One of the problems with the pantry in our 5th wheel is it has deep Shelves and it makes it hard to see what is in there. Sometimes I’ve had to use a flashlight to see inside when searching for things. So I decided to install some lights in the 3 Compartments of the pantry. The first step was to turn off the shore power and the battery disconnect switch. Next was to remove the Cover on the WFCO Distribution panel.
After Removing the cover and the 4 screws holding the panel in, I slid it out to be able to access behind it for running my wires to the pantry. The WFCO has 2 spare terminal for a fuse to hook up other 12 volt Accessories. I used the bottom one on the right. You can see the red Wire which will be the Pos + Wire to the Pantry. Now to find the Neg – Buss bar to hook the black wire to.
There it is buried in the Nest of wires behind the Distribution panel. The black wire will be the Neg – wire to the pantry. Here is how I will run the 2 wires from the Distribution panel to the pantry.
The Distribution panel is under the stove on the right. to the left is the fridge and the furnace and return air is underneath the fridge.you can see the two wires (red and Black) running from the Distribution panel under the fridge to the Water heater compartment which is under the pantry. I had to remove the louvers under the fridge and the panel access cover to the water heater compartment. Using a 5/16th wood bit I drilled a hole in the wall of the of the Distro panel and fed the wires over to the Water Heater compartment.. Next I drilled a 5/16th hole in the Front Right hand Corner of each shelf.
I ran the wires Up thru each hole in the Corners of each shelf in a (Plastic cord conduit with adhesive back) to protect the wires and keep them out of the way. Since the wall was hollow between the fridge and the Pantry, I fastened the lights to that wall with 1 inch sheet metal screws in each pantry compartment. Used LED Lights with switches on them. I decided that it was a PITA to have to reach in the pantry to turn on a light.
So I added a Magnetic door switch so that when the door to the pantry is opened the lights in all three compartments will come on. I mounted the switch in the lower right corner of the door frame.
and the Magnet to the door. I used the switch that motor homes use for electric steps about $18 from most RV parts departments. Be advised that there is two kinds of this switch. One is normally open contacts and the other is normally closed contacts. You want the one that when the magnet is not present the contacts are closed. That way when the door is open The magnet is not present and the contacts are closed turning on the lights in the pantry. When the door is closed the magnet pulls the contacts in the switch open turning off the lights.
Door is open and the lights are on. I can see all the way to the back of each pantry compartment. Now to button everything up.
WFCO Panel Cover is back on, and the lovers under the fridge are installed and the access panel to the water heater is put back on.
Everything is working. My DW is Happy, and I am Happy. Ready to Roll.
Cost of Parts to do the Job.
3 L.E.D. Lights with Switches $27
1ea 5 ft Plastic Cord Conduit with Adhesive back. $5
20 Ft of wire 10 ft Red and 10 ft Black Wire $6
Magnetic Door Switch. $18
Not bad and if you use Lights that don’t have a switch you could do the job for under $50.