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Posted By Topic: Mobile food power supply wiring

haydenyoung
Sep 08 2016 08:01

I am in the process of building a mobile food cart from scratch. It has no wiring right now (excluding trailer lights etc) But I am wondering what are my limits and requirements for such an installation?

I am not an electrician. I will get an electrical to do the work, but right now im trying to see if what i want is possible.

1. I read the below link here and although it applies to caravans I am worried it could affect me:
http://www.electricalforum.co.nz/index.php?action=more_detais&id=1393731713


2. I hope to have everything inside running electric, including a griddle of around 4.4kw, fridge and other appliances totaling around 1.2kw - 200kw and LED lights totaling say 100watts.

This is quite a power requirement so I am wondering if it is even allowed? will I need 32amp external plugs/adapters?

3. Is it possible to have more than one power supply? Because it is mobile, I may have 2 generators, neither of which are able to supply the total amount, and since some parallel kits still don't have the required amount I may look at having 1 generator supply the griddle and 1 supplies the others, in the event I cant find power from a building.

I really appreciate any help anyone can give me even if they cant answer all the questions. Or point me to any AS standards that are specifically for mobile premises.

Finally, if anyone here is a electrician in Auckland, feel free to send me a quote for the work required!

Thanks in advanced!
   

haydenyoung
Sep 08 2016 08:02

I should probably clarify, this is a mobile food enclosed trailer/caravan not a cart.
   

pluto
Sep 08 2016 08:08

There is a suitable standard to cover the type of the set up propose.

You will need to engage a suitable electrician/Electrical inspector to do and certify the work required.

When talking to the electrical worker he/she should be aware of the suitable standard, if they do NOT know, then it is time to find someone who does know.
   

haydenyoung
Sep 08 2016 08:43

Thanks pluto for the reply. So it is possible for me to have a single 32amp (or there abouts) plug for the installation?

Yes I will be sure to engage someone who is qualified to do it.

Also can you confirm if multiple AC power supplies is allowed? In case I go the 2 generator or if i can only get 10A from a house and the other 20A from a generator etc.

Thanks
   

AlecK
Sep 08 2016 11:37

First thing to do is to think hard about whether all that energy needs to be electrical.
eg swap the 4.4 kW griddle for a gas-powered unit.
For food you're going to need hot water for cleaning / hand washing. Instant electric water heaters run at upwards of 6 kW. Storage water-heaters take up a lot of space.
So look at what else you can run off gas, which will reduce the total electrical load substantially. The point being that what matters is not the absolute total, but the total at any one time.
   

AlecK
Sep 08 2016 13:57

You've started well by identifying the expected loads.

The key to whether to have one supply or multiple supplies comes down to whether you want to plug in at a particular site or sites; and what capacity supply or supplies are available in those places.
   

dbuckley
Sep 11 2016 09:57


> Because it is mobile, I may have 2 generators, neither of which are able
> to supply the total amount, and since some parallel kits still don't have the required amount I may look at having 1 generator
> supply the griddle and 1 supplies the others, in the event I cant find power from a building.

Wiring a truck up with a 32A socket on the outside to operate off a single supply, either shore power from a building, or a decent sized genset that electrically "looks" like shore power is something that can be done without any dramas.

Having a system that can operate off shore power, OR two random generators is fraught with difficulties, especially since that given the load split it would likely be one bigger genny for the griddle, and a smaller genny for "the rest", and the smaller genny would probably be something from a tool hire shop for a building site. That could all end up really badly; that is not a cookie cutter installation, but requires very specific attention to detail, and specifying exactly what types of generator are acceptable.

Mainly due to the differing earthing approaches of big and little generators.

Alec is, of course, not wrong; perhaps gas is a better approach?
   

haydenyoung
Sep 21 2016 15:21

Thanks everyone for the replies.

When i was looking into gas it seemed to cause more drama as it was mainly for the huge ones, got expensive and required additional ventilation. Plus i am running quite a small setup.

So i made the decision to keep everything electrical. I ended up changing things slightly.

I got a 5300Watt (6.2kw burst) continous output generator, and I will use a 3kw griddle leaving 2300 left for a fridge register etc.

Now my issues/questions


1. the generator has 3 15a plugs, does that mean i should have say 2 lines going to the trailer and have them as seperate circuits?

2. if i did decide to go for more power later on, is adding a generator and new line and mutually exclusive sockets really a bad idea?


Thanks again!

And yes, im not going to do any wiring myself just wanting to know before i calll upon the electrician