Everything you need to know about RV shore power cords!

Fortress PowerLock Blog 1Whether you’re new to RVing or a seasoned camper, you should know that RVs require power to run their various appliances and systems. Your rig is powered by either its 12-volt systems, also known as batteries, or by being plugged into a 120-volt power source through an RV power cord, also known as shore power. Shore power requires connecting your rig to an outside power source, either a power outlet or a generator.

Power connections at campgrounds are not all alike. They come with a variety of sizes and shapes of power cords. Different power cords mean different amps, and you have to use the appropriate power source for your rig. Your RV either requires a 30-amp or 50-amp plug to connect to a 120-volt power source at the campground.

Fortress PowerLock Blog 2There are items in your RV that won't work unless you are connected to an external power source providing 120-volts. This includes your household outlets, air conditioner, TV and microwave. Usually, these appliances cannot be powered from batteries unless your RV has an inverter to convert DC power into AC power. DC (direct current) power will only send the electric charge in one direction as compared to AC (alternating current) power which changes direction periodically. Getting power from a 120-volt source to your RV is a big deal because some appliances will only work with 120-volt sources. You need to have the right RV power cord for your rig and it needs to be high quality. This is one place you don't want to pinch pennies.
Example of a 30-amp plug

Fortress PowerLock Blog 3Because your RV manufacturer has provided a high-quality power cord, you don’t want there to be any chance of it getting stolen because of the copper that’s inside the cord. It could not only mean you have to replace your cord, but it could also cost you hundreds of dollars to fix a damaged camper outlet. The Fortress PowerLock is designed to cover your shore power cord access door to protect your RV power cords from being cut and stolen. It’s the only lock available specifically designed for shore power cords in the industry.

Features of the Fortress PowerLock include:

Lock covers shore power cord access door to protect RV power cords from being cut and stolen
Prevents theft associated with opening access door and removing power cords
Easy installation
Lock and keys included
Available in black or white high impact powder coat aircraft grade aluminum
Legendary Lifetime Warranty
Proudly made in the USA

Kit includes:

Fortress PowerLock
Two keys
All the mounting hardware

Fortress PowerLock Blog 4

Protect from potential damage to your trailer with this lockable shore power cord hatch

If you’re interested in learning more about the Torklift Fortress PowerLock, there are a couple of options! You can call us at 800-246-8132 and our tech support would be happy to answer your questions about protecting your shore power cord from theft. Or, you can find one of our Certified Dealers near you, and they can help you and get you set up with one of these RV locks.

Fortress PowerLock Blog 5

 

kerstin

Written by Kerstin Stokes:
As a graduate from the College of Idaho with a B.A. in both History and Art, Kerstin has found her passion for writing and marketing, and has loved every minute of working for Torklift for over 2 years. She enjoys looking up tasty recipes for baking and daydreaming about future travels. 

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How to repair a shore power cord

Shore Power Repair Blog 1

Being able to power your RV while traveling is essential. If your shore power cord is damaged or you are a victim of power cord theft, you have options as far as what kind of replacement cord you can purchase. There are two different styles of shore cords and depending on your RV, it may require a small or larger number of amps to power it.

How do I determine what style or how many amps I will need?

Amp ratings

There are two different amp rating shore cords available. What do the amps mean? Here’s an example: If you have a 30-amp rig, you can run one air conditioner and a few other appliances at the same time but not much else. If you have a 50-amp RV plug, then you can plug in and run almost every appliance in your rig at the same time. More amps means more power.

Option one: 30-amp cord that can provide power for a smaller to average sized RV (three prongs)
Option two: 50-amp cord that can provide power for an average to larger sized RV (four prongs)

Different Styles Available

There are two different styles that are available for replacement cords:

Option one- A detachable cord that is plugged into both the RV and outlet which allows you to easily detach and secure the cord. This type of shore cord can easily be replaced and stored in the RV when not in use. If stolen or damaged, it can possibly be expensive to replace, but it’s the only thing that would need to be replaced.

Shore Power Repair Blog 2Example of a 30-amp external cord

Option two- this cord is wired directly to the junction box (and probably already came standard on your RV), which is your RV’s power wiring box. In older RVs the cord is bunched into a small compartment while newer RVs now offer a retractable cord roller for easy storage. If this cord is stolen or damaged, you will have to rewire this shore cord back into the junction box. It could cost you a few hundred dollars to repair the damage and replace the cord.

Shore Power Repair 6Example of a 30-amp cord that is wired to your RV

Each amp rating can be found in both of the cord styles, so it comes down to what is going to meet your needs the best. Now you’ve determined the best shore cord to fit your needs and installed it on your trailer, how are you going to protect it from theft?

The Fortress PowerLock

Shore Power Repair Blog 4Torklift has designed a shore power cord cover called the Fortress PowerLock, to protect the RV power cord from being cut or stolen. This is the only lock available for shore power cords in the industry.  Crafted out of aircraft grade aluminum, the locking shore power hatch is available in a white or black high impact powder coating. This product, like many other Torklift products, comes with a Legendary Lifetime Warranty. The Fortress PowerLock is easy to install and has a lock with a set of keys included.

How do I install the Fortress PowerLock?

Designed for easy installation, the Fortress PowerLock only takes minutes to give you peace of mind when it comes to your shore power. For installation instructions, visit our recent blog on how to install this RV electrical hatch.

 

If you have any questions on how the Fortress PowerLock protects your shore power cord, are interested in purchasing or need more information, contact our tech support at 800.246.8132.

 

 

shyann

Written by Shyann Guerra:

Being in an environment in which I can problem solve is where I flourish. Every answer to a problem leads me to a new concept to understand or a lesson to learn. When I'm not solving problems I enjoy camping and going to festivals with my family - from the local city center festivals to the mountains of Wenatchee at the Winter Grass, blue grass music festival. Experiencing culture is where my heart is content. 

 

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How to install a RV electrical hatch

PowerLock Blog 1

Torklift designed a lockable shore power cord cover called the Fortress PowerLock. It protects the RV power cord from being cut or stolen. This is the only lock available for shore power cords in the industry and protects you from having to pay hundreds of dollars in repairs and replacements.  Crafted out of aircraft grade aluminum, the locking shore power hatch is available in white or black high impact powder coat to match your trailer color. This product is proudly made in the USA and comes with our Legendary Lifetime Warranty.


How do I install the Fortress PowerLock?

PowerLock Blog 2The Fortress PowerLock is easy to install – so easy in fact, it can be done in a matter of 10 minutes and give you peace of mind for a lifetime!

When you receive your kit – the Fortress PowerLock comes with four stainless steel tapping screws and two keys.

  1. Start by removing the existing electrical hatch from the exterior of the camper, and remove the power cord from the back of the electrical hatch.
  2. Clean any remaining sealant from the camper and hatch. To ease your reinstallation, leave the power cord protruding from the camper.
  3. Using your preferred sealant, seal the back side of the Fortress PowerLock.
    1. Be sure to seal all the holes as well as the perimeter of the Fortress PowerLock.
  4. PowerLock Blog 3Next, seal the backside of the flange on your original electrical hatch. Install the original electrical hatch into the Fortress PowerLock, and place the power cord into the back side of the electrical hatch. Slide the cylindrical portion of the electrical hatch with power cord into the opening in the camper.
  5. Reinstall your original hardware through the three holes in the electrical hatch (shown to the right)
    1. Optional: If you feel that the original mounting hardware or condition of the original holes is not up to the task of securing the power cord, the four remaining holes can be screwed into place.
  6. PowerLock Blog 4Pre-drill the remaining four holes in the Fortress PowerLock with a 1/8” drill bit, and install the four #10 x 1¼” stainless steel self-tapping screws (shown to the right). After the screws have been installed, remove any excess sealant away from the edges of the Fortress PowerLock.

Now it’s installed and ready for use! See how easy that was? All you need to do is close the door, insert the key and turn it clockwise and your shore cord is protected! Below is a video demonstrating how the Fortress PowerLock shore power cord door provides the ultimate protection:

If you have any questions on how to install this shore power protection or for more information about the Fortress PowerLock, contact us at 800.246.8132!

 

 

 shyannWritten by Shyann Guerra:
Being in an environment in which I can problem solve is where I flourish. Every answer to a problem leads me to a new concept to understand or a lesson to learn. When I'm not solving problems I enjoy camping and going to festivals with my family - from the local city center festivals to the mountains of Wenatchee at the Winter Grass, blue grass music festival. Experiencing culture is where my heart is content. 

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