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Are you saying that resetting your GFCI brought power back to that outlet only, or did it not resolve any part of the problem? Have you checked the breakers on the 120V power distribution panel? Some RVs have one circuit for outlets, others have two. If your RV has a 50A power cord you probably have two. If you are not aware of it, you must fully open a circuit breaker first, then close it for it to reset. 

Edited by Kirk W
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 Good morning California, YES I have a few ideas, but also a few questions"   

1) Did those outlets work BEFORE the GFCI tripped ???

      After reset Is the GFCI receptacle working for devices plugged into it, is it hot itself ???

      GFCI's, especially the cheaper ones sold in big box stores (perhaps OEM in the RV ??) aren't the best quality units out there, yours may simply be bad ?????

       A person would have to check for the presence of 120 VAC (Hot Line to Neutral) that should be present  on the LOAD side of the GFCI if it is "working  correctly" and has been reset. If no 120 VAC there (LOAD side) any receptacles wired from there obviously will not work CHECK THAT GFCI FOR OPERATION AND 120 VAC ON THE LOAD TERMINALS.    

  2) Are you sure the non working outlets are served downstream from the LOAD side of the receptacle that tripped??? Are they wired to the LOAD terminals on that GFCI ??

  3) Maybe they are on a different GFCI which may be tripped and needs reset ?? Look around for ANOTHER GFCI, especially if its a 50 Amp RV that has TWO legs of 120 VAC..

  4) Some RV's have but one GFCI, maybe in the bath that feed say a kitchen or an exterior outlet, while other RV's may have more then one, again Look around ..

   5) If a GFCI is wired properly the incoming branch circuit from the panel is wired to the LINE side while other downstream protected receptacles are fed off the LOAD side. Does the one in question have a circuit (maybe to kitchen or exterior???) wired to its LOAD side ??? if so see para 1

  6) To be safe check the AC distribution panel to see if any breakers are tripped??? if so reset them. Kitchen/Bath and any exterior outlets are supposed to be and typically are GFCI protected usually by GFCI receptacles, however they do make GFCI circuit breakers which protect the entire branch circuit wired to them CHECK YOUR PANEL  

Hope this helps post back your findings and any questions

 

John T

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Beware for those not in the know.  Several years ago I hooked up a portable 3000W generator to my TT, fired it up and immediately tripped my GFCI breaker.  After disconnecting gen set and trouble shooting only some items would come back on line with shore power and others not respond.  Big pain in the ***.

P.S. I sold my gently used TT for half of what I paid for it to a Burning Man RV dealer in Reno and he was aware of several maintenance issues to be resolved. Maybe someone saw my TT at Burning Man.  Happy Camper.

Edited by NamMedevac 70
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21 hours ago, california3201 said:

anyone has any ideas?

Just so that you know, I have owned RVs since 1971 and am a 40 year electro-mechanical tech who has done RV maintenance for many years. Oldjohn, (almost as old as me ☺️) is a retired RV dealer/electrical engineer. As stated above, it is important to know who is giving advice.

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8 minutes ago, D&J said:

In all my years being a licensed electrician I found a couple of GFCI receptacles trip and after reset only the receptical works but not the downstream recepicals.

If I read you correctly, the reset worked for the GFCI outlet but didn't reset those controlled by in downstream?  I have not seen that, but I'm sure that you have dealt with many more of them than I.  Something to keep in mind for the future.  Thanks!

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18 minutes ago, Kirk W said:

If I read you correctly, the reset worked for the GFCI outlet but didn't reset those controlled by in downstream?  I have not seen that, but I'm sure that you have dealt with many more of them than I.  Something to keep in mind for the future.  Thanks!

Yes you read it right, not common but it will happen and the only way to check it is to pull the rec and he check it with a meter with it hot.

Denny 

Edited by D&J
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I had a strange occurrence with a GFCI a month ago.  One morning we started hearing a "clatter" in the bathroom; I went in and it was pretty easy to localize the sound to a GFCI mounted in a sink vanity outlet.  All of a sudden there was a "pop" and smoke came out of the GFCI.  Needless to say I flipped the breaker off pretty quickly. 

I replaced the GFCI with a WR-rated one I had in reserve; I figured that being near a sink might have exposed it to some occasional wetness but I have no idea what happened.  Does anyone have any thoughts?  It's worth noting that this was a 20-year old GFCI in our MH of the same age.

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2 hours ago, Kirk W said:

Just so that you know, I have owned RVs since 1971 and am a 40 year electro-mechanical tech who has done RV maintenance for many years. Oldjohn, (almost as old as me ☺️) is a retired RV dealer/electrical engineer. As stated above, it is important to know who is giving advice.

EXCELLENT Advice Kirk, hey combined we have owned RV's like ONE HUNDRED years and being electrical techs, electrical engineers, RV owners, and used dealers, we have seen a lot in our day haven't we  ?? and we try to help anytime we can.......Thanks for all you do.......

Best wishes take care now

John T

24 minutes ago, D&J said:

Yes you read it right, not common but it will happen and the only way to check it is to pull the rec and he check it with a meter with it hot.

Denny

  EXACTLY Denny, I agree and that's why I noted above: THANKS FOR THE INFO

   

7 hours ago, oldjohnt said:

     A person would have to check for the presence of 120 VAC (Hot Line to Neutral) that should be present  on the LOAD side of the GFCI if it is "working  correctly" and has been reset. If no 120 VAC there (LOAD side) any receptacles wired from there obviously will not work CHECK THAT GFCI FOR OPERATION AND 120 VAC ON THE LOAD TERMINALS. 

 

6 hours ago, NamMedevac 70 said:

Beware for those not in the know.  Several years ago I hooked up a portable 3000W generator to my TT, fired it up and immediately tripped my GFCI breaker.  After disconnecting gen set and trouble shooting only some items would come back on line with shore power and others not respond.  Big pain in the ***.

Hey NamMedavac, just FYI it only takes a TINY imbalance of current in the Hot and Neutral return of like 0.005 to 0.006 Amps to trip a GFCI and that's not much !!!! Also FYI some gensets come from the factory with a BONDED Neutral some with a FLOATING Neutral and what's needed for RV use depends on how  the connection and transfer schemes are configured. For sure an EMS will trip, alarm and go Bonkers lol  if it sees a Floating Neutral

Take care yall best wishes, hope this helps

John T  BSEE,JD  Longggggggg retired Electrical Engineer (much in Power Distribution), 49 going on 50 year RV owner, past used RV dealer

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17 minutes ago, docj said:

I replaced the GFCI with a WR-rated one I had in reserve; I figured that being near a sink might have exposed it to some occasional wetness but I have no idea what happened.  Does anyone have any thoughts?  It's worth noting that this was a 20-year old GFCI in our MH of the same age.

Good question Doc, as I posted above I (retired electrical power distribution engineer and 49 year RV owner) have seen many failures of "cheap" residential grade GFCI's like sold in big box stores and if yours is 20 years old PLUS was purchased by the RV industry, welllllllll may I say I'm not all that surprised lol

As far as the presence of any moisture INDEED it only takes like 0.005 to 0.006 amps of current imbalance to cause their trip ya know........But hey that's their purpose they do a good job IF working right and can save a life......... 

Best wishes yall

John T

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1 hour ago, oldjohnt said:

I (retired electrical power distribution engineer and 49 year RV owner) have seen many failures of "cheap" residential grade GFCI's like sold in big box stores and if yours is 20 years old PLUS was purchased by the RV industry, welllllllll may I say I'm not all that surprised lol

It now costs ~$25 to buy a Leviton other name brand 20A, WR-rated GFCI.  Not "cheap" by any measure.

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3 hours ago, docj said:

It now costs ~$25 to buy a Leviton other name brand 20A, WR-rated GFCI.  Not "cheap" by any measure.

As insurance goes, that isn't bad, especially if it lasts another 20 years. That is only $1/year! And it is also much cheaper than a fire or electrocution. 

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22 minutes ago, Kirk W said:

As insurance goes, that isn't bad, especially if it lasts another 20 years. That is only $1/year! And it is also much cheaper than a fire or electrocution. 

Totally agree.  I'm going to go through the MH and replace the remaining "original" GFCI's.

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Good Morning Doc, as usual there are cheaper (often seen in Big Box Stores) as well as more expensive GFCI's receptacles perhaps sold at electrical supply houses. A brief search found them as cheap as ten bucks as well as near thirty or so, depending of course I assume on brand name and quality.

Hubbell, Bryant, Leviton, Electech and others

Results for "gfci receptacle" (zoro.com)

gfci outlet price home depot - Bing

gfci outlet from Northern Tool

When it comes to fire (especially in an RV) and life safety this old retired power distribution design engineers choice is for what I believe to be the higher quality (and likely perhaps more expensive??) units. Again I'm NOT surprised one 20 years old and/or ones an RV manufacturer would have chosen (perhaps cheaper??) might fail.

Congratulations and wise choice to replace it !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Best wishes God Bless and keep safe

John T

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Yes moisture will affect the electronics in a GFCI and that's why when I wired them in I keep away from moisture as much as possible but in a RV that's hard to do because of the layout. 

I've installed tons of residential grade (cheaper), commercial grade (more expensive)and hospital grade (top of the line) GFCI and they were all UL approved so I never worried about their safety. I've ever really looked what the big box stores had but I'm sure they are also UL approved, when I was in business I always bought in case lots from a wholesalers so I'm sure they were cheaper than box stores. I'm almost out of my leftover stock from my business so one day I will have to look.

We have no GFCI rec I our trailer but we are protected with a GFCI breaker.

Denny

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Hey Denny, great to hear from electricians, question for you ?

In these later years have you seen much use of "Dual Function" combination GFCI and AFCI breakers ??? Back in my day that wasn't an option........

 

John T  Too long retired n rusty power engineer grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

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15 minutes ago, oldjohnt said:

Hey Denny, great to hear from electricians, question for you ?

In these later years have you seen much use of "Dual Function" combination GFCI and AFCI breakers ??? Back in my day that wasn't an option........

 

John T  Too long retired n rusty power engineer grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

I'm also retired but Arc Fault rec and maybe even breakers were just coming out but our state didn't require them because they weren't reliable and from what I've heard they are still having problems. Variable speed devices and some electronics put to much noise on the line and the Arc Faults pick it up as acring and trips. I've heard some electricians are installing them but after inspections they are removed. I ran into my old inspector a couple of years ago and he said they are a PITA.

Denny

Edited by D&J
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4 hours ago, D&J said:

Yes moisture will affect the electronics in a GFCI and that's why when I wired them in I keep away from moisture as much as possible but in a RV that's hard to do because of the layout. 

I've installed tons of residential grade (cheaper), commercial grade (more expensive)and hospital grade (top of the line) GFCI and they were all UL approved so I never worried about their safety. I've ever really looked what the big box stores had but I'm sure they are also UL approved, when I was in business I always bought in case lots from a wholesalers so I'm sure they were cheaper than box stores. I'm almost out of my leftover stock from my business so one day I will have to look.

We have no GFCI rec I our trailer but we are protected with a GFCI breaker.

Denny

Sometimes the big box stores are cheaper.  Our DIL works for an electrical supply and she said on some things the big box stores sell some things for less than they can buy them for.  A few years ago I needed some wire for a larger project and she checked on prices.  Even with her discount Home Depot was cheaper.  In that case cheaper than their wholesale cost.

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