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Old 08-04-2022, 03:00 PM   #1
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50A RV in a 30A spot

I've been looking at some California State Beaches for overnight camping and most of them are limited to 30A of shore power. My class A typically uses a 50A circuit. While I do have the 30A to 50A dog bone I've never actually used it. Other than the obvious of having a reduced electrical capacity - how would I know which circuits would be energized on by the 30A power source. What can I expect when connected to 30A shore power?
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Old 08-04-2022, 03:03 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by raboud View Post
I've been looking at some California State Beaches for overnight camping and most of them are limited to 30A of shore power. My class A typically uses a 50A circuit. While I do have the 30A to 50A dog bone I've never actually used it. Other than the obvious of having a reduced electrical capacity - how would I know which circuits would be energized on by the 30A power source. What can I expect when connected to 30A shore power?

All circuits will be energized.


The single hot on the 30 amp male side is tied to BOTH hots on the 50 amp female side of the adapter.


And, RV math: you are going from 100 amps available (50 + 50) to 30. So, absolutely you have to manage your loads.


And, also monitor voltage. Do not use appliances or A.C. if voltage falls below 108 VAC.
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Old 08-04-2022, 03:48 PM   #3
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I was on 30amp this past week. Aside from popping the breaker on the pedestal 3 times you won’t notice a difference. A good way to understand the difference is 50amp will let you run more crap at one time.

For instance, both acs, water heater set to electric, and the induction cooktop can’t be run at once on 30amp. Turn 1 AC off and you are good to go.
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Old 08-04-2022, 03:58 PM   #4
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It's all about managing the power you have. With 30 amps, you lose 70% of the available power you're used to. You need to understand what your coach uses along with your spouse and children understanding that you just can't turn everything on. When we're on 30 amp, my wife will ask before she uses the hair dryer or curling iron. Typically, you can only run two large items, like the A/C and microwave, microwave and hair dryer, etc.

Keep in mind that up until about 10 years ago, most RV's only had 30-amp systems.
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Old 08-04-2022, 10:02 PM   #5
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I camp like this almost always. Everyone so far is absolutely correct.

Everything is energized and no issues will happen to the rv. But management of electrical use is the key. I camp normal, but only use 1 ac unit instead of 2. There was a day that it was very hot and I turned the main ac on and let it run for 20 minutes, then turned the 2nd unit on LOW. During this time I could not use any big load other than lights or waterpump. I actually forgot and turn on the electric water heater, then bam I lost power.

If that ever happens, just turn off the ac and other big draw items and flip the breaker on the outside pedestal. You will learn, but it's not hard. Good luck
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Old 08-04-2022, 10:59 PM   #6
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.... and another who successfully used 30A many times. Be selective in what you use. You'll soon learn what can't be used at the same time. Don't be afraid of doing it. There are many state parks with only 30A and they are not to be passed up!
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Old 08-05-2022, 10:25 AM   #7
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I have a 50A RV and have used 30A sources many times

I turn fridge & water heater to Propane
Other then trying to use Microwave while A/C Unit is on have had no problems
Heck when we first got the RV we lived in it alongside of S&B while it was being sold/escrow closing using a 15A source
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Old 08-05-2022, 05:47 PM   #8
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I'm thinking this is where that SoftStartRV for the a/c units would come in handy.
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Old 08-05-2022, 05:57 PM   #9
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Must be right time of year

I've used 30 amps with my 50 amp RV a couple of times and was even able to run both air conditioners at the same time. But to use the microwave, the coffee maker, cooktop, etc. the air had to be turned off.

I would not recommend doing this if the temps are high as you'll need to run the air most of the time. In moderate temps I can usually get by running only one unit.
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Old 08-05-2022, 06:41 PM   #10
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I use the three rule anything above items sets the breaker off
Look at any high draw items on 30-amp service will trip the breaker
Air conditioner each one counts electric hot water heater, Toaster, Microwave, Air fryer, Electric cooktop, coffee pot etc.
any other summertime items
Winter same things but include any electric heaters
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Old 08-05-2022, 07:05 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
I have a 50A RV and have used 30A sources many times

I turn fridge & water heater to Propane
Other then trying to use Microwave while A/C Unit is on have had no problems
Heck when we first got the RV we lived in it alongside of S&B while it was being sold/escrow closing using a 15A source
^^^^ that is what to do and only 1 AC at a time.
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Old 08-05-2022, 07:17 PM   #12
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All answers are spot on. I will add if your inverter lets you change the charging amp profile I turn it down to 5 amps during the day, and maybe up to 10 amps at night, depending on how many amps I am drawing. Remember 30 amps is the max for everything.
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Old 08-08-2022, 08:52 PM   #13
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If you need more than 30 amps, here is how you can get an extra 20.
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Old 08-08-2022, 09:19 PM   #14
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