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azbeachboy
I have fifty amp service on my fifth wheel. My trailer lives in Mexico and my trailer park is closing. I can't find 50 amp only 30. How can you change the power box to 50 amps?
Thank you
Texasrvers
Let me be sure I understand your question. Are you asking how you can change the electrical box that you plug into at the RV park from 30 amp to 50 amp?
westernrvparkowner
You cannot upgrade a park's electrical system from 30 amp to 50 amp service at the utility connection box. There are some aftermarket converter devices that you can use if the campground service box for your site has both a 30 amp connection and a 20 amp (regular home type plug non ground fault interrupter) in the box (or two 30 amp plugs) and they are properly wired with separate breakers. My experience with these converter boxes are they very seldom work (usually due to incompatible wiring in the campground, not a problem with the converter box) and usually are not a good long-term solution. If the campground wiring is not totally compatible with the box you risk low voltage problems or will continually be tripping breakers somewhere in the line. The other possibility is to use a "dogbone" type adapter to downsize your 50 amp plug to fit a 30 amp line. This, however, will only give you 30 amps of power to operate your RV. Things you take for granted like running two air conditioners, running the microwave, a hair dryer, a vaccum cleaner or any other high amperage device two at a time will probably result in a tripped breaker. You will also need to monitor your house battery charging system, since it is also a potential source of high amperage draw. All in all you will probably be better served looking for a site that offers 50 amp service.
John Blue
Remove power before you start this work.

You will need to rewire the post. Remove the 30 amp wiring 10 AWG wires. Run in three 8 AWG and one 10 AWG wire from ckt brk box to post (#8 black, #8 red, #8 white, and #10 green). Remove the old 30 amp brk and add in a new 2 pole 50 amp brk. Hook black and red wire #8 to this brk, next hook white#8 wire the ground return buss, next hook the #10 green wire to bare wire ground buss. Them on post end add a new 50 amp outlet. Hook black and red wires to 120 output leads. The #8 white hook to top round post and the green #10 to bottom post. Test is out before you power up your unit.
denbroncs
QUOTE(azbeachboy @ Sep 19 2008, 05:26 PM) *

I have fifty amp service on my fifth wheel. My trailer lives in Mexico and my trailer park is closing. I can't find 50 amp only 30. How can you change the power box to 50 amps?
Thank you

As an easy start, check the voltage on the site first. NEC allows for a 5% voltage drop at the farthest point in the circuit. If you are reading 114 volts or less, it's a bad idea to make any changes without first increasing the wire size from the load center.

Next, you'll need an electrician to calculate the load coming to the site. You typically should have a minimum of 2/0 copper coming in to the pedestal or 4/0 aluminum. The factors include how far is the pedestal from the load center; what else is on that circuit; is the transformer supplying power even capable of heavier loads? The pedestal itself may be wired with smaller wire - but when you do that you are likely no longer to code. You can pick up 50 amp receptacles & boxes at Lowes.

Most people think that changing a 30 to 50 amp is only a 20 amp difference. What is often forgotton is that there are 2 hot wires (50 amps per side) coming in to a box which makes it capable of 100 amps - or a 70 amp increase.


(yes, I've moonlighted in my former life)



westernrvparkowner
Be sure to get the park's permission before you start rewiring their pedestals. If you don't know the entire electrical layout of the park you may disable service farther down the line, you may overload their main breakers or maybe just overload the circuit and start a few fires or create a voltage drop that will damage all your appliances and maybe the appliances of your neighbors. This could create a liability hazard for you. If someone rewired my service boxes without my permission and damage occurred, you can be assured we will be meeting again in court. The odds are very great that the reason the park has 30 amp service is because that is all the wiring and service can handle. We I upgraded my park to 50 amp ALL the wiring and service boxes had to be replaced. I also needed MUCH GREATER electrical service provided to the campground by the power company. These upgrades cost a lot money(10s of thousands for a medium size campground) and that is probably why the campground you are considering is priced lower that some of the others and why they can only provide 30 amp service.
RetiredFA
I guess I am really confused as to why someone is even asking this question. If the park has 30 amp service and you are a 50 amp vehicle, then either use the dog bone or you move on to a park with 50 amp service. I don't think anyone has a legal right to re-wire an RV switch box, unless it's an "ownership" park and you bought the lot.

When you travel overseas from US, the power is (ok, I get this mixed up, is it 220 in US and 110 in Europe? Or the other way around? ), well, you can't go in a foreign hotel and rewire it to fit your US appliances. You have to buy a converter kit if you travel to a foreign country.

JJ
John Blue
People in Europe and all over the world use 220 volts. We here in USA, Canada, and Mexico all use 120/240 volts, not 110 volts. Remember the power grid is very large.

If we can not find 50 amps then we use the dog bone for 30 amps. Works for me. Cut down to one AC unit.
Kirk
As an electrical professional, I will agree with those who state that you can not convert an existing 30A outlet to one that supplies 50A, partly because a true 50A/120V outlet is really two phases of power, each with a 50A circuit breaker, meaning that in theory, you could draw a total of 100A from it. It takes a total rewire from the supply distribution to the outlet to change it in that way.

There are adapters that will allow you to plug your 50A cord into a 30A outlet, safely. But you will still only be able to use a maximum of 30A.
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