How To Tell If Rv Converter Is Bad?

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Recreational vehicles with excellent working conditions can give you the same comfort as that of your home. It doesn’t matter how far you are from home; home experience matters. Among these additional items to enhance maximum comfort are the power source. 

It is disgusting to experience blackouts when listening to your favourite music, watching a TV show, or preparing a meal. This happens when the power converter fails. So, I thought it is good to provide you with some information on how to tell if the RV converter is bad.

If you experience such issues with your electricity supply, the first thing to do is to check your converter’s condition. But how can you determine whether the RV converter is not okay? Count yourself lucky because this article will try to give information on the common signs that the device is terrible.

Common Indicators If Rv Converter Is Bad

It is not difficult to determine whether your RV converter is terrible. You only need to know some common indicators to direct you.

Irregular Voltage Range

Sometimes an irregular voltage is a good indicator when the RV converter fails. Using this way to determine your converter’s condition is very simple as it involves testing the voltage at the place where the alternating current enters your converter.

The primary voltage reading should lie between 108 volts and 130 volts at the entry place or 11V – 13V breaker box when using a multimeter. Any voltage range exceeding these values implies that you need to install a new breaker. 

The Cooling Fan Of The Converter Fails To Function Properly

These converters require consistent cooling to convert AC to DC. Your cooling fan may fail to start causing overheating. The converter’s internal temperature will begin to rise more than enough. 

Converters with temperatures pose malfunctions to the electrical system of your RV.Confirm if this is the issue by testing the voltage at the place where the alternating current enters your converter. 

If your voltage tester displays 110 volts, then there are chances that either the thermostat or thermal sensor needs a replacement. Remember, the cooling fan will never function appropriately with low current flow. Try a manual power supply to the fan to be sure it is in good working condition. 

If it is just okay, then your converter is the one causing problems by minimizing current flow through the cooling fan?

Blown Fuses

A short circuit or power surge can blow the converter’s fuse. Therefore, you need to take out the fuses from the RV converter one after the other. If you see broken metal bridges or burnt fuses, make sure you replace them. 

Confirm the amp rating of the broken fuse so that you get the new one with a similar rating. If it is an emergency, it is advisable to use the available one as long as its amp rating is lower. Remember, this is not a permanent solution, don’t forget to replace it with a fuse with a similar amp rating. 

Circuit Board With Clogged Connections

This is another way to determine whether your RV converter is terrible. Though, this process is not easy as it needs some experience and knowledge of electronics. Therefore, if you have confidence that you can do this, go on. If not sure, leave for experts.

When you open the circuit breaker, try to inspect if the connections have battery acid. You can determine if the substance is acid through its white colour and distinctive smell.

If you see any leaked acid, switch off first the electricity in the RV before cleaning it. You may apply some solution of baking soda water on the collections to wash the acid. Reconnect the circuit board to see whether the problem is solved.

If you still experience the same issue after cleaning the acid, your RV converter might cause it. Replace or take to a technician for a checkup.

Batteries Drain Faster

A converter is usually meant to supply 12 volts of Direct Current power to your RV battery(s). Therefore, if you realize that your batteries are no longer lasting long, know it is not the right working conditions.

Therefore, you need to recharge the battery and disconnect it from the inverter and RV. Give it about an hour before testing it using a multimeter. When you see any bad reading in the multimeter implies that the battery has complications. But, if the battery has its full volts, then the converter has the problem. 

If it is the converter, seek an expert or replace it. 

Defective Diodes

We have some recreational vehicles that have circuit boards featuring diodes responsible for maintaining the power direction. It prevents the power from changing its direction; to avoid damage to yourRV’s electrical system.

Sometimes testing for this problem is more challenging even to experts. I would recommend you drive your RV to an expert or contact him. That is if you think diodes are posing problems to the electrical system of your RV.

When the RV’s diodes have complications, the safety solution is to replace the whole converter. It is not easy to replace diodes on the RV converter. 

Unreliable Source Of Power

Sometimes reaching out to reliable power sources may be difficult while on the journey. It is not easy to determine whether the existing RV power is reliable. Occasionally, the RV power source may face complications enhancing dim lights. 

These mimic symptoms that your converter is terrible. Therefore, you will have to direct some home appliances or a lamp to your power pole; this will help you know if the power source is unreliable or vice versa.

Therefore, if the lamp shows some abnormalities, then the problem might be coming from your power source but not the converter. This problem is common, especially in camps without housed power outlets. 

Also, sometimes a storm may result in a similar symptom of a bad converter. Therefore, check it wisely to determine the exact problem.

But these problems may arise as a result of low maintenance. Therefore it is good to ensure that you inspect and set everything ready for the adventures before leaving.  Develop a routine checkup on your recreational vehicle’s electrical system to ensure it is in good working condition.

Converters are virtual devices that can hinder you from using RV’s appliances such as radios, microwaves, TVs, etc. without such items. Your journey will be tedious; so, make sure the RV converter is in good condition before the trip kicks off.


To wrap up, you should know that getting a new converter for your recreational vehicle is not easy. This device is expensive, and installation may cost you an arm and a leg, especially if you don’t have experience or knowledge about electricity. 

This DIY job doesn’t necessarily need an expert’s help unless you don’t have time or are reluctant. This article should impart some salient knowledge on how to tell if the RV converter is bad. 

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