Technology has rapidly battened the living standard for people all over the world.
You need power for lighting and to run electrical appliances in your mobile home.
This comes with great worry about how much electricity you will require to efficiently power your mobile home.
So, How Many Amps Does a Mobile Home Use?
A typical double-wide mobile home uses 150amps or more depending on the number of appliances you are running in your home. But if you are operating on a lowkey mobile home with few appliances in place, you can use anywhere between 50-100 amps. So, a 240V circuit breaker is typically sized at 50 amps, which is enough to support up to 10 appliances.
You do not need to be a professional electrician to know your mobile home’s power requirements.
The deal is to grasp the basic knowledge of fuse boxes and service panels to help you use the energy efficiently.
This basic understanding of how your mobile home’s electrical system works will help you fix simple power problems whenever they occur.
Fuse boxes and panels may seem complicated but they are simple to understand once you have grasped the basics.
Now, with the basic know-how, you will be able to calculate the electrical load you will need for your mobile home.
How To Wire Mobile Home Electric Meter?
Mobile homes consume electricity like site build homes.
The electricity connection to the mobile home must first pass through an electric meter so that consumption is measured accurately.
A meter has six terminals inside; three for the output and three for the input.
To begin the connection, open the meter cover and connect the cable from the main power source to the input terminal.
For safety purposes, always ensure that you are wearing protective coverings and ensure that the wire is not live.
Direct cable from the circuit breaker box to the meter and connect it to the load terminal.
How To Calculate Your Mobile Home’s Electric Load
Now, the amount of power you will need for your mobile home is estimated based on the number of electrical appliances you have installed in your mobile home.
Therefore, different homes require different amp services.
For instance, a large mobile home of 2000 sq. feet with central air conditioning, will require about 200 amps while in a small modern mobile home a 60 amps service will be sufficient.
But if you do not have a central air conditioning or electric heating system, a 100 amps service will be adequate for a mobile home of fewer than 3000 sq. feet.
So, to calculate your mobile home’s electric load here is a guide:
- The general load requirement is determined by the total square feet of area inside your mobile home. The total sq. feet are then used to calculate the basic lighting load and the total appliance circuit needed. Therefore, the first thing to do is to multiply the square footage of the total living space inside your mobile home, by three watts. For instance, if your mobile home has a total of 2000 sq. footage and has a central air conditioner, you multiply 2000 sq. feet times 3 watts and hence obtain 6000 watts.
- Now add the wattage of kitchen appliances in the kitchen and laundry room. You can check the wattage on the nameplate for accurate calculation. This is usually 1500 watts for each small kitchen appliance and laundry circuit.
- Add wattages for heating and air conditioning equipment in your mobile home. These are appliances that are on their circuits such as dishwasher, water heater, electric dryer, or window air conditioner. The wattage is usually labeled in the nameplate.
- Find the total of the above wattage additions and figure the first 10.000 watts by 100% and the remaining watts at 40%. For example, if you have obtained a total wattage of 22000, take the first 10,000 watts at 100% and 40% of the rest of 12000 watts, to obtain a total of 14,880 watts.
- Choose the heating unit or the air conditioner, whichever has greater wattage, and add to the above.
- Finally, divide the obtained figure by 230. Now, that is the total amps your mobile home use.
These calculations should not boggle you.
You can simply enter the figures to an online Electrical Load Calculator for easy and accurate calculations.
Simply follow the laid instructions.
The beauty with the Electrical Load Calculator is that it comes with pre-loaded figures for you to choose from.
How To Increase Capacity for Your Electrical Load
If your power needs are below the calculated figure, then you need to upgrade your electrical load.
But before you install an extra capacity to your electrical load, ensure that the service panel can withstand the extra load.
Fuse boxes usually have fixed capacity and do not have space for new circuits. So, if you are planning to upgrade you should buy a new fuse box with a new service panel.
Breaker boxes usually come with an amperage of 100, 150, or 200. Therefore, you should check the panel’s amperage to avoid overloading the service panel.
Electrical Load Box Sizes to Choose From
There are three types of electrical load box systems you can choose from.
The size of the electrical load chosen is determined by your home electrical capacity.
1. Small Fuse Box
A small fuse box has a capacity of 50 to 60 amps.
It is usually found in older mobile homes which have not upgraded their wiring system.
A 60 amps fuse box, can power one 240V appliance, and therefore it is not ideal for modern mobile homes that have more than one appliance in use.
Also, if your mobile home is 1200 sq. feet or more, then a small fuse box is surely inadequate for your home. You should think of upgrading to a higher capacity.
2. Medium-sized serviced panel
The National Electrical Code requires a minimum of 100 amps for mobile homes.
A medium-sized service panel has a capacity of at least 100 amps.
This is enough to run a medium-sized home with 240V appliances and central air conditioning.
3. Large Capacity Service Panel
This is a larger capacity panel with 150 to 200 amps.
This is ideal for mobile homes that use a lot of large electrical appliances besides heating and air conditioning appliances.
If your mobile home has a lot of energy demands, you can consider upgrading to a 400 amps service panel.
Service Panel Safety Tips
Safety is paramount in your mobile home. It is therefore prudent to take all the necessary precautions to prevent any detectable hazard beforehand.
Here are a few safety tips you can adopt in your mobile home:
- A service panel should not be easily accessible to children.
- Firmly attach exposed cables to the wall.
- Run the wires in an orderly manner around the panel. If you notice entangled wires, contact an electrician for an inspection.
- If you are doing rewiring on an old panel, always double-check your work.
Mobile homes typically need at least 100 amps to power electrical appliances in your mobile home.
It is always worth considering an upgrade to keep abreast with evolving power needs in a mobile home.
And when you are doing the connection, ensure that you follow NEC guidelines on the choice of wiring and the required capacity.