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Old 12-22-2010, 02:22 PM   #1
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Any Support For Fortron Power Supplies?

Hello everyone, I am hoping someone can help. I just purchased a 2001 Advancer 26M that I am really happy with except for the power distribution. Of course, the first outing is in the winter so we're pretty dependent on electric heaters to avoid the propane expense...problem is that the breakers (I'm sure they are almost 10 yrs old) are weak. Running a space heater that should take no more that 12.5A somehow trips the 15A breaker with nothing else on. Did the extension cord trick to the post & swapped the 15Ampers around so the lesser used HW & microwave breakers are now supplying the outlets but occasionally the main 30A breaker is now tripping (again w/ not much on). I can live with it and adjust our power usage but during my search for new breakers I've found that NOBODY carries them...I just called Fortron today & left a message and their website claims they now use Square D breakers which I could buy anywhere. I read somewhere that I've got elixir breakers...has anyone ran across these things? If not, may be time for a panel upgrade...any suggestions? First time TT owner here so I'll be back to borrow others' wisdom any chance I get.
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Old 12-22-2010, 06:18 PM   #2
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Could your converter possibly be an Elixer industries unit? Perhaps they used Fortron AC to DC converters in them.

By chance, does it look like this:



Here's what it look like inside. There are knock-outs just to the left-of-center, where the breakers go.


If your unit is an Elixer, I believe you can find what you need HERE This is the power converter page, on the Elixer industries website. Please check it out and let us know if this is what you need. If not, we'll research it further with you.


Gary


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Old 12-22-2010, 07:57 PM   #3
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Thanks for the quick reply, the unit I've got looks exactly like this: http://www.fortronpower.com/Pdf_Shee..._Datasheet.pdf . I don't have any problems with the performance, but if I can't find replacement circuit breakers it may be time to move on to something a little better supported.
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Old 12-22-2010, 10:40 PM   #4
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Hi Odie

1st off welcome to Sunline Owners Club. Glad you found us and best of luck to you with your new to you Sunline.

Somethings that stuck out in your post that may be an issue. A "weak" 15 amp breaker, well it does happen so I'm not questioning that. But you also stated you are tripping the 30 amp one too.

H'mm OK both of those statements can point to you are drawing more current then you think and the electric heater may be accelerating it.

I do not know exactly how yours is wired but look here on this 2004 T2499 wiring diagram. It is at least a Sunline wiring diagram that many are close to. Sunline Coach Owner's Club - Sunline Owner's Files - Sunline Solaris T-2499 Wiring Diagram

As you can see the "General Purpose" 15amp wall plugs are tied on the same circuit as a few other things. Like the fridge and the converter itself.

If the fridge is running on electric, well that is 325 watts at least for the electric element. And then there is the converter. If your battery is low or the converter has issues it could be pulling at least 6 amps at full charge,

So if yours is wired like that, on the General purpose circuit when you plug in on the wall outlet you can trip a 15 amp breaker with 12.5 amps on the ele heater.

Now tripping the 30 amp breaker, well if you are on ele HW heat, that is 1,400 watts, (11.7 amps on 120vac) + 12.5 amps from your heater, + 325 watts from the fridge (2.7 amps on 120VAC), so that is 26.9 amps before you ever turn on the converter. If the converter is pulling any more then 4 amps, the 30 amp main will trip eventually.

Do you have all those things turned on when you use the heater? If so shut the HW heater off that will help big time and save 1400 watts of power. Use it on LP gas only when you need to heat water. That is what we do in the winter. We do not leave the HW on all the time, even in the summer we flip it on and off

Also if there is a wall outlet in the galley between stove and sink that is generally a direct 15 amp breaker with nothing else on it. Try pluggin in that one, it will help spread out some of the load better then on the General purpose wall outlet that has other overhead on it.

Hope this helps

John

PS if you want to do a converter upgrade, we have had many do this as well, me being one. We can suggest a few brands that good and better then you have now. Let me know if once you sort out your problem you want to go that way. Will create a list. But it would be good to see a pic of what you have now so we know what might fit best
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Old 12-23-2010, 08:54 PM   #5
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John,
Thanks for the reply, I've swapped the problematic 15A circuit breaker with the one normally in the HW position and it works much better. The 30A tripping most likely is more about "technique", using more power than we should've. The bigger issue about this is where to buy replacement circuit breakers, I'll need at least one 15Amper and I'd rather have a common breaker that any hardware store would carry. I've tried contacting Fortron the last couple days to see what they can do for me...nobody answering. The link for the power center I've got is in my previous post, although now they seem to be using Square D breakers but it looks identical.

I'll wait until after the holidays to see what Fortron can do about my breakers...a retro-fit kit to upgrade to the newer breakers would be great. We'll see. Thanks for the wiring diagram as well!

Bob
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:28 PM   #6
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If I was in your position, I'd do two things. First, I'd pull one of those breakers and take a few close-up pics of them and post them here in this thread. Get at least one or two that show all the part numbers, etc. That way, those of us who have some resources can see what you have and then do some snooping on the net. If you can't do the pics, get all the part numbers and post them here. Tell us everything that is printed on it.

Second, while you have that breaker out of the panel, take it to Home Depot or Lowes, or whatever you have nearby, and see if it matches anything on the shelf. I would be willing to bet that it's really a standard breaker with some odd labelling. In my experience, the makers of this stuff tend to use readily available and reasonably inexpensive components, especially something like AC circuit breakers. I had a new 200 amp panel installed in our previous home, and coincidentally, it used the exact same Eaton Cutler-Hammer BD or BR Series breakers that are in the Magnetek converter in our Sunline. There is a 3020 and two 1515's. I can not recall if they are BD's or BR's off the top of my head. The trailer is in storage so I can't run out and look to be sure.

Before you run out and buy a new converter, let's see what the breakers really are first.
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Old 12-25-2010, 12:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odiethe1st View Post
John,
T...a retro-fit kit to upgrade to the newer breakers would be great. We'll see.

Bob
Bob, building off of some of what Steve said, you really do not have to have the exact same breaker. The new breaker just needs to fit the buss bar mount in your existing converter.

If you have one in your hand and looking on the shelf at one you have better odds of finding a match that will mount the same.

If you strike out at the Home Depot/Lowes places (most likely not) find an electrical supply house in town. These guys are just one of the places we use at work for these kind of things Graybar | Specializing In Supply Chain Management Services Do not know what town/state your in but they have many locations. And I'm sure there are other contractor/industrial supply stores in your area.

If you come up dry still, do like Steve stated and post us pics of what you are up against. There are many here on SOC that have and will again hunt for options for folks, all just because a fellow Sunliner asked.

Let us know how you make out

John
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Old 12-28-2010, 06:30 PM   #8
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OK, back home in better light with a better idea what to look for...it appears they're actually Square D brand, maybe even a QOT1515CP. I've attached a couple pics, the two metal clips (one on each back corner) is what seemed hard to find. Looking at the power center, only one of those clips is used for electicity flow...the other is just a pivot point attaching only to a plastic post.

Edited to use links because the pics wouldn't work...I'm sure there's a trick to it.


http://picasaweb.google.com/odiethe1...93353647501602

http://picasaweb.google.com/odiethe1...93327374281842

http://picasaweb.google.com/odiethe1...93279635226482
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:13 PM   #9
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I know I've seen them in home improvement stores... You should have no problem finding new one(s)! Just take the offending breaker with you and match it up!
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:15 PM   #10
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Like Gary said, take it to Home Depot or Lowes and see if you can match it.

Or, if you have a Grainger outlet near you or other electric supply house, take it there. They can surely determine a proper replacement.
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Old 12-28-2010, 09:29 PM   #11
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Aubuchon Hardware is another source

Here is a page of them:
Find 15 Amp Single and other Circuit Breakers at Aubuchon Hardware

This one looks similar to your picture:
Circuit Breaker, 15 Amp # QO115CP by Your One Source
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