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Old 04-10-2010, 05:33 PM   #1
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A general question about AC plugged usage

If I run my 13000 BTU electric AC while plugged into my home while it's 80 degrees outside, does this pill a lot of electricity? I know this will be hard to explain but There are times when I like to spend the afternoon and evening and maybe sleep in the Stream. Am I going to see a siginifigant increase in my bill if kept on for 8 days out of the month when the temps get over 80 with a partial shade?

Is this impossible to get an answer because of all the variables?

I sure like the idea of hooking up at a park and running my stream AC all night long with not worrying about the electric bill. Should I worry at home when done on occassion?


I did a little research on the internet after I posted and at .08 cents per kw it comes to about 14 cents an hour. Since I'm at 10 cents a kw then I'll estimate .20 cents a kw hour. Figured it kinda high, but my question would then be, Does this sound about right?
Thanks for trying to answer.

Shane
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Old 04-10-2010, 05:59 PM   #2
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have u got a 30 amp RV plug/outlet at home running from a 30 amp breaker in the main box?

IF u don't have a dedicated 30 amp plug, breaker and supporting WIRE at home to plug into...

RUNNING the ac is not wise.

if using a typical 15-20 amp household outlet, again NOT wise.
__________

with a voltmeter, CHECK the voltage from the outlet and RECHECK it again while the AC is running.

as the voltage drops below 110v, AMPERAGE increases and the wiring and gizmos INSIDE the AC get HOT...

that LOW voltage, heat will SHORTEN the life of the ac significantly...
__________

as the TEMPS climb it will take MORE and MORE juice to keep the inside COOL...

((about 20 degrees COOLER is the most u can get))

so when it's 95, getting her down to 75 will require the AC to work a lot and suck juice.

but none of that matters IF the power connection isn't adequate.

cheers
2air'
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Old 04-10-2010, 06:04 PM   #3
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Yes sir, had it wired and installed when I had my Argosy. Seperate breakers and all going directly into a 3o amp Rv plug.
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Old 04-10-2010, 06:07 PM   #4
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Yes sir, had it wired and installed when I had my Argosy. Seperate breakers and all going directly into a 3o amp Rv plug.
smart move, good 4 u.

now get that trailer OUT of the drive way, so somebody ELSE can use your electricity...

courtesy parking (with hookups) will make U very popular...

cheers
2air'
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Old 04-10-2010, 06:41 PM   #5
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You won't be using 2000 watts. Probably more like 1400 (around 12 amps - multiply watts by voltage to calculate amperage). Therefore, I'd estimate electricity cost at about about 14 cents per hour when when the compressor is actually running - considerably less when it's not.

I believe the key to using a 15 amp outlet is ensuring at least 110v when the AC is running. Plug a voltmeter into an outlet in the trailer and you will quickly find out. Long runs of wiring to the outlet will result in voltage drop. If voltage is too low, the AC compressor won't even start.

Monitor the temperature of adapter plugs if you do connect to a 15 amp outlet.
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Old 04-10-2010, 07:10 PM   #6
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In Tucson we sometimes run the AC in the Bambi while at home, plugged into a 30 amp dedicated shore power outlet...especially while getting ready for a summer trip, or when it's just freaking hot out (just to keep it from melting)... I have watched the power consumption and have not really seen a outrageous usage increase. Of course, there is an increase, but I don't think it's that much.

By the way, you are not alone in spending time in your AS while at home. We occasionally spend an evening in the Bambi and have even spent the night in it...driveway camping. We've also used the oven to help holiday dinners, etc, when there's not enough room in the house oven for everything.
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Old 04-10-2010, 07:16 PM   #7
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Thanks!!

We're, my wife and I, are going to start the Lord of the Rings Trilogy tonight!!!! probably get through 2 of them and then watch the rest tomorrow afternoon.

Shane
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Old 04-30-2010, 07:01 PM   #8
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So, depending how hot it is and how much electricity costs where you are, running the air conditioner will cost around $1 to $2 per day.
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman View Post
have u got a 30 amp RV plug/outlet at home running from a 30 amp breaker in the main box?

IF u don't have a dedicated 30 amp plug, breaker and supporting WIRE at home to plug into...

RUNNING the ac is not wise.

if using a typical 15-20 amp household outlet, again NOT wise.
__________

with a voltmeter, CHECK the voltage from the outlet and RECHECK it again while the AC is running.

as the voltage drops below 110v, AMPERAGE increases and the wiring and gizmos INSIDE the AC get HOT...

that LOW voltage, heat will SHORTEN the life of the ac significantly...
__________

as the TEMPS climb it will take MORE and MORE juice to keep the inside COOL...

((about 20 degrees COOLER is the most u can get))

so when it's 95, getting her down to 75 will require the AC to work a lot and suck juice.

but none of that matters IF the power connection isn't adequate.

cheers
2air'
I am currently :-) of the opinion that the STORY of low voltage damaging compressors is one borne of CONVENIENCE and PLAUSIBILITY not facts.

Compressors fail because of refrigerant contamination, over or under charging, bearing failure, internal shorts or opens in the wiring. While they will ALL ultimately fail from use if run enough, in a typical RV application it would take decades. Which leaves us with poor build quality and poor engineering as the real causes.

Any idea why the RV dealerships like to blame low voltage? Well what would you do? Talk down the industry and the product you sell?

Every air conditioner has a thermal cutout that shuts off the AC before it overheats. They work. If they don't.... you have bigger problems than low voltage.

Lots of stories of people whose AC failed on a hot day when the voltage was a little low at a campground. Well yes you might get a few more hours out of it if you don't push it when it's on its way out, and of course...

...nobody runs their AC on a beautiful cool day when the voltage is high.

Like many myths there is a kernel of truth in all this.. yes, the current will increase as the voltage goes down. In general a 10% reduction in voltage will produce a 10% increase in current. So having a proper 30A or 50A connector depending on your situation makes sense. But the higher current should not cause the a/c to overheat unless it's so bad that the thermal protector trips.
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:54 PM   #10
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HEY wez still waiting for some pics of that NEW stream!
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there are lengthy detailed intelligent threads here on these issues

with post from folks having INdepth knowledge on the issues...

this isn't one of those and i am in no way wise about the particulars.

but no info in the post is from any dealer OR service guy.

having personally cooked 3 30 amp cords, 1 ac and 1 charger/converter, these are hard knock stories, not myths.

new ac killed after 3-4 days of significantly low voltage.

i was given many clues as the breaker tripped several times and the thermal cut off, cut off... during these daze.

but in 105+ temps camped with 100s of other folks we do silly things sometimes.

heat/groans, more groans/smoke/nasty smell and the ac was history.

converter cooked another time after 4-5 winter days of using the 12v furnace with low voltage ac supply for REcharge.

and once the 30 amp cord ends start going it only adds to the problems.
___________

i have YET to see a cooked/burned/melted 30 amp cord when the power supply is optimal...

OR when using a power booster/auto former gizmo...

((the subject of many others threads and i am NOW a believer...))

and 5 years of trouble free AC since getting wiser and RESPECTING low voltage situations.

yes many rv appliances are poorly made and SHORTENING the life span of a gadget a few days/months is very hard to document...

but there is no doubt low volts and heat kills, i've been the executioner.

cheers
2air'
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Old 05-01-2010, 08:16 AM   #11
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The often quoted compressor startup power requirement is around 22 amps. Chuck has a 20 amp plug at his house and reports years of no issues when he is careful to avoid use of other high-draw appliances in his driveway (microwave, toaster, hair dryer).

I looked at purchasing an Overlander some years ago. The guy had a large parking area and kept the O'lander & a new 34' Classic parked along the perimeter. He had 50' of 15 amp cord running to the Overlander ... as he explained to me that his second A/C in 5 years had just failed on this coach. Yes -- said he used the A/C in the driveway. All that cord, he wouldn't have had even 15 amps available at the coach. Wonder how hot the cord got?

Like anything -- depends. But I recall soldiermedic posting about a melted extension cord plug from trying to use a 15 amp plug to run his A/C.
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Old 05-01-2010, 12:45 PM   #12
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So, depending how hot it is and how much electricity costs where you are, running the air conditioner will cost around $1 to $2 per day.
That is a reasonable assumption.

They make a gizmo called a Kill a Watt meter that will tell you exactly what the cost to run a certain item is. I don't know if they make one for anything heavier than a 15 amp circuit.

I use a clamp on ammeter and just calculate my costs from there. You have to take cycling into consideration but that is pretty easy to guess after a couple of hours of monitoring.

Aaron
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