Saturday, July 24, 2010

Heat, Power, and Protection

We headed out from Front Royal at nine o’clock and by quarter after ten had been in four states; Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania – ya gotta love it!!  It was a short drive for us, just under three hours with us pulling into the campground at Jonestown, Pennsylvania just before noon.

It’s hotter than Hades here with the heat index hitting 105*.  Ya gotta move slow and drink lotsa water.  For dinner, we marinated a chicken breast in Zesty Italian Salad Dressing and then grilled it on our Foreman Grill.  After it cooled, we cut it up and mixed it into our garden salad made with lettuce, fresh tomatoes, fresh green peppers, fresh cucumbers, carrots, and some red onions - a great meal on a hot day.  We topped it off with some Hershey’s Peanut Butter Swirl Ice Cream covered in Hershey’s Chocolate Sauce.  Do we know how to live right, or what?

It was just after dinner that Ol’ Heck broke loose.  I had been monitoring the electric meter all afternoon and as more and more rigs arrived, cranking on their air conditioning units, the power level continued to drop.  All of a sudden, the power went out.  At first I figured it was our Surge Guard Power Protection Unit cutting out due to low voltage, however, that was not the case.  The campground circuit breaker that services a couple of rows of sites had “popped”. 

Once the power came back on I took some voltage readings I discovered that we are only getting 104 volts into the coach; our Surge Protection Unit will cut out at 103 which it did about 15 minutes later.  Something tells me that this is not going to be the best weekend to be “camping” in this campground.  It’s at full capacity and with everyone running their A/C’s the campground power system isn’t going to be able to handle demand.  This is not a good thing with the heat index predicted to be even higher this afternoon.

We have a Honda 2000 watt generator and a Cobra 1000 watt inverter but neither will run either one of our air conditioners.  This is the first time in five years of RVing in this unit that we’ve needed a larger generator.   Actually, over the past four years of fulltiming, we’ve very seldom used our air conditioners but, we’ve used them almost continually this year over the past two months.   We may have to purchase another Honda 2000 with a parallel adapter kit which would give us 4000 watts; you need at least a 3000 watt generator to run a 15k air conditioner.

Things began to stabilize and the voltage reading went up to 107 volts which is barely sufficient; I don’t like to see any readings under 110.  If you don’t have a power surge protection unit you should seriously consider purchasing one soon.  Be sure to get one that has surge protection as well as automatic over and under voltage protection.  Ours, also, checks the power pedestal for damaging mis-wire conditions with a warning indicator for reverse polarity, dangerous current on ground wire and/or pedestal mis-wiring.  All of these issues can raise havoc with your appliances.  

Well, that’s more than enough “techy” stuff for today.  This morning we’re going to do some sightseeing before the temperatures get unbearable.  So, thar ya have it for today, see ya tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. We have the 2 Honda generators & together they will run the AC. They are very noisy when they are running at full power & take LOTS of gas, but it's better than having no AC! Try to stay cool today! Hugs, JoAnn