Class A Electric Steps

Discussion in 'General RVing' started by Judy, Oct 5, 2005.

  1. Judy

    Judy New Member

    I am having a problem with the electric steps on my 86 class A Bounder. I left the ignition key on(stupid) for a long period of time and drained my batteries. Since then I have taken a small(100 miles or so) trip. All seemed well until I noticed the steps having a problem. Thinking the aux batteries were low I tried charging them. As far as I can see they won't take a charge.
    1)How can I pinpoint where the problem lies, battery, step door switch, wiring or the electric steps themselves?
    2) Who charges the aux batteries? The Bounder, when plugged into shore power has a charger that comes on(little red light) when necessary. Does it charge the ignition and aux batteries? When I'm driving down the highway is the generator/alternator charging all batteries or just the ignition?
    Sorry to be so long winded. Any advice will be appreciatted
  2. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    I am going to assume that you have Kwikee steps as that is the only kind that I am familiar with. They are normally powered by the chassis battery, or in some cases, they can get power from either battery. The chassis battery is always the prime source since that allows them the ability to retract if you start the engine.

    As to what charges what, the alternator on the chassis engine witll charge both the chassis battery and the coach battery. You don't say what kind of a problem you are having with the steps, but if they fail to retract when the engine is running, the problem is not the batteries. It doesn't matter if all of the batteries are bad, if the engine is running there should be power to operate the electric step.

    If you have some trouble shooting skills, you can down-load the service information by going to [url][/url].
  3. Judy

    Judy New Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    U r right, they are Kwikee steps. The problem is sometimes they would retract and sometimes they wouldn't. The problem could be the step motor and the battery draining was just a coincidence.
    Tks for the info. It sounds like the step motor is dying.
  4. jkill2001

    jkill2001 New Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    what u could do to figure out if its the motor is while the engine is running go outside and open and close the door and listen for the motor. if u don't hear the motor than its the motor
  5. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    I have Kwikee steps which sometimes do not extend and sometimes don't retract. The problem seems to be the door seal getting squeezed onto the contacts in the edge of the door which senses the door being open or closed. Opening the door, pushing the seal out of the way and closing the door usually clears up the problem, for a while at least.
  6. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    Unless you have a very old RV, your step has a magnet in the door and a magnetic switch mounted in the door frame to sense if the door is open or closed. Those switches are pretty touchy and if the door is not closed tightly it will not sense the closed door and the step will stay down. The magnetic switches do fail occasionally as well. The motor can fail, but that is not common. But the motor is designed to shut off if something stopps the travel of the step. If the linkage of the step is full of dirt and rust, it can also make the step stop traveling in or out. Disconnect the power from the step by removing the power plug from the controller. Then carefully disassemble the linkage from the motor to the step and clean all parts of it. Use a dry lubricant on it as things like WD40 or oil will collect dirt and will soon be worse than it is now. The step should move in and out freely with the motor disconnected. If it does not, that is probably at least part of the problem. I clean and lube mine about once a year. I would do this first, then check the magnetic switch. The motor is only slightly more probably than the controler. Bad electrical connections are also pretty common. Use a good contact cleaner on the plug to the controller and also the connections of the controller.

    And down-load the service information from their web site.
  7. Albslb2

    Albslb2 New Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    Kirk is right on the money. Had the same problem with a 93 Coachman, that had been sitting over grass for quite a while (a big NO NO) and suddenly the steps began irratic behavior. Good ole WD40 And a little patience cured the problem. Now I check it about 4 times a yr, just to be safe.

    ARCHER Senior Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    Just a little info. My 89 Chieftain will only charge the aux batteries if I turn a switch on the dash to "all". If I do not turn it to all, the generator will only charge the main coach battery. Since I normally use my fridge while traveling and use "battery power" (it is three way), I always put the switch on "all".
  9. southwind89

    southwind89 New Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    check around your door frame you should have a contact suitch when you close the door if you have it try to push it with your fingers without closing the door . you my have a bad contac and it could be dirty.I use to have the same problem when purchased my 1989 southwind. I did solved the problem with electrical parts cleaners. hope its help
  10. TBland

    TBland New Member

    Class A Electric Steps

    Just returned from talking to an rv tech about the same problem. He told me to check the plugs under the step where four wires are connected. Red, White ,Yellow, and Brown. These plugs are exposed to the elements and end up corroded causing bad connections. If you can pull the connectors apart and they dont break spray terminals with wd40, apply a dilectic grease rejoin connectors and tape well. If they break when pulled apart connect each wire of same color together. Solder, shrink wrap, and tape so no moisture can get at them. Check the Green ground wire for a good connection. For a good diagram go to
  11. bburt

    bburt Junior Member

    The problem I have is an erratic step. While driving the step will go in and out at anytime. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  12. Clay L

    Clay L Senior Member

    This is some info I have collected over the years from various threads for Kwikee steps.

    Trouble shooting chart HERE

    There is a trouble shooting guide HERE

    If you need sources for motors or parts check the following:


    PARTS 1

    PARTS 2

    PARTS 3

    " 1) AM Equipment 402 E. Hazel St Jefferson, OR 97352, (541) 327-1546 the motor is $29 plus $7 shipping.

    2) Replacement step motor at AutoZone. It's a Siemens "Window Lift Motor", part number WL43003.

    3) Autozone. The brand is "Siemens"
    The ID tag lists the following numbers:
    4) A 1986-1995 Ford Taurus left front window lift motor matched my motor. NAPA part # BK655-1395 $63.99 I ordered my motor from Auto-Zone Manufactured by Dorman part# 742-206. This has a lifetime Warranty and was $49.99. "

    Also these guys rebuild the older unencapsulated circuit boards: HERE

    New info in 2012,78656

    Aci Auto/Window Lift Motor

    For your 1995 Ford Truck F150 1/2 ton P/U 2WD 5.0L EFI 8cyl
    Enlarge Image
    Part Number: 83094

    On disasembly of the motor I found the plastic plugs severly lopsided due to all the years of strain, new plugs cost $8.00 at Autozone or Amazon, other than that the Autozone Ford Mark VI would have worked $ $44, but I saved myself $38
    Just rplaced my 25 series Kwikee step motor with a Dorman 742-277 window lift motor for a 1986 Ford Taurus driver side window lift motor. They said the Taurus had a high torqe motor which is why the number ends with 277 meaning high torqe. My steps zip in and out with this motor application. It was a special order item but only took one day for them to get it to my local AutoZone store. I also noticed AutoZone had rebuild kits for Dorman window lift gear boxes (plastic gears) in the Help section of the store.
  13. bburt

    bburt Junior Member

    The step works, just don't know why it would go in and out while I'm driving the RV...

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