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Inverter Breaker Tripping


Keamyinc
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I have a 2002 Windsor. We are plugged into 50 amp power when all of a sudden we found that we lost power. We checked everything inside the motorhome and nothing had been tripped. Finally my brother in law read there is a circuit breaker in the inverter in the belly mechanical room. Sure enough this had tripped. We reset the button and everything has been good for the past 12 hours. Does anyone know why this breaker would have tripped?

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Don,

When on 50 amp shore power the Inverter is not providing any power. The charger portion is maintaining the House Battery bank and keeping your Chassis Battery fully charged also.

The Inverter portion is actually in a Pass-Thru mode.

It may have been a fluke incident or a power blip from the shore power supply.

Do you keep your Inverter on 24/7/365?

Mine is on all the time to keep my fridge running if any of the 120 VAC goes out.

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If you do not have a manual for the inverter, then I would do some googling and download it for your particular brand and model.  Monaco used, i think, three different brands....and also different models as they switched from Modified Sine to Pure Sine Wave.

On the Magnum, there were (TYPICALLY) THREE circuit breakers.  There is an INCOMING (Pin type usually rated at 30 amps).  Then there are TWO outgoing (Pin Types 20 Amps).  The circuit breakers do the same thing....except the are different in appearance.  So it is hard to "just look" at them.  

The logic was....  ONE pin outgoing CB was for the Microwave.  The OTHER was for all the "House" outlets.

Richard is totally correct.  The typical circuit is a 30 Amp breaker (in the main panel) for the Inverter Power.  That is "matched" with the 30 amp pin style on the Magnum.  So, you have two levels of protection.  

Then the two 20 amp pin CB are on the output side.  The Magnum ( all work this way) has an internal Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS).  If the inverters senses or measures 120 VAC, then it just passes through the voltage or the power.  BUT, when it loses the 120 VAC, it automatically transfers to "INVERTING" and supplies 120 VAC from the batteries.

Vibration and time and age are a factor.  High loads (like heaters or toasters or Griddlers or coffee makers will eventually weaken the outgoing pin CB.  These are resettable....as you push them in.  SOMETiMES, you need to pull them out to the fully open position....THEN push back in.  These are NOT designed like a normal main power circuit breaker to be used as ON/OFF switches.

If one does not reset....pull out the pin to where it is fully open....THEN push in.  If it keeps tripping and there is no upstream issues like a shorted receptacle....THEN, it needs replacing.  You can find aftermarket pin types that will fit in the hole and you just swap them out. 

NOW....this is a common sense observation....  I just helped a buddy fix his home AC.  He said..  OLD HOUSE....OLD AC (Heat Pump).  Keeps tripping....  GOTTA BE the old circuit breaker.  I warned him about high resistance connections and the need to check the terminals and connections downstream and also make sure there was no dead short in the compresssor motor.  OK...he said....I looked and it looked OK.

He bought a new 60 amp breaker and put it in.  YES....he found the issue.  He had to trip the power quickly as the wiring in the junction box on the AC Compressor was on fire or almost and burning and smoking.  SO...  

You MAY have just had, as Richard says....a fluke.  BUT, based on the age....if it trips again, you have a high resistance connection or such in an outlet and constantly "resetting" the pin circuit breaker is gonna kill it.  So....monitor it.  IF it trips....then get an electrician (does NOT have to be a RV tech....any good HOUSE electrician can chase bad wiring or connections.  Otherwise, you will be destroying the pin CB and then you have TWO issues....  Fix the wiring in the receptacle...  THEN take apart the Inverter and replace the pin CB that you damaged by not finding the real problem....

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The only time mine has tripped was one winter when we came in to a cold coach and I plugged in space heaters and had the heat pumps going.  I just assumed too much amperage due to the heaters.  Now that I think about it, we have to be careful if the coffee pot is on when my wife turns on her hair dryer.  I think that trips it too. 

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12 minutes ago, Steven P said:

The only time mine has tripped was one winter when we came in to a cold coach and I plugged in space heaters and had the heat pumps going.  I just assumed too much amperage due to the heaters.  Now that I think about it, we have to be careful if the coffee pot is on when my wife turns on her hair dryer.  I think that trips it too. 

since there is only ONE (assuming that you have a 2000 Watt inverter) House circuit....then making morning coffee and someone drying their tresses will definitely trip a CB.  That is why the upper food chain MH's have dual 2000 watt inverters as you actually, I THINK, will have 3 house circuits...or at least 2

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20 hours ago, Steven P said:

The only time mine has tripped was one winter when we came in to a cold coach and I plugged in space heaters and had the heat pumps going.  I just assumed too much amperage due to the heaters.  Now that I think about it, we have to be careful if the coffee pot is on when my wife turns on her hair dryer.  I think that trips it too. 

Steve,

Our 2006 Diplomats have a very poorly thought out 110 VAC electrical design. Almost all of the duplex outlets in the coach are powered thru a single 20 amp circuit breaker on the front of the inverter. There are two of these push button 20 amp circuit breakers on the front of the inverter and the other one is dedicated to the microwave. The inverter itselfs has a single 30 amp input circuit breaker in the main distribution panel that feeds both the inverter and the bypass relay internal to the inverter. The inverter has a max output of 2000 watts but that only matters if you are not connected to shore power. When connected to shore power the bypass relay bypasses the inverter so you only have to worry about the power consumed by the battery charger and the devices connected to the two circuit breakers. Bottom line is that unless you just pulled into a campsite and the battery charger is going full blast and you are running the microwave and have lots of stuff running off the duplex outlet, you are not going to trip that 30 amp breaker in the main panel. What you are going to trip, usually at night when you are running around in your underwear, is that single 20 amp breaker on the front of the inverter. After this happened a couple of time to me I decided to wire in some extra outlets in the bath area and hall that go to a dedicated 20 amp twist lock connector in the service bay. I made up a heavy duty cord with a matching 20 amp twist lock connector on one end and a standard 20 amp plug on the other. Since most of our camping is with shore power I simply plug that into the 20 amp or 30 amp outlet in the pedestal when we hook up. Some pedestals do not have a 20 amp connection so we carry an adapter that allows us to plug into the 30 amp socket. We plug electric heaters, hair dryers, and my wife's rice cooker into those dedicated duplex outlets. That saves me from modeling my underwear in the campground.

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That's interesting, Bob.  Maybe we can meet someday and I can see this setup.  I do remember that the CB tripped one AM when tailgating. We had been plugged into 50A all night and that AM, we were using the Keurig and my wife was drying her hair.  It's possible there was a small crock pot going, but I'm not sure.  Since then, we just turn off the Keurig before she turns on her hair dryer.  BTW,  she does have a fancy hairdryer so I imagine it is pulling some amps. 

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31 minutes ago, Steven P said:

That's interesting, Bob.  Maybe we can meet someday and I can see this setup.  

I vote we have a “2006 Diplomat Rally” and Bob and others can teach us about our coaches! I’m only half kidding... 😉😂. I’ve learned a tremendous amount from Bob. 
 

Of course, Bob is usually at the Gathering, too...

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