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4x4camroaduk

1999 Toyota Camroad Champ model- electrical help required!

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Hi everyone, I am new to this- very excited to join the community, and start exploring the UK and Europe in my new to me Toyota Camroad.

As I expected may happen, I am having some issues with the electrics- the main issues currently are being unable to find any kind of fuse/breaker box for the habitation area (I have explored any and every obvious place It could be) I assume it must be somewhere?

As well as the issue of it being 100v ac (Japanese voltage)- which I of course knew about prior to purchase, yet the mains hook up is a standard 240v blue EU spec connector. For now I plan to use a "yellow box" transformer, stepping down my mains power to 100v, and have then had to change the male connector on my mains cable to a yellow 100v plug so it fits into the "yellow box" one end and the Japanese 240v plug the other- going into the 100v ac habitation electrical system. 

Apologies for the long winded first post- does anyone have any idea why the mains connector would be 240v, while the system is all 100v? 

Thanks in advance for any help/advice. 

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Follow the shore power cord. The power panel has to be accessible for obvious reasons.

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In American motorhomes the "Mains" power cord is different than a regular house plug. This is not because the voltage changes but the amps. Smaller motorhomes like the Toyota use a 30 amp plug and the big bus type ones use a 50 amp plug. 

Image result for 30 amp plug vs 50 amp plug

Is it possible that's why your rig has the different plug. If so plugging it into 240 volt would be a big mistake

Linda S

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I think that if I was in your position, I'd just have the existing 240v -> 100v equipment removed and replaced with 240v only equipment installed. There seems little point in keeping anything 100v.

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Ok so your local power is 220,  unlike the states where it starts  at 220/240 and splits to 120 as needed. Most step down transformers are 220 to 110/120 volt what is in the camper that you need to run? Fans lights fridge? If the current demand is low a simple verick would work just adjust the voltage as needed. How long has the camper been in the UK? Has someone tried to run the camper stuff with 220 hence the different cord cap maybe? Somewhere there must be a load center they often are hidden in compartments. 

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22 minutes ago, Derek up North said:

I think that if I was in your position, I'd just have the existing 240v -> 100v equipment removed and replaced with 240v only equipment installed. There seems little point in keeping anything 100v.

Very good idea. I don't know about shipping and taxes, but something like this is what you need to simplify life.

http://www.bestconverter.com/DLS-240-45-240-VAC-_p_391.html

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, linda s said:

In American motorhomes the "Mains" power cord is different than a regular house plug. This is not because the voltage changes but the amps. Smaller motorhomes like the Toyota use a 30 amp plug and the big bus type ones use a 50 amp plug. 

Image result for 30 amp plug vs 50 amp plug

Is it possible that's why your rig has the different plug. If so plugging it into 240 volt would be a big mistake

Linda S

Yeah they both are 120 volt outlets what the 50 amp does is two different 120 volt feeds giving you 25 amps at 120 X two, only the really big stuff uses 220. The Brits are 220 volt line common line voltage unlike our 240 the they use really strange to us plugs.

Edited by Maineah

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1 hour ago, Derek up North said:

I think that if I was in your position, I'd just have the existing 240v -> 100v equipment removed and replaced with 240v only equipment installed. There seems little point in keeping anything 100v.

That is the long term goal- however, everything is all incredibly well tucked away from the factory, so I don't really want to rip apart/damage all of the internals... would wiring up a seperate 240v with it's own breaker etc be more cost effective? I am looking at getting dual voltage appliances (kettle, toaster etc) to use on the existing 100v circuit.. especially as for the near future it will be more for a weekend getaway, with a future goal of longer stays in it. 

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I'm not really in a position to offer advice, Our motorhomes built in North America are, I assume, built rather differently from your Japanese import. Of the few here that have imported, I don't remember any actually mentioning the wiring or voltage. I'll again assume that the original 100v wiring is OK with 110v. 50Hz vs 60Hz is a different can of worms.

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50 minutes ago, Maineah said:

Ok so your local power is 220,  unlike the states where it starts  at 220/240 and splits to 120 as needed. Most step down transformers are 220 to 110/120 volt what is in the camper that you need to run? Fans lights fridge? If the current demand is low a simple verick would work just adjust the voltage as needed. How long has the camper been in the UK? Has someone tried to run the camper stuff with 220 hence the different cord cap maybe? Somewhere there must be a load center they often are hidden in compartments. 

I had the camper imported directly from Japan, the importer confirmed nothing had been done apart from standard conversion of km to miles, fog lights, etc.

I believe it will be running all lights off the 12v circuit, same for the water pump, toilet, and fridge is 3 way- 12v, 100v, gas. So best option would be potentially a step down transformer wired in directly behind the main ac power input?    https://airlinktransformers.com/category/japan-uk-voltage-converters

I have ruled out all internal compartments (which has been positive as I now know where everything is, except the breaker) checked the lockers and all other obvious locations for load centre/ breaker- I will have another rummage in the external lockers this evening, and do a bit more head scratching- as well as take lots of photos in case anyone spots something obvious I am missing. 

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6 minutes ago, Derek up North said:

I'm not really in a position to offer advice, Our motorhomes built in North America are, I assume, built rather differently from your Japanese import. Of the few here that have imported, I don't remember any actually mentioning the wiring or voltage. I'll again assume that the original 100v wiring is OK with 110v. 50Hz vs 60Hz is a different can of worms.

Completely understandable- I appreciate everyone's willingness to help, and so quickly.

From what I understand running 50hz would effect more temperamental devices with in built clocks such as DVD players? Currently only aiming to charge up the leisure batterys without having to do it by sitting on the motorway for an extended period of time using diesel and the split charge/ alternator. 

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49 minutes ago, 4x4camroaduk said:

 Currently only aiming to charge up the leisure batteries ...

A simple 12v battery charger from Halfords while you find a final solution?

https://www.halfords.com/workshop-tools/garage-equipment/battery-chargers-jump-starters?type=Battery+Charger&pageNo=1&pageSize=21&sort=we_recommend

Or B&Q.

https://www.diy.com/search?term=12v+car+battery+charger

 

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9 minutes ago, Derek up North said:

I have a trickle charger for the car- was scared away from using it, and towards a "yellow box" site transformer, after some advice from a neighbor mentioning leisure batteries need a special charger with different phases? 

Would my trickle charger work for now? And if so- do the leisure batteries need to be disconnected while charging? The maze of wires around the 2 leisure batteries wired together makes me nervous. And shows my lack of electrical knowledge + confidence. 

Cheers

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3 minutes ago, 4x4camroaduk said:

... do the leisure batteries need to be disconnected while charging?

No more than the other batteries you've charged in the past. IMHO

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