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Old 08-16-2007, 06:14 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2007
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SUN #341
Electrical question


I'm new to your forum and need some help! Maybe someone here with some electrical knowledge can offer some suggestions. We moved up from an Apache Hardside camper this year to a 1986 Sunline Satellite. Over all the TT is in very good shape but of course we've had to do some repairs since the previous owners didn't.

Anyway to my problem at hand. We own a riverfront lot and have put in electric this year. We bought a 30amp weatherproof box to plug our TT into (it has the single 30amp plug) My husband wired it from exterior entrance main breaker box using a 30amp breaker with 10/2 wire. The cord which comes from the TT breaker box that I had to replace because the old plug in had the insulation coming apart said it was 10/3 wire. The fridge works beautifully...the AC fan comes on and the compressor tries to come on but won' kicks on and back off immediately. I got one of those little volt meters and when plugged into an outlet in the TT reads in the green until the compressor tries to kick on and then falls immediately to the bottom of the red (100 volts) So the question is the AC trashed or should we have run 10/3 wire from the breker box to our outlet? My hubby says the 10/3 wire is for 220volts on the exterior side.

Thanks for any help.


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Old 08-16-2007, 08:26 PM   #2
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Hi darkshadows

Welcome to the forum.

It sounds like it’s wired up correctly, but you’re getting voltage drops. Anytime voltage drops below 104V - 102V you run the risk of damaging the A/C or other electrical appliances.

A few things that can cause the voltage drop you're seeing:

1. How long is the wire run from the breaker to the 30 amp outlet?
10/2 wire is good to a maximum of 25’ run. You should use 8/2 wire if the run is 25’ – 50’ #6/2 wire for up to 100’.
You said you are connected directly to the main breaker box of the house, which is good.

2. Did he use copper or aluminum wire?
If you use aluminum wire, you have to increase the gauge of the wire to #8 or #6.

3. Is there anything else on the circuit or running when you tried to run the A/C?
Running other items off the same circuit may be overloading the circuit not providing enough power to run the A/C compressor.

4. What is your house service? Is it a 200 Amp service?
If you only have a 100 Amp service and other large electrical appliances are running in the house, that too could also be draining power.

Sorry I wasn’t more help.

Mary & Tom (aka Hutch)
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Sunlines: 2005 Solaris T-280SR; 1999 Solaris T-2670; 1998 Saturn T-24A
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Old 08-17-2007, 01:27 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum!!

FYI - Assuming you are using copper direct burial cable, you can go 70' from the breaker to the outlet box, and then have your 25' 10/3 cord before you need to go to #8 wire.

The difference in the 10/2 cable and the 10/3 cord markings is the ground wire, it is insulated and counted in the cord, but it is not insulated and not counted in cable. Your hubby is right 10/3 cable would be for 220v.

All the other possibilities Hutch listed are good ones, but if it is immediately pulling the voltage down and kicking the breaker, it is most likely a locked up compressor. Another possiblity is that there usually is a capacitor that gives a "kick" to the starting surge of the motor, and if that's bad the compressor motor might not start.

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