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Old 06-11-2019, 07:01 PM   #1
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30A or 50A for new construction?

I am building a house on a 5 acre plot of vacant land. SCE, my local electric company, is asking me what I need as far as power goes. Since my aging RV runs on 30A I was considering going with that. However, that leaves me no room to upgrade. If I go with 50A, is it safe to step that down to 30A without damaging/frying my electrical system? I'm new to this, so forgive me if this is a bonehead question. I see 50A to 30A converter cords on Amazon, I just don't know enough about them to determine if this is safe.

Thanks!
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Old 06-11-2019, 07:54 PM   #2
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Is it possible to have the electrician run both a 30A and 50A circuit to the place you are going to plug in? While the RV breaker should protect you against any current draw greater than 30A, having two 30A breakers in series, I would think, is better protection (also having an EMS like the Progressive unit, whether hard-wired or portable). As it is new construction, running a little extra wire and having an extra breaker (actually two for the 50A circuit) would seem like cheap "insurance" for the future.
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Old 06-11-2019, 08:33 PM   #3
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I’d run 50, you can always step it down to 30 with a dogbone adapter. That said you could do as suggested above and run one a 30 and 50 (assuming it’s pretty close to the breaker panel. - the wire can get expensive). Run it onto a box just like at most RV Parks that have both.
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Old 06-11-2019, 10:12 PM   #4
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Either solution will work quite well. The single 50 Amp costs less to install and the 50-30 Amp dog bone is totally safe to use.

The 30/50 Amp option is very nice and total added cost to the house is almost nothing in new construction.

I'd also consider adding a sewer and water connection while you're at it.
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:40 AM   #5
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I have noticed most RV parks run a 20amp, 30amp, and 50amp to their pedestal. I assume they are all separate circuits. If you are parking the RV behind a garage or some other building, you can just have the plugs mounted to the outside wall. Yes, get some water and a sewer connection run there too. You could use your RV as a another "bedroom" for overnight guests.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:07 AM   #6
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Since the question is coming from your power company, whatever you do outlet-wise, include 50A in your specs to the power company and allow some extra overhead for future use. You don't want your incoming service to be undersized for now or the future.

Otherwise the advice you've received so far is good. Personally, I'd install a 50A outlet and use a dog bone adapter to 30A. I'd also investigate the cost of adding a 20A outlet so you can plug power tools in directly unless you'll have one close by.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:36 AM   #7
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The power company may (properly) select the incoming service line based on the total amperage with both the 30 + 50 amp loads. They could assume you use both at the same time. The could increase the cost of the service panel too.

Selecting only 50 amps may save some money and still allow use of 30 amps.

I just bought a home. The previous owner had a 30 amp service pedestal (DIY) installed without a ground wire so I need to get it all replaced professionally.
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Old 06-19-2019, 04:22 PM   #8
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I agree with any option that includes 50A. We first installed 30A and then had to replace it with 50A when we bought the bigger coach. We lived in NC at the time and wanted everything to be able to run at one time.
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Old 06-19-2019, 04:44 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ericb760 View Post
I am building a house on a 5 acre plot of vacant land. SCE, my local electric company, is asking me what I need as far as power goes. Since my aging RV runs on 30A I was considering going with that. However, that leaves me no room to upgrade. If I go with 50A, is it safe to step that down to 30A without damaging/frying my electrical system? I'm new to this, so forgive me if this is a bonehead question. I see 50A to 30A converter cords on Amazon, I just don't know enough about them to determine if this is safe.

Thanks!

HOLD UP. For your house you should consider running out a 200 amp service for sure. Given that we may all move to electric cars and some wanna charge really fast etc. If you are planning on wind or solar then perhaps 100 amps for the home will do but still it may really be better to run the 200 amp wire sizes.


For the Rig, an outlet that gets ya 50 amps should be good, yes they have adapters all over that will turn the 50 amp plug into a 30 or even a 20 amp style house plug.


For safety put a fuse on that plug and use the appropriate size fuse and you should be good.



To future proof your home do have then install a high capacity 220 V outlet in the garage fused for that electric car/van/RV etc! You will probably have one where the cooktop/range is as well as where the water heater is and where the AC compressor is and where the furnace is. This gives you a way to move to an all electric home when and if you want. That said, heat pump cannot hold a candle to gas heat or wood/pellet stove no matter if you are in the southern state where a furnace is needed and specially in the northern climes where the temps go down to 30s and lower yet.


Must be exciting to build from scratch, enjoy the experience and remember the most absolutely most important construct. Happy wife = Happy life .
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Old 06-19-2019, 06:21 PM   #10
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Have your electrician put in a standard RV box... It will include a 50A, 30A, and 20A receptacle in a single tidy box. It doesn't cost hardly anything more to do it this way (during new construction), and - yes - you can ALWAYS run your 30A rig off a 50A receptacle using an inexpensive and common adapter. By doing this, you future proof your setup should you upgrade to a 50A rig in the future.
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Old 06-19-2019, 07:11 PM   #11
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Rv Plugs

Just be sure your electrician wires the plugs for RV not a house dryer or something. A friend had an RV pedestal installed and luckily I checked before plugging in. I would have had 220v coming in which would have fried everything in the coach.
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Old 06-20-2019, 08:46 AM   #12
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Go for the 50 amp

A 50 amp receptacle will "future proof" you and provide piece of mind of ample capacity. Having said that, the extra capacity is usually only needed to run 2 AC units and the microwave at the same time. If your figure in electric hot water and a residential refrigerator, 50 amp is looking better.
50 amp RV service is actually two 50 amp, 120 volt circuits. All 50 amp boxes have two 50 amp breakers that flip together. The four prongs on a 50 amp plug are: two 120 volt hot, one neutral and one ground. Neutral and ground are essentially the same. The two 120 hot lines could provide 240 volt together, but do not in this application.
The 30 amp "dogbone" just uses one of the 120 volt circuits, the neutral and the ground.
Go for the 50 amp service. It uses a more robust plug!
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Old 06-20-2019, 01:34 PM   #13
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I’m confused with the post as to if your asking what amperage you need for the entire Home or just a plug for the RV.
It’s relatively inexpensive to have a “Sub Panel” installed near where the RV will be, you can then run a 50, 30, 20, off that panel for plugs at the RV. Also as mentioned you might as well add water and sewer too. This give you a “Guest House” or a place for friends and family to park their RV without being in the house all the time or more people over at your place. Just a thought. Cheaper now than later.
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Old 06-21-2019, 08:40 AM   #14
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I added a RV Box onto my garage, found a J-Box with 50amp, 220VAC 30amp 110 VAC and 20 amp VAC each with a branch circuit breaker at Home Depot. The biggest issue was the current rating of the existing circuit breaker box servicing my residence, that after adding the 50 amp RV box the residential breaker box specifications weren't exceeded.


The second issue is the grounding configuration, my local code required a ground rod located at the RV J Box. It is a good idea for RV safety but may cause "ground loop" problems if the residence breaker box uses breakers with integral GFI's.


Need to find a expert electrician with RV or similar (outdoor hot tubs face the same issues as RV's) experience. There is a national code called "Entry Service Requirements" or ESR that most localities base their regulations on for the residential breaker box.
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