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Old 10-23-2012, 07:44 PM   #1
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1994 34' Limited
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pluggin in your coach

So we just towed home our 34' Classic Limited. I would like to keep some heat on inside. I have heard very different advice about staying plugged into shore power long term. Many seem to do so but at least one person said never never. So what do you do, and is there s definitive answer? I leave my boat plugged in year round so I am not sure what the wear issues would be to a trailer unless the converters are not as good in trailers as inverters are on boats. I am also thinking about plugging into a 15 amp and then only running a couple of small space heaters in the trailer. I know I can't run more than 15 amps of power without causing problems but is there any reason not to use 15 amp and then plug a couple small heaters into the TT internal outlets?

thanks much

monty
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:50 PM   #2
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the standard converter will likely overcharge the batteries. you can invest in a good converter or put the converter on a timer. small electric heaters usually are rated at 15A each. you also have to factor in the length and gauge of the power cord(s). it will cost you a fortune in electricity.
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:51 PM   #3
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If your AS has a modern 3 stage converter/charger you can leave it plugged in all the time with no worries.

Most small electric space heaters take 10 to 12 amps (1200 to 1400 watts) so only one could operate on a 15 amp grid power outlet. No problems in the trailer in doing that.

If you had a 30 amp hookup you could use two heaters, but you would need to be sure they were on different circuits in the Airstream.
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Old 10-23-2012, 08:16 PM   #4
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Keep in mind the electric heaters may not be enough to keep your tanks from freezing - whether that is an issue depends on your climate.
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Old 10-23-2012, 08:17 PM   #5
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I leave my trailer plugged in and fridge on at my house. Got to have a cold beer handy when out relaxing in the man cave. My old Univolt does not charge the battery, so no worry about damage from over charging. I have 30 amp wiring at the house so I can run the AC when it is hot. In the event of the rare below freezing weather I can plug in a small heater to keep it toasty.
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Old 10-24-2012, 10:46 AM   #6
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thanks everyone. we are fully winterized, the low setting on the heater is only 750 watts. I plan to run one of those and one fan to help with circulation. just enough heat and air movement to keep the damp feeling and mildew away.

How can i tell if outlets are on different circuits within the TT?
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Old 10-24-2012, 10:51 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyV View Post
...

How can i tell if outlets are on different circuits within the TT?
Verify that all the outlets work first. Flip off one breaker. The ones that don't work now are on that breaker. The ones that do work are not, so must be on another.

I agree with the comments about needing a modern converter when plugged in for long periods. I replaced a working Univolt with an Inteli-Power three years ago for just that reason. There are also plenty of other thread on the subject. Use the Google option in the search drop-down menu.
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Old 10-24-2012, 01:10 PM   #8
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You are fully winterized and your main concern is dampness and mildew in the trailer. Instead of heating and circulating the air all winter try the air dehumidifying crystals called Dry Z Air. A couple maybe for a 34 footer. It sucks the moisture right out of the trailer and leaves it smelling fresh in the spring. You may want to slightly lift your mattress and cushions for air circulation and you will be mold free.
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Old 10-24-2012, 04:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyV View Post
So we just towed home our 34' Classic Limited. I would like to keep some heat on inside. I have heard very different advice about staying plugged into shore power long term. Many seem to do so but at least one person said never never. So what do you do, and is there s definitive answer?
It depends on what converter you have and what temperature the trailer is at. In cold weather there usually isn't a problem with overcharging. I leave mine plugged in all winter and end up adding water to the batteries once in the spring.

You can leave your trailer plugged in and just check the electrolyte level in the batteries regularly, once after a few days, then weekly, then monthly, if there's no need to add water. Any overcharging problems will show up as electrolyte loss.

Quote:
I am also thinking about plugging into a 15 amp and then only running a couple of small space heaters in the trailer. I know I can't run more than 15 amps of power without causing problems but is there any reason not to use 15 amp and then plug a couple small heaters into the TT internal outlets?
The main problem is cost. You'll run up a $100 electric bill every month.

In general a 15 amp circuit will only support one small space heater, though it depends since some of them are lower wattage.

Some trailers cause nuisance GFCI trips when plugged into 15 amp outlets.

Quote:
Originally Posted by woof View Post
You are fully winterized and your main concern is dampness and mildew in the trailer. Instead of heating and circulating the air all winter try the air dehumidifying crystals called Dry Z Air. A couple maybe for a 34 footer. It sucks the moisture right out of the trailer and leaves it smelling fresh in the spring. You may want to slightly lift your mattress and cushions for air circulation and you will be mold free.
Such products don't remove enough water to be useful:
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Old 10-24-2012, 04:43 PM   #10
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I leave ours plugged in to 30 amp all the time. The converter is plugged into a timer. I check every day because I am retired and old retired people have nothing better to do. I make sure nothing freezes and the trailer is ventilated. Minimum amount of heat from a oil filled radiator and it is the perfect man cave. Sal.
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