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Old 01-26-2007, 02:03 AM   #1
JMD
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Hook up question

Sorry for the newbie-dumb question but I'm considering an Airstream in the future and was wondering if it can get water and electricity from a standard hose and outdoor extension cord?

I haven't found the answer anywhere. While I would be doing my share of RV park camping and boondocking, the ability to visit friends/family for an extended period of time and only impose by connecting a hose and an extension cord would definitely be a plus. (Also useful for using as a guest house in you own driveway.)


Perhaps all RVs have this and I'm too naive to realize they don't mention it because it is obvious. If the Airstream doesn't hook up this way I would imagine some attachment would do it. If so, how much do the attachments cost and where are they purchased?

Once again sorry for dumb question.

-Inquiring future Airstreamer
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Old 01-26-2007, 03:39 AM   #2
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Must be exciting considering an Airstream in your future!

Yes you will be able to hook up to their water and plug into their electricity. The Airstream will come with its own electrical cord that is heavier and you may have to use an adapter to meet their receptacle. You would want to use a special hose for water to keep the taste fresh. Go to Shop Camping World for RV Accessories, RV Parts, & other items for Outdoor Enthusiasts. to look at water hoses. They are inexpensive so are electrical adapters. You would need a heavier extension cord as used for RV service for plugging in your trailer if the length required is longer than the length supplied. See also over at camping world. I suggest you get an RV book, they are ever so helpful with info, references and pictures, even purchasing help sections.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JMD
Sorry for the newbie-dumb question but I'm considering an Airstream in the future and was wondering if it can get water and electricity from a standard hose and outdoor extension cord?

I haven't found the answer anywhere. While I would be doing my share of RV park camping and boondocking, the ability to visit friends/family for an extended period of time and only impose by connecting a hose and an extension cord would definitely be a plus. (Also useful for using as a guest house in you own driveway.)


Perhaps all RVs have this and I'm too naive to realize they don't mention it because it is obvious. If the Airstream doesn't hook up this way I would imagine some attachment would do it. If so, how much do the attachments cost and where are they purchased?

Once again sorry for dumb question.

-Inquiring future Airstreamer
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Old 01-26-2007, 04:54 AM   #3
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Driveway Camping

JMD,
I see you are a fellow early riser as am I. You will likely get a lot of help on this question of how to hook up an AS to your house. You can also use the Search function. I am a new Bambi owner and my experience thus far consists of camping on my driveway. It's a great way to gain experience and a lot of fun in and of itself.

I found that hooking up to electricity to be the easiest aspect of driveway camping. Unhitching on my sloping driveway is more of a challenge (requires wheel chocks and some blocking under my jack to get the trailer stablized). The AS comes with a 30A electrical cord that is 30 feet long. You will need a 30A-15/20A adapter which you can buy at WALMART or at an RV Camping store. You can use this to plug into a 15A (or preferably a 20A recepticle) to tap into house hold current. This will run everything with the exception of the Air Conditioner. The AC requires a full on 30A hook up. You can use the electrical heater on the AC unit, but not the AC. The AC may run but it could be damaged. We will probably get a 30A hook up installed in our garage so we can use the AC this Summer.

I think you will find that the AS is a good, non-invasive way to visit close friends and family. We use the AS to visit my Father in Law now and I can tell you it has improved the experience for both he and I. I also seem to sleep better out in my AS than in my own bed. Many others in the Forum also attest to that.
Gene
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Old 01-26-2007, 05:25 AM   #4
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Good morning

Greetings JMD- Sorry I overslept this morning for some reason. Gene has hit it right on the rivit for you. You sure can hook right up to your household connections. Just remember if using water, sooner or later the grey and black tanks will need to be emptied! If you intent to use all of your appliances, your will want an electrician come out to the house and install a dedicated 30 AMP box and proper outlet for you.

Welcome to the forums, and ther is never a dumb question unless you ask after you blow something up!
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Old 01-26-2007, 05:36 AM   #5
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just remember when you get your electrician to wire up your at home campground it is 120 volt! NOT 240!

a couple of members had trailers damaged last year due to this, even seasoned professional electricians make mistakes.

i think a lot of them look at the plug and automaticlly assume it is 240.

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Old 01-26-2007, 07:53 AM   #6
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Yard Camping

Welcome to the Forums.

If you are going to use your Airstream in your yard, I would suggest installing a 30 amp outlet in a convenient location. This will enable you to run the airconditioning.

We camp very often in SuEllyn's Dad's yard in Jacksonville. We had a 30 amp outlet installed. We hook up to his city water and use a duplexer to tap into his cable TV. We even got some extra sewer hose and hook into his sewer clean-out. We have our own private campground in his back yard with complete hook-ups.

On occasion we have hooked up in other yards. You have to be careful when you try to run the A/C on a 15 or 20 amp circuit. Sometimes you can get by on a 20 amp with nothing else running. A trick that we have used is to plug the refer in separately (outside the trailer system) to a different outlet not on the same circuit.

The trailer electrical system can be plugged into a standard househould out let by using an adaptor that costs under $15. You will also need a plug-in current meter for about $10.
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Old 01-26-2007, 08:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moosetags
You will also need a plug-in current meter for about $10.
Brian (moosetags), what's the need for and use of the current meter?

JMD: My new Safari came with the adapator in the starter kit. We have used it when parking in a friends drive for the night, but didn't run the AC, Heat Pump, or Microwave. Making a pot of coffee in the morning with the Mr. Coffee or watching the TV didn't create any brown-outs.

I'm in the process of installing a 30A outlet on the side of my garage so that when I have the trailer out of storage, I can work inside without roasting here in Florida. Also bought a long water hose from Camping World so I can hook up the water.
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Old 01-26-2007, 09:34 AM   #8
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The current meter will allow you to assess the quality of power you are receiving from an unknown source. "Sure that's 30 amps" is something you want to avoid and measure yourself - as stated above - serious damage can occur if the power supply is not up to snuff.
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Old 01-26-2007, 09:48 AM   #9
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Current Meter

Quote:
Originally Posted by clancy_boy
The current meter will allow you to assess the quality of power you are receiving from an unknown source. "Sure that's 30 amps" is something you want to avoid and measure yourself - as stated above - serious damage can occur if the power supply is not up to snuff.
Is this something you should check at each campsite? Is there a recommendation for a particular brand/model number? Can can someone post a picture of one in use for this application?

Thanks,
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Old 01-26-2007, 10:37 AM   #10
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JMD -- Welcome to the Forums! I'll always remember the taste of water from the garden hose in my youth. RV hose is white and is supposed to mean it doesn't leach plasticizers and is healthy for drinking water.

I keep an AC voltage meter plugged into the TV outlet on the side of the fridge where I can see it from the living area or the door. It's quicker than walking up to the fridge to check the LP light or moving around to where I can see the microwave front panel. At least twice last summer it saved me from being on battery power for an extended time without knowing it -- once after a lightning storm threw the breaker on the box outside. It also let's me know if the campground wiring is poor enough to cause brownout conditions.
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Old 01-26-2007, 10:46 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canoe stream
JMD -- Welcome to the Forums! I'll always remember the taste of water from the garden hose in my youth. RV hose is white and is supposed to mean it doesn't leach plasticizers and is healthy for drinking water.

I keep an AC voltage meter plugged into the TV outlet on the side of the fridge where I can see it from the living area or the door. It's quicker than walking up to the fridge to check the LP light or moving around to where I can see the microwave front panel. At least twice last summer it saved me from being on battery power for an extended time without knowing it -- once after a lightning storm threw the breaker on the box outside. It also let's me know if the campground wiring is poor enough to cause brownout conditions.
Thanks for posting that, what do you consider a minimum voltage to continue running your current load?
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Old 01-26-2007, 10:51 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canoe stream
JMD -- Welcome to the Forums! I'll always remember the taste of water from the garden hose in my youth. RV hose is white and is supposed to mean it doesn't leach plasticizers and is healthy for drinking water.
White potable water hoses do not contain lead. Many garden hoses contain lead which can leach out. This is not a concern if the hose is flushed of the stagnant water prior to using it for drinking or cooking.
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Old 01-26-2007, 11:01 AM   #13
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Dave -- I'm not the hottest sparks person on the boards but better walk it like I talk it. The Search function still works! http://www.airforums.com/forum...ge-c-4490.html I would have to say I haven't seen many low voltage situation since I started using this. Most of my plug-in use is at state parks and their wiring is pretty up to date.
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Old 01-26-2007, 11:09 AM   #14
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Thanks Bob,
In reading that post over, it looks like either 100 volts or 110 volts is the minimum for running the A/C - depending on who you talk to.
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