Author Topic: Generator hookup confusion  (Read 123 times)

Offline Paulc

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  • Posts: 4
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1994
  • Make: Georgie Boy
  • Model: Pursuit
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Generator hookup confusion
« on: March 21, 2020, 04:06 PM »
New owner of 94 Georgie Boy Pursuit 3200 with a question about the generator hookup.
Owners manual says to connect the power cable to the generator output socket but my electrical compartment doesn't look like the one in the picture.
Picture shows socket on the left while the only socket i see is on the right on a metal junction box where the coach end of the shoreline plug currently resides.
Is there some sort of switching device to go from generator power to shore power?? That junction box looks like the only input to the coach from an external source.
Also in the electrical compartment, there is a double 50 amp breaker for the main contrary to the manual that indicates a 30 amp main. Was this an upgrade since there are two ac units?

Offline Rickf1985

  • 6 year member
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  • Posts: 5756
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Generator hookup confusion
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2020, 07:27 PM »
It sounds like the previous owner made some modifications so he could run both air conditioners at the same time. Start the generator with no shore power plugged in and see if you have power at the outlet you described. My guess is that he has it set up so that shore power runs one AC and the generator runs the other. You need at least a 6500 watt generator to run both AC units at the same time. And you will not be able to run much else with both units on.

Offline Paulc

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1994
  • Make: Georgie Boy
  • Model: Pursuit
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Generator hookup confusion
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2020, 12:53 PM »
Thanks for the reply.
Took a closer look at the electrical compartment today and found a few interesting things.
The fixed end of the shore cable runs into another large breaker box (grey box in photo) with a 50 amp main and two 30 amp distribution breakers. This looks like an add-on.
There's a cable that runs from this box to what appears to be the OEM box (yellow box in photo) which has a 30 amp main and four distribution breakers, one 20 and three 15.
The shore cable appears to be plugged into the generator output right now.
Looks like if you plug the shore cable into a 50 amp outlet you can feed both a/c units and the remainder of the loads but as you said only the front a/c plus house loads can be run off the generator.
In either case it looks like both main breakers must be on or else there will not be power to the OEM box.


Offline Rickf1985

  • 6 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 5756
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Generator hookup confusion
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2020, 05:10 PM »
You might want to check the both breaker on theory. If you are plugged into 30 amp shore power you don't want to try to fire up both AC units. I will bet one of those breakers powers just the rear AC unit. And if it is off the power will still go to the main box. That way you could also have a second shore power cable and run the coach and front air on the genny and the rear air on a 30 amp shore power. Although technically you should not be able to put 50 amps into a 30 system. I am guessing you have adapter plugs or cables.

Offline Paulc

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1994
  • Make: Georgie Boy
  • Model: Pursuit
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Generator hookup confusion
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2020, 10:26 PM »
Seems like it would be similar to a house setup.
There you have a 100 or possibly 200 amp main feeding a bunch of 20 and 30 amp distribution breakers and maybe a subpanel.
In this case the 50 amp is the "main" breaker with the yellow box 30 amp "main" being a subpanel.


The 20 amp breaker on the grey box is labeled "R A/C" (rear a/c ?) and the 30 is labeled "MAIN".
The double 50 is labeled "PORT SERVICE" (must have been a old Navy guy doing the labeling).


The OEM box has the following:
30A "MAIN"
20A "FRONT AIR"
15A "MICROWAVE"
15A "APPLIANCE"
15A "LIGHTING"

Offline Rickf1985

  • 6 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 5756
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Generator hookup confusion
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2020, 08:38 AM »
Never "assume" anything when it comes to RV modifications!!!! You will be amazed at some of the things you will find, both safe and scary. The easiest way to find out in your case is plug it in and turn off the one marked rear AC and see if the rest works, it either will or it won't. ;)  Or you could open the boxes and actually look at how they are wired. If you are familiar with wiring that might be the better option. I am thinking the 20 rear ac is tied into the main just to run the rear AC and the fact that it has only a 20 amp breaker would tell me that the person that did the work knew what they were doing. I would not be surprised to find decent wiring in those boxes. And that AC wiring from those boxes should go to the AC switch in the cabinet above the fridge where it says AC front, rear, both. At least that is where it is in mine.

Offline Paulc

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1994
  • Make: Georgie Boy
  • Model: Pursuit
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Generator hookup confusion
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2020, 11:08 PM »
Cabinet above the fridge is empty, just storage space.
Pulled the plug off the generator output socket and noticed that there was an adapter pigtail on the shore cable.
Pulled that off and lo and behold there is a 50A plug on the cable.  :)clap
The adapter is a 50 to 30 to adapt to the genny output.
Looks like both ac units can be run at the same time on 50A shore power which is a blessing here in AZ in the summer.  :)


And of course on 30A only one or the other ac unit can be on.

 

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