Hughs Autoformer

On theVAP Episode 166 we talked about low voltage problems at some RV campgrounds. Low AC voltage can cause problems with your appliances such as microwaves and air conditioners. Typically the problem is the result of undersized utilities serving the campground. Prolonged use of your appliances especially your air conditioner can damage them.

I decided to look over the Internet to see if there was a solution to this. What I found was the Hughs Autoformer. Hughs sent me a unit to evaluate. They offer two models, one for 30 amp service and another for 50.

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The basic setup is you plug the Autoformer into the park service and plug your trailer into the Autoformer. There are two lights on the Autoformer, an amber and a red. The amber indicates that the utility power is wired ok. If the amber light stays on, it’s safe to plug in the trailer. The red light indicates the Autoformer is in boost mode. Boost mode is when the utility power is low and the Autoformer is actively boosting the voltage to the trailer to keep it in a safe range.

Since I’m not at a campground, I just tried it on my home service which is wired correctly and has proper voltage, but it let me go through the steps. First thing was to check the voltage in my trailer while connected directly to the utility.

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I setup the Autoformer inline with my trailer and rechecked.

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Even though the lights on the Autoformer were indicating non-boost mode, the voltage did raise a moderate 3VAC. I’m sure that’s the lowest residual amount.

This is about all I can test until I get back on the road with it. It looks to be a heavy duty quality built unit. I can’t wait to find a park with poor power!

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