Electric 50 to 30 AMP

by Ira (DallasTX)

Question: My RV has 50-Amp connections. Is there a way to hook up to use 30-Amp service? What do I need to do and will everything work properly?

Answer: The short answer is yes, but first you need to have an adapter so you can physically plug in to the 30-Amp outlet. Look online for a 30 Amp Male to 50 Amp Female Adapter at Camping Worldshow?id=jQLXThKWTec&bids=170943 or a store that sells RV supplies.

Once you have the adapter, you should be able to use all your appliances – just not at the same time. You will have to manage your power usage, and be particularly aware at appliance start-up, when things like the microwave and air conditioner tend to draw more power than they do once they are up and running.

For instance, on 30-Amps, we may run our refrigerator and air conditioner at the same time but will refrain from using the microwave until the air conditioner is off. Or you might opt for running your refrigerator on propane and you will still have enough power leftover for running your air conditioner and microwave at the same time. Different RVs will have different wiring schematics, so you may have to experiment.

As a general guideline, an air conditioner might use 12-16 Amps, a microwave 8-13 Amps (larger convection microwave 13 Amps) and the fridge 5-8 Amps. Appliances with heating elements (hair dryer, toaster, coffeemaker, etc.) also tend to draw a lot of amps – so take care when running any of these in conjunction with the air conditioner or microwave. Electric heaters are another big draw.

On our rig we have a programmable battery charge rate that allows us to restrict the amount of power used by my battery charger. These are just a few suggestions to help you live with 30-amps.