Reversed Polarity

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by AdgeRas, Sep 30, 2009.

  1. AdgeRas

    AdgeRas Read Only Funster

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    :Eeek:

    I was reading another post, and went to the Dave Newell web site. One of the items he has recently got is "Polarity changeover switch".

    In the description:

    Dave Newell - Motorhome, Habitation, Servicing, Cruise Control, Camos Domes, Satelite Tv, Reversing Cameras look under 'Bits & Bobs'

    They suggest and I quote "Foreign campsites are notorious for having reversed polarity on their hookup points which is potentially very dangerous."

    Is this true, A: Foriegn camp sites are notorious? and B: Is this a dangerous issue?

    Any advice and help is much appreciated as we will be getting our first MH in the next few weeks and will be going to Europe a great deal.

    Thanks.

    Adge.
     
  2. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    the safest way is dont use foreign campsites .you never kmnow what sort of riff raff you will bump into. i,m sure one or two on here have experianced this problem before i,m sure someone will have the answer . sorry i dont use sites cheers alan.heee,heee
     
  3. peter marshall

    peter marshall

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    :thumb:Hi read the replies to paula's enquiry should sort your question . Pete:thumb:
     
  4. Heyupluv

    Heyupluv Read Only Funster

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    Yes to the first........
    and
    Yes could be to the second question...
    from Mel in France
     
  5. twooks

    twooks Read Only Funster

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    we always seem to stay on sites with 2-pin connectors and reversed polarity.
    Not sure about how dangerous it actually is - but not about to argue with Dave :RollEyes:
    my knowledge of electricity starts and finishes with finding the on / off switch.
    Reverse polarity is a hoary old subject which invariables brings excited and opposite arguments on just about every forum I've ever lurked on

    we carry
    2 pin adapter, blue 3-pin lead + reversed lead, covers most eventualities.
    Some people claim never to have encountered it, or indeed sites requiring the 2 pin adapter,
    all I can say is that we've actually found different polarities on the same electric bollard.

    but whatever you do - Don't Panic, and don't forget your towel :Wink:
    get over that bit of water and Enjoy, it's great :thumb::thumb:
     
  6. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    the europeans dont seem to care which way the sockets are connected as they use double pole switches/breakers......both live AND neutral are switched off.
    we use single pole so only the live is switched off.

    if the hookup is reversed you will be switching the neutral off, not the live wire.
    the appliance is still off but if you touch a live wire it will bite you !
    and the rcd protection in the van wont work so it wont trip but it will at the hookup pillar.

    in everyday use this shouldnt be a problem but you may find SOME appliances wont work if they have reverse polarity protection built in. .
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2009
  7. stagman

    stagman Deleted User

     
  8. cater_racer

    cater_racer Read Only Funster

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    Don't worry too much, many "Reverse Polarity" signals are caused by no direct connection between neutral and earth.

    Most generators will give a false "Reverse Polarity" signal for this reason.

    However nearly all modern devices are double insulated and many have only two pin connections in the first place.

    We carry a change-over lead, but in reality rarely bother with it unless we are staying several nights.
     
  9. twooks

    twooks Read Only Funster

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    I can understand AdgeRas' reluctance to take advice at face value, you only have to look at the hype about 'gassing' to see that there can be vested interests at work in some of the adverts around.
    Dave Newell is known, trusted and contributes to the Motorhome community - we've never had call to buy from him, but his advice has always seemed sound and well rated.

    as Pappajohn sez, it's a problem unique to brits because of the way we set up our systems, the rest of europe are ok
     
  10. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Very very much less dangerous then driving to the foreign site.

    Question: How many people reported electrocuted in/near a MH ?

    Question: How many people killed driving a MH.

    God has to really need you if you are to die due to a revered power lead - it has to be a reversed power lead plus a serious electrical fault - that being the case go joyfully.
     
  11. Parcverger

    Parcverger Funster - Campsite Owner

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    We took it seriously, and would not allow our electrician off of the site until I had personally checked every socket to ensure that we have no reverse polarity! :thumb::thumb:

    Bob
     
  12. rogerangie

    rogerangie Read Only Funster

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    Remember, NO ONE is infalliable. Mr Newall included.
     
  13. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    you're to be congratulated on that bob, but you are english and understand the reasons for doing it 'right' for the brits :thumb:
     
  14. Heyupluv

    Heyupluv Read Only Funster

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    Pappa you are right they do not seem to worry which way the electric flows or what colour cable they use for live......it could be brown...it could be blue, it could be yellow or even green, as long as the bulb lights and the motor turns ?????, or as it was in this property even yellow and green was used for live ( the person who wired this property was a top a railway electrician and goes all over France giving electrical lectures)!!! and yes there are many reversed polarity in France and as that other person said in the thread on the same borne!!!???? it is just a fact of life over here .......................Mel in France
     
  15. The Wallace

    The Wallace Read Only Funster

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    Never found a reversed one in France but then we use mainly municipal sites which certainly look better maintained than some of the others we gave the go by. We have given up testing in France and no longer bother to carry a changeover lead.

    HOWEVER, a couple of weeks ago I tested the first Danish hook up we had and it was wired opposite to the Brit way! So I then tested every bollard within easy reach and they were all the same. We went on to another 5 sites and they all tested the same ie reversed according to the Brit convention.
    I took good care not to open any appliances whilst on hook up but then I cant be bothered opening any these days at home and just send for repair or recycling.

    So do the Danes who come over here castigate Britain for having a notorious, dangerous wiring??
     
  16. AdgeRas

    AdgeRas Read Only Funster

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    :Laughing:Hahaha, the Wallace, you have hit the mark so wondefully. Ras is from Denmark, and is always banging on about the infamous, 'Danish Design'; It is a long standing view that the Danes are leaders in design and quality;


    Or so they say.:Cool:


    Brian, I am tempted to take your advice ref God. I had cancer in 1992 and also in 1995, and having been given 6 months to live in 1995 and yet I am still here, thats the first reason to believe, 'He sure as h*** ain't ready for me yet'............my second reason shall 'stayeth a hush' for now.

    Happy tourings, and thanks for the answers.

    Adge

    PS, I think the answer can be found within the 23rd Psalm, "My Lord he 'leadeth' me" :pray:

    A good set of leads of varying types and polarity
     
  17. shortcircuit

    shortcircuit Read Only Funster

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    Papa

    "and the rcd protection in the van wont work so it wont trip but it will at the hookup pillar"

    Are you sure?. It does not matter if the RCD is incorrectly wired as it measures the current flowing in both conductors and looks for an imbalance
     
  18. tommytli

    tommytli Funster

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    weve come across reverse polarity twice on our travels through europe once in belgium and once in croatia, i soon as i hook up i test the sockets to make sure all is good, on both occations our motorhome corrected the problem within 1 minute on its own, a light comes on the control panel then you here a quiet sound like like a switch flicking and thats it, checked the plugs after and all is well
     
  19. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    I am an industrial strength agnostic but I, sort of, became a believer in Morocco. There the operative phrase is "inch Allah", if it pleases God, and it's the only way to cross the road in Marrakech. You look ahead where you want to go and walk at a steady pace, inch Allah the traffic flows around you and you get to the other side.
     
  20. ArenqueRojo

    ArenqueRojo Read Only Funster

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    Anywhere in Europe, so fa
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