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Old 07-22-2013, 10:23 AM   #1
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1966 17' Caravel
North Branch , New York
Join Date: Jul 2013
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running AC in the caravel

The caravel just arrived and it has a rooftop AC. I've just been told by the previous owners that I can't run the AC off my house outlet? It came with the necessary adaptor to plug in but they say it will only run lights and fridge. Is this the nature of this AC, are there any rooftop AC's that can run off house power? I want to work in it but it's too hot without AC. Am planning on switching to the Dometic low profile one, will that work?
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Old 07-22-2013, 10:27 AM   #2
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1978 31' Sovereign
Booneville , Mississippi
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A 110 plug is a 110 plug...if you have an adapter...you can run it while you work...mine stays plugged in all the time.
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Old 07-22-2013, 10:34 AM   #3
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2017 26' Flying Cloud
1976 Argosy 28
Alamo Heights , Texas
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The quick answer is no, but the detailed answer is "it depends on what the house outlet is, and how far it is from the trailer." Running just the AC is doable off a 20A circuit with a short run of heavy-duty cord. Few household outlets are 20A, however... those are generally single-outlet "dedicated appliance" outlets, such as one for a deep freeze or spare refrigerator in the garage. 20A double-gang outlets are common, but usually used in light commercial rather than residential settings, just because 15A is a little cheaper and that's how most homes are wired.

*IF* you have a 20A outlet, make sure it's really on a 20A circuit and not something that was just wired onto a 15A circuit with a bunch of other outlets on it. Measure the voltage with the AC off and monitor the voltage with the AC on. If the voltage drops below 110 with the AC running, you're likely to damage it over time. Also watch for your cords and connectors getting hot.

The best solution for running the AC is to have a dedicated 30A 120V RV circuit, but that takes time and money.
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Old 07-22-2013, 10:59 AM   #4
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1997 25' Excella
Waterville , Minnesota
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Also if you are trying to plug into a GFI outlet, fridge and SOME microwaves WILL NOT work, 20 amp or not!
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Old 07-22-2013, 12:16 PM   #5
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1968 24' Tradewind
Oxford, , Mississippi
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DKB summed it up pretty well. Will it run, yes. Should you run it that way, probably not especially if you are using a light gauge and long extension chord. The longer the chord and the smaller the wire size the greater the voltage drop. The AC in your trailer runs best on a constant 120V. Running the AC at a lower voltage can cause a lot of stress on the AC unit compressor when is cycles on (this is the highest amp draw). If you do have a 20 amp circuit and use a relatively short (say 25 ft) heavy gauge extension chord you should be fine. OTOH, if you have only a 15amp circuit with other loads on it and then hook up a 100ft light to med gauge chord you may cause issues with your AC unit. The best solution is a dedicated 30amp RV outlet box on the side of the garage .
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