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Old 10-02-2018, 01:11 PM   #1
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Romex vs Extension Cord

Seems like I have read of people using both in their busses to wire the 110 from the ac panel. Is there much of a difference? looking 12 gauge
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Old 10-02-2018, 02:40 PM   #2
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Solid wire is NOT recommended for use in vehicles. It is prone to work hardening & breaking due to vibration over time. Make sure to use stranded. And personally, I would seek out some commercial grade SO wire (outdoor rated) rather than an extension cord. At least that way you know what you have.


And it is a good idea to go as large as you can manage. If you can run #10...even better. Less resistance. But either way, definitely check to see what will be required (minimum) for the load as well as the length of the run (the length can make a very big difference). There are lots of charts online. Over doing might cost a couple of bucks more. Under-doing might burn everything down.
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Old 10-02-2018, 04:05 PM   #3
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Interesting, however, when I demoed my camper for parts they used romex. my travel trailer I use to own used romex inside. I was planning on using romex in my bus. sub'd for more responses.
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Old 10-02-2018, 04:16 PM   #4
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Most campers / trailers use romex.. as did I... but I could see the potential for problems down the road. I would think with proper routing and mounting of the romex along with leaving slack in areas needed, it would be fine for a long while... but who knows.


You can get stranded wire at most home improvement stores and its relatively cheap. Should be right next to the romex. Typically used in conduit.
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Old 10-02-2018, 04:24 PM   #5
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I used rome's - 12/3 outdoor rated (for underground wiring) - and placed it in conduit for all my 110V needs.
I don't have a lot running off 110V - my bus is mainly set up to run everything off 12V / solar.
But I do have a 30A outlet for campgrounds - I run fans / heater off it when needed.

I have not had any issue with the Romex outdoor rated - probably could have used regular indoor - since it's airtight in conduit - but I didn't.
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Old 10-02-2018, 07:44 PM   #6
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I would never use a sticks & staples rig as the model for building anything!
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Old 10-02-2018, 07:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango View Post
I would never use a sticks & staples rig as the model for building anything!
This. Romex or other solid wire is absolutely not what you want to be using on a mobile application.

Better than extension cord wire will be a type of stranded wire known as SIS. It's used for controls and low voltage power in machines of all types, and is rated for exactly the type of application that we are using it in for bus conversions. It's not the cheapest stuff around, but it's the right material for the job in this case.
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Old 10-02-2018, 08:11 PM   #8
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Probably best to follow the NEC for ac wiring. Permanent wiring by extension cords is a no-no, but has been used by many .

I believe that 12 vdc is not under NEC regulation, at least for our systems.

Then there are the solar panels. My MPPT panels put out like 90+ volts per string.
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Old 10-02-2018, 10:12 PM   #9
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I appreciate all the info, will look for something stranded
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Old 10-03-2018, 11:59 AM   #10
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Also... No romex in conduit. Romex needs to be in "open air" so to speak to dissipate heat... otherwise it loses ampacity. The conduit will hold heat. Open wall cavities, etc.. just fine. If its going to be close quarters, it needs to be sized for the heat more then the load.
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