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Old 07-30-2017, 09:08 PM   #1
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Trailer trips garage gfci outlet

My 2005 T-2753 trips the GFCI out in my garage as soon as I plug it in. It does not trip a regular outlet. It's not my garage as I've tried plugging into other GFCI outlets along the way with the same result. Did some poking around in my converter box to see if the hot and neutral were reversed and they check out ok. Just looking to keep the battery charged and cool down the fridge in between trips. Anyone have ideas of where to start tracking the issue down?
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:12 PM   #2
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Mine will trip a 15 amp breaker. Works ok on a 20 amp.
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:38 PM   #3
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This points to a possible wiring mix up.

You said you looked from the AC neutral and the AC hot tied together. This is good to check but that would cause a dead short and trip any breaker.

What you want to look for is AC neutral and earth ground or DC (-) negative tied to the AC neutral. That is a common cause of tripping a GFIC.

Sunline used white solid wire, part of a Romex cable to AC neutral. DC (-) negative was also a white wire but a stranded white wire, not solid. If they ever get crossed, they will for sure trip the GFIC.

See this thread it may help if you have an Ohm meter.
Camper Grounding to Prevent Electrical Schock

You want to test the 30 amp plug for resistance between the ground lug and the AC neutral and the hot. Your digital meter should read OL on both. An analog meter will read 0. If there is low digit resistance, then you have a problem somewhere. Most times this happens in the converter panel and some one accidentally put a DC- wire on the AC neutral bus bar or a AC neutral on earth ground. Both are no/no's in a camper.

Hope this helps

John

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Old 07-31-2017, 09:04 PM   #4
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I found the issue after a process of elimination. Starting with the main feed cable coming into coverter box I disconnected one circuit at a time. After disconnecting each circuit I tested for continuity between the neutral and ground wires. When I got the 4th circuit down labeled "appliance" my meter beeped. Leaving it disconnected i powered things back up. The only outlet I found that didn't work was the kitchen counter. I pulled the outlet apart and there was quite a bit of extra wire. I believe ground was touching one of the neutral screws on the side. I tucked the wires back in the box neatly and and put everything back together. Working fine now plugged into the gfci in the garage. Thanks for your help.
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Old 07-31-2017, 09:59 PM   #5
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Great!!! Good job hunting this down.

Thanks for reporting back

John
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Old 08-01-2017, 06:06 PM   #6
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Yep the camper is a sub panel there white wires are grounds are not connected to the same buss bar like they are in a house so an issue like that can trip a house GFI.
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Old 08-03-2017, 08:48 AM   #7
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GFI's go bad, old GFI were prone to nuisance tripping. If there are no problems found replace the GFI they are cheap. Check your camper power cord if the plug has been replaced take it apart I have seen a few with the black and white reversed the camper being a sub panel will function fine (but will not be safe) it will trip a GFI. With the wiring side facing you the black will be on the left white on the right and green on the top. There should be no 12 volt wiring inside the line side of a panel box. The white AC lines have a floating neutral it is isolated from the grounding system, the ground wires are landed on the box case grounding block then a ground AC wire (generally bare) is landed on the camper frame often along with DC grounds. If you stop and think about how the camper is wired you will see the logic it's all about never having a hot camper frame. Camp grounds if they can help it won't hire an electrician and lot of helpers do not know the difference between black and white!
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Old 08-03-2017, 12:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mainah View Post
GFI's go bad, old GFI were prone to nuisance tripping. If there are no problems found replace the GFI they are cheap. Check your camper power cord if the plug has been replaced take it apart I have seen a few with the black and white reversed the camper being a sub panel will function fine (but will not be safe) it will trip a GFI. With the wiring side facing you the black will be on the left white on the right and green on the top. There should be no 12 volt wiring inside the line side of a panel box. The white AC lines have a floating neutral it is isolated from the grounding system, the ground wires are landed on the box case grounding block then a ground AC wire (generally bare) is landed on the camper frame often along with DC grounds. If you stop and think about how the camper is wired you will see the logic it's all about never having a hot camper frame. Camp grounds if they can help it won't hire an electrician and lot of helpers do not know the difference between black and white!
I'm pretty sure I found the problem in the kitchen counter outlet. I've went through and checked my incoming power and all other outlets to make sure they have the correct polarity. I check the outlet now every time before I plug into an unknown source. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 08-03-2017, 04:32 PM   #9
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One of the more valuable tools you can buy costs about $5 it's a little plug in thing with 3 lights mine stays plugged into the GFI outlet and never gets removed.
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Old 08-03-2017, 05:11 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mainah View Post
One of the more valuable tools you can buy costs about $5 it's a little plug in thing with 3 lights mine stays plugged into the GFI outlet and never gets removed.
I fully agree with using one of these at every campsite hookup to insure the power post is wired correctly. Some are not.

See mine here. You have to buy the 15 to 30 amp adapter separate to check the power post. Unplug it apart and you can test any receptacle in the camper or house. Very worthwhile.




mainah a question for you, have you ever been able to use of these to find earth ground connected to the AC neutral? Where does the power come from to run the lights? This may be one of the things it can't find.

I was going to suggest Aaron try one of these and then I looked up the spec's and I did not see any of them that can detect ground on an AC neutral. So I suggested old school and use an ohm meter which he did and found his issue. Did I miss something? May have, just asking.

Here is the manual for one of the new G & B ones. Look under spec's and download the manual Gardner Bender GRT-3500 Outlet Receptacle Tester and Circuit Analyzer, Indicates 5 Wiring Errors, Easy Read Chart, Comfort Grip, 120 VAC, 1/Each | Gardner Bender

Under notes item 7 it states "Will not indicate a reversal of grounded and grounding connectors"

Thanks

John
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Old 08-03-2017, 06:09 PM   #11
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Nope it won't because it works on all services sub or other wise. But it will show errors on either including generator power because the generator is not earth grounded.
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