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Old 10-27-2014, 08:35 AM   #1
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Watch Out For This!!!

I found my 15 Amp breaker for my power plug to the coach at the house tripping and started to check for the problem and I found it.

I went to the power bay and on going to unplug, found that my 10 ga. power cord plugged to the 30-15amp reducer was melted together. Could have been catastrophic!

I watched a video on RV Travel that mentioned the small reducers as inferior. Now I know it to be true. I went out and purchased a 30-15Amp Camco "dogbone" one and everything is fine.

My advise, if you've got one of these small reducers....get rid of it!!!

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Old 10-27-2014, 08:45 AM   #2
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Les, which is the part that burned up, the cylindrical adapter on the left?
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Old 10-27-2014, 08:56 AM   #3
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Those legs on your power cord end need to be cleaned to a shiny surface or you will always have elec. issues. I use the small adapter when I am at the S&B with no issues.
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Old 10-27-2014, 09:10 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogpatch View Post
I found my 15 Amp breaker for my power plug to the coach at the house tripping and started to check for the problem and I found it.
I went to the power bay and on going to unplug, found that my 10 ga. power cord plugged to the 30-15amp reducer was melted together. Could have been catastrophic!
dogpatch
That "melting" is NOT the fault of the electrical adapter/reducer.
It's caused by using more than 15-20 AMPs of power in the coach when connected to a 15 AMP receptacle via an extension cord.
Common sense energy management will prevent that from happening.
Mel
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Old 10-27-2014, 09:24 AM   #5
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I use one of those 'type' adapters to keep the rv plugged in the garage... But the only drain really is the convertor to keep the batteries up.. No problems yet,,, but I do check it from time to time... Not like we would try to run the AC or something off of it...
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Old 10-27-2014, 09:30 AM   #6
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Quote:
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Les, which is the part that burned up, the cylindrical adapter on the left?
It was the joint itself that overheated.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mel s View Post
dogpatch
That "melting" is NOT the fault of the electrical adapter/reducer.
It's caused by using more than 15-20 AMPs of power in the coach when connected to a 15 AMP receptacle via an extension cord.
Common sense energy management will prevent that from happening.
Mel
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I agree, I found my electric switch for my Aqua Hot on when I started looking for possibilities of cause.

I still believe those all in one reducers to be inferior. The "dogbone" style is the recommended.

Here's what I bought.

http://www.amazon.ca/Camco-55165-12-...xp_grid_pt_1_1
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Old 10-27-2014, 09:37 AM   #7
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Quote:
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It was the joint itself that overheated.
I am aware of that, see it all the time. Your picture answered my question though, it was a failing (overheating) connection on the cylindrical adapter that was potentially at fault.
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Old 10-27-2014, 09:38 AM   #8
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Luckily we have 12 Awg/ 20 amp breakers. The connection to the extension cord still was getting warm if the AC was running. I made a 12 gauge extension cord out of romex and an outlet and this connection stays room temp. (using IR to test for heat)
Using any extension cord to run the AC can be problematic. The "melting" was proof that the weakest link gets the hottest. With brand new adapters it would likely be very difficult to melt with 10 gauge extension cord and 15 amp breaker. Still not the best solution if you want to run the AC.
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Old 10-27-2014, 11:02 AM   #9
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Luckily we have 12 Awg/ 20 amp breakers. The connection to the extension cord still was getting warm if the AC was running. I made a 12 gauge extension cord out of romex and an outlet and this connection stays room temp. (using IR to test for heat)
Using any extension cord to run the AC can be problematic. The "melting" was proof that the weakest link gets the hottest. With brand new adapters it would likely be very difficult to melt with 10 gauge extension cord and 15 amp breaker. Still not the best solution if you want to run the AC.
10 gauge cable at 30 amps is good for max 50 feet but that 15 amp adapter will heat if you overload it no matter how good the connection and the dog-bone is still only 15 amps at one end and subject to the same heating, you are asking for trouble when overloading them.
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Old 10-27-2014, 11:06 AM   #10
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Typically I only have the fridge and inverter/charger in use in my driveway.
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Old 10-27-2014, 11:50 AM   #11
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Typically I only have the fridge and inverter/charger in use in my driveway.
Add up all the amps from the fridge/inverter/light/fan/heater/everything and and I think you will find the reason it melted. I wonder if they make a 15 amps power protector thingie for people who plug in to their garage. Or maybe put a gfi outlet.
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Old 10-27-2014, 12:00 PM   #12
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If it is pulling more than 15 amps on a consistent basis, the S&B circuit breaker should have tripped. A deteriorating connection between the plug and receptacle blades will cause a heat buildup and the observed problem even though the current draw may have been within acceptable operating parameters i.e. 80% of the maximum circuit rating.
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Old 10-27-2014, 12:07 PM   #13
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Add up all the amps from the fridge/inverter/light/fan/heater/everything and and I think you will find the reason it melted. I wonder if they make a 15 amps power protector thingie for people who plug in to their garage. Or maybe put a gfi outlet.
Never had a problem in 4 years with only fridge and inverter/charger on. As mentioned, I forgot to turn off the Aqua Hot Electric switch.
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Old 10-27-2014, 03:58 PM   #14
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First: There are two common causes of the failure you photographed.

One is dirty contacts, Often we let those get kind of tarnished and do not polish them up before we plug 'em in.

But in this case, let me ask,,, the breaker that feeds the outlet where you plugged in , 15 or 20 amps?

Duplex outlets come in two common flavors,, one has two parallel slots, it has holes (or slots) that accept 14ga wire and it is rated 15 amp

The other has one straight slot (The hot) and one "T" shaped (Neutral) and has no holes for the wire, you bend the 12ga (or larger) wire around a screw and tighten well. This is a 15/20 amp outlet and is often fed with a 20 amp breaker.

The puck and the cord end were both 15 amp rated. Pulling 20 (or even 15) can melt them.
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