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Old 07-08-2019, 11:38 AM   #1
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Campground voltage?

I have a voltage meter (cheap one from CW). It shows 120 coming from the pedestal, my surge protector shows the circuits to be wired correctly. My question is when I plug the meter in to an outlet in the RV it shows 120 but of course when I start turning things on it starts dropping. I have read that I would be ok as long as I am above 104. Is this correct? I have the amp thing figured out as to what I can run without blowing the breaker but the volt thing has me confused. Am I good as long as the pedestal is giving me 120? Do I need to keep turning things off to keep the voltage above 104? 2016 Axis 25.2
Thanks for all the help.
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Old 07-08-2019, 12:11 PM   #2
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I have a voltage meter (cheap one from CW). It shows 120 coming from the pedestal, my surge protector shows the circuits to be wired correctly. My question is when I plug the meter in to an outlet in the RV it shows 120 but of course when I start turning things on it starts dropping. I have read that I would be ok as long as I am above 104. Is this correct? I have the amp thing figured out as to what I can run without blowing the breaker but the volt thing has me confused. Am I good as long as the pedestal is giving me 120? Do I need to keep turning things off to keep the voltage above 104? 2016 Axis 25.2
Thanks for all the help.
Your park has low voltage issues due to undersized wire for the distance to deliver the proper voltage. It's called Voltage Drop. Turn on the toaster, coffee pot (Brewing not just on warm), and micro wave. The voltage should still be at 120 volts at the PED. I'll guaranty it is not.

Hughes Auto transformer will fix this problem. About $350.00 from Amazon. Do not try to run your A/C with less than 110 volts at the PED.

Acceptable voltage is 108 to 132. But not for your A/C.
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Old 07-08-2019, 12:12 PM   #3
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What's the voltage at the pedestal when the voltage in your MH is 104? If also 104, then the campround wiring/connections have a problem and something is heating up due to a high resistance connection.

On the other hand, if the voltage at the pedestal is still 120 VAC when the voltage in your coach is 104 VAC, then the problem lies in your coach or SP cable or plug.
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Old 07-08-2019, 12:13 PM   #4
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The following is from an article I saved from an RV magazine.

Power companies are required to provide 120 volts, plus or minus five percent. That runs from 114 volts to 126 volts. Years ago, it was referred to 110 volts with an expected measurement of 117 volts. Anything below 100 volts is considered low voltage and all AC appliances should be turn off to avoid damage. Some articles said most of the AC appliances would be OK at a little below 100 volts except for the air conditioner and the microwave. Other articles said to turn off the air conditioner if the voltage drops below 105 volts. Most of the power Surge Voltage protectors turn off the power when low voltage reaches 102 volts.
You be the judge, but 102 to 105 volts is the best and safest guideline.

If you don’t have a good (expensive) protection system (not just a surge protector) you are risking all the electrical systems in your coach. You will not know when the voltage drops.
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Old 07-08-2019, 12:35 PM   #5
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FWIW:
Lake George RV Park over Memorial Day weekend was reading 121-123 at the pedestal.
The park was pretty darn full of rigs.
At the Hammondsport/Bath KOA over the July 4th weekend: they were reading 117 at the pedestal, when they were also filled with campers.
But by Sunday morning (when the place was emptied out...): they were back up to 120.
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Old 07-08-2019, 12:46 PM   #6
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Thanks all.
16ACE27. You are saying that if the pedestal reads 120 volts that no matter what I am running in my coach the volts should still read 120 in my coach. Thanks
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Old 07-08-2019, 01:11 PM   #7
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My meter will read 120 in the coach and when I turn on my A/C it drops to 112. Is that normal? Thanks
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Old 07-08-2019, 01:55 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by sandrooney View Post
My meter will read 120 in the coach and when I turn on my A/C it drops to 112. Is that normal? Thanks
Yep. Same thing for me in some campgrounds. Sometimes a little lower. All the more reason for a good EMS.
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Old 07-08-2019, 02:34 PM   #9
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I have a voltage meter (cheap one from CW).
I don't know your meter as there are many difference measurement options. Cost versus technology. They will give the correct reading on a prefect 60 cycle sine wave but we don't live in a perfect world. All kinds of electronic devices trend to distort the sine wave. The only accurate electronic meter is a True RMS measurement, Fluke meters is one available brand.
There is nothing wrong with using your meter for troubling shooting and finding the drop between your pedestal and your inside equipment but what is the true voltage could be in question?
Good surge protection equipment generally if equipped will give good voltages.
Clay
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Old 07-08-2019, 03:09 PM   #10
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My meter will read 120 in the coach and when I turn on my A/C it drops to 112. Is that normal? Thanks
No, it is not. That's why you need to measure the voltage at the pedestal UNDER THE SAME LOAD to determine if it is a campground issue or a coach issue.
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Old 07-08-2019, 04:48 PM   #11
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I don't have the equipment to check that. Sounds like I need to just get an EMS surge protector instead of just a surge protector .
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Old 07-08-2019, 05:10 PM   #12
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For the extra money: get the EMS, and it'll protect you from a bunch of REALLY expensive problems.
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Old 07-08-2019, 05:22 PM   #13
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I don't have the equipment to check that. Sounds like I need to just get an EMS surge protector instead of just a surge protector .
We bought our new Vegas six weeks ago. When we went in for delivery, the gentleman who did our orientation was very good, and a long-time camper himself. He could have tried to sell us on this, that, and the other thing. (We kind of expected him to, actually.) He didn't. The ONE thing he said we absolutely should do (and he didn't care whether we bought it from the dealership, or Amazon, or wherever) was to get a Hughes Autoformer. He talked about the danger of low-voltage and the total destruction of your electronic system that it could do. We bought one that week (not from the dealer) and have NEVER had our rig plugged in without it. If anything goes wrong with our electrical system, I will know that I've done things exactly the way they instructed me to when I picked up my vehicle.
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:18 PM   #14
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My meter will read 120 in the coach and when I turn on my A/C it drops to 112. Is that normal? Thanks
That seems like a large drop to me. If it drops 8 volts just for that alone. Running your microwave will more then likely, depending on the power of your microwave drop another 10 volts, that would put you at 102 volts. I would agree that the campground is not wired correctly or they could even have a bad transformer. As stated above, low voltage can put a toll on your electrical equipment causing premature failure. I would aim to be in the 114-126 volt range.
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:24 PM   #15
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I don't have the equipment to check that. Sounds like I need to just get an EMS surge protector instead of just a surge protector .
Yes. At least the EMS will monitor your voltage and cut the power if it gets to high or low. We carry an Auto former because we are full time and are connected everyday.
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:29 PM   #16
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I don't have the equipment to check that. Sounds like I need to just get an EMS surge protector instead of just a surge protector .
Yes. Yes and Yes. A surge protector will not protect you from low voltage which can destroy your AC and other electronics and in my case melt your 30 amp cable to the coach plug. It was not pretty and made a believer out of me.
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Old 07-09-2019, 10:02 PM   #17
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I don't have the equipment to check that. .
Yes you can get the measurements to see if the campground has a problem or your RV. Take these measurement and write reading

With the A/C off. First check the Pedestal voltage, check the inside voltage, Turn on the A/C and check inside voltage.
Now check the pedestal voltage again. check the inside voltage, turn off the A/C and check the inside voltage and then check the pedestal.

You mentioned you saw a change of 8 volts (120 to 112 volts) when the A/C was running. if the campground drops even half that amount I would be inclined to say the campground has a problem. Your Rv could easily drop 2 volts pending the point of measure.
You have not identified your RV. Are you connected to 50 or 30 amp service?
Some campgrounds have 50 amp service but the not the capacity to have a full park on a hot day. ( Case in Illinois State Park and Illinois don't have the money to repair problems)
Good luck Clay
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:21 AM   #18
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I have an Axis 25.2. I am running 30 amps. I was dropping the 8 volts on the AC at the campground I was at on Sunday night and yes the MW was dropping it another 8. Monday night at a different campground the AC only dropped it 2 volts and the MW only 1 more volt and the exact same at last nights campground. I believe it was just the Sunday night campground.
Thanks a lot
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