than the older models to operate without kicking the standard 30 amp power supply used by many campgrounds. Fortunately, many campgrounds and RV parks now provide 50 amp service for these types of units. When making reservations or checking in be sure to ask about the availability of a 50 amp hook up if you own a unit with multiple A/C units.Keeping your electrical systems in good and safe working order insures a trouble free camping trip with no sudden power outages to ruin the trip. Most problems can be repaired easily if you understand how the system works. RV electrical manuals along with a few inexpensive tools are well worth the cost of their purchase.If you are completely confused by electrical wiring there are also some very good basic books to start you off. It isnt very hard at all to check electrical circuits, switches or outlets with an inexpensive voltmeter. Just remember, when touching any wires be sure the power to that particular circuit is off. If in doubt, turn off the main breaker or unplug the RV or camper trailer from the power supply. Happy Camping! href='' - -