New washer/dryer trips WH breaker

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Wadoman

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Aug 11, 2018
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Florida
Hey everyone, new to RVing here. We have a 2003 Holiday Rambler Vacationer 36 that is setup to have a W/D. So hopefully you experienced folk can help me out. I just added a washer/dryer combo to the RV and as soon as I plug it in it pops the water heater breaker, which is strange because there is also a washer dryer breaker. So I don?t understand why it pops the WH breaker. Right now we are on 50 amp shore power. The WH is running on 120v power. Turning off the WH doesn?t help. Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Thank you in advance
Dale
 

RVRAC

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I am not sure what is causing it, but if I were you, I would try a couple things.  First, see how many other things are drawing power when you try to use the washer-dryer, and see how many amps are required to power all of them.  See if reducing the things that are drawing power helps.  The second thing I would do is to get a good extension cord, and see if it works in a different circuit.  My two cents.
 

Alfa38User

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Oct 4, 2007
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It may be connected to the wrong breaker or sharing with the water heater by badly connected wiring. Have you tried to prove it is really connected to the breaker marked for the W/D?? RVRAC made an excellent suggestion using an extension cord.
 

kdbgoat

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From what I'm reading from the original post, it is tripping the breaker as soon as it's plugged in, not when actually trying to use it. Am I correct?
 

Wadoman

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Florida
Thank you for the replies and suggestions.
@RVRAC good idea with the extension cord. Gonna pick one up on the way home. Though I am pretty confident that the W/D works.

@kdbgoat yes you are correct. The second I plug it into the outlet it trips the WH breaker.

@Alfa38User I agree it seems like the W/D is wired to the wrong breaker. When I plug it in and it trips the WH breaker the W/D has no power while the W/D breaker is still on. I?m no electrician, but that sounds like it?s wired to the wrong breaker. It will be interesting to see what the W/D breaker is connected to.

I will test all these suggestions out tonight after work.
Thanks again
Dale
 

Ernie n Tara

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Ft Myers, FL
Do you have an rv type (125V) drier? Theoretically it wouldn't make a difference except for poor drying, but you never know. If you have a multimeter you might ohm out the wd plug (s) to verify there not a short in the wd.

Ernie
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Problem #1: the w/d is wired to the wrong breaker

Problem #2: There is a short in the w/d or its power cord such that the w/d trips the breaker as soon as it is plugged in

#2 needs to be fixed  first.  #1 is less critical because you could run the water heater on LP while washing (or wash with warm or cool water).
 

Wadoman

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Aug 11, 2018
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Location
Florida
Ok guys so far I have plugged the W/D into a different outlet and it works fine. So that tells me the W/D is not the problem.
Next I pulled off the breaker cover expecting to see the W/D breaker not wired to anything, but I was wrong something is wired to it, but I can?t figure out what yet. Now remember the W/D outlet is tripping the WH breaker, which would tell me it?s wired to the WH breaker. Right?
Well next I thought to check the actual outlet for the W/D. Thinking maybe it?s bad or wired wrong. I used a 3 wire receptacle tester. As soon as I plug it in it trips the WH breaker as well. Now just plugging that in should trip the breaker, right? I mean that little tester shouldn?t draw that much power. Now it LOOKS like it?s wired correct, so maybe the outlet is bad.
Also I haven?t gone off shore power and tried it with the geny as we have bad weather at the moment and don?t want to flip the breaker and pull the plug while standing in the rain.
So that?s where I am so far.
 

beaverfever

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Feb 3, 2011
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my washer and dryer and the dishwasher are on the same breaker with a switch in a cabinet to switch back and forth so you can only use one or the other at a time. baffled me what the switch in the cupboard was and why my dishwasher didn't work. a phone call to beaver coach straightened me out. if you have a dishwasher you may have a similar set up.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Since the w/d itself seems to be ok, then the problem must be in the outlet it is supposed to plug to. I've seen  outlets that short out whn the plug blades push in, plus it's possible the neutral side of the receptacle is shorted to ground.  A shorter neutral doesn't "short" until some current passes through it.  Most modern appliances start to draw some power for a circuit board as soon as they are plugged in, so a short in the neutral of the receptacle can show even before the appliance is turned on.
Have you plugged anything else into that outlet? Something simple like a table lamp or a toaster?  Something that doesn't draw any power until  actually switched on?

Another idea: Just for grins, turn off the breaker labeled for the w/d and plug something into the outlet it is supposed to feed. See if the WH breaker still trips. And if you get any power to the outlet. 
 

Wadoman

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Aug 11, 2018
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Florida
@Gary RV_Wizard yes I plugged a simple 3 prong reseptacle tester and it tripped the WH breaker.

I also shut off the W/D breaker and the outlet still had power and still tripped the WH breaker when I plugged in tester
Thanks Gary
 

Lou Schneider

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Is the water heater breaker a GFCI breaker?  If it is, it works similar to a GFCI outlet and any slight leakage to ground can trip it.

This may explain why the breaker is tripping, but it doesn't explain why the washer outlet is wired to the water heater circuit breaker.

Does the water heater work if you shut off the washer breaker, i.e. maybe the wires got transposed between them?
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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I was thinking more in terms of diagnosing the outlet rather than just replacing the receptacle.  Look closely at the wiring, e.g. hot & neutral connected to the proper terminals, no stray wires touching the box, that sort of thing.  With no shore or genset power active, test to see if the neutral has continuity to the ground wire (it should NOT).  It's possible the receptacle itself is defective, but its not a common sort of failure.
 

Wadoman

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Aug 11, 2018
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Location
Florida
Ok so I checked the outlet and it is wired correctly
Also turns out the W/D is connected to the WH breaker and the WH is connected to the W/D breaker.
And as Lou mentioned the WH breaker that the W/D is connected to is a GFCI breaker.
 

Wadoman

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Aug 11, 2018
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Florida
Here are pics of the breaker box
 

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