Electric at campgrounds - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-18-2013, 10:38 AM   #1
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Electric at campgrounds

OK -- here's a question exposing my ignorance: when you're hooking up electric at the post, what kinds of outlets are usually available? Is it possible to plug in a 120-v extension cord (heavy-duty construction quality)?
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:04 AM   #2
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Louise:
At the campgrounds we have been to in BC, Washington and Oregon, usually there is a 30 Amp connection, often also a 15 Amp connection. Some campgrounds also have 50 Amp connections. Our trailer (an Escape 13) came with a 30 Amp power cord, and we have never had problems getting power with it. If you want to connect at home you may need an adapter to allow plugging into a regular 15 Amp outlet.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:41 AM   #3
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Same as Brian-I have found both 15amp and 30 amp at the campgrounds I have stayed in-that had power.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:51 AM   #4
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Around Michigan I have seen pretty much what Brian reports. A normal household 15A receptacle and either a 30A or 50A plug. On rare occasions there can be both a 30A and 50A connection in addition to the 15A.

My Casita comes with a 30A connection so I carry a 50A (male) to 30A (female) adapter and also a 30A (female) to 15A (male).

If the trailer comes with a 15A plug, there are adapters for that, too.

If someone's handy and pays attention to wiring conventions I know some frugal campers can wire their own adapter. I don't bother.

I offer this extra tidbit because it sometimes comes up but, assuming the trailer is protected properly with circuit breakers appropriate for it's wiring, there is no issue with plugging a 30A plug into a 50A receptacle (assuming an adapter). The 50A isn't forcing 50A into the 30A plug, it's just a descriptor of how much the receptacle can supply before tripping itself. Your (that's the global you) trailer should only take 30 of those 50A before it's own circuit breaker(s) trips.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:09 PM   #5
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Louise:

The 30 amp connection looks like this (pick 30 amp in top left):
RV Electric

Note that it is a 110 volt service.

To plug in your trailer at home you may need this:
Plug Adapter for RV Power on Sale - PPL Motor Homes

You will need the 30 amp female to 15 amp male.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:15 PM   #6
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Cost Adaptor

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Originally Posted by Steve L. View Post
If someone's handy and pays attention to wiring conventions I know some frugal campers can wire their own adapter. I don't bother.
I was planning to make a 50 AMP to 30 amp adaptor but after going to my electrical wholesaler and pricing the parts,I could not make one as cheap as buying one . I can purchase a manufactured adaptor for under $20.00 and the parts to make one would cost me (Best contractors price ) over $30.00. Plus the manufactured adaptor has molded ends which help keep rain out of the connections
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:35 PM   #7
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Ah-ha! I needed the photos!

Just to be clear -- I don't have a trailer yet. I do have camping gear, and I can manage ok without electricity -- but if I'm going to be out for a few weeks, I would like to be able to plug in a standard extension cord and run my computer for a few hours.

I'm hoping this will be the Year of the Egg -- fingers crossed!
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:36 PM   #8
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Louise, your not ingnorant! Just not campground/trailer savy! You will be, nice to see a newbie "planning", educating themselfs!


Most Campgrounds/rvparks I have been in provide 50/30/15 amp all on the same post. CO, CA, NV, AZ, UT, ID, WY, even many in MT. Depending on what type of trailer you purchase will depend on what type of service you will have. Most newer trailers will automatically come with 30 amp wiring. Older ones will either be, 15 or 30 amp.


Truly no reason to plug into 50 amp, though on rare occasion you will get a camp site that only offers only 50 amp. Then you will need to have a adapter in that case. But (BIG BUT) your trailer will still only have 15/30 amp capability! And trying to use 50 amps of power through 30 amp wire is not and I repeat NOT a smart thing to do.....

This is very rare, unless your in a new/newer campground/rvpark.... 50 amp service is made for those big travel trailers/5thwheel/Motor Coaches. And many of those are not even 50 amp! Not our lil travel trailers.

Of course there are people who choose to re-wire their trailer to meet their needs, but you will know what amp's your trailer is when you see the plug.


Good luck in your search, you will find it fun. Hope you find what your looking for soon..........................
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:43 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin G View Post
... But (BIG BUT) ...
What did you call her?

Oh, wait a minute....only one "T".

Nevermind...
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by havingfunnow View Post
Ah-ha! I needed the photos!

Just to be clear -- I don't have a trailer yet. I do have camping gear, and I can manage ok without electricity -- but if I'm going to be out for a few weeks, I would like to be able to plug in a standard extension cord and run my computer for a few hours.

I'm hoping this will be the Year of the Egg -- fingers crossed!
Louise:
There are many more camping spots without power. If the only power you need is for a computer, you can get a small inverter which will allow you to charge your computer when you drive. Something like this: PowerLine 200 Watt Inverter: Home Audio & Theater : Walmart.com

When we were tenting we used an inverter with an extension cord to inflate our airbed.

If you have a camping spot with a power pole you may find that you are charged extra for having a serviced site, but an ordinary extension cord will work just fine.

Lots of options.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve L. View Post
What did you call her?

Oh, wait a minute....only one "T".

Nevermind...




http://www.rvtechlibrary.com/electri...eloadchart.htm

Louise, here's a amp chart as well as a decent explanation of amps. The charts help. Unfortuanately they do vary do to the person who put the chart together most likely uses the amperage from his or her's rv appliances. But most get close. If I remember correctly there was a topic here are the A/C on a new Casita. If I remember right, the amp on start for it is higher then amps down after start up. But I still think higher than this amp chart. But again even this helps.

The best way to know exactly what amps your, A/C, coffee pot, curling iron etc uses is to read the manual that comes with it. Even my curling irons state what amps they use (I personally don't ever keep that info, it goes in the trash along with the box it came in) But you can find that info......... Again, Good luck!
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Old 01-18-2013, 04:09 PM   #12
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In the USofA, (at least to be UL Listed) all appliances must have the voltage and power draw indicated on the appliance. These values are usually molded into the base or near a mfg's tag. Divide watts by 120 for amps. ex. 500 watt heater = 4.16 amps, a 150 watt curling iron (we're camping???) = 1.25 amps etc.
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Old 01-18-2013, 05:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
a 150 watt curling iron (we're camping???) = 1.25 amps etc.
Bob, Robin is a certified member of the Glamping fraternity, so yes a curling iron, is a camping necessity
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:49 PM   #14
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So much to learn -- you guys are great teachers!
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