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July 31, 2017

Understanding Your Motorhome’s Electrical System

Are you the proud owner of a motorhome in Calgary or Edmonton? Or maybe you’re finally ready to put that dream in your driveway and are looking for motorhomes for sale in Alberta or BC? Good for you!

One of the things you’ll want to know a bit about before you hit the open road is your motorhome’s electrical system. Understanding the basics of your motorhome’s electrical system could help keep you running trouble-free when you head off down those glorious Alberta roads and beyond!

The Different Motorhome Electrical Systems

Let’s look at the basics of your motorhome’s electrical system(s) in Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta: That’s right! Your motorhome has not one… not two… but three electrical systems!

  • The 12-volt DC automotive system. This electrical system is identical to the one you find in your car, SUV or pickup. It has its own battery and fuse panel with automotive-style blade fuses. It governs all things electrical associated with the functioning of the motorhome’s engine, cockpit, ABS brakes, external lights, etc.
  • The 12-volt DC coach system. This system is distinct from the automotive system with its own auxiliary deep-cycle battery (or batteries) and fuse panel (also with automotive-style blade fuses). It supplies power to things like the vent, furnace and range fans, overhead lights, water pump, stereo and refrigerator when it’s in LP gas mode. Your 12-volt coach system is charging when the on-board generator or motorhome engine is running, or when the motorhome is plugged into an external electrical source (at the campground, for example).
  • The 120-volt AC coach system. This system is distinct from the two mentioned above and provides the same type of electricity you find in your home. It supplies power to all the 120-volt appliances like the microwave, roof AC unit, refrigerator in electric mode and 120-volt electrical outlets. The 120-volt system has its own panel with breakers like those found in your home. It’s available when the on-board generator is running or when you are plugged into an external electrical source.
  • Always use extreme caution around your motorhome’s electrical systems! You should also use caution when plugging into campground outlets. The power from these can fluctuate enough to damage your on-board electronics and appliances. Buy a digital voltmeter and test campground power before plugging in! It’s an invaluable investment if you own a motorhome in Calgary or Edmonton.
Do you Have Questions Regarding Motorhomes in Calgary, Edmonton and Elsewhere in Alberta?

Contact us at Happy Trails RV Inc.! If you’re looking for motorhomes for sale in BC, we can help, as well. We can help whether you are a novice or an expert. We know that sometimes you will need a hand and we are happy to help. Call us if you are experiencing difficulties!