How to Convert 30 Amp To 15 Amp (How To Make a Safe Adapter)

You may not have to make one. In this technological age, just about any electrical device or accessory has been adapted to meet different electrical needs. That means that you can easily find a commercial 30 amp to 15 amp adapter at a good big box store or hardware outlet.

The simplest way to do this is to go to your local store that handles this type of electrical equipment. Then go to the adapter section and pick out one that is made by a good brand. Making one yourself requires electrical experience most RVers do not have

To learn more about this topic, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about before you make a purchase. Take a few minutes to see how this information helps you convert from a 30 amp system down to a 15 amp system.

Can You Run a 30 Amp RV On 15 Amp?


Yes, this is possible and many RV owners have confessed to doing it all the time. They plug into a 20-amp outlet on the shore power pole because the 30-amp outlet is broken.

The only difference is since the 15-amp & the 30-amp are both 120 volts, is that you will only receive 15 amps of power. What that means in real life is that you will not be able to run a lot of electrical devices at the same time.

When it comes to big ticket items like the AC or water heater, you can’t run both. You have to pick those times when to start one, shut it off and start the other, and so on.

As a precaution, when you plug a 15-amp power cord into the outlet, take some time now and then to feel the cord. You do not want it to overheat on you. Your biggest problem will be that the breaker will trip if you try to draw too much power from the 15-amp outlet.

How To Convert 30 Amp To 15 Amp

The best way to do this is to use a power converter. This converter will change the amperage and the voltage for you. That will make the conversion nice and safe for everyone.

Or you can buy a power strip that has a built-in convertor. This device will do the same thing as the power converter and it still is simple to operate. These two devices should be easy to find at electrical supply outlets or hardware stores.

Or you can do the same thing you would do when you are using a 50-amp shore power outlet with a 30-amp RV. Buy a 30-amp to 15-amp adapter and plug it in. Many electrical devices only need 15 amps and that is what they will get with this adapter.

You can’t plug straight into the outlet as the prongs should be different on the outlet and the plug. The adapter is the cheapest and simplest way to do this objective.

What is a 30 Amp To 15 Amp Adapter?


Usually, these adapters are called dog bones. They may look like a dog’s bone to some people thus they got their nickname. But these adapters are very straight forward and not hard to use.

Generally, they are simple plug-and-play models that plug into the 30-amp outlet and then you plug in your 15-amp power cord on the other end. They should be found just about anywhere and they can be found on Amazon with ease.

You will notice that there are two different types of these adapters. One will fit the female outlet and the other will fit on the male end of a 30-amp power cord. Once plugged in, they will work like any power cord you have used at any time in your life.

Plus, they are not expensive to buy. You can find them for under $20 at the right outlet, depending on the design and brand. They are also quite small and will not take up a lot of room in your toolbox or storage area.

How Does a 30 Amp To 15 Amp Adapter Work?

In very basic language and hoping to not get too technical, the adapters in use in RVs, etc., usually have a transformer inside the plug. What the transformer does is convert the incoming electrical level to a lower electrical level.

For example, if you have 30 amps coming into the plug, the transformer will convert it to 15 amps and you can use that outlet to power your 15-amp devices. There are other technical details that come into play as well but that is the simplified version.

Suffice it to say that the makers of these adapters have used technology to create products that help broaden your electrical use when you need it. The biggest advantage that comes with using an adapter is safety. This is the safest way to lower your incoming electrical levels.

Another advantage will be that it helps keep your electrical devices from overheating when turned on. There are other advantages of using this type of adapter and those can be explained to you by the store employees when you buy an adapter for your RV.

How To Make a 30 Amp To 15 Amp Adapter


To make your own, you need to have a lot of experience with electricity as well as wires and other electrical devices. This is not a project for a novice or anyone who does not like working with electricity.

However, when we checked for instructions on how to make an adapter, none popped up on the results page. We also checked YouTube as that outlet has a myriad of how-to videos on any project you may undertake--- except this one.

There are no instruction videos on how to make a 30 to 15-amp adapter. The reason for this is probably liability issues. No one wants to get sued nor do we. If something goes wrong and you followed any instructions we have provided we would be vulnerable to lawsuits and that is not a good thing.

What we will say is that if you have extensive electrical experience, you already know how to make this adapter and do not need any instructions from us. If you do not have the right electrical background, then find someone who does and ask them to make one for you.

This is not a project that should be done by those without the proper experience or background.

30 Amp To 20 Amp Reducer Options

The options for this topic are the same as the options for the 30-amp to 15-amp reduction. The first one will be to buy a power converter that goes from 30 to 20 amps. These may or may not be that expensive.

The second option will be to buy a 30-amp to a 20-amp power strip. Easy to use and also not that expensive. Plus, you should have some overload protection in both of these devices.

The final option would be a 30-amp to 20-amp adapter. The transformer inside will do the reducing for you and they are very safe accessories to use. The ones that we have seen are designed to work in all types of weather conditions.

When you buy the right brand, it should last you a long time. These devices won’t take up a lot of storage space either and can hang with your other adapters.

30 Amp Breaker 15 Amp Receptacle

This would be a code violation if you were to do it. Here is what the National Electrical Code has to say:

210.21(B)(3), you can install 15-ampere receptacles on a 20-ampere branch circuit, as long as the circuit supplies two or more receptacles or outlets. All the wiring in the circuit must be sized to a 20-ampere circuit, meaning that it must all be 12 AWG or larger copper.

To answer this question in the context of your previous question, you can still have 15-ampere receptacles on the 20-ampere circuit. However, since the circuit will have to be 240 volts, the 15-ampere receptacles have to be 240-volt receptacles (NEMA 6-15). Any equipment attached to these receptacles will also have to be rated for 240 volts, and be rated less than 16 amperes

Some Final Words

It is not hard to convert 30 amps of power to 15 amps if you have the right equipment. The equipment isn’t complicated nor hard to use. Most are just plug-and-play options. They are also inexpensive to buy.

However, do not try to make your own adapter. If you make even one slight mistake, you could cause a lot of damage to your RV, trailer, and electrical devices.

Making one would be as or more expensive than buying an adapter anyways so save yourself the risk and go with the safest option, buy an adapter and protect your family.

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