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Old 03-17-2018, 01:43 PM   #1
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Only 30A on a 50A plug?

Went to a N FL park. Checked my Volt Amp built in meter on the coach. Only 30A on a 50A plug in. Got a shade tree park mechanic to come out to fix. Both power legs had 120v but no 240v across both. Hummm...
Put in new circuit breaker. No change. Ran my 50A extention cord to a second different post. Got 50A. Not my RV problem. Checked a third different 50A post. Still only 30A and no 240v.
At central power distribution box found my post had both legs connected together and third post was the same way.
Electrician 2 years ago had wired it wrong. I was first to say you gotta fix it or move me.
Final dispostion was at central box 2 wires were reversed to the breakers so only getting 1 leg and 30A on 1st and other leg on the 3rd. Took 1.5 hours to figure this out. Never saw this in 55 years working on electric.
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Old 03-17-2018, 01:46 PM   #2
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There are lots of "miswired" places out there. We once stayed at a park near a casino that advertised 50 amp sites. Problem was that L1 had a 30 amp breaker and L2 had a 20 amp breaker. Yep, that's 50 amps but not the full 100 expected. Luckily it was cool enough that we didn't need the heat pumps.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:02 PM   #3
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I'm not a expert by no means, but have to ask this is the worst you have seen ?

We just went thru a blackout for 3 day's, i have a transfer switch installed by a lic. electrician, so all i have to do is plug a wire into the gen-set, but first throw the transfer switch's to off, and i like to throw the main breakers.

A mutual friend tried to wire a running gen-set into a house panel, and blew one side out. This is the third house he blew.

Seen many marinas with messed up electric.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:34 PM   #4
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You were getting 50 amps but not 240 volt. The issue with 50 amp X 2, 120 volt service, is that you could have overloaded the neutral line, if drawing over 50 amps between the two. The neutral doesn't go thru a breaker and in that situation had the potential to carry 100 amps.

On 240 volt service, the neutral only carries the imbalance between the 2 legs. Never more then 50 amps.

Your built in meter doesn't actually test amperage. It looks for 240 volts and assumes that its connected to proper 50 amp service.

When you connect to 30 amps or that screwed up service, the built in system does not see 240 volts and assumes its 30 amp service. If you also have load sheading, it probably would have prevented the neutral overload but you would have been limited to what you can run.

I guess all of the other users didn't have the monitor or didn't think it was a big deal. Your persistence may have saved some other future users.
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:04 PM   #5
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Sounds like the service has both hots connected to one line. The service should have two hots. Line 1 and Line 2 from the transformer. Some idiot managed to get both brakers on one line not easy but can happen.
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Old 03-18-2018, 09:58 AM   #6
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And that kind of story is while I have a Progressive Industries (Progressive Industries, Inc. | Rv Surge Protection) electrical management device instead of just plugging into a post and hoping it's wired right.
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Old 03-18-2018, 10:13 AM   #7
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in Alaska we found a desolate rv park/campground with 'full hookups', although the 30a outlet was a DRYER outlet. One 30a outlet had a old 'pull out' type large handled breaker, and the only other had an old glass fuse!
So, we decided to just make use of two 15a outlets, with our dogbone 'Y' adapter... both 15a outlets worked, but both were just electric 'extension' cord ends coming up out of the ground. : )

...found out later, after a nice time in the resort's hot tub, and a great home cooked meal at the 'restaurant', that the owner lady's 'brother-in-law' is their 'electrician' : )
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Old 03-18-2018, 04:42 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Fiesta48 View Post
Both power legs had 120v but no 240v across both.
I have heard this arrangement called "fake 50a." As I understand (and I am NOT an electrician), a true 50a 240v outlet requires the two 50a power sources to be opposite phase. If you read 120v on each leg and do not read 240v across both (you would normally read 0, the 50a power leads are from the same phase. I have run into this a time or two over the years. The first time was at a military RV park. If that wasn't surprising enough the manager was not at all concerned about it.
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Old 03-19-2018, 07:37 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Rkesselus View Post
Sounds like the service has both hots connected to one line. The service should have two hots. Line 1 and Line 2 from the transformer. Some idiot managed to get both brakers on one line not easy but can happen.
Pretty sure that's what he said the problem was.
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