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Old 02-14-2019, 03:51 PM   #1
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Power Fluctuations

How much should the power fluctuate on my readout?

Typically it's between 117 and 122.

I had the microwave going while the dryer was on. I turned on the air fryer and glanced at the readout and it said 105. I instantly shut off the dryer.

Should it go that low? I seem to remember something about 110-125.

Any thoughts?

I can't imagine this thing couldn't handle those three items. What if I'd had the AC on?

With only the air fryer going I'm showing 112.

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Old 02-14-2019, 03:59 PM   #2
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Was that the voltage on BOTH legs of the 50 amp service? I ask because if the voltage on the "other" leg rises proportionately to the voltage drop on the lower-voltage leg, it indicates a compromised neutral connection (which could be anywhere, not just on your side of the pedestal).


FWIW, you were probably drawing 30-35 amperes on that leg. To see the voltage drop relative to the load you experienced, I'd also guess that the wiring to the pedestal is under-size or has corroded terminations, or that the service in the park/CG is heavily loaded.
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Old 02-14-2019, 04:18 PM   #3
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I'm guessing all three of those appliances are fed from the same leg of your 50A shore power.
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Old 02-14-2019, 06:48 PM   #4
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Many RV parks don't have enough capacity to maintain voltage when there is
very much demand .
I doubt you have a problem , the problem is most likely the park power .

I have a Progressive Industries HW50C EMS . I think everyone should have one .
It samples the power before passing it to the RV . The little read out window tells
me the volts and amps on each leg . It will also kill the power if it drops to 104 or
rises to 132 . It protects in many other ways too such as frequency off , spikes and
open neutral .

https://www.rvupgradestore.com/Progr...p/emshw50c.htm

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Old 02-14-2019, 07:07 PM   #5
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I found out the park power is old and sub par.

I have a built in surge protector which is supposed to test the power coming in.

I'd like to learn more about this area. I hated to see that meter go down to 105. That can't be great for the appliances.
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Old 02-14-2019, 07:08 PM   #6
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Rule of thumb is appliances are usually rated between +/- 10% of 120 Volt AC. (There hasn't been a US power supplier of 110 volt since the '20's so I often wonder why manufacturers still use it occasionally to rate their devices. Probably to skirt some difficult regulation of some kind).

Anyway, try to keep your incoming line voltage at between 108 to 132.

Now, if you see your line voltage drop when you turn on some appliance, that can mean several things. Starting at your rig, you could have a poor connection in the input box in the power bay. Your power cord could have a connection going bad (I've had this happen in the head of a 30 amp cord), the socket you plug into (shore power) might have a contact sprung making poor contact. The circuit breaker in the parks power tower might be bad or the wire clamp loosened up.

All of these things can be checked by feeling for heat nearby. Electrical connections should not be hot. Neither should circuit breakers or power cords. Warm maybe, but not significantly hotter then nearby areas. There's other stuff to know, but I'm tired.

If it was me, I'd start looking for a bad connection. Your cords power head is a prime suspect. Meanwhile, minimize your power consumption and check tomorrow.
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Old 02-14-2019, 07:21 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Jim_HiTek View Post
Rule of thumb is appliances are usually rated between +/- 10% of 120 Volt AC. (There hasn't been a US power supplier of 110 volt since the '20's so I often wonder why manufacturers still use it occasionally to rate their devices. Probably to skirt some difficult regulation of some kind).

Anyway, try to keep your incoming line voltage at between 108 to 132.

Now, if you see your line voltage drop when you turn on some appliance, that can mean several things. Starting at your rig, you could have a poor connection in the input box in the power bay. Your power cord could have a connection going bad (I've had this happen in the head of a 30 amp cord), the socket you plug into (shore power) might have a contact sprung making poor contact. The circuit breaker in the parks power tower might be bad or the wire clamp loosened up.

All of these things can be checked by feeling for heat nearby. Electrical connections should not be hot. Neither should circuit breakers or power cords. Warm maybe, but not significantly hotter then nearby areas. There's other stuff to know, but I'm tired.

If it was me, I'd start looking for a bad connection. Your cords power head is a prime suspect. Meanwhile, minimize your power consumption and check tomorrow.
I couldn't wait till tomorrow. I checked the post, box, breaker, cord head and surge protector. Nothing is even warm. There is slightly more heat in the surge protector but not even luke warm. The other connections are as cool as the night air. It's about 63 right now.

The mystery continues...
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Old 02-15-2019, 06:35 AM   #8
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Higher than rated voltages can be a problem for electronics, like TV's, microwave controls, etc. Lower than rated voltages can be a problem for motors, like AC units, etc..

In my home state there are government rules that I believe require the electric utility to provide 120 VAC, plus or minus 5%. So that means 114 volts to 126 volts. But what happens beyond their point of service is purely a function of the quality and condition of the installed conductors and devices.

The posts above are pretty much right on. Many older RV parks were built to serve much smaller and much more basic RV's than what is commonplace, today. As a result, their service conductors may not be even close to doing the job with today's "all the comforts of home" coaches.

This summer, in an older park in the northeast corner of Nevada, I actually saw 102 volts on one leg on our coach. The entire reason for that low voltage was the overloading of the parks system by a large number of RV's, and it was in the upper 90's for temperature. It ultimately cost me a control board for our front heat pump unit. Low voltage to AC motors results in higher currents, and I'm suspecting that the contacts on the relay for the fan motor couldn't handle the high current that it was experiencing and the result was a fan that wouldn't turn off. New board, all is good. Thankfully it was the board that failed, and not the fan motor.
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Old 02-15-2019, 06:49 AM   #9
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Perhaps the OP might consider adding a Hughes Autoformer or similar voltage regulator.
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Old 02-15-2019, 07:32 AM   #10
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My EMS shuts my rig down/disconnects at 107-108V. The further you are from the transformer feeding the CG the lower the voltage, especially when everyone else is using a lot of power. Moving closer to the transformer will help.
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Old 02-15-2019, 07:51 AM   #11
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Perhaps the OP might consider adding a Hughes Autoformer or similar voltage regulator.
I would consider this. What are the details of this device, how does it work? What are the benefits?
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Old 02-15-2019, 11:54 AM   #12
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I would consider this. What are the details of this device, how does it work? What are the benefits?
Probably more than you want to know:

https://hughesautoformers.com/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autotransformer

The reason I have one is that some parks have low voltage especially in times of heavy use in hot weather where everyone is running their A/C.

Mine is hard wired inside the bay (out of sight) where the power cord reel is located. They will work outside by the power post too but if one "walked off" it would be expensive.
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Old 02-15-2019, 04:12 PM   #13
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I carry a Hughes Autoformer for sites that have questionable power. One such park I am heading to in a few weeks, in AZ. I have found the voltage on one of the two legs get's very low when I put any kind of load on it. I chalk it up to all the pedestals being daisy chained together, and if I have half a dozen 30A travel trailers on either side of me, the power load is high, on one leg.
Had one electrician tell me my theory is possible !
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