The majority of RVs have an electrical system that can manage 30 amps which is very different from a 200 amp in a modern home.
So what can you run on 30 amps? A 30-amp circuit uses 120 volts which has about 3,600 watts available for use. You can make use of your microwave, coffee machine, and toaster. For bigger appliances, it appears that there is enough power to operate a small A/C unit, refrigerator, and electric water heater.
Amps, Watts, and Volts Calculation
Currently, standard electrical plugs in North America are around 120 volts. It would usually generate at least 109 volts. If it produces a lower voltage, it is more likely to damage your device, such as air conditioning compressors.
It is important to understand some fundamental electrical formulas. It helps you figure out why a circuit in your RV is overloaded or if you want to manage your power usage.
- Amps X Volts = Watts
- Watts / Volts = Amps
- Watts /Amps = Volts
There are several methods to determine how much voltage or wattage is required to run a machine at 30 amps.
By using the tool below, you can calculate the voltage and wattage quickly.
1. Amps to Volts
If you want to determine how many volts are present, you must divide watts by amps in order.
It is also helpful to look at the listed labels for your device and you will see its wattage and/or amperage needed to operate.
Let’s say you want to use your device but you want to be sure you are not over 120 volts so that you wouldn’t run the risk of damaging your equipment. you have to convert 30 amps to volts using the formula above
3600 watts / 30 amps = 120 volts
2. Amps to Watts
Let’s say your device is producing 30 amps and you want to know how many watts are needed for it to operate, the formula above will be needed to convert 30 amps to watts:
30 amps X 120 volts = 3600 watts
List of Units That Can Run on 30 Amps
Motorhomes often have 30 amps RV plugs with 120 or 220 volts outlets. A typical 30-amp RV service has three prongs and provides a total of 3,600 watts of power at 30 amps at 120 volts.
Let’s now evaluate some basic appliances and determine the wattage each needs. With this table, you can decide which devices to run with the RV 30 amp service.
|Appliance||How much watts needed (W)|
|Hair Dryer||1000 to 1800|
|Toaster||800 to 1500|
|Air Conditioning||450 to 1200|
|Coffee Machine||550 to 900|
|Microwave||100 to 900|
|Television||50 to 200|
|Refrigerator||50 to 100|
|Washer||400 – 500|
RV plugs of 30 amps at 220 volts usually generate 5250 watts of power. In your sub-panel or main breaker box, a single-pole 30A breaker needs to be installed to safeguard the outlet.
It is essential to keep an eye out for your appliances that consume the most power since these could be some of the greatest wattage hogs. Some are space heaters, electric water heaters, microwaves, and air conditioners.
If you’re planning to plug your 30 amp RV directly into your 240v outlet, don’t do it. It may damage your device. Instead, you may get its dedicated adaptors for the said use.
The standard outlets in your motorhome won’t be able to give enough power, so you’ll need, at the very least, an RV electrical hook-up at 30 amps or, better yet, 50 amps.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you run the air conditioner on 30-amp?
Your air conditioner uses a lot of power when you turn it on. The largest A/C units can require roughly 17 amps when it is up and running. However, that same air conditioner requires 30 amps or more when it is initially turned on. It is advisable to run off a 30 amp breaker if you want to install air conditioning.
Is 30 amps enough to power a house?
To power a house, 100 amps is the typical minimum of electrical service, regulated by the National Electrical Code (NEC).
The secret to living on 30 amps is keeping track of how many appliances or devices you are using at once and how much wattage or voltage each one is producing. Stay within the amperage of one circuit, and draw up to 30 amps all at once.
What appliances require 30 amps?
With 30 amps, you can use the following:
- Hair dryer
- Coffee machine
- Electric skillset
You could turn on a small TV and a radio for your entertainment devices. It is necessary to use air conditioning when living in a car to avoid heat stroke. You must pick a manageable size to prevent it from using up all of the power.
What sets 30 amp generators apart from 50 amp generators?
Some could sufficiently live off a 30 amp generator run meanwhile others choose to use a 50 amp generator to live more comfortably. This creates the question, “what can you run on 50 amps?” People choose a 50 amp generator if they want to use centralized air conditioning without worrying about overloading their circuit.
If you put in the effort to learn your RV’s electrical system and a few fundamental electrical formulas, it is easy to be living on 30 amps. It may be different from a typical 200 amp powered house, but you don’t have to give up comfort by using less power.
With a rudimentary understanding of this electrical concept, answering the question, “what can you run on 30 amps?” would be a no-brainer.
You can now manage running your refrigerator, electric water heater, and air conditioner all at once without the fear of getting a short circuit.
I have dedicated countless hours to exploring every nook and corner of the world. Ten years living in an RV may seem long, but time seems to fly by when I’m doing what I love with the person I love. So, if you want to run away from the busy lifestyle to embrace nature, I’m your guy.