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Author Topic: Grounding Issue?  (Read 485 times)

Deano2002

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Grounding Issue?
« on: December 02, 2017, 07:23:52 PM »
I bought a Geo Tracker toad this summer and when I hooked up the electrical to the motorhome, the lights on the motorhome dimmed some along with the tail lights on the Tracker not being as bright as on its own. Is this a ground problem and where do I start with troubleshooting?
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Grounding Issue?
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2017, 08:50:58 PM »
Dimming the motorhome lights doesn't sound like a ground problem - the coach lights have their own ground and do not depend on the toad wiring.. Sounds more like a high resistance short somewhere, or maybe one of the toad lights is in series rather than parallel?  Or maybe the lack of a ground at the toad connection, forcing the ground path to backfeed somehow?
Gary
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jubileee

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Re: Grounding Issue?
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2017, 11:50:39 PM »
I have a Geo Tracker toad. Easy to check vehicle to vehicle ground with battery jumper cable, light sockets with small jumper (alligator clips and short wire).  Hard to guess a suggested solution to your problem without knowing more info. How’s vehicle wired?  Separate wiring from plug to tail and rear side lights? Any diodes in system? Are the motorhome and towed both single bulb stop/ turn, mixed, or both dual bulb stop/turn?

Arch Hoagland

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Re: Grounding Issue?
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2017, 02:02:38 AM »
Do the lights get brighter if you start the engine on the motorhome?

Do the lights work correctly?

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Ranger smith

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Re: Grounding Issue?
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2017, 05:18:40 AM »
did you install the Diode isolators or wire direct??

Lou Schneider

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Re: Grounding Issue?
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2017, 12:28:59 PM »
If it's a slight dimming, it's probably normal, caused by the length and gauge of wire between the lighting controls at the front of the motor home and the lights and toad connection at the rear.

Powering both the toad lights and the rear lights on the motorhome increases the load on the rear light wires by 50-100%, increasing the voltage lost along the wire a like amount.

If you have diodes or combiners (to convert separate turn signal and stop lights to a single bulb in the toad), they'll also add about 0.3 to 0.5 volts of loss going through them.

If you're losing a major amount of brightness, I'd look for corroded connections between the switches at the front of the motorhome and the connections in the rear.

A quick way to solve the problem is to switch from incandescent bulbs to LED replacements in the toad's taillights.  The dimming is proportional to the amount of current flowing through the wires, and the LED lights use such a small amount of current compared to conventional bulbs that the additional load becomes insignificant.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2017, 12:48:02 PM by Lou Schneider »

Deano2002

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Re: Grounding Issue?
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2017, 07:22:08 PM »
Do the lights get brighter if you start the engine on the motorhome?

Do the lights work correctly?
the lights are brighter when alternator is charging, I do notice that the alternator gauge moves back and forth as the lights blink and one of the turn signal indicator lights on the dash has always stayed on even when not blinking. The Geo was wired for towing when I purchased it, the original owner towed it as I do. I sure know nothing about diodes being installed
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