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Old 05-15-2013, 02:20 AM   #1
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Default 15 amp extension power cord

I stumbled upon a good deal for a 15 amp extension power cord at Costco. It is 100 feet long for $39.95. Usually, I see 50 foot 15 amp cords for that price. I wanted to make a new 15 amp cord for my van so getting the 100 foot cord from Costco works well.

At home, at friends and relatives and often in campgrounds I use a 15 amp cord and leave the 30 amp cord in the RV. My van has low wattage requirements -> 600 watt A/C, 900 watt (power consumption) microwave ........... 15 amps at 120 volts is 1800 watts.

I made two cords out of the 100 foot cord. One 60' cord for RV use and one 40' cord for home use. I went kind of long for the RV cord because of where I plug in at one relatives house. There is a twist-lock type plug on my van. I plan to use Velcro straps to section the 60 foot cord into either two 30 foot or three 20 foot sections to make it easier to handle.

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Old 05-15-2013, 04:35 AM   #2
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Default Re: 15 amp extension power cord

I'm a yard sale fan, so sometime in the past, I can't remember when, I bought a 15 amp 100 ft cord. I think I paid $2 or $3 bucks for it. (It was pretty well used as it came from a contractor who was retiring.) When we got the motorhome, I grabbed it and plopped it into the bin with the 30 apm'er. Haven't seen need to use it yet, except for in our own driveway. We also have a converter mini-cord that will allow us to plug our 30 amp'er into a normal 110 outlet, but it doesn't reach on its own--our 30 amp'er is only 30 feet long.

We have a large referigerator and a large microwave, so when we use the 15 amp'er at home, it tends to heat up a little--I don't know if that is normal. Do you, Marco?

..........Rocky
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:35 PM   #3
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Default Re: 15 amp extension power cord

Running the fridge at home shouldn't heat up the cord. I don't know which fridge you have but I looked up the specs for 6.3 cubic foot Norcold N621 to get an idea of the amp draw and it is only 3 Amps at 120V/AC. The microwave oven would draw much more, maybe 12 or 15 amps and even more if it is a convection oven and used that way. The convection microwave oven I had in an RV had a 20 amp plug.

The converter/charger in your RV will also use AC current when plugged in. The Maximum Continuous Input Power on mine is 725 watts or approximately 6 amps AC. My batteries are often fully charged from driving when I plug in so the AC amp draw is usually very little. If your batteries are low when first plugging in then expect the converter to initially draw near the maximum.

If the cord gets warm with just the fridge and the converter the inspect the cord for damage and try cleaning the plug. The plug or socket end could be a bit worn and not making good contact creating resistance. Also try to figure if one part of the cord is getting warm; the plug end, the socket end, or the cord itself.

With a 15 amp cord like mine you do have to be aware of what is using power in the RV because the amps can add up. Running an 11,000 BTU air conditioner for example probably will trip a breaker. I'd expect a 15,000 btu A/C to overload a 15 amp cord for sure.
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