Somerset Power Lift Broken

Discussion in 'Lift Systems' started by kgibson, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. kgibson

    kgibson Member

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    I do not own this popup...yet. So this will have to be theory without testing/resolution.

    I'm looking at purchasing a 2013 Somerset Utah with a power lift. I have read a lot of the other threads that spoke to Somerset build quality in the first few years. I've seen it in person and it looks and feels really solid.

    One thing that is broken is the power lift. It doesn't do anything. No sound. No try. No herky jerky.

    I am hoping someone can give me a few basic steps to help troubleshoot? I do have a volt meter, I can read a battery, but not sure how to test at the motor/lift end? The manual crank with motor unplugged works fine.

    What are the first few things to check?
     
  2. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Go to the source and call Somerset with your query - specifically, ask if they're using the same Barker Mfg power lift as Fleetwood did. If so you might also ask if the same warnings apply as they did for Fleetwood - never use the power lift with the trailer plugged into shore power. If this one was then that could be the reason why it doesn't work and if so could be an costly repair.
     
  3. PopUpSteve

    PopUpSteve Administrator

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    I never heard that one, what's the reasoning behind that?

    I do know that the power to the motor should be disconnected before using the manual crank. I wish they would put a switch next to the power lift connector for that, takes a bit for me to get under the camper now a days.
     
  4. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Page 5 of the Fleetwood Electric Lift Guide ...

    [​IMG]

    Common knowledge for those of us who have been around Fleetwood campers as long as I have. Doing so can easily damage the current limiter. :eek:
     
  5. PopUpSteve

    PopUpSteve Administrator

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    Yup, well I'll be. Good thing I've never done that. Page 25 of my Somerset manual. Probably read that way back when and filed it in my mental setup instructions.

    Of course I always get a kick out of the way manufacturers refer to the sub-component manufacturers' manual for the actual instructions. Saves them having to do a rewrite if they change parts.

    3BD3EC17-1AD0-4793-BF7B-F982511358F0.jpeg

    You know, a simple "Use Power Lift on 12v DC Power ONLY" decal next to the Power Lift plug receptacle would probably save a lot of issues from occurring.
     
  6. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    That was actually Fleetwood's "fix" for this problem when they first became aware of it around 2005 - they sent warning stickers out to owners, giving themselves and Barker Mfg time to figure it out. Seems like they never got any further than saying "Don't do this!" [LOL]
     
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  7. kgibson

    kgibson Member

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  8. PopUpSteve

    PopUpSteve Administrator

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    Interesting.
     
  9. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    There's nothing to dispute, Fleetwood's warning has been out there for years. This is why I suggested earlier that a call to Somerset & Barker is in order to find out if Somerset is using the same parts as Fleetwood had used but if different, what's different. ;)
     
  10. kgibson

    kgibson Member

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    Here is the response from Somerset for the sake of future answers.

    Thanks for your inquiry. We don’t have any type of troubleshooting guide for the power lift system. There are only three parts to that system.
    There is the powerhead motor, the current limiter (the box that you plug the remote into), and the remote. That system has been around for over 10 years. I can count on my two hands the amount of issues I have experienced with the powerhead motor. It has been extremely reliable. If there is a problem, it would be with the remote or the current limiter box that it plugs into. I would check to make sure that the wires are connected between the current limiter box and the powerhead motor. There is an easy disconnect plug that must be connected to operate the power lift system on electricity, but must be unplugged to use the manual crank function. If that plug is connected and there doesn’t appear to be any issues with the wiring, then I would check the fuses in the converter inside the trailer to make sure that there isn’t a blown fuse. If the fuses in the converter are fine, then I would say it is most likely an issue with the remote or the current limiter box. Those replacement parts are available. We don’t have any other lift system available for the Somerset trailer, so there is not another option. Have a good day.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2020
  11. kgibson

    kgibson Member

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    Update to my own update.

    I bought the trailer.

    The Powerlift works fine if you charge the battery. :)
     
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  12. kgibson

    kgibson Member

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    I'm planning to run a 10 guage wire from the current limiter to the battery direct with a 40 amp fuse inline.

    Dumb question is that just one wire? Does that go to the positive post?
     
  13. McFlyfi

    McFlyfi Well-Known Member

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    You have to ground it as well...I used 10g landscape wire, 1positive, 1 negative.
     
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