tent power

Submitted: Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 16:36
ThreadID: 134131 Views:6949 Replies:17 FollowUps:55
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Hi guys.. can I plug my domestic 10 amp plug into a 15amp caravan park socket ?? or do I need an adapter ..Thanks
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Reply By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 16:47

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 16:47
You certainly can. No adapters required.
AnswerID: 607713

Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 17:41

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 17:41
You can physically plug it in...... but, some caravan parks may unplug it & give it back to you when you leave.

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Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 17:41

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 17:41
Yes, you can put a 10A cord into a 15A outlet but you cannot put a 15A cord into a 10A outlet.

Shaker, why would a caravan park unplug it as there is nothing wrong with doing it.
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 17:59

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 17:59
It happened to a friend of mine, also at the marina where I worked, all 10amp leads were regularly unplugged & removed from the boats, as they only allowed 15 amp leads.

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FollowupID: 877436

Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:46

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:46
Removing 10A plugs from 15A sockets is silly.

That's the whole point of the design. Lower ratings can use higher rated sockets, provided there are no 15A sockets downstream.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:54

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:54
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Yes, it's silly, but I think some park managers do not understand electrics fully and
consider "15A is 15A" and no 10A plug or anything else will get anywhere near it.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:00

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:00
Why bother with 15 amp then?

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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:12

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:12
Because the regulations require 15A outlets so that is what the electrical contractors install.
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Allan

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Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:41

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:41
Exactly, they are required because of the amount of current draw that fully equipped vans can use.
How many times have you seen 10 amp powerboards trip their overload button?

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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:01

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:01
Shaker,

What is the situation/ legality if I run a 15 amp lead to my site then plug a toaster or jug with a 10 amp lug into the end of it? Is that not the same as using a 10amp lead.

The 15 amp receptacle is for plugging a van or camper or boat with a corresponding input receptacle, which they must have by law if they are to take power from such a supply, and then distribute power within the van/camper.

That does not preclude a simple tent-based camper from using a 10 amp lead to power a couple of plug-in household appliances in a tent or camper which itself is not plugged in to the supply.

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Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:04

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:04
Caravans have a 15A inlet mainly for the airconditioner.

If you were never going to draw in excess of 10A there is no reason why you could not have the inlet changes to 10A along with the main circuit breaker.
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:38

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:38
Un authorised removal of a lead from a carvan park connection would be classed as theft, and not giving it back straight away could lead to all sorts of legal issues?

Over the years we have stayed in dozens of caravan park powered sited and never ever once asked if we own and use a 15amp lead, or physically told to by caravan park staff to do so.

If this happens to anyone, they have to right to call police and lay charged against the person that has illegally removed your lead.



Cheers



Stephen
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:41

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:41
Shaker,

Given your post and Allan's further down, I'll concede. Ridiculous though it is, if you want to charge your phone in your tent in a caravan park and you want to use their power staunchion you must use a 15 amp extension lead.

Stupid, but compliant with regs.
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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 20:57

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 20:57
The reason that marinas stipulate you must use a 15 amp lead is because their insurers stipulate it as a requirement, I don't know but caravan parks may have the same requirements?
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Reply By: Member - MIKE.G - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:37

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:37
Hi Gordenski, most of the caravan parks we stay at require a 15 amp power cord for connection to tents, campers or caravans.
To get this clear in my own mind, I rang a couple of caravan parks and evidently it is now law in both NSW and here in QLD. The reason I was given is that it is a safety requirement as the 15 amp cords will take a larger surge and have a the larger earth.

Cheers,

Mike

AnswerID: 607716

Follow Up By: Member - Gordoneski (WA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:46

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 18:46
Thanks for the reply Mike...
So I run a 15amp power cord from the power pole to my tent ... then I can plug a 10amp plug (with safety cut off switch) into it ??
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FollowupID: 877438

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 18:23

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 18:23
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Gordon, You can run a 15A cord to your tent and plug a single appliance into that even if the appliance has a 10A plug on it.

If you wish to have multiple appliances operating in your tent you must connect them to the 15A extension cable via an Outlet Box which contains earth leakage protection (safety switch) such as this.............

Power Block with Safety Switch

You are NOT PERMITTED to use a domestic power board such as this.....

Now maybe people do use electrical equipment that is not approved and are still alive but I am simply stating the lawful regulations.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: TomH - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 16:46

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 16:46
Unless that one is the one rated for outside use you may only use it INSIDE.

I havent seen the best one at Bunnings nor for less than about $115

Boxes rated under AU/NZ 3105 are NOT rated for portable structure use

Make sure the one you buy is rated for 3001 which are.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 17:57

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 17:57
Tom,

The Outlet Box that I illustrated above in the upper photo labelled "Portable Outlet Box" is rated as IP33 which is "suitable for water spray up to 60 degrees from vertical. Bunnings sell it for $127. They also sell one for $114 rated as IP44, "suitable for water spray from any angle". Either of these may be suitable for within or outside a tent. But outside the appliances plugged into these boxes may not be suitable for exposure.

AS/NZS3001 refers to "Electrical Portable Outlet Devices" (EPODS) complying with AS/NZS3105 shall not be used as outlet boxes." These EPODS are the "plugboards" illustrated in my lower photo above which I have labelled as "NOT PERMITTED" to be used in relation to tents.

The distinction here is in the expressions "Outlet Boxes" and "Portable Outlet Devices (EPODS)". The terms are very similar and it cannot be expected for the general public to comprehend which products are acceptable and which are not. Indeed, even when familiar with interpreting Electrical Standards one has to be extremely careful to properly identify the expressions and meanings. Tradesmen frequently need to contact an Authorised Officer for interpretation.
For this reason I am very careful and specific when I make references in these forum threads and they need to be read just as carefully.





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Allan

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Follow Up By: TomH - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 19:26

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 19:26
Firstly Bunnings have it for $78 in your link ATM
The fullywaterproof versions start at $114

As I understood it when I was looking for one The Bunnings ones were suitable for a building site and are rated under a different standard to what a Portable structure unit is.
I was told I had to buy one which complies with AS/NZ3001

The ones Bunnings stock are AZ/NZ 3105 compliant or were when I looked so I didnt buy one. They would be Ok if you had them in the tent I guess
There is also the 15 amp versions which some use rather than an Ampfibian and may or may not be legal. Jaycar even sell one in a box and reckon it complies for use with a van.

I do also have a copy of the standard

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Reply By: Dean K3 - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:15

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:15
Interesting to say least yes understand why they want caravans/motorhome to use 15a as stated previously gives bit of "safety margin" it when a person files down earth pin so it fits a 10a outlet i get annoyed as 99% of caravan parks will be 15A supply.

But if you look at a engel waeco etc etc they only run a 10amp inlet so why a caravan park would have issues with plugging in a 10a into a 15a rated supply is beyond me.

Even when we had new sheds built after bushfire just over 3 years ago (Parker ville-Mt helena) sparkie recommended 15a straight away just in case we ever needed to run slightly higher amp equipment -even said running normal 10a plugged equipment perfectly OK to do

So gordoneski - carry a 15a with you just in case then plug 10a powered item into it no problems feel free to add a circuit breaker/adaptor if you feel it necessary
AnswerID: 607718

Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:36

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 19:36
_
Gordon,
I presume your VW Caddy Van is not wired for 230 volts and you are using an extension cord from the park power pillars into your van. That is legal and safe if sensible precautions are observed.
If you get hassles from park managers about using a 10A extension lead you could instead use a 15A lead then plug your appliances into that. Entirely legal and safe.
The park manager will see that you are using his preferred 15A extension and be happy.
(Although a few of them are never happy about anything. LOL)
Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 607719

Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:17

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:17
-
I have just perused my copy of the AS/NZS 3001 Standard that covers electrical supply to Transportable Structures.
It specifically states that it "Includes provisions for ...... temporary structures such as tents...." (Section 4)
Section 5 defines the supply lead as "...requires a cord extension with a minimum rating of 15 Amps and 15 Amp rated plugs."

So it would seem that you are indeed required to use a 15 Amp extension lead into a tent. However I know of no regulation limiting the use of a 10A plug into that 15A extension cord.

Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 607721

Follow Up By: Geoffr17 - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 22:15

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 22:15
Quite right Allen.
My Camper Trailer like all of them has a 3 pin 15 amp mounted on the side of the camper to meet the regulation as your entry above . on the inside of the camper from the plug is 6 cm of cable to a 10 amp 3 pin socket and the inbuilt battery Charger plugs into this.

Also caravans with Microwaves , A/C etc all on at once needs a 15 amp supply.

As for the tent carry a 15amp lead to plug into switchboard and then a 10 amp power board in the tent with overload protection.

Also be aware of the requirement to have leads tested and test tags fitted.
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Follow Up By: The Bantam - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 00:47

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 00:47
There are some interesting issues with tents, that normal people may not realise.

Some of them are specifically addressed in the tempoary structures standards ..... (which is a consolidation of about 3 previous standards) some are not.

The first thing to understand is that any tent, or camper trailer is a wet area and a water hazard exists ...... it's not guaranteed dry inside, like a hard structure like a shed or a caravan ...... so using any sort of 240v electrical supply is risky.
This is not explicity stated in the standards.

remember too that tents are not guaranteed stable structures ..... it's fairly common for them to fall over a blow away.

There are some explict things like ...... power boards can't just lie on the ground ..... ya cant link power from one tent to another ( except in special circumstances) ...... power cords cant just lie on the ground unprotected.

There is a whole string of requirement in the standard.

Seriously ....... think very very carefully before you introduce a 240V supply into your tent or camper trailer.

AND while every caravan or camping site should have individual earth leakage protection for every outlet ...... it may not be the case in every situation .... anything more than running a battery charger .... I'd be bringing my own earth leakage.

Then there are some very specific risks posed by certain appliances

Heaters in tents ...... HELL ....... be very aware that most tents burn very very well ..... bringing any sort of heater into a tent is super risky.

think about these things ... serioulsy

cheers
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Follow Up By: Dusty D - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:03

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:03
Geoffr17 wrote: "Also be aware of the requirement to have leads tested and test tags fitted."

Are you sure that it is a legal requirement?

I've read this before on different forums and nobody has come up with any legal reference to the requirement.

Dusty
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Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 00:59

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 00:59
I can not recall any mention of testing and tagging being mandated on private equipment.

If a caravan, any cable or appliance is put to a commercial use ..... the item is owned by a business or the item is used in a "workplace", it will require testing and tagging.

That said ...... proprietors may be well within their rights to require it.


Yeah and all that said ...... electrical cables used around caravans and camps ..... are in a much higher risk situation than a home ........ those items realy need to be in A1 condition ....... so it's probably wise to have them and the van inspected regularly.

cheers
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:29

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:29
I would be very interested to hear from a legal point of view of the unlawful removal of a lead from a covered caravan park power point where there are usually connections for 4 caravans, with no signs stating 15 amp only, and who is qualified to do so?

I would have thought that if you have paid your money for a powered site, are not physically told by staff that you are not to use a 10amp lead, and then set up, they are in fact tampering with your site and this could be used as a legal fight as to why. Imagine if this was the case and you come back to your site and food stuff has gone off in warm weather if you were away all day from your site.

These days with consumer laws, if there are no signs saying you can not do it, are not told by staff when paying your fees, and then to see the the persons A class electricians licence to see that he or she is qualified to give such advise?

As for being legal in some states, this sounds like another lot of c........

Australia has uniform electrical rules from state to state so there is one set of standards right across Australia and not just to suit some state that want to do their own thing.




Cheers




Stephen
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AnswerID: 607722

Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:41

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:41
Did you read the reply directly above this one?
I think it is quite clear.

This is from a WA government document:

For caravans

Connecting to electricity supply

Power is available to caravan and camper vans at sites by connecting a supply extension lead from a socket outlet at an on-site connection facility to an inlet socket fitted on the van.

The supply extension lead must be one continuous length and be rated at 15 amperes. The lead should also be between 3 and 15 metres long.
The lead should also be secured to the tie bar at the site connection facility. Ensure the lead does not cross vehicle tracks or block access ways.
Worn or damaged leads should be repaired or replaced.
Always fully uncoil leads before using them.
Only one lead shall be connected to each socket outlet at the on-site connection facility.
There must be a separate lead for each inlet socket on the van.
Double adaptors must not be used to connect supply leads into the on-site connection facility.
Is your caravan safe?

The caravan must be wired to Australian New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 3001 by an electrical contractor. A Caravan Installation Test Certificate (sticker) should be attached to the caravan to show that it meets the safety standards.

When connecting to caravan park site facility, check that the socket outlet has a safety switch.

For tents

Supply extension leads need to meet the requirements as outlined for caravans.
If the on-site connection point does not have safety switch protection for the outlets, it is recommended that a portable safety switch be used to supply the tents.
Electricity supply must not be obtained from another tent having a different occupier or situated on another site.
Connecting electrical equipment in a tent

If there is more than one appliance to be connected in the tent, use an approved portable socket outlet box. Place the outlet box on a rigid support in a dry and protection position.

If possible, switch the power off at night or when electricity is not being used.

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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:58

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 20:58
It was not there when I was doing my repy shaker
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Follow Up By: Member - Blue M - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:17

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:17
Stephen, how do you "physically" tell some one something?

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:21

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:21
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Ah Blue, you clench your fists, flex your biceps, push your jaw forward and say "Now listen fella...." lol
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:25

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:25
verbally as you pay your fees. If these laws are going to be enforced, the caravan park staff should advise all paid patrons of the new laws and that before they connect their van to the power outlet, it must be 15 amp. It would not take any longer to tell them that piece of information, as the where their site is and the amenities block.


Cheers


Stephen
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Follow Up By: Geoffr17 - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 22:24

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 22:24
I wonder why they put 15 amp power points in the switchboard and not ordinary 10 amp ones ???.

Uh , probably because I need to plug in a 15 amp lead .

Simple !!!!!.
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Reply By: TomH - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:43

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2017 at 21:43
As long as you dont do what I saw at Jurien Bay and Kings Canyon. Two different wizzbangs each of them with two short joined domestic extension cords and in the first case a 4 way power board in mid air behind the thing IN THE RAIN.
Unbelievable. They live amongst us and they breed.
AnswerID: 607725

Reply By: The Bantam - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 01:12

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 01:12
Some people will be wondering WHY the requirement for a 15 amp lead.

This is because the outlets are not general purpose outlets ....... they are intended as a supply connection point ( a source of supply to a caravan or tent site)..... AND there are specific risks that would not be present in a home or workshop.

The outlet is a 15 amp outlet and will have a 15 amp breaker.

SO if a 10 amp extension lead is used with some other non-compliant item ( like an early unfused power board or a 15 amp item fitted with a 10 amp plug, the power cord may overheat before the fuse blows.

BTW ... it is not the site owner or managers specific obligation to ensure that customers know all the laws and standards that apply.

They do however have some duty of care ..... they would be unwise to allow the use of a 10 amp lead when the standards, that they are obliged to know, explicitly state that a 15 amp lead is required

AND this is nothing new

cheers
AnswerID: 607733

Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:58

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:58
Thank you Bantam. Yes what you say makes sense when you put it that way.

You learn something every day.
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FollowupID: 877464

Reply By: 9900Eagle - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:29

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:29
Mate it is pretty simple. There is nothing wrong with plugging a 10 amp lead into a 15 amp outlet and here is an example.

Firstly the outlet lets you plug the lead in which in itself tells you something.

Secondly, go to any engineering shop and all the outlets will be 15 amp. The boilermakers will have anything from a radio, fan, small and large grinder, welder and so on plugged into the 15a outlets.

Thirdly, the circuit breaker (16 amp) which protects both the 10a outlets and the 15 amp outlets will be the same for both as it is there to protect the cabling from the circuit breaker to the outlet. They may even run larger cable to the outlets and have a larger circuit breaker fitted to protect that cable.
AnswerID: 607734

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 01:10

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 01:10
This is not an engineering shop.

This is a carravan park, it is outdoors and the cable is a supply feed, that may have many things connected to it ....... the safety features of the site or caravan depend on that link.

In an engineering shop, only one appliance should be connected to a 15 amp outlet and there are a range safety measures inherant in the building installation and other regulations and OHS procedures that should be in place to manage the many risks.

In the caravan park the circuit breaker is specified and the expectation is that it protects both the installed cabling and the supply connection cable to the van or the camp site.
IF the breaker is 15 amp and the connection cord is 10 amp ..... there is no overload protection for the 10 amp cable

Besides the 15 amp supply cable in mandated in the standard, the standard is called in regulation and thus it is law.

The 15 amp cable used on a caravan site should be viewed as a supply interconnect and not an extension cable.

cheers
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FollowupID: 877515

Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 07:36

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 07:36
Bantam. I know the consequences of overloading but what was asked is can a 10amp lead be plugged into a 15amp outlet. The answer yes.

He is NOT plugging in a CARAVAN, just using a tent. That tent may only have a fridge, some lights and capability to charge appliances, most I know with tents use the camp kitchen or they have a small gas stove for cooking or boiling the billy.

I have both a 15 amp outlet that is on a double power point. One side is 15 amp and the other is 10 amp. The outlets in my home are 10 amp but the circuit breaker size is 16 amps, the 10 amp lead is not protected and it was never intended to be.
What I am saying is. It is ok to plug a 10amp lead into a 15 amp outlet but if you choose to use a power board and overload it, then you will suffer the consequences. Don't worry boilermakers and carpenters are notorious for using power boards.



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FollowupID: 877517

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 16:48

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 16:48
Yeh you can, but you MAY NOT use a 10 amp extension cord on a caravan site.

regardless of it being a caravan or a tent ...... the regulations and any site manager that knows their business, require it.

I'll say it again ..... a caravan or tent site is not a house or a workshop.
The socket you plug into on this site, is not a general power outlet it is a site supply connection.
The cable you plug into this socket is not an extension cord it is the supply cable feeding the site.

there are very good reasons why this 15 amp cable is required .... if you understand them or not. It is a legal requirement

Just to illustrate the specifics further

IF, I as a tradesman, plugged a 10 amp extension cord into a caravan site pillar for the purpose of powering an electric drill to do maintenance work ....... that would be perfectly legal. ....

If I as a camper was to connect the same 10 amp cable to supply a fridge in a tent I had erected on that site .... that would not be legal

It is a matter of extending the protections provided on that circuit all the way to the camp site ...... because they can ..... and to provide as much protection against risks that can not be controlled.

NOW think on this ...... IF all caravan site supplies are required to have earth leakage protection ...... why are all caravans and the like required to be fitted with earth leakage protection?
It is a matter of providing as much protection as possible... WITH ... the expectation that something will be faulty and non-compliant in an already high risk situation.

cheers
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FollowupID: 877533

Follow Up By: Member - ACD 1 - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:01

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:01
What if I'm a tradesman and I have setup a dome type screen house (OHS requirement to protect me from mozzie bites) and I use the 10 amp extension lead out of the 15 amp power supply to run a fridge to keep my water cold (another OHS requirement) while I listen to my 10 amp boom box....

Cheers

Anthony
VKS 3539
Work - a 40 hour interuption to my weekend!
Too many places - too little time

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FollowupID: 877535

Follow Up By: Shaker - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 20:02

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 20:02
If you were a tradesman, your leads would be tested & tagged, you would know legal requirements & you would respect your employer's wishes, which may be a caravan park proprietor.

You could also ask, what if the sky fell?

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FollowupID: 877542

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:52

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 07:52
May I suggest a safe method.

Use a 15A lead from the power outlet to your tent. This will provide better current carrying capacity over long runs and good mechanical protection as they are by design heavy duty.

At the tent end, use a 10A power board with safety overload. This will ensure that any current draw up to the 10A maximum will be covered. The overload circuitry in the power board will protect the user from over current draw.
A fridge, toaster and jug would not be uncommon to have running at the same time.

This is the minimum configuration I would use.

Bill


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AnswerID: 607735

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 01:13

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 01:13
remember there are power distro boxes ( fancy power boards) available that have a 15 amp plug, a 15 amp breaker and several 10 amp outlets .... available specifically for this purpose

cheers
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FollowupID: 877516

Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 08:19

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 08:19
Hi Bantam,

Whoa!
That doesn't sound safe to me and I'm suprised it's legal.
It would protect from a dead short, but not from possible over current draw on a 10 amp circuit.

If I added youngsters into the equation, I would be adding a portable ELCB or RCD device.
As you would be aware, these attach to a power board or extension lead and protect the circuits of appliances connected to them. They are essential for people using power tools or electrical appliances outside that are not protected by a meter box RCD or power point RCD.

Bill


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Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:55

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:55
Remember pretty much all household power circuits with 10 amp plugs are 15 or 20 amp circuits.

All the 10 amp double power points will have sufficient engineering margin to manage a 20 amp combined long term loading.

Remember too that individual RCD is mandatory on all caravan and camp site supplies.

From memory all of the distro boards I mention also have an RDC on board ...... check the Clipsal catalogue or web site

https://www.clipsal.com/Trade/Products/Electrical-Accessories/Safety-Protection/RCD-Protected-Portable-Accessories#.WIGzF321eck

besides what is the difference between a power board with 10 amp sockets, a 10 amp breaker and a 10 amp plug and the same with a 15 amp breaker and a 15 amp plug ....... the answer is less overload risk.

cheers
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FollowupID: 877538

Reply By: Member - Gordoneski (WA) - Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 13:02

Thursday, Jan 19, 2017 at 13:02
thanks guys for all your input.. we have now learned the safe and hopefully proper way to do it.. :)
AnswerID: 607744

Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 11:27

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 11:27
-
There is a lot of 'second guessing' going on here about the requirements of using portable electrical equipment in caravan parks. I do hold a number of electrical qualifications including the specific 'Test & Tag' licence so am acquainted with appropriate requirements.

There are legislated requirements covering both permanent fixed electrical installations and also portable electrical appliances. These requirements cover all situations which includes caravan parks. It does require considerable skill and effort to interpret and understand the regulations. Making assumptions based on what you consider to be 'sensible' or 'likely' may not arrive at the legally mandated requirement.

Legislation related to electrical matters is the authority of each State and does vary somewhat although this particular matter of Tagging & Testing is generally agreed upon via the Workplace Health and Safety 'Harmonised Model' of all States. Well, almost..... as with all legislation we never seem to completely agree.

Caravan Parks are a commercial workplace falling within the definition of places required to observe the legislation regarding safe management of electrical appliances. Specifically, this covers all the park's own equipment and specifically includes flexible extension leads connected to their power outlets. It does not extend to the individual appliances used by customers. Legislation exists requiring all such extension leads to be rated at 15 amps with 15 amp plugs and sockets.

There is NO specific legislated requirement for such extension leads to be 'Tag & Tested'. However the caravan park owner does have WHS requirements toward his employees and visitors to his premises that extend to the extension leads used by visitors and accordingly may reasonably apply measures of control over such leads, and in fact any other electrical equipment operated within his premises. Of course, as with all things, not all park operators will behave in full accordance with all laws, but they have the right to do so. They may even be more motivated by the provisions of their Public Risk insurance policies than with government electrical regulations.

It would be overwhelming to express them all here but the following is a convenient fact sheet of the issue of Caravan Leads.
Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 607795

Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 12:31

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 12:31
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There seems to be confusion regarding the rating of electrical power sockets and the over-current protection of them. The requirements are well established in legislation and generally coverd by the AS/NZS 3000 standard.

'General Purpose Outlets' rated at 10 Amps are designed to connect appliances rated at 10 Amps or less. In domestic installations, an unlimited number of General Purpose Outlets (GPO's) may be connected to each sub-circuit of the switchboard by cables rated at 20A and protected by over-current circuit breakers rated at 20A. (A consideration called 'diversity factor' determines that not all sockets will be attempting to draw the full 10 Amps at the same time). Sensibly, installers wire an installation with several final sub-circuits each with a limited number of GPO's.
Outlets rated at 15 Amps are required to be each individually connected to a 20A circuit breaker by 20A rated cable. Accordingly only one appliance can be connected to a 15A outlet sub-circuit at any one time.

Appliances rated at no more than 10A with 10A plugs can be safely connected to a 15A outlet. They are adequately protected against fault currents by the 20A circuit breaker. Similarly, extension cables rated at 10A can be used from a 15A outlet as the 10A style socket of the extension cable will only accept appliances rated at no more than 10A. If a multiple plug board is used at the end of the 10A extension cable, the cable is protected by the 10A circuit breaker incorporated within the plugboard so multiple connected appliances cannot overload the extension cable.

So technically, a 10A rated extension cable could be used from a caravan park 15A outlet even with a multiple outlet board at the end. HOWEVER, it is an expressed requirement that only extension cables rated at 15A be used from the park's supply outlets. That is the legislation and a park operator has not just a right but an obligation to comply to it.
Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 607800

Reply By: Tony F8 - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:30

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:30
Ok can someone tell me the difference betwen a 10 amp lead and a 15 amp, not the plugs, the actual physical size of the wire in the lead, and on a side note, all switches, gpo's and board in a mobile situation should be double pole
AnswerID: 607812

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:45

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:45
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Yes Tony, The required cable conductor size in square millimetres depends on the cable length and is as follows:

10 Amp rated lead:
1.0 mm2 conductors = 25m maximum length.
1.5 = 35m
2.5 = 60m
4.0 = 100m

15 Amp rated lead:
1.5 mm2 conductors = 25m maximum length
2.5 = 40m
4.0 = 65m

Yes, ALL mains connected isolating switches, GPO switches, lighting switches and Circuit Breakers are required to be double pole. This applies to caravans, tents, transportable structures and anything else connected to the supply via a flexible cable and a plug-socket.

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Allan

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Reply By: TomH - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:36

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 17:36
Stightly OT but isnt it also illegal to make a y cable to power both inputs in a big van that has a seperate socket for the Aircon. Have seen a few like that and read that you must use two seperate leads from the power source for that.

A bit hard to do in a busy van park when all sites are used.
AnswerID: 607813

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 18:46

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 18:46
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Yes Tom, some vans do have dual inlet sockets, both of which are 15A and supply separate sub-circuits within the van, usually for the purpose of coping with an air conditioner as well as other appliances. Each of these inlet sockets must be connected with 15A cables to two separate 15A outlets on the park pillar. Such connections may well require the approval of the park manager both because of outlet availability and also because of the extra power consumption relative to park fees.
Cheers
Allan

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Reply By: Member - Outback Gazz - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 21:09

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 21:09
So who should I submit the job safety analysis form to when I camp at a caravan park ??

Do I need to wear Hi Viz at a campground to avoid being run over ??

Should I wear steel cap boots in case the bbq hotplate falls over while cooking ??

Is there a requirement to wear safety goggles when cooking a barbie to avoid fat splatters in the eyes ??

Do I need to get my camper trailer fitted with reversing beepers for when I back into my site ??

Is it a regulation to wear a hard hat when erecting an awning ??

How do I know my $7.95 Bunnings camp chair is 100kg rated and safe to sit on ??

Is it compulsory to wear earmuffs if you are camped next to someone using a generator to run their tv ??


I'm starting to think it's too dangerous to go camping now - but I'm sure there will be an App out soon that can remind us all what camping was like !!


Sad but true


Happy and safe travelling - provided your leads are tagged !

Gazz








AnswerID: 607823

Follow Up By: Member - Ups and Downs - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 09:11

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 09:11
You're right Gazz.

Rules start off with sensible requirements to avoid exposing anyone to ill-effects.

Then the clowns get involved and start micro analysing every miniscule part of the rule and come up with complex solutions to prevent some imagined disaster.

I suppose it keeps a lot of people employed.

Paul
1
FollowupID: 877558

Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 09:36

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 09:36
I think the clowns have got involved here, micro analysing the need for 15 amp leads & coming up with ridiculous scenarios.
Having been closely involved in the aftermath of an electrocution death of a young man on board a vessel in our Marina, I don't think the use of electricity can be over regulated, it is an invisible & silent killer!

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FollowupID: 877559

Reply By: Frank P (NSW) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 22:42

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 22:42
There's no point, absolutely no point, in having all these techo rules and regs and Aus/NZ standards if there is no public education.

And there is none.

Technocrats write lovely rules, regs and standards but we are supposed to learn them by osmosis.

FrankP

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AnswerID: 607831

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 23:18

Friday, Jan 20, 2017 at 23:18
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Frank, by far, most of the 'electrical' rules are only needed by those licensed to carry out the work. All the discussion on this thread about 'why so?' and 'why not?' are really no business of the general public and trying to understand regulations is usually futile without comprehensive electrical training.
The only things they really need to know is 1) 15A extensions are required in caravan parks for caravans, camper trailers and tents. 2) Extension leads must be in one length, not coupled and kept off the ground. 3) A park operator has a responsibility of safety toward employees and the public. 4) Testing & tagging of van leads is not required but may be imposed by the park operator if he wishes. Appliances within vans are not required to be test & tagged and the park operator has no jurisdiction over them.

Now that is all very well but as you say, gaining that information is not easy. It is somewhat like Hacker in 'Yes Minister' saying "I don't know what I don't know".
The rules and guidelines should be required to be displayed in plain english at the office of all van parks and a copy be made available on request.

The rules are not easily accessed by the public and even if you do find them, regulations can be difficult to interpret by even those working in the electrical industry.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 15:52

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 15:52
Allan,

" 2) Extension leads must be in one length, not coupled and KEPT OFF THE GROUND."

Surely they must be joking. There would not be a single compliant caravan park or campground or user of same in Australia. Not to mention tradies on worksites.

Bantam mentioned this too. Are you both sure about it?

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FrankP

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Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 16:26

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 16:26
I think they would be referring to the live end not to be on the floor of a tent.

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FollowupID: 877567

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 19:01

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 19:01
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Oops, that is not strictly correct Frank. It is the rule for flexible extension cables on construction sites and that was probably in my head.
Nonetheless, there is a requirement regarding cable positioning to avoid damage, as follows:


Incidentally, observe the "Note" at the end of that clause.
It is not a "requirement" but a recommendation to park operators.
Here it is in full:
Cheers
Allan

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FollowupID: 877570

Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 19:16

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 19:16
Allan, you must have a different version of AS 3001-2001 as I can find no reference saying that a tent can only use a 15A lead.
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FollowupID: 877573

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 20:41

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 20:41
Ah, Allan,

The old, "shall", "should", "could", "must", and "may" discussion.

There are only two imperatives there, "shall"and "must". Both are absent from your quoted Appendix B.

So all the "should"s and the recommendation in the appendix are totally ineffectual, witnessed by the fact that in 47 years of camping, including at government-run campsites (ie national parks and council-run facilities) and commercial caravan parks, I have NEVER been presented with any of the recommended information. I doubt that anyone else has either, despite, as Bantam has suggested, that any CP manager could do it if they want. But they don't.

Mate, not having a shot at you, just the system....I cannot help but think it is all bureaucratic BS.

If there is a safety issue, make it COMPULSORY to advise patrons of the requirements.. Not "should" or "may", but "must" or "shall".

In the absence of that imperative, as far as the user of commercially provided powered sites is concerned (ie me and the average camper), the rules are remote, opaque, uninformative and basically useless.

Cheers
FrankP

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FollowupID: 877580

Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 21:06

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 21:06
Frank, I appreciate Alans input which is correct by the rules. What I can't get used to is the lumping in of everything together. He is just stating the rules which don't allow any latitude.

I guess the main problem is the rules can't be swayed for different applications, which is a shame.

I would never have survived doing what I did if I stuck to those same ridged rules,
There is no black and white, only under kill and over kill.




0
FollowupID: 877581

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 21:38

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 21:38
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Kazza, I am using AS/NZS 3001:2008/Amdt 1:2012 which I believe is the current version.

Section 1.1.2 reproduced below shows "tents".

Cheers
Allan

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FollowupID: 877584

Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 22:29

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 22:29
Oh dear, I guess my 2001 version is now obsolete ;=(
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FollowupID: 877585

Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 22:42

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 at 22:42
Somebody should start a thread titled;
How many ExplorOz contributors does it take to change a light bulb?

0
FollowupID: 877586

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 09:14

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 09:14
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Shaker asked........
"How many EO contributors to change a lightbulb?"
The answer is FORTY-TWO......
One to remove the old bulb. one to hand-up the incorrect replacement, and forty to debate the specifications of the new bulb. LOL
Cheers
Allan

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FollowupID: 877602

Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 12:24

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 12:24
Shaker, I nearly ran out of fingers in counting the times you helped change the light bulb.

Just saying
1
FollowupID: 877617

Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 13:29

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 13:29
Sorry Allan, you are definitely wrong this time, 42 is the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything

0
FollowupID: 877621

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 13:43

Sunday, Jan 22, 2017 at 13:43
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So, in that case, isn't "42" also the answer to Shaker's question?
Cheers
Allan

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