Thursday, August 27, 2015

Why Does My New LED Light Not Work?

A customer of TechnoRv Ordered a LED reading light (67-CW67) to replace a 1383 incandescent. The bulb base is the single contact Bayonet. When he received the new LED it would not work in the fixture, but it would work in another fixture, and his old incandescent worked in the fixture that the LED would not work in. Seemed a bit confusing as the problem did not follow the bulb, nor did the problem transfer to other fixtures. 

The RV industry can be a little confusing at times.

With the incandescent light that was installed at the OEM level in the past , nobody was putting the wires at the same place all the time because the element (Incandescent) was working on both sides on the wiring installation.

Enter LED lighting and you deal with polarity. The reading fixture that he was trying to install the replacement with the 67-CW30L is polarity sensative, so the positive needed to be at the end of the bayonet and the ground on the round metal base to be able to work the proper way. I asked the customer to swap the 2 wires behind the fixture and the LED worked. Happy Customer!

Also, the wedge base LED's are polarity sensative, but that is easy, you just push it in, and if it does not work then turn it 180 degrees and reinsert and it will work. 


Eric

Sunday, August 16, 2015

RV Electrical Safety – Safely Plugging Your RV into Power


In my last blog post I talked about what a volt is and how it can be set into motion by pushing current through a path of least voltage pressure. In some cases this can be your body. In short, if you touch something charged with 100 volts with one wet hand, and then touch something else charged with zero volts with the other wet hand, then the 100 volts will be set into motion through the conduit, in this case, you. So, not to get all scary here, there are some basic safety measures to take when plugging your RV into the campground pedestal. If the pedestal is operating correctly, then there should be no problem, but just in case, think about how you could avoid potential voltage pressure from being released. First step is to make sure the circuit breaker on the pedestal is turned off. With only one hand, and standing on dry ground, flip the breaker off. Now, with one hand, and never standing or kneeling on wet surfaces, plug your power into the pedestal. (Example - you wouldn’t want to be plugging the power in with one hand and be bracing your other hand on the pedestal; remember, that could potentially complete a circuit if the pedestal was charged for some reason).  Once you plug power in, then test a few items in your RV. If you find yourself getting shocked by touching things in the RV, then shut the power off and let the campground attendant know what is going on.

I always recommend an electrical management system with any RV. TechnoRV (www.technorv.com)  sells the Progressive Electrical Management Systems and these units are the best on the market. When you plug into power, the Progressive unit runs a series of tests on the pedestal power to ensure that it is safe. Once it finishes evaluating the power, then, and only then, will it release the power to the RV. If the Progressive unit detects a power problem then it will display an error code explaining what the issue is. Once power is released to the RV, then the unit continues to monitor the power for spikes or low voltage situations that could damage the sensitive components in your RV. You can look at our full line of Progressive products here: http://www.technorv.com/Progressive_Electrical_Protection_Systems_s/169.htm

Running power to a RV without some kind of electrical management system is asking for trouble. We spend too much on our RVs not to protect it from the perils that can come along with electricity. 




Saturday, August 15, 2015

RV Electrical Safety Basics - What is a Volt?

Well, the professor of electrical engineering at the local university will tell you that a volt is a standard international unit of electric potential. What? Why do I have the definition and still don’t know what in the world it is. Let me break it down into terms that I can understand, and then certainly the masses will understand too. Think of a volt in terms of pressure. An electrical unit waiting to be set into motion with the right circumstances. Like a balloon that is under pressure. When it is popped, the air is set free into motion. So what sets a volt free? 

Have you ever been shocked by a door knob? For some reason the doorknob was holding on to some precious volts, under pressure and waiting to be set free, and when you came along and touched it, you were the conduit to allow the pressure to flow. So where did it go? Well, it went through you, from one part, to whatever other part of you that was touching something that had less volts than the door knob. If you were standing on the ground that was zero volts, and you touched a door knob with 60 volts, the pressure of 60 volts pushes current (otherwise known as Amps) to the part that is at zero volts. What if the ground was at 60 volts too? You ever wonder why a bird can stand on a power line charged with 100,000 volts and sing like there is no danger? Because both of the birds feet are on the exact same pressure of volts, and therefore the pressure is offsetting. If the bird picked a foot up and put it on a zero volt grounded pole, guess what? The pressure is set free and
the bird turns into a cooked chicken as the 100,000 volts pushes current through it to the path of least pressure. Now, depending on what you are standing on when you touch the doorknob makes a difference. If you have some nice rubber sole shoes on, then you may feel nothing, but if you are standing barefoot in some water then you have made a positive connection with the zero volt surface. This is the idea of completing a circuit that you may have heard of before.  

Are RVers in danger of bad electricity? Maybe, but don’t walk around paranoid while you are enjoying the RV life. Just know what to look for, and practice safe procedures when hooking your RV to power. If you are getting shocked by different parts of your RV then there is a problem and you should report it to the front office and asked to be moved. More to come on this topic in future blog articles.