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Old 10-14-2019, 11:13 AM   #1
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Adding USB charging outlets

So, I'm not anticipating any issues here but I thought I'd bring it up just in case there's something that I'm not thinking of.

The one thing I've noticed is a lack of USB charging outlets in our 27BH. The built in ones in the pop-up outlet in the kitchen are it. We normally just use them for our tablets and/or phones which are pretty much just used as a Kindle reader. We do have a portable light or two that can be USB charged as well though.

I have two thoughts: replacing the non-GFCI outlets with the outlets that have the built in USB chargers. Obviously this only works if you're plugged in to shore power. I also thought of adding a new outlet on the wall between the bathroom and the main cabin by tying it in to the bathroom outlet.

The second is to get one (or more) of the USB chargers meant to tie in to 12 volts and just parallel off the lights by the dining table and/or the recliner in the slideout. Obviously I'll need some sort of cable channel because I'm pretty sure I'm not going to be running wires through the walls there.

Any thoughts?
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Old 10-14-2019, 11:24 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by kweinert View Post
I have two thoughts: replacing the non-GFCI outlets with the outlets that have the built in USB chargers. Obviously this only works if you're plugged in to shore power. I also thought of adding a new outlet on the wall between the bathroom and the main cabin by tying it in to the bathroom outlet.
Any thoughts?
You do know that RV outlets are not the standard duplex receptacles don't you? They are pressed on wiring connections and they do not use outlet boxes.
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Old 10-14-2019, 11:44 AM   #3
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You might want to check these USB POWER Panels from AMAZON. They have several different layouts... All of these modules are round so you can mount the panel in either horizontal or vertical... Not expensive... Search for USB Power Adapter Panels AMAZON....

Tie 12VDC BOAT CABLE (two conductor) into 12VDC at your converter panel... Your converter setup should be powered by both Shore Power and Battery allowing it to work in both modes of camping... The BOAT CABLE comes in different color schemes for wiring to match what you have in your trailer... Most are wired with BLACK (+12V) and WHITE (-12VDC) verses what is shown in this photo having RED and BLACK wiring...


google image


Google image...

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Old 10-14-2019, 12:07 PM   #4
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I've added several USB ports with a couple more in mind for the near future.
Great advise here (as usual) but I'll add that, depending on where you want to locate the ports, you could run into a depth problem. You'll see that I didn't have that issue with the ones that I added near my radio but I did back in the bunkhouse.

Also I agree that you should just use 12vdc for power source as it will always be there, plugged into the shore or not. I did tap into the light in the bunkhouse and then behind the radio for the entertainment center.

I also added power switches to eliminate the parasitic drain and to kill the bright blue lights at night.

Cheers
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:25 PM   #5
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Why not just get a few of these:

https://www.amazon.com/Charger-Amone...33&sr=8-9&th=1

Or something like this if you need them to be in a different location:

https://www.amazon.com/Desktop-Charg...xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

I use both types in various places in my camper. Good thing is I can take them out and use them when I'm traveling OUTSIDE my camper. I've started carrying a heavy-gauge multi-outlet extension cord when we are staying in hotels now too. Only took one night of having to park my CPAP on an ottoman in the middle of the room before I got wise on that one!

Anyway, only down side is you need shore power (or inverter). Not a problem in my rig, but would've been a bit of a hassle in my trailer on occasion...
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:39 PM   #6
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Why not just get a few of these:

https://www.amazon.com/Charger-Amone...33&sr=8-9&th=1

Or something like this if you need them to be in a different location:

https://www.amazon.com/Desktop-Charg...xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

I use both types in various places in my camper. Good thing is I can take them out and use them when I'm traveling OUTSIDE my camper. I've started carrying a heavy-gauge multi-outlet extension cord when we are staying in hotels now too. Only took one night of having to park my CPAP on an ottoman in the middle of the room before I got wise on that one!

Anyway, only down side is you need shore power (or inverter). Not a problem in my rig, but would've been a bit of a hassle in my trailer on occasion...
The only issue is that they require shore power or a running genny to work
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:48 PM   #7
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The only issue is that they require shore power or a running genny to work
Right, like I said...

You could also install an inverter setup. If you're boondocking a lot, it might be a good thing to have anyway.

Or you could get something like this to charge up your smaller devices in between shore power availability:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JIWQPMW...mart%20Devices
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Old 10-14-2019, 01:03 PM   #8
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Right, like I said...

You could also install an inverter setup. If you're boondocking a lot, it might be a good thing to have anyway.

Or you could get something like this to charge up your smaller devices in between shore power availability:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JIWQPMW...mart%20Devices
Sorry Camper_Bob! I guess I failed my speed-reading course!
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Old 10-14-2019, 01:29 PM   #9
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Doing something similar now but one issue I'm trying to resolve is that there's nowhere to plug those in anywhere near the table/couch area. That's why I was looking at point 2, coming off the lights.

Admittedly, if I did that then I'd have to install the 'business' end in the valence over the windows because I'm fairly certain that we have foamed walls and I don't even want to start messing with that.
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Old 10-14-2019, 01:35 PM   #10
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You might want to check these USB POWER Panels from AMAZON. They have several different layouts... All of these modules are round so you can mount the panel in either horizontal or vertical... Not expensive... Search for USB Power Adapter Panels AMAZON....
Good idea, I'll just have to see if there's any 12v access in the slideout that's not hidden behind walls.

I could see me building a wall mount box for these that would sit between the table and the couch on the outside wall and just using a cable management 'thingie' (hope that's not too technical : ) to hide the cable inside.
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:29 PM   #11
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I have one of these and I love it.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F73MGX8...i-a=B07F73MGX8

The On/Off switch makes sure it doesn't use any power if you don't want it to. The voltage display is handy to keep an eye on your battery.

You should be ok stealing power from your lighting circuit, especially if you've changed your incandescent bulbs out for LED ones. That leaves you with lots of extra power available on the lighting circuit.
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:38 PM   #12
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I added at least 6 12v aux ports, that I use car chargers in.

I pulled a new 12volt power line from the fuse box. I had about 4-5 unused fuses. I installed 2 at the stereo, 2 at my bed, one on each side, at least 1 at the rear bunk, and 1 inside the refrigerator access panel. They all get used on a regular basis. It probably took an afternoon to run all the power,so the install.
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Old 10-15-2019, 07:09 AM   #13
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Just curious how you ran the wires.

And is your rig stick and tin or aluminum composite? Just wondering if that makes a difference on running wires.

Thanks.
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Old 10-15-2019, 02:23 PM   #14
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Sorry Camper_Bob! I guess I failed my speed-reading course!
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Old 10-20-2019, 08:15 PM   #15
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Just curious how you ran the wires.

And is your rig stick and tin or aluminum composite? Just wondering if that makes a difference on running wires.

Thanks.
Mine is fiberglass. But that does not matter. The wires do not run inside the walls. They all run through and under cabinets.

The lower shelves, of the OHC are hollow. An easy way to see how the wires are run, is to pull the microwave.
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Old 10-21-2019, 07:53 AM   #16
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Mine is fiberglass. But that does not matter. The wires do not run inside the walls. They all run through and under cabinets.

The lower shelves, of the OHC are hollow. An easy way to see how the wires are run, is to pull the microwave.
Ahh, that's different than what I want to do.

The place I want to add USB chargers is in the slideout which is on the other side of the kitchen. Obviously there are some wires in there somewhere as there are lights over the table and the couch. As far as I know there's no way to run any further wires inside the walls so they'd have to be surface mount.

Thanks for your reply.
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Old 10-21-2019, 09:09 AM   #17
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https://www.amazon.com/BESTTEN-1200-...%2C274&sr=8-48
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Old 10-21-2019, 10:59 AM   #18
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Ahh, that's different than what I want to do.

The place I want to add USB chargers is in the slideout which is on the other side of the kitchen. Obviously there are some wires in there somewhere as there are lights over the table and the couch. As far as I know there's no way to run any further wires inside the walls so they'd have to be surface mount.

Thanks for your reply.
Do you have a J-Sofa, in the slide-out? I do, and when I lift the seat up to turn it into a bed, you can see the power wires poking through the plywood base. Might be a place to trace the wires from to splice in.

No matter what, do some snooping and I bet you will find a power feed for the lights, that are in the slideout. I assume mine go up the wall behind one of the decorative moldings to the OHC.
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Old 10-21-2019, 12:20 PM   #19
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Do you have a J-Sofa, in the slide-out? I do, and when I lift the seat up to turn it into a bed, you can see the power wires poking through the plywood base. Might be a place to trace the wires from to splice in.

No matter what, do some snooping and I bet you will find a power feed for the lights, that are in the slideout. I assume mine go up the wall behind one of the decorative moldings to the OHC.
Thanks for the tip, I'll take a look later this week when we get ours back from the dealer. They owed us a radio as it was broken when we bought it and it turns out that my issue with daylight by the bottom corners of the slide out are related to the fact that I didn't have foam blocks there at all. They're waiting for those to come in so we can get it fixed.
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Old 10-22-2019, 12:28 PM   #20
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You do know that RV outlets are not the standard duplex receptacles don't you? They are pressed on wiring connections and they do not use outlet boxes.
It's very easy to add an outlet box and a standard residential style outlet that has USB. I did this both in our old Hummingbird and the new trailer. I use the "old work" style PVC outlet boxes with the flip-out ears, works great with the thin paneling found in RV's.

I've also added several 12VDC powered USB outlets in both trailers for when we're boondocking.





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