We had an electrical problem with our Alpine 3250RL 5th wheel. My husband, John, found most of the problem and fixed it, except for the outside receptacle and the kitchen island receptacle. Those two outlets still don’t work. —Linda
Typically, the exterior outlet is “ganged” or wired to a GFCI outlet on the inside of the rig as it will be exposed to moisture. I would guess the kitchen is like this, too, since it’s so close to the sink. Most RV manufacturers use only one test/reset GFCI inside the rig, either in the bathroom or kitchen. The rest are connected to that with what we called “dummy outlets” which have no test/reset button. If the main one trips, they all trip.
Testing RV outlets that don’t work
The outside outlet typically has a small sticker. However, it usually comes off or people don’t know it is ganged to the inside test/reset outlet. Check your outlet that has the test/reset to see if it needs to be reset. If that outlet is working, I would recommend using a non-contact voltage tester and testing the wire coming off the outlet with the test/reset.
If the main GFCI gets tripped a few times, they go bad and don’t allow the current through. You will need to replace the GFCI outlet. Make sure you disconnect the shoreline cord and also the house batteries in case you have an inverter.
If you can get a wiring diagram, it will save a little time. But typically it will not show you specific locations of wires and where they run. That’s the fun part!
Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and author of the “RV Handbook” as well as the Managing Editor of the RV Repair Club.
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