Help please with 30 amp cord - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-19-2017, 04:49 PM   #1
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Name: karen
Trailer: Casita Spirit Deluxe
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Help please with 30 amp cord

Hi there all of you wonderful helpers on this forum. I need to purchase an extra 25 feet of extension cord to extent to 50 feet my Casita power. I see outdoor extension cords (like at Harbor Freight). Can I purchase a 10 gauge one which I understand is 30 amp? Thank you for the help. First trip is in late May for a music venue. Happy Trails to you all!
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Old 04-19-2017, 05:01 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by artsykaren View Post
Hi there all of you wonderful helpers on this forum. I need to purchase an extra 25 feet of extension cord to extent to 50 feet my Casita power. I see outdoor extension cords (like at Harbor Freight). Can I purchase a 10 gauge one which I understand is 30 amp? Thank you for the help. First trip is in late May for a music venue. Happy Trails to you all!
Amazon , Walmart , Camping World etc. sell 25 ft 30 amp RV extension cords with the proper cord caps .
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Old 04-19-2017, 05:21 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Amazon , Walmart , Camping World etc. sell 25 ft 30 amp RV extension cords with the,proper cord caps .
...yep, just like Steve sez...I bought my 30' 30amp extension from WallyWorld, ready made with proper ends...believe I saw one at Lowes as well...sorry, don't remember price......
madjack
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Old 04-19-2017, 05:28 PM   #4
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I used a heavy duty 20 amp extension for mine for a long time. It will keep the battery charged and let you use lights. It may or may not let you run heavier loads. I popped a circuit breaker trying to use the heater coil but could use a 750 Watt space heater.

If you have a 30 amp outlet, then by all means, spend the money on a 30 amp cord as suggested. I have a 25 foot cord that I got from Amazon for less than $50. Sorry I don't remember exactly what I paid but it was worth it.
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Old 04-19-2017, 05:39 PM   #5
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One more point , trying to make your own cord will cost your more money for the parts than buying a factory pre-made cord
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Old 04-19-2017, 06:57 PM   #6
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We use a 12 Gauge and they have them at Costco in a 2 pack
And we Use an adapter that we got at Walmart.

Can run the Airconditioner or the microwave but not both at the same time and this has not proved to be incovenient.
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:22 AM   #7
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Go with the 10 gauge. I think I paid around $45 at Walmart for a 30'. I think that with a larger gauge, you may have problems with it heating up or even melting if you run the A/C and the two cords connected, and could possibly put a strain on the A/C compressor, etc. Just my $.02 cents worth.
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:46 AM   #8
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Go with the 10 gauge. I think I paid around $45 at Walmart for a 30'. I think that with a larger gauge, you may have problems with it heating up or even melting if you run the A/C and the two cords connected, and could possibly put a strain on the A/C compressor, etc. Just my $.02 cents worth.
Just a note on melting conductors . In a night school class for an experiment , we used a piece of bare #12 cu wire as a fuse link.
It took 168 amps of load to get that piece of #12 wire to melt.
Overloading a cord usually damages the cord connections and can lead to voltage drop or insulation damage.
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Old 04-20-2017, 11:53 AM   #9
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Yes, but a wire encased in two layers of plastic will get hot at much lower amperage. That heat is wasted power that is being paid for. And it's generally the connector that fails first.
Standard household plug connections cannot stand a 30 amp continuous load. Getting an adapter to go from house style to twist lock doesn't solve the problem. With the #10 trailer twist lock connector you can run 30 amps continuous.

Best thing is to get a #10 cord long enough to go from the trailer to the outlet.
Next best is to get a #10 extension cord to make up the difference between your cord and the outlet. Get one with twist lock on both ends
Third would be to run a #12 cord to make up the difference and put on a twist lock connector.
Fourth would be to run a #12 cord and use a twist lock adapter to the standard household plug that comes on extension cords.

If you choose number 3 or 4, try to keep the load down to 20 amps. An electric heater and a microwave, plus a couple of lights and maybe a battery charger will put you at 30 amps. You can turn off the heater to run the microwave.

If you run a #12 cord on a 30 amp breaker you can gradually heat it up to failure without tripping the breaker. That means you can start a fire if the connector is laying an a pile of leaves or in the garage with gasoline fumes, etc.
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:04 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by artsykaren View Post
Hi there all of you wonderful helpers on this forum. I need to purchase an extra 25 feet of extension cord to extent to 50 feet my Casita power. I see outdoor extension cords (like at Harbor Freight). Can I purchase a 10 gauge one which I understand is 30 amp? Thank you for the help. First trip is in late May for a music venue. Happy Trails to you all!
Just buy a good 30 amp cord from Walmart or another place that has them with the proper ends. The longer the cord the more likely of overheating and damaging an appliance. Could also cause a fire. If you life is worth $35-50 then buy a properly made cord. We did and have had no problems running the A/C, microwave, etc. No overheating either. If you make a cord it will not be waterproof and that is a necessity also. A homemade will also cost you almost a store bought one. An RV fire is not worth a homemade cord. Especially if you are asleep. Friends almost died in an RV fire. Please just spend the money and be safe.
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:28 PM   #11
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A 12 /3 cord has a rated ampacity of 20 or 25 amps based on the type of conductor insulation according to NEC Table 400 -5(A)
** Based on an ambient temperature of 30 deg C (86 deg F) **
In 40 years as an electrician I have never seen a properly rated cord used according to the code , melt except if physically damaged .
I have seen the cord caps damaged by heat due to poor / loose connections .
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:40 PM   #12
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A 12 /3 cord has a rated ampacity of 20 or 25 amps based on the type of conductor insulation according to NEC Table 400 -5(A)
** Based on an ambient temperature of 30 deg C (86 deg F) **
In 40 years as an electrician I have never seen a properly rated cord used according to the code , melt except if physically damaged .
I have seen the cord caps damaged by heat due to poor / loose connections .
The problem is the 30 amp breaker with a #12 wire and conventional household ends. That is not properly rated. The factory cord caps cannot stand the load. I've got a couple of melted ones in the garage myself.

It's not possible to predict how much power someone will use, but eventually it will be at full load. Best to go with a #10 cord and twist lock connectors. Or use a #12 cord and switch the breaker to a 20 amp.
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Old 04-21-2017, 11:38 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
A 12 /3 cord has a rated ampacity of 20 or 25 amps based on the type of conductor insulation according to NEC Table 400 -5(A)
** Based on an ambient temperature of 30 deg C (86 deg F) **
In 40 years as an electrician I have never seen a properly rated cord used according to the code , melt except if physically damaged .
I have seen the cord caps damaged by heat due to poor / loose connections .
The trailers have a 30 amp cord not 20 or 25. Trying to put on ends and using them eventually will loosen them. So why not just buy a 30 amp cord made for the purpose with sealed ends. The ambient temperature in many places will be over 86 degrees. When a cord lays out in the sun it heats up. So it will be more like 120 degrees possibly. Have you ever felt your cord in the sun on a very warm day. It is extremely hot due to the sun. I agree with all you said though. I've never seen a cord used as designed melt. The key words here are used as designed.
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Old 04-21-2017, 12:03 PM   #14
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Name: Terry
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Go with 30 amp

Using a second #10 cable with good connectors will work. Getting #10 that will run the full distance will last longer and be safer. There are water tight boxes to encase cord connections for wet conditions. Use one and you'll never know what it saved you.
The breaker is only made to protect the conductor, not equipment. This protects against a fire in the conductors and contectors if the connectors have good contact. If there is not in good contact there will be damaged overtime. A 30 amp breaker will let #12 conductor burn and melt without shutting off. It may never happen, but if it does its to late.The # 12 may or may not under power the equipment in your camper and cause permanent damage over time. You won't know till the damage is done.
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