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Electrical issues ala Barth
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Supporting Member of 3/11
Picture of Tom  and Julie
I have railed about the lack of professional standards in the wiring of, at least, my 93. Luckily the wires in mine were color coded but not numbered or lettered. I have discovered after about three months of on again off again work trying to install a new Dumbetic Brisk II,(as my old Duo Therm did not have a 12v power source to the ceiling) (another tirade dealt with that issue) that after taking down 2/3rds of the ceiling to fish a 12v dedicated wire to the new unit I was confounded as to why it would not work. With a multimeter I followed the line to a point under the bathroom vanity (removing the floor shelf and back panel) to find the dreaded mobile home gray three wire Romex plastic connectors. I had 110 volts there so I eliminated the connector and spliced the wire from the breaker box directly to the ac line that was marked front AC. Perplexed as to why I still had no voltage at the unit I traced each of the Romex wires. White and the bare copper were good, the black showed open. By crawling under the sink and using flashlights and mirrors I discovered another gray connector between the bathroom and kitchen wall more than halfway up, and completely inaccessible. Some *#**% had placed a connector inside a wall with no access. That violates the first commandment of wiring, piping, hydraulics and water. Never ever put a connector where it can't be serviced! If you lose ac power to your forward air conditioner you have three choices: tear out the entire ceiling so you can run a new cable; surface mount a new line from the bathroom around the corners and walls to the unit; or connnect an extension cord, let it hang down from the ceiling and then plug it in when you want ac. But be sure to change the outlet breaker to 20 amps. I hope no one has to do this job, but in case it happens you now know Barth did put connectors in walls that can and do fail.

1993 32' Regency Wide Body, 4 speed Allison Trans, Front Entry door, Diamond Plate aluminum roof &
1981 Euro 22' w Chevy 350 engine and TH 400 tranny
Posts: 1465 | Location: Houston Texas | Member Since: 12-19-2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Supporting Member of 1/19
Picture of Kevin
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Wow, good grief head bang I certainly lucked out with my wiring so far. The only connector that did fail was the one to the blender. It became accessible by removing the drawers under the kitchen counter.
Tom, have you had any opportunity to travel with either of your coaches?
Hopefully you will be getting around to it soon.

Stop wasting time and get a round
DataTag:8911-0136-38RDG C5
Barth Show Coach
Posts: 3576 | Location: Northeast , Ohio | Member Since: 07-29-2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Supporting Member of 1/19
Picture of Steve VW
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Good grief, what a nightmare. head bang I have never found those connectors in the 86 but I think they used them in the 97. There have been several complaints about failures and overheating.

I think Barth started using those connectors in the early 90's, a curse for the future owner. Kind of like using hidden rubber heater hoses all the way from front to back....

When I used to do field service computer repair I found I could eliminate about half the failures if I soldered the power connector plugs.

Good luck with that AC. You have worked hard for it!

"98" Monarch 37
Spartan MM, 6 spd Allison
Cummins 8.3 300 hp
Posts: 3806 | Location: Kalkaska, MI | Member Since: 02-04-2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Supporting Member of 7/17
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Just curious why you can install a small 12v DC supply and run it off the 120 v to the AC instead of running a 12v circuit?

1986 31' Regal -1976 Class C
454/T400 P30 -350/T400 G30
twin cntr beds - 21' rear bath
Posts: 847 | Location: Dayton, Ohio | Member Since: 09-27-2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Supporting Member of 10/08
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Tom I had the exact same issue in 2012 with my front A/C unit. I had to remove the toilet to get to where that @$%^ connector was. I have since replaced all those connectors I could find. I did a write up on this.

Front A/C wiring issues

Most all the RV makers used those crappy AC connectors as a fast way to wire the body and the chassis separately and then plug the two together when body was fixed to the chassis.

These insulation displacement connectors (not actually insulation displacement but the contact area is similar and really small for the amount of current they need to handle) have been a major source of home fires over the years and in many places cannot be used. I have been amazed that RV makers still are using them.

94 30' Breakaway #3864
30-BS-6B side entry
230 Cummins, Allison 6 speed
Spartan chassis
Posts: 2065 | Location: Los Gatos, CA | Member Since: 12-08-2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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