Changing the AC Shore Power socket

One of the things that was suggested was to change out my AC 30amp shore power socket, which had a cover with a snapped hinge and was also lookin’ pretty grubby



The cable itself was also looking pretty beat up, so I decided to buy a Smartplug cable and AC Power inlet.

As described here, the old twist-lock standard for shore cables/sockets is from 1938 and was grandfathered in, and is TERRIBLE. It has a thin contact area, and the way it twists and locks into place leads to an even smaller contact area – which means any pulling or chafing leads to resistance – which leads to heat and then fire. It’s led to more boat fires that maybe anything else, and you get a hefty insurance discount for switching to a smartplug! The smartplug has flat connectors which are then locked into place using clasps at the side of the plug. It also has a thermal breaker built in that disconnects if the plug gets too hot.

First order was to remove the old inlet – 4 screws and it was out


Next was to get the 10AWG cable, clean it up, and then wire up each wire into the back of the new smartplug terminal


All done!


Next, all was left was to clean the area and then screw it in (using the same screw holes), and done!


It looks smart even when closed


All told, it took just over an hour, and was a lot easier than I expected. I can’t wait to get the rest of the electrics in to try it out.


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