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How to Replace RV Electric Step Motor?

How to Replace RV Electric Step Motor?

There are different beneficial features in RV. One of them is the automatic step installation that provides convenience to its user.

The automatic step is always in use because there is a lot of wear and tear in the electrical stairs. They have different components attached to them that need replacement after some time. 

How to Replace RV Electric Step Motor? You can easily replace the RV electric step motor inside the compartment by removing the old one. Clean the washer and gear present in the old motor and assemble it on the new one. Fix the new motor on the top of the gearbox and screw it. Plug all the electrical connections back to their place; the new motor started working.

How to Replace RV Electric Step Motor?

There are two systems of using electric stairs in RV, i-e the automatic and manual. The automated system increases the vehicle’s safety compared to the manual one. 

The electrical steps work automatically with the movement of the door. They become extended when the door opens, and their stairs become retracted when the door closes.

The automatic steps also retract from their place when you turn the vehicle’s ignition. When the ignition turns ON, the retraction of steps back to their site is the safety feature preventing damage to the camper during driving.  

A magnetic switch mounted in the door frame’s lower position makes this task possible. The magnetic switch stimulates when the magnet in the RV door passes in front of it.

When the door closes, the frame’s magnetic button does not become aligned with the magnet present in the door; thus, the step does not activate. 

 RV’s manual electric steps system does not provide the safety features like an automatic system. A switch called override is present near the door to make the retraction and extending possible when the camper park.

There is no safety switch in a manual step that connects with the ignition to prevent driving if the stairs are in the extended position. You need to turn OFF this switch manually to retrace steps back to their place. 

There are three main elements of the electrical stairs. The controller unit refers to the electrical step’s brain and the motor that enables the gear linkage.

The gear linkage moves the staircase in and out. The controller sends the motor’s positive and negative power with wires’ help.

When the power supply to the engine, it enables the gear that does its task by using its arm. You can replace the motor if the step is not working.

Make sure to start your task when the stair is in the extended position if your step is in a small place and stuck.

You need to remove the link between the gear assembly and manually remove the stairs from the compartment. In this way, you can have more access to move towards the electrical stairs’ motor. 

After that, remove the power supply to your whole stair assembly. It will help in saving yourself from electrical shocks.

It would help if you detached the four-wire connector from RV’s primary source. After that, unplug the wire that goes to the motor from the controller unit of step assembly.

After that point, unbolt all the bolts present on the motor’s top and push it down on the step’s gear assembly. You can unbolt it with the help of a socket wrench. 

When you remove the last bolt, try to hold the motor with your hand to prevent it from falling in the step assembly and damages its compartment. 

After removing the last bolt, the motor stuck to its place then wiggle it slightly. Be careful because there is a gear attached to the other motor’s other side.

It fits in the gearbox; if you wiggle the motor hard, it will damage your gearbox.

You need to replace the gearbox too if the damage happens. Due to the gear’s presence, try to lift the equipment directly so that the gear does not fall. 

After removing the motor from the gearbox, extract the washers and the gear. 

Clean all the washers and the gear components from old grease and dirt and place the pieces on the new motor of the electrical step.

Add washer on the new one, add a generous amount of grease on the gear, and fix it in the motor. After adding all the components down to their position, place the new motor on the gearbox.

Push the motor down and attach all the bolts in their place and tight them with the help of a socket wrench.

Plug the motor’s connection to its place that comes from the controller unit; you hear a click sound.

After that, plug the primary source of the step power assembly. Before doing that step, move away from the electrical step route because after connecting, the motor starts its job of extending and retracting.

 It is beneficial to move away from the site of step because it will cause serious injury. You can also tight the cable connections by using some tape.

It will make the whole assembly more secure and safe. Test the procedure by opening and closing the door. The steps automatically extend or retract to their original position.

How does the RV step motor work?

The electrical steps have an essential component that controls their extending and retracting activity, known as the step motor.

The motor located in the gear linkage arm helps move the steps in and out. The motor secure in its place with the help of three bolts.

The motor moves the gear arm out. As a result, the gear linkages move the steps out or inside. It performs its activity when trigger by the step controller and starts turning.

When the motor turns enough and cannot proceed further, the steps are either fully extending or retracting.

Why is my RV step motor not working?

 Sometimes due to malfunctioning in the power supply, the motor stops its proper function and cannot convert the gear linkage.

As a result, the step does not retract or extend. You can test its functionality by doing the following procedure.

Cut down the motor’s power connection by removing the RV’s power cables. Use a multimeter and make sure that the door switch is activated.

Measure the voltage reading that must be around 12 volts. If the voltage reading is in positive and negative volts, but it’s not working, then there is some motor fault.

The multimeter shows that the power supply to it, but it’s not turning, which indicates that your motor malfunction and needs replacement.

During checking the motor working, make sure not to stand in the front of steps because if the step becomes extended, it will cause serious injury. 

 Some symptoms represent that there is some problem with your RV electrical stairs. Some of them are as follow:

Retracting problem

The electrical step work with the door magnets. When magnets of the door frame come in front of the magnets in the door, steps retracted back to their original place without hindrance.

Sometimes the stairs do not retract back to their original site because the magnets do not accurately align.

The manual switch also causes this problem because it ON position. If the manual button is ON, it will make the step extended. 

Extending problems

Sometimes due to improper supply of power from the camper primary source, it will not perform its activity accurately.

If the power is not reaching the controller unit, it will not supply it to the motor and the steps not extended.

The malfunctioning happens due to the faults in the electrical steps’ wiring. Another reason for the steps malfunctioning is the override switch turns ON. 

The magnets in both the door frame and inside the door do not correctly align.

The noise inside the RV electric stairs

Sometimes when you try to extend or retract the steps, it makes noise but does not move from its place.

It happens because the motor does its working correctly. Make sure to clean all the steps and their linkages between them.

Faulty wiring of stairs

The wiring faults can also make this task impossible. There are wires present inside the electrical stairs that contain powers from the battery of the RV and send them to the controller unit.

Ensure that all the electric steps cables are not stuck with each other and check their functionality using a multimeter.

The wiring must free from debris and dust and must connect with their respective component.

Check the motor’s power that must be 12 volt; if the voltage is not proper, then the motor is damaged due to excessive use or age.

Now check the electrical switch’s power that also performs the work of extending and retracting.

It will lead toward the real problem inside the electrical step that makes its function impossible.

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