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Old 05-13-2019, 05:51 PM   #1
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Commercial Ice Maker?

So we camp twice a year at the Coast. We usually stay for three weeks each trip. Our main thing is fishing. With our bait/fish cooler and our drink/food cooler we go through 30-40 Lbs of ice a day. Costing between $200 per trip. So I’ve been looking at smaller commercial ice makers for $350. They will produce 150 Lbs in 24 hours and hold 33lbs in the ice bin. Was wondering if anyone else has installed a commercial ice maker in their unit?
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Old 05-13-2019, 06:24 PM   #2
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Icemakers consume huge amounts of power. 40lbs. per day is continuous operation at about 15 to 20 amps. What is your source rating and what other appliances are you running in tandem? I have never seen supplied power above 50A for a campsite. That is barely enough for A/C, refrigerator, hot water(unless using propane), and other miscellany. All that load will inevitably drop the voltage along the circuit feeding your supply line. Adding a commercial icemaker would very likely begin tripping main breaker at supply. Be sure to understand your total electrical load for normal and peak trailer operational requirements and what the additional load of the icemaker would mean to the trailer. Trailer electronics are very sensitive to low voltage conditions and spikes. Also consider your neighbors. If you take down a feed for the line of trailers you are sitting on, they may not be so neighborly. Hopefully others can chime in with solutions.
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Old 05-13-2019, 06:38 PM   #3
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Thanks for the response. The smaller ice maker runs on 110 and shows Ice making current - 3.5A and Ice storage current - 5.5A. So that’s approximately 9A. I think this should be ok plugged into 50 Amp service. ??????????????? All responses are appreciated.
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Old 05-19-2019, 03:12 PM   #4
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I have been thinking about the same thing. The ones I see on Amazon are all in the 10A or less range. One shows using an 18ga cord.



To clarify on the power available. If your RV is wired for 50A service then you have 2 legs of 120v ea and each is 50A so you have 100A available.
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Old 05-19-2019, 04:41 PM   #5
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Ice machine production (lbs/24hrs) is for perfect conditions- 50 deg water and 70 deg air around machine, most of the commercial machines I work on don’t even come close to the ratings and produce lots of heat around them, so keep that in mind when considering buying one.
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Old 05-19-2019, 06:35 PM   #6
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avvidclif ,
I believe that the campground service is 50A total, as that is what the breaker states. You must add the current draw on each leg and sum them. If you exceed 50A total, the campground service breaker will trip. Additionally, just like a home service, each leg in the RV has a breaker at 1/2 the total service rating. If you exceed either leg of the RV breaker - that RV breaker will trip. My home 200A has a 100A on each leg.
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Old 05-19-2019, 08:38 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by jmnsn57 View Post
avvidclif ,
I believe that the campground service is 50A total, as that is what the breaker states. You must add the current draw on each leg and sum them. If you exceed 50A total, the campground service breaker will trip. Additionally, just like a home service, each leg in the RV has a breaker at 1/2 the total service rating. If you exceed either leg of the RV breaker - that RV breaker will trip. My home 200A has a 100A on each leg.
Not correct. Each pole of a 2 pole breaker will carry the rated load. So a 2P50A breaker will do 50A on each pole. A breaker will only reliably carry 80% for continuous loads.
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Old 05-20-2019, 08:40 AM   #8
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I'm not an electrician, so I'm having some difficulty wrapping my head around just how you get 100 amps out of a 50 amp breaker panel.
Maybe somebody who is qualified could jump in here and explain this before we get a whole bunch of misinformation floating around on the subject.
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Old 05-20-2019, 10:47 AM   #9
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From what I understand a 50 amp RV has 2 - 50 amp 120 v lines. They are hooked to a double 50 amp breaker so if 1 line trips both lines trip thus limiting the RV to 50 amp max. Depending on how the RV is wired you "Theoretically" could use up to 50 amp on each leg making 100 amps. This is my understanding but I could be mistaken. I just googled 50 amp RV service.
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Old 05-20-2019, 02:05 PM   #10
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Each pole can be loaded up to 50A, but if one of them is overloaded it will trip both poles. The total available power available from a 50A RV circuit is 12,000W, and can be a combination of 120V & 240V loads because that is what voltages are available from the circuit. If the campground system is on a 3 phase service it gets more complicated. In that case, the voltages are 120/208V. So if all loads are 120V, you can still get 12,000W, but if they are all 208V, then only 10,400W are available.

A 30A RV circuit is 120V only & has a capacity of 3600W.
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Old 05-20-2019, 03:31 PM   #11
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I guess it's what I had in my head.
You might have 50 amps on each leg, but you can only use a total of 50 amps. Is that correct?


We're kinda get off topic of the ice maker, but I guess this amp thing is along the same need.
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Old 05-20-2019, 04:03 PM   #12
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If I understand correctly depending on what is wired to each leg on the double 50 a breaker you could have up to a total of 100a . Lets say one leg has the rear air - fireplace - microwave and water heater wired to it for a total of say 45 amps . Then the other leg has the front air - converter and washer/dryer for a total of 40 amp. You are using 85 total amps with everything running at the same time but you have not exceeded the 50 amp rating on either leg. Now add a coffee maker at 10amps to the first leg -for a total of 55 amps and the double breaker trips and shuts everything off. And yes these amp ratings are for illustration purposes only.
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Old 05-20-2019, 05:47 PM   #13
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@dagst1 has it right. But if you have a 240V load, like some clothes dryers, then you need to add its current to both legs.
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Old 05-20-2019, 06:28 PM   #14
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Is your RV load balanced for each leg of the power distribution panel? My point is and was not probably stated clearly that the unspoken problem with Campground power distribution is that most campgrounds I have stayed at cannot deliver even close to the sustainable 50Ax120Vx2 poles wattage for a 10 site long line of RV's on the same feed. My amp clamp and VOM verify that brown downs occur frequently along a line of sites utilizing the same feed throughout the day. Ever wonder why everyone advocates for a surge suppressor? And as you are farther from the source your problems become worse. Remember that the supply from Campground suffers losses for every foot of wiring, every camper on that feed line, and whatever each coach is taking from the feed. Voltages below 100 are detrimental to electronics that rely on computer circuitry - like refrigerators, furnaces, water heaters, tvs, stereos, and just about anything else these days. Not a problem when camp is minimally occupied - Big deal when it's full.
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Old 05-20-2019, 06:40 PM   #15
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Well didn’t mean to turn this into a power amp thing. But for right now I’ve decided to hold off on the ice maker . I don’t want to have to drill holes for drain lines and not sure if I want to deal with the noise of ice dumping. So, for now I’ll just keep buying ice.
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Old 05-20-2019, 06:50 PM   #16
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Papa-T. We were just at a COE campground over the weekend and talked to some fishermen camped there and they had a ice maker outside on a table plugged in to a extension cord to the power pedestal - problem solved.
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Old 05-20-2019, 08:55 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by dagst1 View Post
Papa-T. We were just at a COE campground over the weekend and talked to some fishermen camped there and they had a ice maker outside on a table plugged in to a extension cord to the power pedestal - problem solved.
Huh how big was the ice maker? Could you tell. That’s an idea. Could leave it under the fiver front outside. Don’t know how long it would hold up with the salt air though.
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Old 05-20-2019, 09:32 PM   #18
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It was about the size of a small dorm refrigerator. They had it on a table and would use the ice for there coolers when they went out fishing. Judging by the boat I would guess they were pro or semi pro fishermen.
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Old 05-21-2019, 05:13 AM   #19
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Interesting, thanks.
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Old 06-02-2019, 08:51 PM   #20
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Update:

So I decided to purchase an ice maker. The one I purchased is supposed to make 110 Lbs in 24 hours and have a storage bin of 44 Lbs. My plans are to set it under the front of the 5er and plug into the pedestal. I will let up know how it goes when I go back to the beach in October. Plan to hookup water line to low point drain. If I can get 50lbs a day it will be worth the money. We shall see.
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