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Old 02-27-2024, 01:35 PM   #1
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50 to 30 amp adapter banned in some Parks

Recently we camped at KOA park and had booked a 30 amp site. Our trailer has a 50 power pane. The park had us move to a 50 amp site because their electrician said there is no UL certification for 50-30 amp adapters.
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Old 02-27-2024, 01:43 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by hhendrix View Post
Recently we camped at KOA park and had booked a 30 amp site. Our trailer has a 50 power pane. The park had us move to a 50 amp site because their electrician said there is no UL certification for 50-30 amp adapters.
Not a real electrician. Heck, your trailer isn’t UL listed.
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Old 02-27-2024, 02:37 PM   #3
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Well for one, there are plenty of UL listed 50-30 adapters so I'm assuming you meant 30-50, and yes I have not seen a UL listed 30-50. There are however some with ETL listings, and the Camco has a ULC or Canada listing.

There are many listing organizations, not just UL. (There is also no law that requires a product to be listed in order to sell and use it). Listed products primarily help local jurisdictions to know that a product has been tested for it's intended use before they approve it's installation or use, and to tell a consumer it has been evaluated for it's intended use. Listing organizations, including UL, are all 3rd party. UL just happens to be the most widely known one.

I'm sure they have had issues that they blamed on 30-50 adapters and that's why they prohibit the use. To say there are no "UL" listed ones is a clever way to get around it because even though there are indeed "listed" ones, the listings are not by UL.

Looking at it from the park owner's viewpoint, it is their property and they have the right to make rules to protect their property as they see fit so you can hardly blame them for making efforts to keep their 30 amp stuff from getting abused or overloaded. A sustained load close to 30 amps but not over will not trip the breaker and eventually the receptacle will overheat and begin to suffer damage, and from that point on it will continue to deteriorate even under smaller loads.
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Old 02-27-2024, 03:53 PM   #4
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It’s a reasonable policy for a park owner to require an RV with 50A equipment to rent a 50A site. Not only does it prevent abuse/overloading of 30A sites…it makes available 30A sites for 30A RV owners…. after-all….that’s the reason both types sites are created….and that’s how park operators meet their financial obligations toward their owners and their accommodations to RV owners.
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Old 02-28-2024, 09:28 AM   #5
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Hi

A 50A trailer is going to put a pretty heavy load on a 30A outlet. That will create more wear and tear on their side of things. It also creates "service calls" when folks start tripping the 30A breakers with those loads.

Is their "excuse" anything but an excuse? Not really. it's just a way to rationalize a pretty reasonable business decision.

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Old 02-28-2024, 09:44 AM   #6
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It's about real world useage

Quote:
Originally Posted by hhendrix View Post
Recently we camped at KOA park and had booked a 30 amp site. Our trailer has a 50 power pane. The park had us move to a 50 amp site because their electrician said there is no UL certification for 50-30 amp adapters.
Whether you have 50 or 30 amp trailer is less relevant than how many amps you actually use. 50 amp rigs typically have two air conditioners and if you plan to run both of them at the same time, while you run your water heater and refrigerator on electricity and then make toast while your wife uses the hair dryer you will be challenging a 50 amp service. On the other hand if you only use 1 air conditioner and a little common sense 30 amp service is more than adequate. I've had park owners take a look at our trailer and remind me that I can't use two air conditioners or heat pumps at the same time but I've never been asked to move to a different site. Its not about the adapter cord or the rating of the trailer - its about actual use.
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Old 02-28-2024, 09:50 AM   #7
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I don’t think many campgrounds have aversions to adapters. Our tow vehicle is electric. Our trailer is 30 amp. A couple or maybe three times we have pulled into a campground and although all we need is a 30 amp site they upgraded us (for a fee of course) to a 50 amp site so we could charge the car at the same time as plugging in the trailer. They had their own adapter/splitters available for that (although we carry our own). But we noticed that on at least one there was no UL certification. They probably got them off of Amazon like we did. . I think they sometimes use these for site splitting at events etc. Turn a single 50 amp site into 2 x 30 amp sites.

Whatever. They work. Normally on a 30 amp site it’s one or the other for us. This is easier but uncommon for us. Everybody is happy and they make a little more money. Adapters are handy. We carry a bunch.

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Old 02-28-2024, 10:09 AM   #8
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You could get a 30 amp cord that connects to a 50 amp trailer, that way there is no "adapter".
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Old 02-28-2024, 10:16 AM   #9
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I don't think it's unreasonable for an RV park to require a 50 to use a 50 instead of using a 30, esp if you have 2 AC units.
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Old 02-28-2024, 11:05 AM   #10
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I try to get 50 amp sites as a first choice, but its just not always possible, so the adapter it is. (But no, I dont run both ACs on it.) Id hate to think Im being “that guy” or that my favorite park is off limits because they dont even have 50s. That said, Im curious if this was in the fine print prior to booking???
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Old 02-28-2024, 11:26 AM   #11
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KOA's bay widely in their management and policies. I doubt if this is a general or prevalent policy. Could be they have had electrical trouble and worried about it. Have had several "interesting" discussions with different KOA's and other campgrounds over the years. "Independent Operators" I have gone to often booking 50 amp sites for my 30 amp trailer in places where I think there might be electrical deficiencies.
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Old 02-28-2024, 12:55 PM   #12
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Maybe the reason for the parks rule --- has something to do with your incomplete question ?

Incomplete , you did ask why , or ?

Kinda like litting children playing with matches in your house

Seems like most people do not understand electronics --- why let them make the rules ???
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Old 02-28-2024, 01:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wazbro View Post
You could get a 30 amp cord that connects to a 50 amp trailer, that way there is no "adapter".
I have one.
I got it for my storage yard where I have 30 amp power and I hated dragging out the 50 amp cord.
Then I discovered that it's perfect for the generator.
It's ideal for a park putting me in a 30 amp site.


Have the campgrounds banning adapters considered what they'll do when there's no 50 amp sites available, but there are ten 30 amp sites? Turn away business?
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Old 02-28-2024, 05:47 PM   #14
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I been in an Airstream for 15 years with over 100K miles of travel. I know very well how to manage our electrical needs. I have also used the 30-50 amp adapter off and on for over 8 years and never had a problem. We have a 50 amp trailer but know how to wisely and safely use 30 amps. I also have a Southwire EMS with a remote display which allows me to monitor current use to the amp. Both A/C's have easy start capacitors.



We sometimes reserve a 30 site because either we don't need 50 amps, or the 30 amp sites are better, or sometimes parks charge more for a 50 amp site. Then there are parks with only have 30 amps sites which is the point of my posting. In fact as I post this we are at a KOA in WA and chose a 30 amp site that backs up to a river.


I agree with many of you that I think the reaction at the KOA park was an ill informed overreaction to information provided by their electrician.



I don't see a ground swell of parks banning the 30-50 amp adapters. The vast majority have been allowing them for years. Actually the bigger problem is poorly maintained power posts. I've repaired more than a few.
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Old 02-28-2024, 07:20 PM   #15
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The current drawn by a 50A trailer from a 30A site is limited to 30A by the circuit breaker. I can't see any justification for concern about a 30-50 adapter.
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Old 02-28-2024, 07:32 PM   #16
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There seems to be a lot of self-righteous indignation over a park owners policy with regard to guests use of adaptors. If you are a guest in someone’s property… guess what..?? You should follow the guidelines of the host.

If that policy is no smoking…no pets…or no adapters…. You should politely and courteously follow the rules. It makes no difference if you are a house guest… a paying hotel guest… or a park guest.
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Old 02-28-2024, 09:36 PM   #17
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My guess is that this probably comes from the park owner/manager having experienced a pedestal melt-down or damage resulting from someone using a homemade or defective adapter. I've seen some sketchy things hanging from a pedestal, including using multiple dog-bone adapters which pushed the final connection into the mud/rain.

Some traditional adapters (not dog-bone) can cause the cord to hang down until the adapter is being partially pulled out of the socket, which can quickly lead to burned contacts and/or fire. We've all experienced damaged pedestals, often caused by other campers not knowing how to setup without causing damage or just being careless. Obviously many of us use adapters without a problem, but it only takes one or two problems for a campground owner to make new rules.

If the rule only bans adapters used at the pedestal itself, a solution would be to use a 30-amp extension cord with a built-in adapter on the female end. Not difficult to make one of these and it would have a normal 30-amp plug on the end that goes into the pedestal outlet.
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Old 02-29-2024, 07:13 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hhendrix View Post
I been in an Airstream for 15 years with over 100K miles of travel. I know very well how to manage our electrical needs. I have also used the 30-50 amp adapter off and on for over 8 years and never had a problem. We have a 50 amp trailer but know how to wisely and safely use 30 amps. I also have a Southwire EMS with a remote display which allows me to monitor current use to the amp. Both A/C's have easy start capacitors.



We sometimes reserve a 30 site because either we don't need 50 amps, or the 30 amp sites are better, or sometimes parks charge more for a 50 amp site. Then there are parks with only have 30 amps sites which is the point of my posting. In fact as I post this we are at a KOA in WA and chose a 30 amp site that backs up to a river.


I agree with many of you that I think the reaction at the KOA park was an ill informed overreaction to information provided by their electrician.



I don't see a ground swell of parks banning the 30-50 amp adapters. The vast majority have been allowing them for years. Actually the bigger problem is poorly maintained power posts. I've repaired more than a few.
Hi

Here's the problem with that: They don't make rules on an individual basis. They don't give folks a quiz and then score it to decide who can or can't do this or that.

There are a *lot* of folks out there who are not careful. Over the last 4 years many people headed out in an RV for the first time ever. If enough 50A to 30A folks pull up and create issues, the park makes a really simple and easy to implement rule.

That's how this stuff always works.

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Old 03-03-2024, 09:33 AM   #19
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50a to 30a discussion cont.

If your RV uses 50 amp service it consists of two 120 volt AC 50 amp circuits. Your plug has two hot prongs / legs, one neutral prong / leg and one ground prong / leg.

A 30 amp service consists of one 120 volt AC 30 amp prong / leg, one neutral prong / leg and one ground prong / leg. If your RV uses 50 amp service it consists of two 120 volt AC 50 amp circuits. Your plug will have two hot prongs / legs, one neutral prong / leg & one ground prong / leg.

How are you plugging your 50 amp cord into a 30 amp outlet? You need a 30 amp to 50 amp dog bone adapter which in 30 yrs of Airstreaming I have never been denied.

One word of caution, if you plug your 4 prong 50 amp cord into a 4 prong 30 amp outlet unplug it immediately, you are plugged into a 220/240 volt outlet and will damage your converter and possibly other RV electrical appliances.
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Old 03-03-2024, 09:39 AM   #20
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"There is also no law that requires a product to be listed in order to sell and use it Listed products primarily help local jurisdictions to know that a product has been tested for it's intended use before they approve it's installation or use, and to tell a consumer it has been evaluated for it's intended use. Listing organizations, including UL, are all 3rd party. UL just happens to be the most widely known one."

Focusing on the above paragraph I respectfully disagree. Here is a clear explanation of what UL does:
"UL is a global safety science company that was founded in 1894 in Chicago. They are the oldest and largest third-party testing laboratory in the country. Consumers value UL Certification to ensure their products are safe, and manufacturers must follow these industry standards when fabricating new products."

So maybe it isn't a "law" per se, but manufacturers still have to follow the standards.
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