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Old 01-07-2017, 11:39 AM   #1
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Question 15amps

A trailer park only has 15amps for electric, will be there for 5 days, what can I run on 15amps?
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Old 01-07-2017, 11:57 AM   #2
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A trailer park only has 15amps for electric, will be there for 5 days, what can I run on 15amps?
That is enough to run the converter/battery charger to keep your batteries topped up. Your lighting, fridge electronic circuit board and the furnace circuit board run off the batteries. If you want to run something like the microwave, you may need to shut down the converter/charger. Most hair dryers use between 800 and 1800 watts.

For example here is how to calculate the amount of power you have to run all AC appliances:
  • 15A to watts calculation with voltage of 120V AC
  • For AC power supply, watts are equal to the power factor times amps times volts.
  • watts = PF ◊ amps ◊ volts
  • For resistive load without inductors or capacitors, the power factor is equal to 1:
    watts = 1 ◊ 15A ◊ 120V = 1800W
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Old 01-07-2017, 12:29 PM   #3
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Although the pedestal has a 15 amp breaker on it, voltage and available power (as determined by wire size, length, and the amount of power other campers are drawing on the same campground wiring will vary widely.

Using the 30 amp plug at the pedestal at our present 30 year old campground with original wiring, we have about 116-120 volts depending on the time of day, and other camper loads on the system. We can (usually) run two major heating items at a time, for example the water heater and the space heater. Turn something off to make coffee or there is too much voltage drop for my comfort (110-112 volts).

At the last park we had 124 volts in the Airstream, run three major heating appliances at a time with maybe a drop to 120 volts. Better park wiring and fewer campers, especially the big motorhomes and fifth wheels.

To sum this up, the converter/charger will use most of the 15 amps in many parks, use the propane system for heating/cooking.
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Old 01-07-2017, 02:29 PM   #4
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You should be able to run everything except your air conditioner(s).
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Old 01-07-2017, 03:16 PM   #5
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"You should be able to run everything except your air conditioner(s)." Just not all at once.

15A @ 120 volts = 1800 Watts. My suggestion would be to start with full propane tanks and keep the hot water heater and refrigerator on propane. Leave the converter/charger on and use only one major appliance (microwave, coffee maker, a/c, etc.) at a time. You probably won't need the a/c now, but an electric space heater in the bath might be nice. Don't run any other big draw item when it is on.
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Old 01-07-2017, 03:44 PM   #6
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Ditto to David, but if you use a small electric heater use the Low setting if you are running other 120 volt items.

Echo: water heater on propane only -- fridge is probably OK on 120 electric IMO.

Have fun! We are having a major snow storm in the NE, so any electric use in an Airstream seems pretty nice right now!

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Old 01-07-2017, 04:07 PM   #7
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Just not all at once.
Correct :0)

I omitted that fact because it seemed incredibly obvious. No system (including the 120v 200AMP service in my home and including the Airstream with a 30amp connection) is design to run "everything" (coffee pots, space heaters, microwave, TV, air conditioner, converter, furnace fans, 12v accessories, stereo, battery charger, etc etc) ... at once....

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Old 01-07-2017, 06:35 PM   #8
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It is beyond me why everyone so loves their electric space heaters. Does everyone run space heaters all over their house? Where is a safe place to put a space heater in a trailer? Few on this forum have a trailer as large as mine, and there are precious few places to safely keep one running in my rig.

The rest of the world is fooled into thinking our RVs are an indication of discerning taste. Yet we run hazardous little heaters because??? Are we too cheap to use our central heat? If we can't afford the comfort, convenience, and safety of using our LP furnaces, then I seriously question our fitness to own a luxury RV.

To the original OP: You should be able to run anything but your AC on 15 amps. Don't do any ironing while you brew coffee and make toast. Otherwise you should be just fine. 15 amps should be able to run anything but AC.

Back when all our homes had 60 amp service, the lights dimmed at times when everything was on. That's why we upgraded to 100, then 200 amp service so that we CAN run everything at once.
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Old 01-07-2017, 08:16 PM   #9
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I can tell you why we love our Dyson electric space heater.

It is absolutely safe, there are no hot spots on its exterior and the air coming out is only warm (but there's lots of it). It keeps the air temperature throughout our Airstream exactly as we (remotely) set the thermostat down to near 40 degrees outside, then the furnace is set as a backup. It is whisper quiet. It is near 100% efficient. It makes no dangerous gases, or uses any. There are no hot spots in the trailer when its on, or cool spots. It empties no fuel tank on our Airstream, and in some campgrounds there is no extra charge for fuel. It is a 6 inch wide cylinder, space is not an issue. We bought it at a huge discount.

The furnace does not even come close to it's comfort, quiet, and even air temperature control, we have used it for at least 1200 nights camping during the winter months all across the U.S. whenever we have hookups.
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:38 AM   #10
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Thumbs up 15 amps

Thanks to all, Just need to get a little peace of mine.
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:48 AM   #11
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It is beyond me why everyone so loves their electric space heaters.
How about when staying at a site with hookups you are paying for the juice as part of your fee. With propane you paying for extra out of your pocket and using up your gas.
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:14 AM   #12
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15amps

In moderate weather and 'free' electricity a portable electric heater makes sense. I also run the tank heaters if it's close to freezing outside.

In winterized storage it's also "good enough" to keep the chill off.

However, when it's really cold, running the propane heat is noisy, but it keeps the plumbing warmer, and heats up faster.

I'm not hung up on one method or the other. I use one of those oil-filled radiator type heaters. Silent.


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Old 01-08-2017, 07:37 PM   #13
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How about when staying at a site with hookups you are paying for the juice as part of your fee. With propane you paying for extra out of your pocket and using up your gas.
If I were that cheap, I wouldn't have bought a luxury trailer.

People pay $70 for a heater to save $4 in propane???
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Old 01-08-2017, 07:45 PM   #14
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15amps

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If I were that cheap, I wouldn't have bought a luxury trailer.



I don't have a high opinion of someone who pays $70 for an electric heater so he can save $4 in propane, especially considering the potential hazard.

This seems a little harsh. People make different decisions for different reasons and I'm sure none of them will hinge on you having a "high opinion" on what might be a very limited knowledge base.


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Old 01-09-2017, 12:33 AM   #15
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Most small electric heaters are perfectly safe, and much quieter than the furnace cycling on and off during a cold night IMO.

No need for judgments IMO.

Different strokes . . .
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Old 01-09-2017, 12:57 AM   #16
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If I were that cheap, I wouldn't have bought a luxury trailer.

People pay $70 for a heater to save $4 in propane???

I wondered that too. Ran me $33 to fill each forty pound propane tank. Both tanks together won't last a week in cold weather. The electric is annualized at $100/month.

The point to having both is the options afforded. (The Cheap Heat furnace addition would be better than space heaters; for a variety of reasons).

I'd rather not ever run out of propane is a rule for me.
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Old 01-09-2017, 04:01 PM   #17
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If electric were better, then it's a gross oversight for AS to not include baseboard heat.
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Old 01-09-2017, 04:06 PM   #18
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If electric were better, then it's a gross oversight for AS to not include baseboard heat.
Ummm, they do install electric heat pumps and heat strips in many models. My heat pump warms the AS down to 37* ambients, before the furnace automatically takes over. So, no oversight at all.
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Old 01-09-2017, 05:07 PM   #19
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Clearly Iím out of my depth.

I thought Airstream and Avion were similar. But you Airstreamers clearly have a different story than mine.

For two weeks in October we had the heat cranked up, took long hot showers (I wanted to see how long a full tank of fresh water lasts) baked desserts, cooked breakfast daily, etc before our propane ran dry. The furnace was set to 65 all day while we drove, and at night while we slept, and 72 when we were ďat homeĒ. This was no extreme weather situation; we were only in snow for 2 days. Our furnaces are not silent, but they are by no means loud.

But in any case, I have wrongly projected my experience onto those who have Airstreams. I was hoping to encourage you to fully enjoy your trailers. Instead I came across fighting reality.

Please forgive my wrongful assumptions. I hope to speak more wisely in the future.
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Old 01-09-2017, 05:27 PM   #20
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If I were that cheap, I wouldn't have bought a luxury trailer.

People pay $70 for a heater to save $4 in propane???
I am even more of a cheapskate than that. I think I paid about $15 for my electric heater.

The other half of my post was to conserve the propane. I would rather be camping than refilling propane bottles.
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