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Thursday, December 19, 2013

Burned Wires in IOTA Transfer Switch

I just found my IOTA, 50-amp transfer switch smoking badly. I opened it and found all the wires burned up inside. I found a recall; NHTSA Recall No. 12V-516, and it does involve my unit, but I have a 2010 Cameo and they went out of business, so I think I'm at a loss here. My question is, do I even need this thing? I don't have an in-house generator. And it's only there from what I can figure out, to transfer from shore power to generator power if I loose shore power. Is that correct? Can I just wire around it? It looks like I can connect the inbound wires from the the pedestal to the wires going to the inside circuit breaker box and eliminate this auto transfer switch altogether. The other wires go to an inside, built-in generator switch and the heavy wires appear to go to the generator, if I had one to connect to it. Can I just eliminate it? Bill K. 

Along with the recall, the Internet is rife with problems associated with that IOTA transfer switch Bill. I see no problem with you removing it altogether if you do not have a generator OR an inverter. Be sure to use an approved, listed electrical box to make the connection between the shore cord and the load side of the coach’s system. It can be mounted right where the transfer switch is located now. Tape the wire nuts securely also. I would also label the generator-ready wires inside the proposed generator compartment to alert future owners of that coach that a modification was made. Leave the conductors in place but label both ends of the generator circuit just in case someone eventually installs a generator. 

A transfer switch (either manual or automatic), is only required when more than one source of 120-volts AC is available to power the coach circuits. Some transfer switches control all three available RV sources; shore power, generator and inverter. In an RV equipped with only a shore cord connection, the conductors simply end up at the main panelboard breaker box anyway. There is a junction box somewhere in the circuitry of those coaches that transitions from the stranded shore cord conductors to solid romex wires inside the RV. So without a generator (even though it's prewired for one) and no inverter, you can safely bypass and remove that failed IOTA transfer switch.

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