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Old 08-14-2014, 08:27 AM   #1
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Running AC and microwave together throws the breakers

My RV has the 15k BTU AC unit and we have noticed that when we have the AC on (high or low fan with compressor) and run the microwave (on default high) either the RV's main breaker is thrown or the breaker on the pedestal (30A or 50A) is thrown. The Surge Guard typically has no issues with the power at the pedestal when this happens. At the time there would be no TV, maybe 3 LED lights and the fridge would be on (in AC mode). LEDs on the CO detector and a couple of LEDs on surge protected outlets would be on.

Running AC and anything else is not a problem.

Does anyone else have this issue with their Flagstaff?
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:36 AM   #2
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This is normal in a 30 amp camper.

You are using too much power expecting 30 amps to handle the AC startup amps and the microwave at the same time.

Turn the AC to "FAN ONLY" when you need to use the microwave and back to AC "Cooling" when you are finished.

Startup amps on the compressor and fan motor can exceed 25 amps all by its lonesome and your microwave can use 8-13 amps depending on power setting and wattage. Your converter can be using an additional 5-15 amps depending on active DC load and battery charge status.

You can see you can quickly overwhelm a 30 amp camper's service.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:49 AM   #3
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normal appliance amp draws

This should help.

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Old 08-14-2014, 09:20 AM   #4
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Lou and Turbs - many thanks. I though that this was the case of course, but I guess I just needed some reassurance. My wife will be especially thankful.
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:36 AM   #5
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Happy camping !

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Old 08-15-2014, 10:57 AM   #6
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Same trailer and same problem. It doesn't always trip with the AC/micro combo, but pretty often. I try to remember to turn off the AC before I run the micro.

I have also tripped it by running two electric griddles at once with the AC on. My wife's hair straightener has tripped it when other things were running.

I guess such is life until we move up to a 50 amp rig.
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Old 08-16-2014, 07:42 AM   #7
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When any electrical motor starts...it uses an "extra set of windings," these are the start-up windings and draw extra power for up to 5 to 6 seconds till the regular motor windings can function without assistance. A microwave can draw up to 12-14 amps by itself. The best solution for you is to place a small note on your microwave, saying "AC ON???" This will remind you to power down the AC of a minute.
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Old 08-16-2014, 08:09 AM   #8
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Are you running the water heater on electric as well ??? It draws a lot of AMPS also............


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Old 08-16-2014, 09:13 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaklevel View Post
Are you running the water heater on electric as well ??? It draws a lot of AMPS also............


Assuming the question is to me ... Yes although the heater should not have been on at the time the breakers were thrown. I suspect that it is as others have suggested - the combination of the AC compressor load and the microwave on high that just went over the 30A threshold.

Since that time we have had the lights on, the TV on, ran a Ninja blender and had other "normal" electrical loads and there was no problem. Microwave and AC are the only two that would cause this to happen.
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Old 08-16-2014, 09:50 AM   #10
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Switch the water heater to LP and I'm sure your problem will disappear.
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Old 08-16-2014, 10:04 AM   #11
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Switch the water heater to LP and I'm sure your problem will disappear.
Hmmm ... So Dan, are you saying that with my water heater on gas, and the AC compressor on, the breakers should not trip when the microwave is turned on high power? I that is the case I may well do the experiment on this trip. If I do I will report back on the findings.

Seems like two workarounds - (a) no AC compressor on, vs (b) LP gas and no electricity to the water heater.
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Old 08-16-2014, 10:13 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Wmoses View Post
Hmmm ... So Dan, are you saying that with my water heater on gas, and the AC compressor on, the breakers should not trip when the microwave is turned on high power? I that is the case I may well do the experiment on this trip. If I do I will report back on the findings.

Seems like two workarounds - (a) no AC compressor on, vs (b) LP gas and no electricity to the water heater.
That's the way my last 30 amp RV worked.
It just takes a few seconds to switch the water heater to LP and test.
What do you have to lose?

From the chart someone linked to:
Air Conditioner (X number of A/C) 12-16 Amps
Electric Water Heater 9-13 Amps
Microwave 8-13 Amps


Any 2 adds up to LESS than 30 amps.
All 3 WILL trip some breaker.
Your choice on which 2 you want to run at once.
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Old 08-16-2014, 11:50 AM   #13
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I've tripped the breaker on the 30 amp pedestal a couple of times by running the AC and microwave at the same time. Microwaves draw quite a few amps. No big deal. Just go outside and flip it back on. It's nothing to worry about.
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Old 08-16-2014, 12:21 PM   #14
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I dont use the hair dry for the same reason... turn off the A/C and/or the microwave. Trailers are NOT like your house!! Besides... its called "camping" for a reason... you have to give something up.
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Old 08-16-2014, 05:17 PM   #15
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When I set up I try and setup my outside cooking appliances with a 110 to the pedestal
I use a 1500 watt griddle outside and that seems to blow the breaker a lot
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Old 08-16-2014, 06:17 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by dan-nickie View Post
That's the way my last 30 amp RV worked.
It just takes a few seconds to switch the water heater to LP and test.
What do you have to lose?
Thanks but it looks like I have another problem - I never used the WH on gas ever since taking delivery (at the PDI) and I just switched the rocker switch on the WH to OFF (was on for the electric) and then switched the inside control panel switch to ON and noticed that the little red LED labelled "DSI/FLT" did not come on. I went to the WH outside and noticed that the burner did not light. Hmmmm ... read the instructions on the WH itself and it suggested that the rocker switch on the WH had to be ON so I did that - now both the onside control panel switch was ON and the rocker switch was on. The burner did not ignite and the "DSI/FLT" light was still off. I shut it down again.

Got out the manual and it seems that the DSI/FLT illuminates when the burner fails to light so no light at the start is okay.

What am I missing here?
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Old 08-16-2014, 09:26 PM   #17
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Wayne I haven't run mine on gas yet either. Let me know what you get after you pioneer the way.


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Old 08-16-2014, 09:51 PM   #18
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When water in heater Is cold and you turn on the gas switch the lite comes on till it lites if it don't then it tries to lite three more times if it don't lite then it will stay on telling you it failed to lite. to reset you just turn switch off and back on and it will try again. If the water in the tank is already hot from the electric element when you turn on the switch inside for gas it won't come on because water is already hot and until it cools down then it will go thru it cycle to lite and heat water.
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Old 08-16-2014, 10:04 PM   #19
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Onetonford - Thanks for the info. My water was already hot from the electric element so it makes sense if it does not come on. I have left it on for the past few hours and the water is still hot so I assume that the gas burner is working. I will update tomorrow morning.
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Old 09-06-2014, 01:18 PM   #20
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Back to the MW for a minute, could running the MW and AC together cause the MW to be damaged, somehow? Forgot to turn AC off while heating dinner last night and the MW stopped working. Breaker didn't trip, but the MW is dead as can be.. I pulled it out, and the outlet has power...

Thanks!
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