7
   

Caravan shock when touching earth and van

 
 
Jim2012
 
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:13 pm
Hi, Iv got a caravan hooked up to 240 mains power, we do contract earthworks and set van up for 4 weeks at a time, iv just moved to new site and we have had some rain, after rain iv gone to get into van and have gotten a shock from the van, what can cause this? Poor ground in van, leads, or power supply ground? iv checked for loose connections but havent found any as yet. The chassie is grounded to earth from the stands on the van (should blocks be put under them to stop stray current?) Id get it tested asap but we are miles from a town atm and would cost a fortune to get someone to come out. Cheers
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Type: Question • Score: 7 • Views: 3,850 • Replies: 23
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Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:17 pm
@Jim2012,
a Dodge caravan, a camel and tent caravan, or something british I don't comprehend? (there's a lot of that lately)

sounds likely you've a short somewhere's about it....
Jim2012
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:21 pm
@Rockhead,
Australian standard caravan. Tips on testing for shorts with multimeter?
Jim2012
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:22 pm
@Jim2012,
Tow behind caravan, single axle
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:25 pm
@Jim2012,
I'm mostly american, so you're spakin' greek to me.

Electricity ain't my strong suit. Isolate a circuit at a time. check for blown fuses first. if it has fuses...
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:29 pm
@Jim2012,
so this is like a camper?

I might have some better envisionment if we can agree on terms. (I know from spanners now)

I live in a similarly constructed paradise...
Jim2012
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:30 pm
@Rockhead,
Lol, No fuses mate. straint 15amp lead into van, wondering why power tirp doesnt go off when it happens. cheers for that
0 Replies
 
Jim2012
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:33 pm
@Rockhead,
Yeah bud, like a camper (whatever you call em over there) basicly a trailer (tow behind off hitch/towball) on a axle
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:36 pm
@Jim2012,
I'm with ya now, mate...

gotta be a short somewheres. does it have outlets.?

are the wires hidden behind walls, or in conduit?

( a meter would prolly show something if an electrician stumbles over this way)
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:41 pm
I can ask my electrician (although we run different voltage set-ups than you and the limeys) when I see him next, but he knows I am outta beer, so it may be a while before I meet up with him.)

there's an Auzzie dude that comes here sometimes that is an electrician of sorts. name's wilso.

best we don't aggravate him about this, though. he frowns on DIY stuff if I remember correctly...
0 Replies
 
Jim2012
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:43 pm
@Rockhead,
most wireing is in walls, so hard to test and inspect, can only inspect where i can and at outlets and lights
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:45 pm
@Jim2012,
I would open the outlets and visually inspect them.

you might find a scorched spot or loose wire...

verra carefully, of course.

another thought...

On both my sheet metal building, and my metal dwelling, I have ground rods and such, albeit mostly for anti-lightning measures. but the main electrical box is wired to actual ground as well...

0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:53 pm
@Jim2012,
Test for how good the ground is. "Stands on the ground" doesn't mean that you have a good or sufficient ground.

If you are set up for 4 weeks at a time, it wouldn't hurt to drive a good ground rod into the ground and attach the appropriate size grounding wire to the ground rod.

Where are you getting the power from?
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 05:59 pm
@Jim2012,
go to yer breaker box and start (one at a time) shutting OFF the berakers and have somebody recreate the shock experience. Thisll isolate the circuit thats causing the problem. Then (I HOPE YOU HAVE IT) take the wiring diagrams and trace that one circuit around the trailer.
DID you say that the voltage is 240? or 24?. 240 is a some kind of trailer, do you have 240v tools in there like a table saw? ABOUT your ground. Isnt the trailer mounted on a frame of box beams and isnt the hitch jack touching the earth and isnt it a heavy steel jack stand? before you try to isolate the short, try laying your safety chains on the ground and see if that doesnt help. I used to have an old camper that would do this and I nearbout tore it apart to find the shorts responsible.
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 06:12 pm
@farmerman,
Quote:
DID you say that the voltage is 240? or 24?. 240 is a some kind of trailer, do you have 240v tools in there like a table saw?


Most of the world, save for NA is 220/240V, Farmer.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 06:37 pm
@JTT,
If a human, upon touching the van/caravan/trailer and being in contact with earth, experiences a shock, obviously the metal parts of the van/caravan/trailer are not properly grounded.

Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 06:39 pm
@JTT,
but in addition, there is probably a problem somewhere else that is charging the trailer to begin with...
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 06:43 pm
@Rockhead,
True, Rocky, but I can guarantee that it will never kill the trailer/caravan/van.

A house/caravan can "live" with a slow voltage leak for years. If it grows larger than slow, the breaker should tell the tale.

You can energize a metal piece of a caravan just the same as you can energize copper wire. The difference is that you never know when the errant connection becomes capable of allowing the full amperage to flow and a human being is all too often a one time tester and then it's shot and you gotta get another one.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 06:51 pm
@Jim2012,
If it was a one time occurance, it might really be static electricity this time. Do you routinely ground the thing when it is set up? Recall that aircraft have an attachment for a ground line between ship and fuel nozzle for just this reason.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Sun 15 Jan, 2012 08:29 pm
@roger,
Quote:
Recall that aircraft have an attachment for a ground line between ship and fuel nozzle for just this reason.


I sure may be wrong about this but isn't that because of the build up of static electricity resulting from fuel flow, Roger?
 

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