What Is RV Shore Power?

RV shore power allows you to run your recreational vehicle while parked. Today, we’ll explain what exactly it is, how it works, if it can charge your 12V battery, and everything else you need to know. Let’s get started.

So, What Is RV Shore Power?

Shore power is simply a stationary AC electrical source you plug into, like a standard household plug-in. They usually have plug-ins at campgrounds and RV parks, sometimes called a power pedestal because they’re on a stand. While the term shore power may seem strange, it comes from energy supplied at shipping ports to run a ship’s electricals while in berth, much like a parked recreational vehicle. 

Using shore power is incredibly convenient for RV drivers. However, depending on where you plug in, you may have to pay for the electricity provided. This is where EcoFlow Power Kits come to the rescue: off-grid electricity storage and generation solutions that can be charged in numerous ways using AC electrical plugins, generators, or solar panels. If you’re considering a kit, it’s a good idea to calculate how much energy you’ll need.  

Solar panels are the best option to recharge your batteries; once you pay for them, your energy is free, and you can generate electricity from anywhere. Just make sure you have enough solar panels for your RV, and you may want to consider EcoFlow’s Flexible Solar Panels to maximize your surface area for electricity generation. 

What Is Standard RV Shore Power?

AC ports for RVs usually have 30 amp or 50 amp service, but occasionally they come in 15 amps for smaller vans.  This service can easily run all your appliances and keep your batteries topped up. 

Does Plugging Into Shore Power Charge an RV Battery?

Your RV’s battery receives charge while plugged in. Despite using an AC plug, your RV has a built-in converter that converts AC electricity into DC to charge your 12V battery. Devices running on DC electricity, like your lights and RV refrigerator, will keep drawing from your 12V battery, and the incoming AC and converter will keep topping it back up. 

Since external plugs use AC electricity, they’ll run your AC appliances directly.

Is It Safe to Plug Your RV Into Shore Power?

Yes, using AC plugins for your recreational vehicle is perfectly safe; just make sure you use the cord that comes with it. Or, if you don’t have one, use a quality extension cord that’s grounded so you don’t risk damaging your electrical system. 

Should I Disconnect My RV Battery When Plugged Into Shore Power?

You should leave your battery connected when plugged in because your DC-dependent devices will keep draining your 12V batteries while in use, so the incoming AC electricity will keep it topped up via the converter.

The only exception is when it’s left plugged in while in long-term storage. If your converter doesn’t sense the charge on your battery and step it down to a trickle charge, it could, over time, end up over-charging your battery, but that’s only for older recreational vehicles in long-term storage. 

Final Thoughts

A power pedestal is a quick and convenient option that uses AC electrical plugs to run your AC-dependent appliances directly or charge your 12V DC battery, which runs your DC-dependent devices. 

No matter what energy source you’re using, adding one of EcoFlow’s Power Kits is a great idea to make charging and running your RV’s electrical system simple. Now, go out and enjoy your next outdoor adventure with unlimited power.

EcoFlow is a portable power and renewable energy solutions company. Since its founding in 2017, EcoFlow has provided peace-of-mind power to customers in over 85 markets through its DELTA and RIVER product lines of portable power stations and eco-friendly accessories.


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