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Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
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usertrialsrider
Posted: 22 January 2021 7:49 PM
Subject: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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Hi there. I was testing my new (to me) Honda eu10i generator. Runs like a clock. But when I hooked it up to the van I noticed the reverse polarity switch came on the Sargent ec160. It's never illuminated before. When on ehu it doesn't light up. Did a bit of research before posting this and it appears common with honda generators. Should I be concerned or do anything about it ? Id rather not burden my already bursting hospital with my electrical burns if I can help it !!
uservindiboy
Posted: 22 January 2021 8:57 PM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 
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I had the same result on my Honda 10i gennie when I first bought it and had it checked out, I was told that it was because there was no EARTH , I was supposed to connect an EARTH cable to the gennie and connect it to an earth rod which I was supposed to drive into the ground when using the Gennie, this was years ago before I got wise and got rid of the noisy smelly gennie which I found to be pretty useless apart from battery charging and a few lights as 1000 watts is pretty useless in practice,
When you are on hook up the Earth is produced by an earth cable back to the hook up bollard through your hook up cable, so no problems with no Earth there ,
userDerek Uzzell
Posted: 23 January 2021 8:51 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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The phenomenon of a portable generator causing the reverse-polarity light to illuminate on Sargent equipment has been discussed on-line a number of times over the years.

https://tinyurl.com/y6xtgntt

Reverse-polarity concerns many leisure-vehicle owners and the following quote from a 2014 thread on this forum provides expert technical advice on what may happen.

...People do not realise the dire consequences of uncorrected reverse polarity.

The first thing is a steady barrage of electromagnetic waves at a frequency that eventually affects the brain. Prolonged exposure to these waves results in a similar effect to being drunk or smoking marijuana.

The more visible effects of reverse polarity include: Your fridge will heat up and cook all your food, your oven will freeze everything in it; your hot taps will run cold and your cold taps will emit boiling water.

Television programmes will start at the end and run backwards and DVDs will do the same. Your lights will come on automatically and to turn them off you have to turn the switches on.

But the worst danger is that every metal surface in your motorhome will become live and touching anything will be extremely dangerous. If for instance you are gassed during the night, as we know happens all the time, the gas can explode and blow up the entire campsite.

I have personal experience of the consequences of reverse polarity. I plugged in on a French site without checking and I touched the door handle to the shower, which must have been live. My left leg shot out in a violent spasm and kicked my wife through the kitchen window. She landed on the barbeque, which fortunately had only just been lit and wasn’t red hot but she still sustained second-degree burns to her derriere. The barbeque tipped over, lit the grass and the flames spread very rapidly (it was high summer and very dry) and destroyed six other outfits before the fire brigade came and got it under control.

I now check every site’s EHU socket for reverse polarity and, if it is reversed, I insert my reverse plug adaptor. I am now so worried about the consequences of this for my fellow travellers that I am marketing a reverse polarity package consisting of a plug-in checking device and another plug-in automatic corrector if you find that you have reverse polarity.

The whole kit is available for only £399.99 with a ten percent discount for MMM subscribers. Some may think this is expensive but, ask yourself, what value do you place on the lives of yourself and your loved ones? Oh, post and packing is another £50 but it’s next day delivery and insured. Please PM me if you wish to order.

userAlanb
Posted: 23 January 2021 9:03 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 
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In the modern idiom, ROFL.

More seriously, it could be due to the generator being earthed at the mid point of its output. In this case it would make no difference if you did reverse the output.

I have read on this forum that some items of MH equipment detect and alarm on being connected to a reversed AC supply, but the only item that comes to mind as possibly hazardous is a toaster, where if it is single pole switched, the element could remain alive after it has "popped". If in any doubt, unplug before handling.

Alan

Edited by Alanb 2021-01-23 9:20 AM
usertrialsrider
Posted: 23 January 2021 9:16 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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Derek Uzzell - 2021-01-23 8:51 AM

The phenomenon of a portable generator causing the reverse-polarity light to illuminate on Sargent equipment has been discussed on-line a number of times over the years.

https://tinyurl.com/y6xtgntt

Reverse-polarity concerns many leisure-vehicle owners and the following quote from a 2014 thread on this forum provides expert technical advice on what may happen.

...People do not realise the dire consequences of uncorrected reverse polarity.

The first thing is a steady barrage of electromagnetic waves at a frequency that eventually affects the brain. Prolonged exposure to these waves results in a similar effect to being drunk or smoking marijuana.

The more visible effects of reverse polarity include: Your fridge will heat up and cook all your food, your oven will freeze everything in it; your hot taps will run cold and your cold taps will emit boiling water.

Television programmes will start at the end and run backwards and DVDs will do the same. Your lights will come on automatically and to turn them off you have to turn the switches on.

But the worst danger is that every metal surface in your motorhome will become live and touching anything will be extremely dangerous. If for instance you are gassed during the night, as we know happens all the time, the gas can explode and blow up the entire campsite.

I have personal experience of the consequences of reverse polarity. I plugged in on a French site without checking and I touched the door handle to the shower, which must have been live. My left leg shot out in a violent spasm and kicked my wife through the kitchen window. She landed on the barbeque, which fortunately had only just been lit and wasn’t red hot but she still sustained second-degree burns to her derriere. The barbeque tipped over, lit the grass and the flames spread very rapidly (it was high summer and very dry) and destroyed six other outfits before the fire brigade came and got it under control.

I now check every site’s EHU socket for reverse polarity and, if it is reversed, I insert my reverse plug adaptor. I am now so worried about the consequences of this for my fellow travellers that I am marketing a reverse polarity package consisting of a plug-in checking device and another plug-in automatic corrector if you find that you have reverse polarity.

The whole kit is available for only £399.99 with a ten percent discount for MMM subscribers. Some may think this is expensive but, ask yourself, what value do you place on the lives of yourself and your loved ones? Oh, post and packing is another £50 but it’s next day delivery and insured. Please PM me if you wish to order.


Nice one Derek. I reckon the TV programming may be better backwards it is so bad at the moment !!
usertrialsrider
Posted: 23 January 2021 9:27 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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More seriously, it could be due to the generator being earthed at the mid point of its output.

What does this mean please ?
userAlanb
Posted: 23 January 2021 10:33 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 
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trialsrider - 2021-01-23 9:27 AM

More seriously, it could be due to the generator being earthed at the mid point of its output.

What does this mean please ?

Gareth,

My suggestion was purely speculative, as I do not have the luxury of a 1000i to investigate. The "i" stands for inverter. The principle of operation is that the generator does not have to run constantly at 3000 rpm in order to provide a 50 Hz output. Instead the output frequency is determined by the inverter. The output of the inverter could be two 115V outputs internally connected in series to give 115V -- 0V (earth?) -- 115V, or 230V across across the whole output.

However with the mid point earthed, you would not have Live and Neutral output terminals, but rather two opposed Live outputs. A typical 230V appliance connected to such a supply would function normally, but in the UK where single pole switching is normal, the interior of the appliance could be partially live, even when switched off.

Alan
usertrialsrider
Posted: 23 January 2021 10:40 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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Alanb - 2021-01-23 10:33 AM

trialsrider - 2021-01-23 9:27 AM

More seriously, it could be due to the generator being earthed at the mid point of its output.

What does this mean please ?

Gareth,

My suggestion was purely speculative, as I do not have the luxury of a 1000i to investigate. The "i" stands for inverter. The principle of operation is that the generator does not have to run constantly at 3000 rpm in order to provide a 50 Hz output. Instead the output frequency is determined by the inverter. The output of the inverter could be two 115V outputs internally connected in series to give 115V -- 0V (earth?) -- 115V, or 230V across across the whole output.

However with the mid point earthed, you would not have Live and Neutral output terminals, but rather two opposed Live outputs. A typical 230V appliance connected to such a supply would function normally, but in the UK where single pole switching is normal, the interior of the appliance could be partially live, even when switched off.

Alan

Thanks for the explanation Alan. It may suggest why I didn't notice this with my previous generator a Honda ex1000.
usertrialsrider
Posted: 23 January 2021 10:51 AM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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Just done some googling and it seems the problem may be down to the 'floating earth' on the honda.
userDerek Uzzell
Posted: 23 January 2021 2:15 PM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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A 2006 UKCampsite enquiry was about a 1994 caravan’s reverse-polarity (RP) warning light illuminating when a newly-purchased Honda EU10i generator was connected to the caravan.

There was initially a lot of uninformed crystal-ball gazing, but when the supplier of the generator (Just Generators)

https://www.justgenerators.co.uk/

was eventually asked about the ‘problem’, their reply was

...it is because Honda has a floating earth and that is why the reverse-polarity light comes on - all is well and you are safe to use it. ...modern technology has "flumoxed" the older types of electrical system and we get this question over and over again.

Although a light warning that a 230V hook-up has RP is the norm for the Sargent electrical equipment commonly fitted to UK-built motorhomes/caravans, I don’t know how many (if any) other manufacturers (CBE, Nordelletronica, Schaudt, etc) of such equipment provide a RP indicator.

Many UK owners of UK-built leisure vehicles are apprehensive of RP, but if your motorhome had different electrical kit you would most likely have remained unaware of your Honda generator’s effect on Sargent equipment.

Allan Evans’s advice is here

http://www.aandncaravanservices.co.uk/reverse-polarity.php
usertrialsrider
Posted: 23 January 2021 4:59 PM
Subject: RE: Reverse polarity light on Sargent ec160 when using generator.
 


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Posts: 321
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Derek Uzzell - 2021-01-23 2:15 PM

A 2006 UKCampsite enquiry was about a 1994 caravan’s reverse-polarity (RP) warning light illuminating when a newly-purchased Honda EU10i generator was connected to the caravan.

There was initially a lot of uninformed crystal-ball gazing, but when the supplier of the generator (Just Generators)

https://www.justgenerators.co.uk/

was eventually asked about the ‘problem’, their reply was

...it is because Honda has a floating earth and that is why the reverse-polarity light comes on - all is well and you are safe to use it. ...modern technology has "flumoxed" the older types of electrical system and we get this question over and over again.

Although a light warning that a 230V hook-up has RP is the norm for the Sargent electrical equipment commonly fitted to UK-built motorhomes/caravans, I don’t know how many (if any) other manufacturers (CBE, Nordelletronica, Schaudt, etc) of such equipment provide a RP indicator.

Many UK owners of UK-built leisure vehicles are apprehensive of RP, but if your motorhome had different electrical kit you would most likely have remained unaware of your Honda generator’s effect on Sargent equipment.

Allan Evans’s advice is here

http://www.aandncaravanservices.co.uk/reverse-polarity.php

Derek. Thanks for that post. Very reassuring. I was worried about my son getting fried when we go away.
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