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Old 01-21-2013, 11:33 AM   #1
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2013 25' Flying Cloud
Livingston , Texas
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2013 25' Flying Cloud Main Circuit Braker

Greetings and thanks for your help on the "2013 Flying Cloud Furnace" problem, that I asked about earlier.

Our main 30A circuit breaker trips when we add loads while the heat pump is operating. We first noticed this at the dealership when we tried to operate the "convection microwave" while the heat pump was in use. The 30A breaker would trip every time the HP and Microwave were on at the same time.

The dealer did some trouble shooting and found the battery charging system was throwing spikes so he replaced this and also replaced the 30A circuit barker but the problem persisted.

The dealer spoke with Airstream and was informed that the convection microwave would overload the circuit when the HP was operating. This was a surprise since a simple load analysis should have identified this problem. This configuration should not be offered as an option since failure is certain.

Our dealer was not aware of this built in problem by Airstream. I asked the dealer if he could swap out the convection microwave with a standard microwave that did not draw so much power. He is looking into this.

This morning I was making some toast in a plain Jane toaster and the 30A circuit breaker tripped. All that was on was the overhead 12v lights the heat pump and the toaster. This was steady state with no compressors or starting.

I reviewed the manual for the Dometic AC/heat pump and it shows that the rated load for the compressor is 12.5 amps and the fan 3.5 amps, or 16 amps for the heating/cooling. It seems like the remaining capacity on the 30A breaker (14 amps) should be enough to operate other household appliances.

I'm beginning to wonder if any microwave will be compatible with my new Airstream. Or perhaps there is something else causing an excessive load.

I would appreciate knowing if anyone else is having this problem, any comments you have regarding this problem and any possible solutions you could recommend.

2013 25' Airstream Flying Cloud Twin Bed.

Thanks in advance,

Ed
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:49 AM   #2
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2006 25' Safari FB SE
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Continuous operating ampacity

While the breaker is labeled 30 Amps, it is designed to trip at 80 per cent of that in actual use. When loaded as you describe, if the current exceeds that percentage, or 24 Amps in this case, the heat build up will cause the thermal unit in the breaker to trip. It will allow over 24 amps to be drawn through the breaker but only until the heat accumulates enough to trip the breaker. While it is a 30 amp breaker, it is only good for 24 amps continuous. If the devices in use cycle, it will prolong or possible escape that point.
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:55 AM   #3
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Addendum

I failed to mention that this is not specific to the circuit breakers in the Airstream or other trailers. It is true for the breakers in residences, if something other than your AS, and most other breakers in commercial, residential and industrial use. Hope that clears that issue up, if that question came up.
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Old 01-21-2013, 12:00 PM   #4
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Ed, 30 amp service woud not come close to operating everything in the new Airstream at once. 50 amp service would be lacking as well. That's about all you can get at campgrounds.

The power hogs, heat pump/ac, elect water heater, conv microwave together draw more than that. Then there are constant loads such as converter, and such items as coffee makers and hair curlers.

These have propane alternatives. For example when cooking, use the gas furnace and gas water heater.

I don't think there is anything wrong with your trailer, nor the design is deficient. With some experience you will know what combinations work for different functions. Remember that many homes with similar electrical devices have 200 amp services.

doug k
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Old 01-21-2013, 12:02 PM   #5
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There are a few other items that you need to consider when looking at your power usage. When you are plugged into shore power you are also powering the convertor to supply 12 volts and charge the batteries. Your refrigerator would have switched to electric as well. Both of these items will increase your power draw.
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Old 01-21-2013, 12:13 PM   #6
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You might also check out the toaster to see what it draws. Toaster or heater elements are in essence a controlled direct short. The toaster may very well be using 900-1000 watts which calculates to 7.5-8.3 amps. All these things that the others have mentioned add rather quickly to the load. Good luck in solving the problem.
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:04 PM   #7
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Sounds like your dealer lied to you or is ignorant to all thing RV related.

Back in the '70s through the '90s Airstream installed a switch so that the A/C and microwave could only be on 1 at a time. Way too many high amp items now to have switches so only 1 or 2 can be on at a time.

The big problem is consumers demand all these items be included or they wont buy the RV and many don't understand the limitation of a low amp power supply (at least without an explanation).
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Old 01-21-2013, 06:06 PM   #8
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2013 25' Flying Cloud main circuit breaker

Thank you..... Wazbro, afneill, azflycaster, dkottum,

I do appreciate your kind advice and for setting me straight on all of this. I bought the Airstream off the lot and it came equipped as is. I just expected that all the stuff would work.

I upgraded to the AS from a 17' Casita SD and could run everything, AC, micro, light, water heater, etc. and never popped a circuit breaker. Your explanations are clear and I understand how this works now, but I am STILL amazed that this huge upgrade to the Airstream did not include all the simple things I took for granted in the smaller camper.

Warmest Regards,

Ed
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Old 01-22-2013, 06:38 AM   #9
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Casita, smaller ac, smaller converter, no heat pump, gas water heater and smaller microwave, Jim.
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:45 AM   #10
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My trailer has toggle switches so I can not run the micro wave while I have another high amperage draw item on like heat pump.

I agree that customers want all this stuff so the manufacturers are building 40 amp to 70 amp trailers. The campgrounds are only have 30 or 50 amp service. And remember - as the campground fills up 30 amp service could become 28 amp.

Add up the amps that are required to start all electrical stuff - I bet you will add up to much more than 30 amps.
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