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Old 07-08-2015, 04:55 PM   #41
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To clarify, the ONLY place there could be a short that would allow 50A and not trip the 30A in the unit, is the cable, as that is the only thing between the two breakers. Again, if you develop a direct short in the cable, it will trip a 50!
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Old 07-08-2015, 05:07 PM   #42
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Tim Although I agree with some of what you are saying. A CB is designed to protect the equipment on the circuit and also to protect the wires. And you are correct about the 30 AMP breaker should trip when a overload happens. But even the Code states you do not protect a lower rated device with a higher rated CB so using a 50 amp CB to protect a 30 amp cord is not advisable. And what would happen if the 30 AMP breaker in the RV shorted out then you have to depend on the 50 AMP breaker to trip. We all do things that shouldn't be done and most of the time we are lucky and get away with it. But over 45 years as a maintenance electrician tells me not to protect a lower rated device with a higher rated device. And using a 30 amp cord on a 50 amp service should not be done. You may get lucky but you are tempting fate.


Also this is part of the reason for the MFG to put a label on the side of the camper to state what the RV is rated for and why the plug is designed to be plugged into a 30 AMP receptacle.
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Old 07-08-2015, 07:01 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim L View Post
Hooking your 30A to a 50A with the adapter is fine. The adapter only uses one leg of the 50A service, so you are back to 120V, and although the service is limited to 50A at the power pole breaker, your cord will only see the current demanded by your rig, and your rig is limited by a 30A main breaker, so the cord won't see over 30A. I do this often, as many 30A female plugs, at campgrounds, are worn out and loose, where the less used 50A plugs are still in good shape.
The following was copied from the State of Illinois and I am certain other states and even the National Electric Code has similar rules



RV Electrical Safety
for Campers
Printed by the Authority of the State of Illinois
One last tip on cords, do not use a power cord adapter that converts a low power cord
for use with a higher power receptacle. For example if you have a 20 ampere cord,
do not use an adapter and plug into a 30 ampere receptacle.
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Old 07-09-2015, 10:22 AM   #44
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Using an adapter to connect a 30A RV to a 50A pedestal does carry some risk. Is in violation of the NEC and most local electrical codes. In my opinion it is ill advised. However, the risk is minimal and each person needs to decide if they are willing to accept that risk.

If you don't have enough knowledge to make the assessment you should probably not use an adapter. If you do have enough knowledge to make the assessment you probably won't use an adapter. Now an adapter with a built in 30A breaker might be ok but I've never seen one of those.

I've never looked but I can't imagine the commercially available adapters carry a UL approval.
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Old 07-09-2015, 01:47 PM   #45
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With all due respect, I for one, have a B.S. in Engineering, and the understanding of risk involved, and I will continue using my adapter. I do understand that a short in the cord could happen upstream of my 30A breaker, but I also know that I could be killed driving to the campground, or get struck by lightning while I am there. I also know that I could take my dog bone, plug it into a 50A service, take my 30A to 15A adapter, and plug it into my dog bone, then plug in a 15 A lamp cord, with bare ends, short out the 14 ga lamp cord bare ends, and the 50A breaker would trip.

As far as code and legality, in our litigious, nanny state society, with this "disaster waiting to happen" product, which I can pick up at every RV store in the country, not to mention Wal Marts etc., or order from a plethora of online stores, like Amazon, and is made by large companies with deep pockets like Camco and Progressive, and Nada. With all of our social media and online content, I can't find one lawsuit, fire, or disaster story related to the adapter...
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Old 07-09-2015, 01:57 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim L View Post
...14 ga lamp cord bare ends, and the 50A breaker would trip. ....
Nope.

The shorted 14ga lamp cord will smoke, catch fire and glow bright red.

Depending on many factors, the 50A breaker might trip before some portion the copper wire melts and opens the circuit.

Try it sometime where you can limit the damage. I wish camcorders were affordable when I did it against a 20A breaker.


It is fairly likely that the 10ga wire inside an RV 30A cable will hold 50A until the breaker trips, but why take that kind of risk?

The cord will be ruined. And the RV will still be on fire.
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Old 07-09-2015, 02:03 PM   #47
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Well I would say that with a BS in engineering that you would have a better outlook on the negatives But then if and when you do have a fire caused by your use of a adaptor that you so well put that you will continue to use. I hope when you put a claim into the insurance that you tell them you were using that adaptor. Lets see how fast they walk away and tell you that a BS in Engineering should have known better. As I said before we all do tings that we get lucky and walk away from By why be foolish and tempt fate. Also having a BS doesn't mean you have common sense. But then again with so many that have said not to use the adaptor and you with the BS say to use it we all must be wrong and you must be correct`.
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Old 07-09-2015, 02:05 PM   #48
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and with all that is said HOPEFULL A MODERATOR WILL END THIS THREAD BEFORE IT GETS OUT OF HAND.
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Old 07-09-2015, 02:36 PM   #49
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For the record, a 12 ga wire will carry a whole house...when putting in new services, we would jump the meter with 12 ga solid wire, until it was inspected and the electric company would install the new meter. BUT the wire was stripped and in open air (inside the meter cabinet)...running higher amperage than a wire is designed to carry can cause heat to build up, since it was in open air and only for a few days, it was capable of carrying the load. Keeping your cord rolled up in your TT and extending only a small portion to connect to the pedestal can cause the heat to build up in the cord and caused issues, before 30 amps is reached and the breaker trips.


Best to pull your cord completely out so as to mitigate this potential issue in my opinion.


It is also always best to plug your cord into the correct receptacle...ie 20 to 20, 30 to 30 and 50 to 50.. Many things can be used in an emergency, but it doesn't make it right.. If it made no difference, then mfg could wire all units with a 50 amp plug and only use one leg on the 30 amp rigs.... as stated above you never want to use a higher rated breaker on a lower rated cord...your asking for issues...like so many things, you may get away with it 1000 times....but the 1001 you get banged....not worth it.


If a plug is bad, let the campground know, it's a 10 minute job to replace a plug....tho if the campground is doing it's job, they should be checking the receptacles between campers as part of their on going Preventative maintenance.


Happy Camping
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Old 07-09-2015, 02:40 PM   #50
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So for those of us who take the whole cord out, how do you dissuade the ants from making that conga line into your camper?

I always spray my tires, around my tires, the sewer hose, water hose, and electrical line w/ some 12 month bug barrier/killer you can pick up at Depot. I can't stop them from climbing onto my wires and hoses, but my thinking is I can kill them before they get too far.
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