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Old 06-24-2016, 10:10 PM   #71
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Given this is a temporary thing and money is tight, buy a cheap used contractor generator to run your AC during your project then sell it when finished. Forget messing with wires.
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Old 06-25-2016, 06:12 AM   #72
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What else is running on your garage circuit(s)?

Is there something else beside the Airstream using juice that might explain the change from last year?


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Old 06-25-2016, 06:29 AM   #73
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Originally Posted by joemikeb View Post
....[*]The A/C in the trailer burns out because it is running under low power (brown out) conditions
.....
Couple of points / questions.

Joemikeb, do you have a reference for that? How do we know when brown becomes too brown, so to speak, where supplied power is concerned?

I ask because, OP, I have a similar situation to yours. I'm just south of Houston and I am working on my rig during the summer months so I want to plug into shore power. What I have found is that there is only ONE regular outlet into which I can plug without tripping the corresponding breaker. I'm not sure why this is. I will note that my a/c is a bit smaller than yours - 11,000 BTU. But I have wondered if there's any risk to running it on a regular circuit. I keep it on the lowest setting and it runs fine, but beyond that, I don't know how to tell if this could become a problem at any point.

Regarding the generator suggestions, if the OP is within Houston city limits proper, he could be in for a world of hurt if he tries that route. Houston is well-known for being the largest city in America with no zoning, but they have a number of functional ordinances that take the place of zoning and they do not hesitate to enforce those rules. I should know, because I've been on the receiving end. Number one is the noise ordinance. Number two is an ordinance related to vehicles over a certain length and height ("Sec. 26-96. Large vehicle restrictions" which includes trailers). Typically the way this works is that you might not get busted unless you draw attention to yourself. Fire up a generator and it's instant attention if you have neighbors, and HPD will immediately enforce. It's a ticket, money out the window, and a prohibition against trying the same thing twice.
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Old 06-25-2016, 08:13 PM   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InterBlog View Post
Couple of points / questions.

Joemikeb, do you have a reference for that? How do we know when brown becomes too brown, so to speak, where supplied power is concerned?

I ask because, OP, I have a similar situation to yours. I'm just south of Houston and I am working on my rig during the summer months so I want to plug into shore power. What I have found is that there is only ONE regular outlet into which I can plug without tripping the corresponding breaker. I'm not sure why this is. I will note that my a/c is a bit smaller than yours - 11,000 BTU. But I have wondered if there's any risk to running it on a regular circuit. I keep it on the lowest setting and it runs fine, but beyond that, I don't know how to tell if this could become a problem at any point.

Hi, my air conditioner is an 11,000 BTU unit also and I have never had a problem running mine on 15/20 amp house current.

As for the brown out question; My house had a brown out once while I had two air conditioners running. One was a window unit and the other was a portable unit. My voltage dropped to 88 volts and the only thing that happened was the compressors wouldn't cycle on. As for low voltage causing damage to air conditioners, I have no proof. As an automotive electrician, I have always said that "there is no time limit on anything electrical, Electrical items can last three million years or pop the second they are turned on/plugged in." Air conditioners are electrical are subject to the same time limits.
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Old 06-25-2016, 09:50 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by kscherzi View Post
Given this is a temporary thing and money is tight, buy a cheap used contractor generator to run your AC during your project then sell it when finished. Forget messing with wires.
Great idea!
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Old 06-25-2016, 10:15 PM   #76
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A 13,500 BTU. Unit will require about 20% more power than a 11,000 BTU unit. 15,000 BTU will require at least 25% more power than the 11,000 BTU unit.
Many of the contractor style generators have a 240 volt outlet along with the standard 20 amp duplex outlet. The 240 volt outlet will probably be rated a 30 amps on a 4,000 watt unit.
Be careful that you don't put 240 volts on your coach. One hot leg, one neutral and ground are all that is required. Unless you drive a true ground rod, which is 8' long you will not have a reliable grounded system.
Hope you have good neighbors. The contractor generators are quite noisy.
Have you considered working at night? You may only need a fan for that.
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Old 06-26-2016, 10:26 AM   #77
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As mentioned earlier, I have a pair of Honda EU2000i generators, and if cooling the trailer for a few hours a week was the objective, then they would be OK. Despite their reputation for being nearly silent, a pair of these running all afternoon does become noticeable, especially in the area in which I live, where the houses are shoe-horned in in rather close proximity. But, to run the generators a couple of hours several nights out of the week, and several hours on each weekend day, seems like more than a temporary fix. I don't want to wear out $2000 worth of generators to save $1000 in electrical work.

As far as what else I have running in the garage, I have only a small freezer that pulls about 2.3 amps.

The low-voltage issue is a big question in my mind. I was considering a compromise of installing a sub-panel next to the main panel (which is up near the front corner of the house, 104 ft from the garage). I could then run some 6GA wires back to the back corner of the house in a conduit mounted on the side of the house, and install the 30A plug on the corner of the house. So this would leave about 40-45 ft that I would have to cover with the main power lead and and an extension. Problem is that the power lead and extension are only 10 GA wires, which means I am adding 50ft of 10GA to the circuit, which will likely result in voltage drop that renders the whole effort a waste of time.
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Old 06-26-2016, 12:02 PM   #78
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I have an important follow up question. I bought a weather proof recreational vehicle 50 amp outlet box with intention of wiring it into the sub panel that is already present. I intend to use it for my new classic which requires 50 amps. So to clarify this for my circumstances I need to understand that dispite the directions on the outlet that state it is to be wired as a 220 volt with a double throw breaker and four 8 gauge wires, i.e. Red, black, white and green I should purchase a single pole 50 amp breaker and buy a three wire outlet correct ? Therefore, I end up with a single 50 amp breaker with a single hot black wire running to the out let.
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Old 06-26-2016, 12:37 PM   #79
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Jury-rigging shore power at the house

Follow the directions on the outlet. 50 amp is wired with two breakers, and is 220 volt across the hot sides. The ground and neutral in the right place are critical.

The outlet should match your Classic's shore power plug.

Note that 50 amp RV connection has 4 prong connections. 30 amp only has three prongs. 30 amp is wired as 120 volt. One hot, one neutral, one safety ground.

If you are not sure what you are doing, in the interest of safety, consult a licensed electrician that understands RV connections. Not all of them do.

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Old 06-26-2016, 12:43 PM   #80
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You Can Not mix and match electrical hardware. They are designed to be idiot proof so one can not cause a problem. If you do what you are saying and the house goes up in smoke and the insurance company find an out of code receptacle you are out of luck.

If you want a 50 amp 220 volt connection for something and a 30 amp 120 volt connection for something else get each and wire them correctly.

This tread is titled Jury Rig for a reason. Jury Rigs just don't fly in today's regulatory climate.
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Old 06-26-2016, 01:08 PM   #81
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Jury-rigging shore power at the house

A 50 amp to 30 amp adaptor will solve your current problem. The 50 amp service and RV receptacle will be a 4 wire system. The 50 to 30 amp adaptor will only use 3 of the 4 wires; one hot, one neutral and the ground.
So go ahead and install the 50 amp RV receptacle which will match your future needs. Pick up a 50 amp to 30 amp adaptor at most RV suppliers or maybe even Wal-Mart and you are good to go.
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Old 06-26-2016, 01:51 PM   #82
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Hey Belegedhel exactly what are the wires that enter the garage and are they in a junction box where they enter the garage? Are they buried in the ground or in the wall and you just see the lights and outlets in the garage? Is the garage attached to the house? Why not go with your original idea as a temporary thing and take a chance it will be OK until you change it back? Maybe replace the 2 breakers with 1 GFIC so that you are doubling the wire cross section and hopefully preventing a child from being electrocuted by touching the live prongs of the unplugged cheater cord. This should be safe enough for practical purposes though it sure is not code or insurance safe. Don't do anything unless you know where the electricity could go under any circumstances. It's America after all! Signed Rube Goldberg. *I know Rube well and his Airstream is always powered up...
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Old 06-27-2016, 09:17 AM   #83
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$1000? It shouldn't cost $100 to do this with two slimline breakers, one 30amp breaker, and some 10 gauge wire for a 30amp outlet. If it's a long run, you might go to 8 gauge wire.

If you want to do a 50amp, you should use minimum 8 gauge wire but I'd probably go 6 gauge to be safe. There are charts with temperatures, drops, etc. that show that 8 will work in a lot of cases but you need 6 in some. Just use six.

Even so, it shouldn't be anywhere near $1000. If you're worried about it not being a "professional install", do like one other guy said on here and do all the running of the wire and setting of the box yourself, so that all the electrician has to do is make the connections at each end and switch it on.

As to the main service having enough juice, you have that same problem if you wire a sub panel into the main. So you will need to check your rating on the main panel to make sure you have the capacity to add this.

I installed a 30amp outlet at each end of my garage. I run 50amp on the trailer but use a 30 to 50 pigtail and just don't turn on everything. Works fine. I got by in the trailer for the first five years with 30amp, but eventually replaced the power center with a Progressive Dynamics unit and upgraded to 50amp. It's a nice conversion.

Best of luck,
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Old 06-27-2016, 11:37 AM   #84
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If the new wire to the garage is buried or in conduit it must be derated.
Do it right.
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