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Old 09-14-2014, 09:25 AM   #1
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Adding 2nd 30 amp service

We have an older Dutchmen trailer that we live in full time over half the year. It's got a 30 amp service in it and works pretty well but we're heading into winter again which means engine block heaters, space heaters, water hose and line heaters, gray and black water tank heaters....you get the picture. We're already pushing the limit. Also decided we desperately need additional freezer space so...in goes a 4cf freezer. I've done a fair bit of wiring on our actual home, but not so much in the camper. Considered doing a complete upgrade but cost wise it would be over kill. Has anyone done a simple 30 amp to breaker box to electrical outlet install? Got any tips or suggestions?

Thanks!!
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Old 09-14-2014, 11:11 AM   #2
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I added a 2nd 30 AMP breaker in mine to run a front AC that I upgraded to a 15K heat pump from a 13.5k AC only.

In most campgrounds I use the OEM 30 AMP cord with 50 AMP adapter to campground post and the new front AC 30 AMP cord to campground 30 or 20 AMP plug in.

I put mine in a outside compartment right below the OEM beaker box.
At the inside box I wired it so I could still use the inside breaker or bypass it.

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Old 09-14-2014, 01:36 PM   #3
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It might not be as expensive or as hard as you think to go to 50A service. It all depends on where your inlet is, where the power cable is routed, and where the breaker box is.
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Old 09-14-2014, 01:46 PM   #4
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Since many 50 amp campgrounds have 30 amps in the same box, and since there really is a 30+30 to 50 adapater out there (It is a "Y" adapter with dual TT-30 outlets and a 50 amp plug). I will give you the basics.

You need a 30 amp service box, some brakers (one 30 and a few 15s) and outlets, IT is all straight forward

30 amp cord (or pigtail, I like short cords for this spot) to the box, White to the insulated bus bar, Green to the one that's connected (electrically) to the case, Black to the 30 amp MAIN breaker

12 ga wire to the outlets (I like 12 ga you can use 14 but 12 is not that much more) same color code, On the outlet you hook the WHITE wire to the aluminum screw (Use the kind with screws please) black to Copper, Bare = Green

NOTE with 12 ga wire and 15/20 amp outlets and wire bent around the screw (These outlets have a "T" shaped neutral (White) side) you can use 20 amp branch breakers.

Works great..

Use a 30 amp extension cord with the short cord, plug one plug into each side of the Y adapter I described above and go for it.
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Old 09-14-2014, 02:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jesilvas View Post
It might not be as expensive or as hard as you think to go to 50A service. It all depends on where your inlet is, where the power cable is routed, and where the breaker box is.
Please elaborate.
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Old 09-14-2014, 07:00 PM   #6
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I added an extra 20 amp service to mine primarily as a "Dedicated Blow Dryer Circuit" for the wife, but it is also handy to plug in additional heat in cold weather as well. I'm also thinking it could feed a second AC unit if I ever opt for one.

I did mine by installing a motor base on the exterior near all the other hookups and pulled Romax from it to a GFCI outlet that's mounted in the vanity. I carry a 25' heavy duty extension cord to connect the motor base to the auxillary circuit on the camp pedestal. Total cost <$40 and 1.5 hours.

One could do something similar, but add more plugs and a small breaker box with a couple of 10A breakers, or whatever suits your needs, without having to rewire the whole trailer.
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Old 09-14-2014, 07:18 PM   #7
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Under the cover of the motor base
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Old 09-14-2014, 08:40 PM   #8
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Wish I had your talent L.C. Nice job.
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Old 09-15-2014, 06:43 AM   #9
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Please elaborate.
It's on a case by case basis. I've done one 30A to 50A upgrade that only took 3hrs, one that took 6hrs.

Basically, change the inlet and cord to 50A, add a second breaker box with the 50A mains, have a 30A to go to the existing 30A box, and then take a couple wires from the 30A box and run them to the 50A box, and then that's about it.
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Old 09-15-2014, 11:56 AM   #10
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Being an older trailer do you have a slide out? If so you can do what a lot do, and run a heavy 20AMP ext. cord out thru the slide area and use the 15 Amp outlet on the pole to provide an addition dedicated line for the space heater.
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