Running Casita 17 a/c on generator and/or household outlet - Fiberglass RV
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Old 03-14-2015, 06:41 AM   #1
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Name: Iggy
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Running Casita 17 a/c on generator and/or household outlet

Hi Folks,
I'm looking to buy a used Casita 17 foot. I'll be located on family/friend's property for some of my travel and would like to know if I can run the a/c unit by simply hooking up the Casita to an extension cord running from family/friend's house. Can I use a regular outlet or should I use the washer/dryer outlet? Additionally, will a Honda 2000 generator run my a/c when I am boondocking? I've done some searches but get many different answers which I assume are based on the size of the a/c unit and I am not sure of the size of the Casita 17 a/c unit. Thanks in advance.
Iggy
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Old 03-14-2015, 06:48 AM   #2
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Name: bob
Trailer: 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
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Our '96 Casita uses a 30 amp plug on the cord. Your friends house probably does not have one.
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Old 03-14-2015, 07:06 AM   #3
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The 30 amp outlets in a residence (dryer) are 120/240 VAC NOT 120 VAC . Your trailer is 30 amp 120 VAC . The cord cap on your trailer will not fit in a dryer outlet and for good reason . A 2000 watt generator may run your A/C but it may not start it .
The starting current is the problem .
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Old 03-14-2015, 07:39 AM   #4
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Go to Walmart and buy an adapter plug that will be 30 amp on one end and 110 on the other. As long as you do not exceed the Amps of the breaker in the house you will be OK.

Little House Customs sells a Hard Start kit for your AC that will solve the start up problem and should let you run the AC with your Honda 2000.






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Old 03-14-2015, 09:13 AM   #5
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Walmart also has a 30 foot 30 amp extension cord in rv section. I have used mine many times when rv cord was not long enough.
I have Honda eu2000 generator and it has always been fine to run A/C in Casita and my Bigfoot.
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Old 03-14-2015, 09:37 AM   #6
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SIZE MATTERS (BTU Size that is...)


What a/c unit a Honda 2000 generator can run is very dependent on the size of the a/c unit.


A "Standard" rooftop ac is 13,500 BTU and the 2000's usually will not restart those units, often not even with the modification kit installed.


However I know of a number of RV owners using Honda 2000's with rooftop units between 7,600 and 9,800 BTU's without problems.


For those that don't know, a running a/c unit will have what is called a "Locked Rotor" when trying to restart while being used. "Locked Rotor" current is usually shown in the specs and it can be twice the nominal run current. This is the killer that will trip many generators off-line from an overload.


Household, through the wall/window a/c units, are usually less than 7,000 BTU and shouldn't be a problem.



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Old 03-14-2015, 10:00 AM   #7
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Starting current for inductive loads is usually 5 to 7 times the running current. That is the reason most overcurrent devices are time delay . Instantaneous. overcurrent devices are adjustable and can be set at up to 1300 % of the breaker rating in order to allow for motor / transformer inrush current. If you try and start an A/C with too small of a generator, you will either trip the breaker or bog down the generator reducing the voltage and possibly damaging the compressor . You need to maintain full voltage to the A/C during both start up and while running
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:04 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Z View Post
Walmart also has a 30 foot 30 amp extension cord in rv section. I have used mine many times when rv cord was not long enough.
I have Honda eu2000 generator and it has always been fine to run A/C in Casita and my Bigfoot.
I always look at those 30 Amp RV cords at walmarts but they all say don`t use when wet. How can they sell an RV cord with those restrictions, am i supposed to bring the RV in the house. Carl
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:13 AM   #9
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Name: Tom
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My 2008 Casita SD Deluxe has Ac has operated on household 120 vac and a Honda 2000i generator with on modifications other than a 30 amp adapter for the power cord.
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:17 AM   #10
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The insulation on an RV cord is rated for damp/ wet
locations ,sunlight /UV resistant and hard usage .
As long as the cord is not submerged in water or the connection point is not subject to moisture there is no issue. The problem stems from using an extension cord with an RV cord and the connection point between the cords sitting in water. This is the reason that the electrical pedistals at campsites have a flip down cover to keep water off of the receptacle and cord cap.
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:27 AM   #11
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Ooops, my earlier info about Locked Rotor Current may have been a tad low. Here is a link to a chart showing this info for a Coleman, 13,500 BTU, roof top unit.


Run Current, High Fan: 15.3 amps (1836 watts) Locked Rotor Current: 65 amps (7800 watts)


https://www.americanrvcompany.com/as.../48203Data.pdf



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Old 03-14-2015, 10:54 AM   #12
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Locked rotor current is used for sizing the disconnect. or controller. for a motor, That s why disconnects and controlers. are both current and horsepower rated. They need to have an interupting rating capable of opening the load under lock rotor current without destroying themselves or causing injury. Locked rotor current is not an issue under normal circumstances. CEMF limits the current of motors under normal circumstances . Refer to Art
430 in the NEC for clarification
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Old 03-14-2015, 11:32 AM   #13
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Back to the 30 amp to 20 amp adapters. I was using one the last couple years in a campground for the winter. It's the one that looks like a small hockey puck. It would get warm if I had enough load on it, like a dorm fridge, electric heater, TV, 60 watt light bulb. A self described "professional electrician" in the campground said that those types were more prone to heat up than the type that has a short cord between the plugs. The one I was using plugged into the 30 amp outlet in the campground pedestal and then a regular extension cord would plug into it, so the reverse of what Iggy would need. What do you think Steve, does this make sense?
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Old 03-14-2015, 12:31 PM   #14
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Molded Plug Ends "Tend" to be more prone to short life than assembled ends as the wires are often just crimped into place when the rubber stuff is hot molded around them. But, while in use, they are more water proof than many of the assembled plugs. All plug 15/20/30 amp plug adapter combinations are available from RV suppliers.


As the little "Hockey Puck" adapters; a) usually come from China and b) Use the same metal pieces, usually spot welded together, for both sides of the circuit, they seem to suffer from mechanical failure earlier.


AND, IF any adapter or connector ever shows any signs of heating up, it's time to replace.



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Old 03-14-2015, 12:39 PM   #15
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Translation?

<Clip>
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Starting current for inductive loads is usually 5 to 7 times the running current.
.....

For those that aren't electrical engineers or have misplaced their copy of the NEC standards, is it OK to just say that A/C's will momentarily draw a lot more power when restarting during use, than the nominal run current???? LOLOLOL



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Old 03-14-2015, 01:05 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
Back to the 30 amp to 20 amp adapters. I was using one the last couple years in a campground for the winter. It's the one that looks like a small hockey puck. It would get warm if I had enough load on it, like a dorm fridge, electric heater, TV, 60 watt light bulb. A self described "professional electrician" in the campground said that those types were more prone to heat up than the type that has a short cord between the plugs. The one I was using plugged into the 30 amp outlet in the campground pedestal and then a regular extension cord would plug into it, so the reverse of what Iggy would need. What do you think Steve, does this make sense?
NO . Hypothericalli if both devces meet UL and NEMA standards for contact resistance
& contact tension, the temperature rise above ambient should be approximately the same, Since the puck style has 2 connecns in a limited space I believe the puck would run warmer but still within standards ,
The problem usually stems from whether the device has a single or double wipe contact,
This same problem [heating] occurs in homes when heavy loads are connected to residential grade receptaces . Low cost receptacles are single wipe where as commercial grade or hospital grade receptacles have heavier double wipe contacts . That is why one receptacle cost 39 Cents and one costs $4 . Overheating leads to loss of contact tension of the contact surfaces and starts a downward spiral untl the device is destroyed, I apologize fot the long winded explanation. Maybe when we meet again and you have a day to kill ,I can explain it in full detail but you probably have more interesting things to do!!
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Old 03-14-2015, 01:33 PM   #17
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Thanks Steve, makes sense to me, or at least I think I get it. Expected to see you this past winter. Would have been interesting since we now both have similar campers and tow vehicles. A couple years ago (think we discussed this) I did burn out the 30 amp receptacle on the campground pedestal. I blame it on me overloading it, and that the receptacle was old, and worn resulting in a loose connection.
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Old 03-14-2015, 02:25 PM   #18
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Name: Steve
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
<Clip>.....

For those that aren't electrical engineers or have misplaced their copy of the NEC standards, is it OK to just say that A/C's will momentarily draw a lot more power when restarting during use, than the nominal run current???? LOLOLOL
Yes you are correct !!! . I taught AC / DC theory in our union's apprentice program and at the local technical college for 35 years so I have developed some bad habits,
As a union electrician you are expected not only to know how things work but the why.
I was a code instructor certified to teach classes required to renew your electrical license in the State of Minnesota. I forget sometimes on this forum I am not teaching people that are electrician . You have my apology.
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Old 03-15-2015, 02:59 PM   #19
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Name: JD
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We bought a Harbor Freight 2500 watt inverter generator for $499 mostly to compare with one of our Honda 2000 generators at work
We keep these along with the 3000 inverter Hondas for power outages to keep the coffee post and control systems alive during power off parts.
We tested the unit with full load, ran it for 8 hours and more. It sounds different,but not measurably louder than the Honda on out dB meter.
One of the guys took it with him on a barbque contest where it ran the roof top A/C and lights etc with no problem.
The Hondas are nice, but the HF unit is cheap and seems to work pretty good.
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Old 04-06-2015, 09:16 PM   #20
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Name: Doug
Trailer: Casita
California
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I'd recommend the Honda 2000 Companion generator plus adding the LHC hard start capacitor kit. One outlet on the Companion version has a 26a rating and comes with an adaptor so you can plug your 30a power cord into it. The Companion would overload occasionally when running my Casita AC on it until I added the capacitor.

-Doug

2012 Casita Liberty 17 Deluxe
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