Burning up shore cord ends, and connectors, is pretty common. Unfortunately. Three causes:
1. Overloading -- trying to pull too much current
2. Poor maintenance
, leading to corroded or loose connections; and
2. Overspecification of 30A connectors.
can occur because of failure to understand that a 30A circuit cannot be expected to deliver 30A continuously. Rather, they should not be loaded more than 24A or so, even when new and shiny. Now, 24A isn't much, if you count air conditioning
chargers, hot water
heaters, and all the other heavy loads. Often, as well, boats aren't wired in such way as to keep you out of trouble, either. I lived aboard a houseboat for many years which -- straight from the factory -- was wired in such way that you could try to pull 90A thru the 30A connection!
You need to pay attention to your shore cords. Make it a habit of touching them near the power pole and where they attach to the boat whenever you leave or come aboard. You'll be able to spot heating
that way. Keep them water
tight. Do your best to keep them clean and make sure they are making a good connection at each end.
IMHO, 30 amp cords are way overrated. They can't carry that much current
continuously, even when new. Their configuration is such that they very shortly deteriorate. If you add a splitter so that you get two 30A connections, you in one way add some capacity, but you also add a potential danger
: the only CPD protecting those two 30A cords is the 50A breaker on the dock
, meaning that you could pull 50A thru EACH
of those cords before the circuit breaker on the dock
would think of tripping. This could get you into real trouble.
If you have the option, you'd be much better off with one 50A shore cord leading to a 50A connector on the boat (same physical size as the 30A one). From this inlet, you could have two honest-to-god 50A 120VAC circuits, i.e., much more than you could get from two 30A cords. To do this, you'd have to upgrade your wiring
on the boat from the inlet to the panel(s), using AWG6 wire instead of the AWG10 wire which you most likely now have. And, you'd have to upgrade the main breakers to 50A.
The conversion isn't cheap
(connector and shorecord prices are astonishingly high), but it's definitely the way to go if you have the $$$ and the desire to never again worry about having enough onboard power :-)