The Control Panel (1 Viewer)

Babbs

Free Member
Apr 23, 2019
1
0
Funster No
60,149
MH
Fiat Ducato Milano 57
Exp
Brand spanking new to this
Hi all.
We've just bought a Fiat Ducato Milano 57, 1997 model. We've never owned a motorhome before and we were drawn to this one as it has very low mileage for it's age. It was fitted out by Caravans North West and the control panel looks like it could be a Liva. We've figured out that it tells us the battery levels of both of the batteries, the fresh water tank level and the grey water tank level. We can run everything from the battery but when we plugged into the mains on a camping site yesterday, it tripped the switches on the site board and also on the motorhome board, so we gave up with the mains and stuck to the battery. I have been unable to find any information about this control panel and the information we're getting from the previous 'owner' doesn't make much sense - he said the blue switch is the transformer and that it must be in the off position if we plug into the mains - but we would have thought the reverse? He also said that the other switch labelled 1 0 2 should be in position 1 if we're on the mains and 2 if we're using the battery, but we were using the battery for power with it in the 0 position and the blue switch was off when the switches tripped. My husband is going to try and fault find to discover why it tripped all the switches, but any information that anyone could provide on the board or on connecting to the mains would be hugely appreciated! Thanking you in advance.
 

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Feb 21, 2016
4,829
26,884
Uk
Funster No
41,726
MH
C class
Exp
Since 2017
Bumps are sometimes frowned upon,but here goes......
Bump!
Hope you get some help soon now you are nearer the top of the pile.
 
Upvote 0
Jun 29, 2015
3,310
52,853
Southampton
Funster No
36,999
MH
caravan (for now)
Exp
on and off since 1984
I would try switching everything off. Then connect the hook up. If it trips then you have a problem with the incoming supply. If it doesn't trip then switch on one thing at a time until it does trip and that's the fault. Good luck

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138go

Free Member
Feb 26, 2016
3,276
14,612
Funster No
41,781
MH
Carthago 138
Exp
Since 2001
The MH will have had 22 years of people tinkering with it. Why would it need a transformer. Perhaps he means Inverter. That would make more sense as you would not have the Inverter and the mains connected together. Looks like pencil and paper and draw out a winding diagram it will be the only way to solve it. Work out what each switch does and find out what is actually fitted.
 
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pappajohn

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 26, 2007
42,972
47,123
Dark side of the moon
Funster No
172
Exp
Since 2005
An easy test to try.

Unplug the hookup lead..
Locate your mains fuse box and turn off all breakers including the main switch.
Plug the hookup lead into the site bollard.
If that stays live (doesn't trip) continue to plug into the vans hookup point. If the post trips you have a faulty connection between the vans socket and fusebox

If that stays live turn on the mainswitch.
If it trips there's a live/earth/neutral fault in the fuse box.

If it stays live then turn on each breaker in turn until it either trips the bollard, the main switch or that breaker won't stay on.
That then is the faulty circuit.
There may only be three breakers.. Sockets, water heater and charger.
The fridge may be on a breaker OR plugged into a socket.

Sometimes, but not often, plugging in with some appliances turned on can surge the bollard effectively overloading it and causing it to trip.
Turning everything off as above can overcome this.

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Feb 21, 2016
4,829
26,884
Uk
Funster No
41,726
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C class
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Since 2017
Hey Babbs! How are you getting on?
Has hubbie solved the mystery yet?:D
 
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Apr 27, 2016
6,565
7,429
Manchester
Funster No
42,762
MH
A class Hymer
Exp
Since the 80s
I'd say that the big rotary switch to the left of the panel is for an inverter. That's a device that converts 12 volt DC battery power to 240 volts AC mains-type power. Most MHs don't have an inverter, especially the older ones. It has presumably been fitted afterwards as an accessory. I have one just like it in my MH.

Inverters are usually connected to the battery with thick heavy-duty wires. To cut down on voltage drop (and expensive copper cable) they are usually located very near the battery. So look around the leisure battery area to see if there's a box connected by thick cables. Post a picture of it if you can, with the label showing if possible.

So let's assume the rotary switch is for an inverter. You need to find out which position is the inverter and which is the hookup mains. The centre '0' position is almost certainly 'off', where both of them are disconnected. Here's my suggestion how to proceed.

The control panel has a 10A MCB (overcurrent protection) and an RCD (shock protection). The RCD is the one with the white test button. The RCD will completely isolate the incoming supply from the mains circuits. So switch off the RCD (off is usually down, not up).

For the incoming supply, you have a choice of the inverter or the hookup mains, selected by the rotary switch. Make sure the hookup is not connected to the mains inlet. Set the switch to the left (position 1), turn on the blue switch, and switch on the RCD. If it stays on and doesn't trip, switch on the MCB and try the main sockets to see if they are working. If they work, and nothing trips, then you have 240V mains-type power, powered by the inverter from the battery.

If it trips, or if the sockets don't work, I guessed wrong. Set the switch to the right (position 2) and try the RCD again. If it stays on and doesn't trip, switch on the MCB and try the main sockets to see if they are working. If they work, and nothing trips, then you have 240V mains-type power, powered by the inverter from the battery.

Remember which switch setting is the inverter. It's a good idea to label it.

Next step is to switch off the inverter and try to get the mains hookup working.

Turn off the blue inverter switch, and set the rotary switch to the centre (position 0). Check to see that the sockets are now without power. Plug the hookup lead into the mains inlet. Again check to see that the sockets are without power. Turn the rotary switch to the position that's not the inverter. Hopefully the RCD and MCB on the control panel will not trip, and neither will the hookup post. If anything trips, there's a fault somewhere. Otherwise check the sockets are working, now getting power from the hookup mains.
 
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Sundowners

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 30, 2007
3,289
3,570
Suffolk/Central Portugal
Funster No
744
MH
A class
Exp
37 years
I suspect that OP switched the inverter on then connected EHU feeding 240v back into the inverter this would almost always cause an instant meltdown (don't ask!!)
My first step would be to see if the inverter works
I am guessing that is the transformer OP mentioned????

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Apr 27, 2016
6,565
7,429
Manchester
Funster No
42,762
MH
A class Hymer
Exp
Since the 80s
I suspect that OP switched the inverter on then connected EHU feeding 240v back into the inverter this would almost always cause an instant meltdown (don't ask!!)
My first step would be to see if the inverter works
I am guessing that is the transformer OP mentioned????
If the switch is wired correctly then it should keep them isolated from each other. But I agree, it's not looking good.
 
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