I purchased an adapter that allows me to convert an RV 30A (TT-30) connector to a standard 15A, 3-prong extension cord (Example). Then I attach a standard 15A extension cord to reach my RV. Can I use a standard 15A extension cord to run the air conditioner or the microwave for extended periods of time, or should I use my 30A cord?
You really have to know what your appliances draw before using a 30A to 15A adapter such as this one. Your 30A cord is capable of running a large air conditioner, and a few small appliances at the same time, but the adapter cord will not.
If you want to run a small microwave, and heating element (hairdryer, etc.) you could probably use your 15A Adapter cord+Extension cord combo. Anything more, you should bust out the clunky 30A cord.
If you choose the adapter route, you have to watch how much power is being drawn and have the right size cords! Here are some things to consider:
#1 Your extension cord Gauge should be the same as the adapter (or larger)
The adapter example listed is a 12/3AWG cord which is very capable of running 15 to 20AMPS. This size is very common for heavy-duty 15A extension cords. If you had to attach another cord to get to your RV we recommend matching the adapter’s gauge size (or larger if possible)
You will want to get at least a 12/3AWG extension cord. (Like this one) This set-up will allow you to run a medium sized air conditioner and another small appliance.
Why it’s important…
The big problem with using a 30 to 15AMP adapter is that you essentially lose the protection of the circuit breaker at the camp site pedestal. You end up with a 30AMP circuit breaker protecting a 15AMP cord. You could pull 20 or 25AMPS through the 15AMP cord and the camp site pedestal circuit breaker would not trip. This will heat an under-rated cord and can cause a fire!
You really have to know what your appliances draw before using a 30A to 15A adapter such as this one. We can help you make that choice as well. Just contact us anytime and we can work out a good plan for your power needs.