Propane vs Electric Appliances

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Schmelly
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/07 22:51:58 (permalink)
Hey Backrhodes...yes I meant to thank you for that detailed response....My brother in law who is an electrician came over this weekend and got it all straightened out....We are going to be running 50 amp...I believe it's 110 v or 115v? Breakers are 20 amp....Exhaust fan draws around 8 or  9 amps and is on its on home run outlet.....
I will also have a home run outlet near the cooking area for whatever...
 
I think I am leaning towards a propane fryer...Nope scratch that....I just decided I am going with propane....I want to keep up with high demands during busy times...No messing around....I have so many things going through my mind with this project it's hard to keep up with everything I read and hear....thanks again BR for your input...
         Schmelly
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BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 02:58:47 (permalink)
Are the 20 amp breakers on the food cart...???  Are the breakers that SUPPLY the electrical outlet 50 amps...???
 
Remember that a reefer will draw 3 to 4 times the AMPS in the momentary Start Up SURGE when the reefer compressor starts up...you need to take this into consideration...and the hotter the day and inside cart / trailer temperatures rise, the reefer will turn on more often, and stay on longer, and work harder...
 
If the reefer draws 4 amps when running, the surge could be as high as 16 amps...and IF the exhaust fan is already drawing 8 or 9 amps, then you're gonna pop a breaker when the reefer turns on...
 
If the electrical SUPPLY wires and breakers are rated at 50 amps...and IF it was me doing this, I'd consider 40 amp breakers in the trailer / cart to handle the surge...
 
So I'd get a reefer that draws as little as possible while still keeping your food at safe temperatures...look for one that is Energy Star rated if possible...
 
Too many things going on...???
 
Some friends did something in terms of rehab'ing a house...they used Post It Notes to list projects, tasks,  and needs...and they stuck them on a glass door for easy removal or to move them around as priorities changed...a "whiteboard" (dry erase board) might work as well...
 
This was a creative way to approach the DYNAMIC changes that were taking place all the while keeping ALL projects, tasks, needs, etc within full view, and could be moved around as needed to meet changing priorities and tasks completed...
 
This might also work for you to stay organized, and know what you need to do at any particular time...
#32
BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 03:07:30 (permalink)
BTW...50 amp circuits are usually 240 VOLTS...you really need to confirm the voltage will be 120 VAC or 240 VAC...and do this pronto...everything else in the design stage depends on it...
 
You say "I believe it's 110 v or 115v?"
 
KNOW...don't GUESS...
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BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 03:11:29 (permalink)
Another suggestion...FOCUS on ONE thing at a time, and give it all the attention it needs...don't let your mind flit from one thing to another to the point nothing gets resolved...you CAN do this if you have a clear mind based on solid knowledge...
#34
THE WILD DOG
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 05:04:33 (permalink)
Your main throw should be more than you amp outwards wire. EX: If you have a 50amp outward cable hooking up to a genny or a lifeline plug in, Your circuit box would be WAY more than a 50 amp box. I have a 125amp box soley b/c I need most of the 12 circuits to provide electric for each of my home run outlet. Don't screw with electric. I ran all my own stuff but will have a qualified MASTER electrician look at my stuff prior to me plugging anything in. 50amps will kill your  ass in a split second.
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edwmax
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 10:35:31 (permalink)
BackRhodes

BTW...50 amp circuits are usually 240 VOLTS...you really need to confirm the voltage will be 120 VAC or 240 VAC...and do this pronto...everything else in the design stage depends on it...

You say "I believe it's 110 v or 115v?"

KNOW...don't GUESS...

 
Huh ...It is not 240volts circuits or should not be. ...  The NEC Code for 50 amp RV service calls for 120/240 volt double pole service.  ... 50 amp 'service' is TWO 110/115/120 volt legs (lines/circuits) & a neutral/ground.   You get 240v by using TWO 120v lines TOGETHER.   This why there are double pole breakers for 220/240v.   A single 110/120 line with a neutral used individually is your 110/120v (single pole breaker).
 
50 amp service means you have a total of 12,000 watts of power. 6,000 amps on each of the TWO 120/240 legs (lines/circuits).   When wiring the circuits, the power usage should be balanced (approx. equal) between the TWO 110/120v legs. 

If for some reason there is in fact 240 volts on a single line (industrial high voltage wiring), a transformer will be needed to step the voltage down to 110/120v.  I don't think you have to worry about this.
post edited by edwmax - 2011/09/10 11:16:37
#36
edwmax
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 11:03:13 (permalink)
Here is a good reference page for RV hookups and shore-power.
http://www.bobhatch.com/electricStuff/30to50amp.htm
#37
Schmelly
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 11:09:42 (permalink)
OK I had the code enforcement officer over yesterday...My old panel was no good....Believe it or not he only lives a few doors down from me.....He went home and came back with a brand new panel for me that he said would work....It's a 240v....can handle up to 100 amps i believe...I will also be switching the 3 prong feeder to the panel to a 4 prong at his request....
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edwmax
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/10 11:39:14 (permalink)
Great   ... You can put a 50 amp Main breaker in the new box.
The 3 prong was 30 amp plug.   ... The 4 prong should be a 50 amp plug.
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BackAlleyBurger
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/11 13:32:33 (permalink)
BackRhodes
 Are the 20 amp breakers on the food cart...???  Are the breakers that SUPPLY the electrical outlet 50 amps...???

 
you never put a 50 amp breaker supplying an outlet, unless the equipment plugged into that outlet pulls 40-50 amps.....nothing on a food truck will ever pull that normally.... and it wouldnt be a "normal" outlet anyway
 
the breakers supplying the outlets need to be 20amp at most...... or even 15 amp if the circuit is dedicated to small equipment (registers, lighting,etc...)
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/11 13:34:34 (permalink)
BackRhodes
If the reefer draws 4 amps when running, the surge could be as high as 16 amps...and IF the exhaust fan is already drawing 8 or 9 amps, then you're gonna pop a breaker when the reefer turns on...

 
both of these items should be on home runs for a variety of reasons !!
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BackAlleyBurger
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/11 13:36:42 (permalink)
BackRhodes
If the electrical SUPPLY wires and breakers are rated at 50 amps...and IF it was me doing this, I'd consider 40 amp breakers in the trailer / cart to handle the surge...

 
i think you are mistaking the purpose of a 50 amp main breaker with individual circuit breakers
#42
BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/12 18:11:49 (permalink)
I'm not mistaking anything ... I'm trying to figure out what Schmelly is saying...
 
A "50 amp circuit" could be either 120VAC or 240VAC...saying you have a "50 amp circuit" is only partial infomation
 
A MAIN breaker supplies the service inlet panel
a BRANCH breaker in an individual or ganged breaker that protects the individual circuits...
 
They can be individual or ganged...
 
SUBpanels are often 120VAC with a single pole MAIN Breaker...(but not always)
 
Individual breakers use only 1 pole (single phase) of a 240VAC circuit (IF it's 240VAC service)
 
Ganged (or double) breakers use BOTH poles (split phase) of a 240VAC circuit, which is what you see for heavy duty appiances, such as electric stoves, HVAC, well pumps, etc  that operate on 240VAC...
 
As an electrican I've never heard of the term "home run"...but I think in this case you're referring to a 120VAC "branch circuit"...
 
Individual Branch circuits are nomally protected with a 15 amp breaker and have the typical 15 amp house type outlet, but in some cases a 20 amp circuit breaker is used in conjunction with a special 20 amp outlet (that accepst both 15 amp and 20 amp plugs...but this is ONLY IF the wiring is large enough (AWG) to handle the designed ampacity...
 
In the case of this "50 amp circuit", I'd never put in a breaker on a Branch circuit that exceeds the rating of the Main breaker, otherwise you'll exceed the AMPACITY rating of the 90*C THHN wire...
post edited by BackRhodes - 2011/09/12 18:19:20
#43
BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/12 18:37:08 (permalink)
Schmelly...glad that you had help with your CEO (Code Enforcement Officer)...while often portrayed as inspection grinches, their function is to ensure SAFETY...and some can be quite friendly & helpful, as in your recent experience...
 
Even IF you know the NEC (Nat'l Electroc Code, as published by the NFPA every 2 years) there are often additional local codes and practices, and this is where the expert knowledge of your inspector comes in handy...
 
Inspectors can be either your best friend or your worst enemy, depending...keep good relations to your inspector...they have the FINAL word...!!!
 
Many 2nd hand panels (breaker boxes) are obsolete and no longer meet local or NEC codes...
 
Those already in service can also be current technology, but still have problems, such as "burnt bars"...the bus bars in a breaker will look discolored if too much current (amperage) is drawn and overheated...you might also see carbon spots or arc traces...and rust....all three of the above are reasons to reject any and all USED panels...
 
And just because a new panel is new, it doesn't mean it's top quality...we had to replace around 35 to 40 main service entrance panels in a subdivision in the eastern part of Petaluma (Sonoma Co, CA) because the contractor used cheap Zinco panels, which had rust, carbon, and burnt bar problems after only 20 years (we used Square D as replacements)...and while the Zinco Panels DID pass inspection during construction, they were cheap and not durable...
 
The GOOD news is that you ARE making progress...
post edited by BackRhodes - 2011/09/12 18:39:53
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BackAlleyBurger
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/12 20:45:54 (permalink)
backrhodes,
im going to refrain from saying what i really want to say... 
the reason for the individual breakers is to trip before something burns, or someone is killed...
all of your posts sound like you are googling your tail off trying to sound like you know what your talking about.....
its idiotic to think you need a 40 amp breaker because the freezer or a/c has a start up surge, i just dont think you know what you are trying to say...
 
you do realize that if you have a 2000w coffee maker plugged into a 40 amp circuit and the coffee maker decides to short out and burn up, the 40 amp breaker will continue to flow juice to it, allowing it to catch fire and burn the trailer down, or truck, or house, or building...... with a 20 amp circuit, it will short out until it pulls 19-20 amps, and the breaker will trip..... cutting off the flow and hopefully preventing the appliance from actually catching fire....
post edited by BackAlleyBurger - 2011/09/12 20:55:00
#45
BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/13 20:44:52 (permalink)
BAB...I'm not googling a damn thing...I worked MANY years as an electrician, I'm still an electrical consultant for a well known magazine, and am also a certified broadcast engineer, and a Ham Radio Operator...so put a cork in it...I have a license issued by the State Of California and have FIFTY years of experience...what do you have other than your skewed opinion...???
 
The 40 AMP breaker is what I was suggesting as the MAIN breaker for the panel...not for an individual branch circuit...individual branch circuits need to be protected as needed...and a trailer such as this will need several branch circuits...
 
And If a circuit and or appliance truely SHORTS OUT it WILL trip a breaker...you DO know what a short circuit is, right (?) ...it has zero impedence, and maximum current flow, which will trip a breaker...
 
Obviously you've not really been understanding what I'm saying, and just can't wait to jump someone's s#!t just because you're in a bad mood...I suggest you by a copy of the NEC from the NFPA and do some reading...and refrain from posts like the one you made above...you are so off base about me and all you can do is start flaming me...???   I bet you've never even heard of Petaluma and the electrical company I worked for, yet you want to shoot arrows without any factual knowledge about me, and would rather make unfoounded and patently wild accusations...which reflects badly on you, not me... 
post edited by BackRhodes - 2011/09/13 20:49:07
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BackAlleyBurger
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/13 22:50:27 (permalink)
BackRhodes
 , and am also a certified broadcast engineer,
should have known by the way you insist on barking the obvious and making simple things more complicated then they are
 
and a Ham Radio Operator...so put a cork in it...I have a license issued by the State Of California and have FIFTY years of experience...what do you have other than your skewed opinion...???
 
skewed opinion ??? whatever.....
i have a license issued by the state of north carolina, big deal
 
 
The 40 AMP breaker is what I was suggesting as the MAIN breaker for the panel...not for an individual branch circuit...individual branch circuits need to be protected as needed...and a trailer such as this will need several branch circuits...  
THATS WHAT I HAVE BEEN SAYING THE WHOLE TIME !!.... unlike yourself, who has not been saying that at all until now
 
And If a circuit and or appliance truely SHORTS OUT it WILL trip a breaker...you DO know what a short circuit is, right (?) ...it has zero impedence, and maximum current flow, which will trip a breaker...
a strait to ground short will yes, pop any breaker almost instantly,  im talking about when something decides to fry for a while, a partial short...... lets say 36 amps worth ..... your 40 amp breaker is not going to pop, and something will burn, or someone will die....
having all your experience you should know this..... its not the obvious that you need to look out for, its the weird unusual stuff that gets ya ! please dont tell me that in all your years of experience you havent come across gremlins that cant be explained..... for example, a short that only pulls 36 amps and a 40 amp breaker that lets whatever is broken sit there and sizzle

 
Obviously you've not really been understanding what I'm saying, and just can't wait to jump someone's s#!t just because you're in a bad mood... 
number one, i dont think anyone knows what you are trying to say, including yourself....im just the asshole willing to say something about your crude and lacking sense of teaching
 
I suggest you by a copy of the NEC from the NFPA and do some reading...and refrain from posts like the one you made above...you are so off base about me and all you can do is start flaming me...??? 
i havent flamed yet, i called you out, big difference
 
   I bet you've never even heard of Petaluma and the electrical company I worked for, 
who the hell cares, whats that got to do with anything 
 
 
yet you want to shoot arrows without any factual knowledge about me, and would rather make unfoounded and patently wild accusations...which reflects badly on you, not me... 

i dont need to know a damn thing about you, i can see you talk out of your rear end without needing to know the man behind the curtain.....
post edited by BackAlleyBurger - 2011/09/13 22:53:17
#47
BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/14 04:01:48 (permalink)
You're the man behind the curtain...???  HA  
 
Again, you read only what you want to, to fit your skewed ideas...I said the 40 AMP Breaker is what I'd use for the MAIN, and you chose to ignore this AGAIN, and once again go off on a RANT...
 
You "called me out"...???   You must think you're still in high school...I guess that's on par, considering how much younger you are...
 
Time for you to GROW UP...!!!
 
This conversation is over...
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BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/14 04:12:32 (permalink)
BTW...Teaching...???
 
Not everybody is blessed with your genius...if you had any vision you might consider that there could be folks READING this but are not participants in the forums...and a well intentioned but inept person might attempt something not realizing the danger occurring, such as Carbon Monoxide...
 
And while you call this "barking the obvious" in your vulgar way, IF at least 1 person reading these pages is prevented from doing something unknowingly bone-headed, then mission successful...the suggestions I make are not intended for YOU, but for folks lower on the learning curve...
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edwmax
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/14 08:50:24 (permalink)
BackRhodes
.................
As an electrican I've never heard of the term "home run"...but I think in this case you're referring to a 120VAC "branch circuit"...
....................

I've been an engineer for more than 30 years; and 'home run' has always been a common term to indicate an outlet/appliance to be on a panel circuit  (i.e ... breaker) by its self; or a particular wire is to connect to the panel without any other outlets or switches inline.
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edwmax
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/14 09:43:15 (permalink)
BackRhodes .....

The 40 AMP breaker is what I was suggesting as the MAIN breaker for the panel...not for an individual branch circuit...individual branch circuits need to be protected as needed...and a trailer such as this will need several branch circuits...
....


 
I would use a 50 amp main breaker in this case.  The 50 amp 120/240 service connection should already be properly sized to deliver 50 amps.   Per Code total (running) amp draw by the trailer should not exceed 40 amp (80% of 50).   ... If the main breaker is stepped down to 40 amp as suggested, then the trailer  would be restricted to max. running amps of abt 32 amps (80% of 40).    
 
The trailer's electrical panel is a sub-panel to the 50 amp 120/240 service supply panel.  Technically, a main breaker in the sub-panel is not needed as the breaker in the supply panel will provide circuit (service) protection.    Therefore, providing a 50 amp main breaker in the sub-panel (trailer panel) will provide protection to the trailer if the owner has improperly size the breaker in the service supply panel or the supply circuit (50 amp 120/240 service).  There is no reason these 2 breakers can not be equal in size; one backs up the other (or redundant to the other).   If the breaker at the service supply panel trips or continually trip, would be an indication of a problem on the service side of the 50 120/240 service.   It is not uncommon for the supply circuit to be undersized by the owner or the main supply panel to be over loaded.  So in this case the extra 50 amp main breaker (trailer) is a 'piece of mine' for an idiot owner (service connection).
#51
BackRhodes
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Re:Propane vs Electric Appliances 2011/09/14 13:45:28 (permalink)
Home Run is what I'd call a dedicated circuit...same thing, just different words...
 
Yes, each situation is different..I agree a 50 amp breaker would be better...
#52
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