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Old 05-27-2014, 07:18 AM   #1
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5er wiring upgrade

Has anyone done/seen a 5er converted from 30amp to 50amp service? I have experience wiring houses with my father but have never attempted this kind of project. We have an '04 Cameo that is 30amp and are wanting the additional amperage due to running nearly everything off shore power (unlimited electric at our site). It seems to me that I'd have to install the 50amp box, divide the zones better, and swap out the 30amp connector on the side of the 5er. Any ideas/comments/recommendations? Will the factory wiring from the outside connector to the box support such an upgrade?
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Old 05-27-2014, 09:52 PM   #3
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Done it before. Some are easy, some cost more money. It depends on where the breaker box is and how hard it is to run a new wire from the shore connector.
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Old 05-28-2014, 06:42 AM   #4
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Great info wingnut. Thank you.

Jesilvas, what all did you do on yours?

One question I didn't ask...wouldn't it be a better idea for me to simply add a 50amp box/line/plug? I could divide up my zones better and provide much greater flexibility for all future electrical usage. My current campground (and most I've heard of) offer both 50 and 30 amp service. Wouldn't it be acceptable to use both at the same time?
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Old 05-28-2014, 09:21 AM   #5
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Wasn't mine but I've wired a couple.

I've completely replaced the power center with a 50A box because it was easy; plug was close to box.

I've added a separate box that then fed the OEM 30A box because it was a long way to run wiring and just easier.

Best thing is to change out the shore cord plug to a 50A, don't use 30A and 50A at the same time.
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Old 05-28-2014, 06:51 PM   #6
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Buying a 50 amp shore power cord is the biggest expense. Last one I did was pretty ez and inexpensive. Mounted a $10 8 slot breaker box near the existing power center and ran the 50 amp cable to it. The existing box became a sub panel and I moved several circuits to slots on the new box to balance the load. There was plenty of excess wire length on most of the circuits, so no splicing or junction boxes. As a bonus, the 12V convertor had shared a breaker with other items and I was able to put it on a dedicated breaker.
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Old 05-30-2014, 12:49 PM   #7
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I have seen some of these upgrades , mostly the 50 amp units use 12ga. wire for every outlet. Where 30 amp use 12,14,16 ga. It wasn't meant to handle the loads as a 50. Check your wall plates and such to be sure your upgrading far enough.
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Old 05-30-2014, 04:17 PM   #8
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All the trailers I've seen, 50A or 30A, still use 14ga wire for 15A circuits, 12ga wire for 20A circuits, and 8ga for 30A, and 6ga for 50A
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Old 05-30-2014, 05:08 PM   #9
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The Teton and Carriage had 12ga, On almost all of the outlets. And I havent tore into any of the newer fifth wheels.
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Old 05-31-2014, 08:06 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonbrown View Post
The Teton and Carriage had 12ga, On almost all of the outlets. And I havent tore into any of the newer fifth wheels.
That's good to know. The majority (Keystone, Forest River) don't do that.
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Old 05-31-2014, 08:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonbrown View Post
I have seen some of these upgrades , mostly the 50 amp units use 12ga. wire for every outlet. Where 30 amp use 12,14,16 ga. It wasn't meant to handle the loads as a 50. Check your wall plates and such to be sure your upgrading far enough.
Jon
Wire gauge can never be less than the breaker protecting an individual circuit. The gauge can be more, but not less. That is code, both residential and RV. Upgrading to 50 amp main service does not involve replacing existing individual breakers with higher amperage breakers. There are cases where a single breaker protects two separate circuits, but again the breaker must have a lower amperage rating than either wire gauge. I had that case with the converter and another circuit sharing a 15 amp breaker. With a low battery, the converter would draw almost 15 amps, leaving nothing for the other circuit.

Anyway, the primary reason for a 50 amp upgrade is not to provide higher amperage on an individual circuit, but to allow more circuits to operate near their individual rating capacities at the same time, like running the A/C, microwave, water heater and a hair dryer all at the same time.
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Old 06-02-2014, 02:38 PM   #12
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How many amps are you drawing now? Are you popping circuit breakers? If the problem is that too many outlets are on the same CB , it could be very expensive and time consuming to rewire them separately.
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