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Old 08-06-2014, 08:20 PM   #1
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Newbie question about 30 amp service

Hi everyone Ė my 2014 19 foot flying cloud has a 30 amp connection on it for electrical hookup. What if a campground only offers 50 amp service?
Do I need some kind of adapter?

Thanks!
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Old 08-06-2014, 08:33 PM   #2
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Maybe, maybe not....

As I understand it, the answer is maybe, but probably not. The 50 amp connector is different, but the only campground I asked about it said their box had both connectors so, in effect, they have both 30 amp and 50 amp service. Some campgrounds or campsites may only have the 50 amp connector and for those you would need an adapter.
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Old 08-06-2014, 08:43 PM   #3
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You need to keep a 50 to 30 amp connected on your trailer.
I also keep a 30 to 15


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Old 08-06-2014, 08:45 PM   #4
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You need what's called a dogbone adapter. Something like this:

http://www.amazon.com/Camco-55175-Po...50+amp+adapter
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Old 08-06-2014, 08:55 PM   #5
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The 30-amp plugs get a lot of use. Sometimes you get a better connection using the 50-amp with the dogbone connector acstokes has a link to. Like egraham I have 30 to 15-amp connector as well. You just can't have too many adapters. You never know what you're going to come across and it's better to have one handy.

You should also look into getting a smart surge protector (like Progressive Industries) so you can check the campground connection before plugging in your AS. It checks for correct polarity, open grounds and the like. Here's what I have (there are others)
SSP-30
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Old 08-06-2014, 09:01 PM   #6
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Truth is it's rare to find a post that doesn't have both - and when it's only one, it's almost always a 30 amp service. I keep a 50 to 30 dogbone simply because it's not uncommon for the 30 amp receptacle to be worn out. I've had connections so loose that I've had to bungee the cord to the post... and that's not a solid connection. Could even be dangerous with a little arcing and sparking. Of course if I were more methodical I wouldn't do anything to unhitch until I'd hooked up the electrical service and tested it. Always happens that I've already unhitched and then just say "OH, naughty word!".

A dogbone is a handy thing to have.

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Old 08-06-2014, 09:37 PM   #7
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Many state parks may offer only 30A service. The adapters are inexpensive. Just carry them in case of need.


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Old 08-06-2014, 09:47 PM   #8
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If you plug in with little or no "resistance" chances are the 30 amp receptacle is shot.

Last trip to a Corps of Engineer park we noticed the problem and called the front desk to report the 50 amp was out. They fixed it within 45 minutes and were really nice folks with good manners and grooming.... Not your "usual" experience at some places.

Always check the voltage when you are running with an electrical load. The smarter (more expensive) surge and power protectors will test, warn and may even protect should power be bad. But they can't "fix" bad power.

There are "line conditioners" which can handle whatever your wallet can tolerate in protection.

Anyway, simply keep up with condition of your hardware, look for discolored or damaged lugs on the plugs... You will see the problems sooner.
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Old 08-06-2014, 09:53 PM   #9
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Correct me if I'm wrong. If the AS has a 30amp cord it is rated for 30amps. If the camp post only has a 50amp and a 15amp it would be better to use the 15amp. Here is my logic, if I use the 50 to 30amp adapter I would not trip the 50amp breaker unless I was to draw 50amps or more. However my 30amp cord will over heat if I draw more than 30amps.
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Old 08-06-2014, 10:49 PM   #10
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I am not a electrician, but my understanding is as follows: a 30 A service has three legs (prongs) on the plug. A 50 A service, in order to get to 50 A, has four legs on the plug. All the adapter does is allow you to plug into the plug. If you use a 50 A adapter on a 30 A cord, you will only get 30 A. The adapter just kills one of the legs from the actual 50 A service. Your Airstream will not get more than 30 A, unless there is some other major electrical problem with the service being provided by the campground.


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Old 08-06-2014, 10:54 PM   #11
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It gets far more interesting!

I upgraded 30 to 50.

Running 30 we could not run AC, water heater and hair dryer or microwave.

With 50 I run both AC and all 110 appliances, just like home.

The "dogbones" merely allow you to plug in. You MUST self manage power use.
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Old 08-07-2014, 07:05 AM   #12
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Quote:
Correct me if I'm wrong. If the AS has a 30amp cord it is rated for 30amps. If the camp post only has a 50amp and a 15amp it would be better to use the 15amp. Here is my logic, if I use the 50 to 30amp adapter I would not trip the 50amp breaker unless I was to draw 50amps or more. However my 30amp cord will over heat if I draw more than 30amps.
In this instance one of your AS breakers would trip. If you connect to the 15 amp you can only draw 15 amps before a breaker would trip so you won't be able to use your AC, microwave, toaster, or coffee pot.
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Old 08-07-2014, 07:39 AM   #13
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Cannonball's post is correct. If you use the 50 to 30 amp adapter, your electrical service is only going to provide 30 amps of power so you will not be able to run the second AC, you will not "overheat" your 30 amp cord, you will not "fry" your on-board electrical system and you will not trip the campground breaker for making the hookup this way. The 50 to 30 amp adapter effectively disables one of the legs on the 50 amp service and creates a 30 amp service for you.
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Old 08-07-2014, 08:06 AM   #14
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Newbie question about 30 amp service

The 50 amp service provides 50 amps of current to each leg. Since you are using 1 leg, there is still 50 amp capacity. Even when you plug in the adaptor. It doesn't know the difference between your rig and one that has 50amp requirement.
You should have a main 30 amp breaker in your coach. Which will trip if overloaded. The only part that is not protected is the shore power cable. If it were damaged to the point of causing the camp sight breaker to trip. It would not matter if it were 30 or 50 amp.
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