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Old 05-09-2010, 10:18 PM   #1
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Convert 50amp 240V to 50amp 220v


Ok- Here's the deal, please feel free to share your ideas, thoughts or concerns. We just sold our house- 20days from sign in yard to closed. Needless to say we were not exspecting it- We are about 6 months away from completing our new home, so we are "roughing it" in our camper for the time being- We are in a nice rv park, that has both 30amp and 50amp service at each site- Camper is designed to run on the 30amp- The 50amp however is being un-used. The park owner has given me permission to place a nice shed on the back side of the my camper- I am wanting to take a #6wire and attach a male on one end- To be plugged into the 50amp plug for an RV- Then take the other end and run it into the storage building- Put a small panel to cover 3 things, standard residential appliances, clothes washer, dryer, and frig and maybe one florecent light. My own logic, says YES this Should work- I am concerned about the grouding aspect and the 220 vs 240, etc... Alright guys this is a good one, lets discuss-
JG
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Old 05-09-2010, 10:27 PM   #2
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220 vs 240 is not an issue it is the same thing just different terms from different times.
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Old 05-09-2010, 10:57 PM   #3
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good info here to understand the differences between RV electric service and typically household electric service - http://www.myrv.us/electric/
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Old 05-10-2010, 11:23 AM   #4
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It will work, but you have to do it right.


You can buy a 50 amp cable to go from the plug to the box, you will find it in the appliance section of the hardware store. You will also need to get a fitting that will allow you to feed that cable into a box without letting in water - I can't remember the name of that fitting at the moment. Strain relief maybe. An electrical shop will have it.

You can take that into a very small service panel.

Don't plug in the cable yet.

Hook the red and black wires to the main lugs - these are where you breakers fit into. On the side, you will see two terminal strips with little slotted screws and various sized holes, there will probably be something there that will allow you to make a bridge connection between these two strips - you don't need that, they should be isolated. The ground you are worried about is actually back in the main service panel.

The white Neutral/white wire should got to one - probably labeled neutral, the Ground should go to the one called Ground or GND.

At this point, you will have two lugs in the center, powered by the red and black wires, and two strips on the sides, one is neutral and the other ground.

Plug the cable in to check your work. No big sparks? Great, now unplug it to continue.

Here is where you start adding breakers. Figure out what you appliances need... 20amp 110/120 service for the washer, 40 amp 220/240 for the dryer?
Now you can start adding the wires back to the panel. Everything in the panel should be SUPER ANAL NEAT, so that you can trace a wire from the breaker to a bundle just by eyeballing it. When you get to the service panel, leave about 24" of extra wire form all 3 (110/120) or 4 (220/240) conductors you pull.

Place the correct sized breaker you need in the panel. Since this is an outdoor shed, you should probably use GCFI breakers on all those devices. A GCFI breaker will have it's own neutral white wire that will go to the neutral terminal strip, in addition to the other neutral wire coming from your outlet that will also terminate on that same terminal strip. Connect the ground wire to the Ground bus. Route your black(and/or red) power wire to where your breaker will go, use 90 degree bends. Check the breaker for how much jacket to strip off, it's likely a 1/2" or less. Feed it in and tighten the screw. Snap the breaker into place. Plug everything in again - including the device you are setting up - then flip the breaker on to test. If it works, unplug again and move on to the next device.
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Old 05-10-2010, 06:08 PM   #5
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RV outlets are all 120 volts.
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Old 05-10-2010, 08:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by studhauler View Post
RV outlets are all 120 volts.
So true! Special distribution panels are made for RV's!

Once, I was asked to add a pony panel into a regular house panel. They were to supply the new panel.
Guess what! They bought an RV panel. Had to drive a hundred miles to get it exchanged!
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Old 05-10-2010, 08:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by studhauler View Post
RV outlets are all 120 volts.
50 amp RV outlets will provide 240 volts.
30 amp RV outlets are 120 volts only.
See http://www.myrv.us/electric/ for details.
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Old 05-11-2010, 09:43 AM   #8
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50 amp RV outlets CAN provide 240v if you go inside the panel and rewire the outlet, providing the panel has 240v inside of it.
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Old 05-11-2010, 10:38 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by studhauler View Post
50 amp RV outlets CAN provide 240v if you go inside the panel and rewire the outlet, providing the panel has 240v inside of it.
When it comes to electrical wiring, there is all sorts of things you "CAN" do. But the question becomes "SHOULD" you (i.e. does it meet electrical codes?).
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