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Old 06-10-2019, 06:44 PM   #1
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30 amp + 20 amp

Can someone explain why paying for 30 amp and using 50 amp (30 + 20) is not theft. Why should park operators, who must pay for the extra kw, accept my use of a 30 + 20 device or the 20 amp cord to my electric heater?
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Old 06-10-2019, 06:59 PM   #2
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Did you ask the RV park owner about it?

Perhaps you should offer to pay the 50 amp price if you are doing that.

Good of you to ask.
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:15 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by barrys View Post
Can someone explain why paying for 30 amp and using 50 amp (30 + 20) is not theft. Why should park operators, who must pay for the extra kw, accept my use of a 30 + 20 device or the 20 amp cord to my electric heater?

I agree with you. Back before we converted to 50 amp service, I would always ask the park officials if I could plug my water line freeze prevention heater and water bay heater into the 20 amp circuit, in addition to connecting to the standard 30 amp service connection. The responses were a mixed bag of answers, the overwhelming majority were "go for it" and only on occasion would someone tell me that I would overload the panel if I used them both. But no one ever said I couldn't use the 50 amp connector and use a "Y" power splitter. I always offered to pay more for the added service, and for the ones that charged more, they just charged me for the 50 amp service rate.



After realizing that the 50 amp connector at the pedestal won't trip with a 30 amp cable plugged into it with a 50 to 30/20 "T" or "Y" splitter, I started using the 50 amp connector always. It was our experience that many of the park 30 amp breakers would trip at 26-28 amps (especially in state parks), so I started using a 50 amp converter cable and just started telling the park that we were 50 amp service. This seemed to alleviate the problem with old worn out 30 amp breakers tripping at 26-28 amps at the pedestal AND it eliminated the constant inquiry about the age of our coach. Paying for 50 amp service is only a few dollars more and it's better anyway. Gone are the days of tripping the pedestal 30 amp breaker.



All that ended last Christmas when Saint Nick converted our coach to true 50 amp service.


People need to stop being cheap and shortchanging the parks or potentially overloading the pedestal. Ask them if its safe first, them pay them for the added service!
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:35 PM   #4
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I assume that you realize that using 30A plus 20A is nowhere near the same as having a 50A hookup. A 50A pedestal provides 50 amps on each of two 120 volt legs. That's twice the power of a 30A plus 20 A connection.
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:57 PM   #5
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I assume that you realize that using 30A plus 20A is nowhere near the same as having a 50A hookup. A 50A pedestal provides 50 amps on each of two 120 volt legs. That's twice the power of a 30A plus 20 A connection.



Not knowing who your question was directed towards - I do realize.



What I was trying to point out is how using the 50 amp side of the pedestal is more reliable. A 30 amp connection is 3600 watts and the 20 amp connection is 2400 watts, for a combined total of 6,000 watts. A true NEMA15-50 has 6,000 watts on each hot leg (making 12,000 watts total). So no matter how the "T" or Y" is wired, and as long as the conductors are wired properly, there is no load or fire hazard and it's highly unlikely to trip the pedestal breaker.


Its worth the added expense to have the better power source.
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Old 06-10-2019, 08:06 PM   #6
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Sounds like the OP's question is more a question of ethics rather than an electrical question.

Answer would depend on campground rules, and as stated above the simple way to go about this is to ask for permission when checking in.
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Old 06-11-2019, 04:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barrys View Post
Can someone explain why paying for 30 amp and using 50 amp (30 + 20) is not theft. Why should park operators, who must pay for the extra kw, accept my use of a 30 + 20 device or the 20 amp cord to my electric heater?
Normally campsites that are 30 amp do not have any 50 amp service available. If you plug into both the 30 amp and 20 amp circuits you are on a single phase so you are not cheating the campground. On the other hand, in the rare occasion that the pedestal has both 50 amp and 30 amp on the same pedestal and you only paid for 30 amp service then you you should only use the 30 amp or 20 amp outlet. Even if the 30 amp outlet and the 20 amp outlet are on separate phases and you use a combo box you will only be able to consume 50 amps total before blowing a breaker. If you are plugged into the 50 amp socket you can consume 100 amps before blowing a breaker.

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Old 06-11-2019, 04:53 AM   #8
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As stated above, at a 30 amp site, even using a 30 and 20 amp outlet, the most you can use is 50 amps@120 volts, or 6 KWs. You will need to run everything you got to draw that much energy.

At a 50 amp, 240 volt site, the potential is double that, 100 amps or 12 KWs. Then you still have another 20 amps to draw at the standard outlet.
That's why they charge more. If you don't use it all, you loose.

Of course, if you have a 30 amp RV, you will never use what your paying extra for.

Metering the power is the fair way to do it.

http://www.myrv.us/electric/Pg/50amp_Service.htm
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Old 06-11-2019, 05:40 AM   #9
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It's my understanding that if I rent a space everything inside that space is for my use. If the park operators did not want me using the 20A/110 plug then why would it not be turned off and somehow locked out? Sometimes people post stuff that makes me LOL.
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Old 06-11-2019, 06:05 AM   #10
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It's my understanding that if I rent a space everything inside that space is for my use. If the park operators did not want me using the 20A/110 plug then why would it not be turned off and somehow locked out? Sometimes people post stuff that makes me LOL.

One of the parks I visit charges by the site type. If the site has 50 amp , sewer & water service , that's what you pay for even if you only have a tent. So as far as using the 30 & 20 amp receptacles , I don't think it would be a problem.
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Old 06-11-2019, 07:29 AM   #11
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Nobody is cheating anybody.

If electric IS included in your rent, they are providing all the energy you can use, regardless of which receptacle(s) you plug into. They don't care, and the park's electrical system will, if it is built to code standards, satisfy your demand. (Older parks may have supply voltage problems due to higher use demands than the system was designed for, thus overloading their supply cables and transformers.)

If electric IS NOT included in your rent, there will be a meter, and that meter records the energy from the combination of all of the available receptacles.

All the 20 amp, 30 amp and 50 amp breakers do is protect the cables that we, their customers, will be plugging into the receptacles. You are not paying for 30 amp, or 50 amp. You are simply paying for electric energy. The size of the breakers is purely dictated by the park's installed transformers, cables, pedestals and receptacles that their designers specified and installed.
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Old 06-11-2019, 07:42 AM   #12
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I travel with an electric grill. Set it up outside and run a cord from 20 amp service to keep from overloading the 30 amp with a/c running. Takes all of 30 minutes. That's a big difference from plugging into, and using 50 amps for several days.
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Old 06-11-2019, 07:51 AM   #13
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…..agree, some older campgrounds have issues with their 30amp service--just weren't designed for the larger RVs we enjoy these days....wont comment on the ethics of what you do/don't pay for--that's a personal choice...use to hear about a "cheater" box [interesting name don't you think????] that allowed you to combine 30 and 20 amp plugs--but evolution of RV surge protection and GFI 20 amp plugs have limited what you use to be able to do with combiners.....
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Old 06-11-2019, 10:32 AM   #14
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I can run your 30 amp breaker right at 30 amps continuously. Would you as the owner rather I split the load or put that wear on one breaker? I'm using the same amount of power regardless.
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