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Sprite Alpine 2 [2008]


Guest Tephi
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It must have been the shortest ‘long weekend’ in history. I took the new Alpine on its first outing to Commons Wood, arrived at 1330, used the powrtouch to pitch – plugged into EHU and put the kettle on for a brew. It was then that I discovered we had no power except the 3 mains sockets and the two lights at the front of the ‘van. No heater, no fridge, no other lights and even no gas [there must be a safety cut-out when there is no lecky] and no 12v.

I phoned Swift, but they must be on a 4 day week as the switchboard isn’t open on Fridays.

Phoned the dealer who couldn’t suggest what was wrong. Taking it in on Tuesday.

 

On the plus side, the powrtouch worked a treat – well worth the money.

Got a full refund on the pitch.

Better still the Alko ‘dampers’, I fitted a couple of weeks ago, were superb, the ‘van was as steady as a rock, no bouncing, pitching or rolling.

 

Left the site at 1700, 100 mile approx. round trip @ 50 mph & 60mph on M25 & A1M, averaged 35mpg with an 89bhp tug.

 

Who said caravanning was a relaxing business? :lol:

Edited by Tephi
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Oh Steve. ...............Sorry to hear your tale of woe. ........

 

Hope the Dealers get things fixed quickly for you.

 

Martin ;)

2011 S Max Titanium Powershift

2011 Citroen C3 Picasso Exclusive

2011 Swift Conqueror 570 Special Equipment

'If I'd Been Born Thirty Years Later They Would Call It ADHD'

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It must have been the shortest ‘long weekend’ in history. I took the new Alpine on its first outing to Commons Wood, arrived at 1330, used the powrtouch to pitch – plugged into EHU and put the kettle on for a brew. It was then that I discovered we had no power except the 3 mains sockets and the two lights at the front of the ‘van. No heater, no fridge, no other lights and even no gas [there must be a safety cut-out when there is no lecky] and no 12v.

I phoned Swift, but they must be on a 4 day week as the switchboard isn’t open on Fridays.

Phoned the dealer who couldn’t suggest what was wrong. Taking it in on Tuesday.

 

On the plus side, the powrtouch worked a treat – well worth the money.

Got a full refund on the pitch.

Better still the Alko ‘dampers’, I fitted a couple of weeks ago, were superb, the ‘van was as steady as a rock, no bouncing, pitching or rolling.

 

Left the site at 1700, 100 mile approx. round trip @ 50 mph & 60mph on M25 & A1M, averaged 35mpg with an 89bhp tug.

 

Who said caravanning was a relaxing business? :lol:

 

Steve,

I'm reallly sorry to hear about the problems with your van electrics. Our Switchboard closes at 2pm on a friday.

 

If you want me to help to understand the elctrical issue, please email me over the weekend and I will try and help.

 

Regards

Andy Spacey

aspacey@swiftleisure. co. uk

Swift Group Website: www. swiftgroup. co. uk

Swift Group Handbooks: www. swiftgroup. co. uk/caravans/handbooks

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Guest Tephi

I am glad to say that with the help of Andy and Ash of Swift, I have now sorted the problem. :)

Many thanks Andy and Ash!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest Tephi
So what was the problem? was it a fault or human error on your part?

 

The charger had failed - not my fault - replaced by dealer under warranty - now OK.

 

Because the majority of equipment in a modern van is controlled by 12v, if the charger fails, then nothing will work except 240v 3 pin sockets and lights.

Edited by Tephi
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  • 2 weeks later...

David,

 

I think Steve was adding a seperate note about Powertouch, not suggesting that the Powertouch did not work.

 

Thanks,

 

Ash

Swift Group Website: www. swiftgroup. co. uk

Swift Group Handbooks: www. swiftgroup. co. uk/caravans/handbooks

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But the question is. .....if there was a battery (which we know there was as the Mover worked), why did the 12v stuff in the van not work off the battery?

 

And why did the gas not work?

 

On another forum I read about a new Abbey Vogue where 230v failed overnight, but things still worked off the van battery. The consumer unit (according to the owner) was replaced and all was well again. The next night exactly the same happened again.

 

After 2 weeks with the dealer the whole CHARGER unit was replaced, it was said there had been some problem with quite a few of them.

 

So I am wondering how, in that case, a duff charger causes the 230v to fail, but battery can still be used?

 

And in this case on the Sprite a duff charger leaves the 230v intact (although apparently not the fridge, heating, or hot water), but does not allow the battery to work?

 

The charger failed in our 1998 Emerald (twice even, a few years apart) , but we still had mains and battery, and my husband was able to wire up a car type battery charger to charge the battery and keep us going.

 

Perhaps new vans are too sophisticated/complicated. Just wondering what folk can do if something like this happens abroad? Lack of any power would sure ruin your holiday!

Jennifer

 

Sterling Elite Searcher, Volvo XC90 SE D5 Auto

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Without inspecting the vehicle and charger, it is difficult to comment why and how the failure occurred. But, after speaking with Steve, it seems as well as the charger failing, the leisure battery fuse had blown.

 

The reason the fridge, hob and other items did not work, is that without 12V from the charger or 12V from the leisure battery, the fridge electronics were not powered and the 12V ignition of the burners was not active (there is a safety system in place to prevent gas leaking if the burner is not ignited).

 

When Steve replaced the leisure battery fuse, all his systems were back to normal, with the exception of the charger, which required replacing. Customers should carry spare fuses with them, in case of a similar issue.

 

Ash

Swift Group Website: www. swiftgroup. co. uk

Swift Group Handbooks: www. swiftgroup. co. uk/caravans/handbooks

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I see, I did think we did not have the full story!

 

We always travel with a full tool kit and complete set of spare bits as far as possible, but you do also need the knowledge to be able to diagnose faults.

 

A box of matches might be good too, surely you could light the hob manually?

Jennifer

 

Sterling Elite Searcher, Volvo XC90 SE D5 Auto

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Guest Tephi
Without inspecting the vehicle and charger, it is difficult to comment why and how the failure occurred. But, after speaking with Steve, it seems as well as the charger failing, the leisure battery fuse had blown.

 

The reason the fridge, hob and other items did not work, is that without 12V from the charger or 12V from the leisure battery, the fridge electronics were not powered and the 12V ignition of the burners was not active (there is a safety system in place to prevent gas leaking if the burner is not ignited).

 

When Steve replaced the leisure battery fuse, all his systems were back to normal, with the exception of the charger, which required replacing. Customers should carry spare fuses with them, in case of a similar issue.

 

Ash

 

Thanks for that Ash, I couldn't have put it better myself.

 

Jennifer, as Ash said, if the 12v supply fails [blown fuse] there is a safety cut out in the gas supply to all gas appliances and a box of matches will be of no use :mellow:

Edited by Tephi
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That sounds very "big brother" !

 

Why on earth should one not be able to at least light a hob burner manually to prevent hypothermia setting in ? Do we now need to carry a spare gas stove for emergencies? I think that is just taking things too far.

 

Will the gas BBQ outlet still work as a last resort?

Jennifer

 

Sterling Elite Searcher, Volvo XC90 SE D5 Auto

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Thanks for that Ash, I couldn't have put it better myself.

 

Jennifer, as Ash said, if the 12v supply fails [blown fuse] there is a safety cut out in the gas supply to all gas appliances and a box of matches will be of no use :mellow:

Change is inevitable, progress is optional.

 

The older my caravan gets, the less reason I have to change it.

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That sounds very "big brother" !

 

Why on earth should one not be able to at least light a hob burner manually to prevent hypothermia setting in ? Do we now need to carry a spare gas stove for emergencies? I think that is just taking things too far.

 

Will the gas BBQ outlet still work as a last resort?

 

 

Why not carry a fuse, or a simple answer in emergency is to pop a fuse for something you don't need from the fuse box to get the 12V supply from the battery.

 

Regards

 

David

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As I said, we do travel FULLY equipped, but there could be a scenario where you cannot fix an electrical problem.

 

However. ...........I think we can spare the Boy Scouts and rely on the matches.

 

OH has just been out to the van, disconnected the mains, turned off the van battery on the control panel. This presumably means all 12v from battery is disconnected?

 

We still have gas to the hob.

 

Plugging in mains only, we can still run the fridge on mains. The electric ring on the hob works too.

 

The Alde heating does not work.

 

This is of course specific to our van (Sterling Searcher 2008) and our model of fridge (Thetford N180 with manual power selection)

Edited by jennifernn

Jennifer

 

Sterling Elite Searcher, Volvo XC90 SE D5 Auto

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Guest Tephi
As I said, we do travel FULLY equipped, but there could be a scenario where you cannot fix an electrical problem.

 

However. ...........I think we can spare the Boy Scouts and rely on the matches.

 

OH has just been out to the van, disconnected the mains, turned off the van battery on the control panel. This presumably means all 12v from battery is disconnected?

 

We still have gas to the hob.

 

Plugging in mains only, we can still run the fridge on mains. The electric ring on the hob works too.

 

The Alde heating does not work.

 

This is of course specific to our van (Sterling Searcher 2008) and our model of fridge (Thetford N180 with manual power selection)

 

Try removing the yellow 20A fuse near the charger and then see what, if anything, works.

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Does turning off the battery not have the same effect then?

 

Don't want to try anything too drastic. ..........the alarm might go off! And that would have Phantom on the phone! :o

 

Inspection of our wiring diagram shows that the alarm is connected AFTER the fuse, but before the relays that switch the 12v.

 

There is no safety gas cut out connection shown on the diagram, so this must be built into the individual appliances. Either that or it is very hush hush!

 

Supplementary question. ........did you try using from your car battery ?

 

Or was that function also disabled?

Edited by jennifernn

Jennifer

 

Sterling Elite Searcher, Volvo XC90 SE D5 Auto

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Guest Tephi
Does turning off the battery not have the same effect then? To be honest I'm not sure - Ash at Swift is the expert on these matters

Don't want to try anything too drastic. ..........the alarm might go off! And that would have Phantom on the phone! :o

 

Inspection of our wiring diagram shows that the alarm is connected AFTER the fuse, but before the relays that switch the 12v.

 

There is no safety gas cut out connection shown on the diagram, so this must be built into the individual appliances. Either that or it is very hush hush!

 

Supplementary question. ........did you try using from your car battery ? No, at the time it didn't cross my mind to try that.

 

Or was that function also disabled?

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Yes, turning off the control panel does disconnect the leisure battery from the circuit, i. e. removing all 12V from the system, except for items such as alarms, which are connected directly to the battery (via the fuse).

 

Thanks,

 

Ash

Swift Group Website: www. swiftgroup. co. uk

Swift Group Handbooks: www. swiftgroup. co. uk/caravans/handbooks

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There is a faulty batch of chargers fitted to Swift Group vans. These are the consumer unit type supplied by Nordic Electronica.

 

After use for a short while they fail. The 12v system then goes down when the battery runs out. I know that the 12v system should work even without a battery, but with these faulty chargers, it doesn't.

 

I speak from first hand experience having had three of these charges fitted in my new Swift since 28th February 2009.

Scarlet 'till I die. ...

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