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Old 01-28-2016, 04:42 PM   #1
Senior Member
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 34E
State: California
Posts: 524
THOR #937
Bad Wall Wart!

I just experienced the strangest electrical system rollercoaster in my 2014 Hurricane 34E this past week!

A long story.......

I'm setup in an RVPark that has had issues with their electricity, and warns against using dual A/C units to help prevent brown outs during the hot months. A sign is posted in the front office. So, I'm thinking brown-outs are a normal thing at this RVPark.

This past week it's been very cold, (for Southern California it's dipped down into the 40's at night, brrr), so I have been using my trusty little 1500W Pelonis "space shuttle ceramic disc technology" heater. On Monday morning I attempted to iron some shirts, and that's when the excitement started!! The bedroom television turned off and came back on, the ceiling lights dimmed, and the iron wasn't making steam. I figured the RVPark was experiencing a brown out. This went on every morning.

On Wednesday night I went to watch the living room television and there was no sound. I thought perhaps the Sony soundbar that I had attached was defective. Then I went to the TV itself and turned on it's internal speakers, again, no sound.

I had previously flipped on the electric switch for the water heater when I entered the motorhome, and now I went to turn on my trusty little Pelonis heater and WOW!! The lights dimmed to the extreme, and I heard what sounded like 200 squirrels trying to chew their way out from under the bedroom bed platform!

I quickly realized that the motorhomes voltage converter and house battery charger are under the bed, and something is wrong with my electrical system and not the RVPark. However, when I turned off the tiny Pelonis heater everything returned to normal.

Being that it was now about 10:30 p.m., I didn't smell anything burning, and I had to be at work early the next mourning, I chose to completely ignore the electrical problem until the weekend when I would have more time to remove the bed and open the platform to investigate.

So, I went back to attempting to watch the living area TV with no sound. I started to troubleshoot all the things attached to the TV for sound, like the analog digital audio out cable from the cheesy OEM Continuus brand TV, the analog to spdif digital audio converter, and the fiber optic cable into the Sony soundbar.

I noticed that the analog to digital sound converter, (necessary because the cheesy OEM Continuus TV does not have an optical digital output), device was not producing it's tell tale red LED light. When I unplugged the 120vAC to 12vDC wallwart voltage converter in the bar cabinet underneath the television suddenly the house lights became MUCH brighter and the TV's internal sound came back on!!

Apparently, the little voltage converter/transformer wallwart used to power the digital audio converter for my TV's soundbar was shorted out and wreaking havoc with my motorhome's electrical system!

So, .... Keep track of those innocuous little wallwart critters. They can bite!

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Old 01-28-2016, 09:59 PM   #2
Senior Member
Bruce's Avatar
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Axis 25.1
State: Pennsylvania
Posts: 299
THOR #1503
Invest a few dollars in a wall volt meter so you can keep an eye on what's going on with your electrical system.

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You can also buy a device that plugs in the park electrical outlet that trades amperage for voltage. However, it's lots more money.

Bruce in NoLA
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