- MEDIUM Latching Cable Raceway Kit – Black
- Leviton 42777-1EA Surface Mount Backbox, Single Gang, Black, 1.89″
- TOPGREENER TU2154A 4A High Speed USB Charger Receptacle 15A
- Southwire 28827422 14/2WG NMB Wire 50-Foot
- NOCO Genius GCP1 Black 13 Amp 125V AC Port Plug
- Morris 89212 Appliance and Air Conditioner Extension Cord, 14/3, 3′
Guess what? I’m going to talk about Keystone once again and their obvious miss. Maybe there was a good reason, but I can’t think of any other reason than cost savings. Someone(s) decided that there shouldn’t be any A/C (the 120v kind) on the living room slide-out on the Outback 324CG. If you know why, please enlighten me!
So if you haven’t gathered by now, the slide-out that the dinette and couch live in does not have it’s own A/C electrical power, and it’s a long slide-out. The closest outlets are in two locations, 1) up high behind the TV, 2) on the wall beside the dinette bench. If you want to plug in that dying mobile device while sitting somewhere in the middle of the slide-out, you need someway of extending the power to you. Or if for instance you purchased a 5.1 surround system from Costco with a wireless sub-woofer and rear surround sound speakers, you need to drape an unsightly extension cord to power it.
My inspiration to fix this issue came from work where they use a bunch on wall-mounted raceways and receptacles made by Panduit. That brand is pretty expensive so I turned to my usual source, Amazon and they had some great affordable alternatives.
Knowing I wanted power in the middle of the slide-out and at the dinette, I needed to design how I was going to source the power. Looking underneath the slide-out there’s a small penetration towards the hitch side of the slide-out for the 12vDC lights. Using the same path is viable, but I still have a warranty to consider and I really don’t like pulling down the “Arctic Barrier (LOL)” plastic material. So harvesting power from an existing outlet inside seemed to be a good compromise but I know I didn’t want to use the outlet behind the TV. That left the outlet beside the dinette.
obligatory disclaimer: I’m not a professional electrician, do not do as I do. This isn’t a how-to guide, but rather me documenting my work. Please seek professional advice elsewhere as I don’t want anyone hurting themselves. Also, I’m a certified geek, I may get technical.
Here you can see the power outlet on the cabinet. Behind the outlet is all the “docking station” connections from outside and water pump. Now I need to figure out a way to bring power to the slide-out. I need someway of jumping the power from the outlet to the slide-out that doesn’t involve magic.
I slid out the storage drawer under the dinette bench to see what space I had available. There’s actually a lot of room for a cable run. The drawer hardware is several inches away from the wall. I need to get the power into this area so I can run the raceway and outlets on the slide-out.
I know what I’ll do! I’ll get a male outlet and flush-mount it towards the cabinet outlet and use a short “jumper” cable to plug in the slide-out! The NOCO Genius was the perfect solution for this.
Combined with a 3′ Appliance and Air Conditioner Extension Cord I’ll “jumper” from the cabinet outlet to the Noco receptacle. I just needed to trim off the nub from the female end since it wasn’t fitting in the plug.
Next up was to figure how I was going to put the Noco into the dinette. Obviously a hole-saw is the best tool, but I need to take careful measurement so the lip of the flange fits under the slide-out trim and also not extend past the dinette’s edge.
So I drilled a smaller hole in the approximate location that would get removed by the hole saw anyway. The left picture is behind the dinette facing the outlet and the right is under the bench seat. Using the screwdriver I measured from center out to see where the edges of the flange would land. I was off about 1/4″ actually, the flange would’ve never fit next to the slide-out trim. So I moved over and rechecked.
Time to commit! This is permanent and an oops here would be met with an unhappy lady.
Yay, it fits! I sawed the hole a bit oversized since the flange on the other side was larger and would hide the actual hole. This allowed me to wedge the back and pigtail in putting the lip of the flange close to the slide-out’s trim.
Pretty snug fit actually. Three fasteners through the face and its secure.
Here it is with the nice finishing plug. It’s part of the rubber gasket under the flange so it just hangs there when its in use.
This is demonstrating how I’ll “jumper” from the outlet to the slide-out. Now, this does add another task to landing and departure, but that’s what lists are for. To be safe though, this length of cord should retract without stressing either outlet.
Now it’s time to begin setting up the raceway where the 14/2WG NMB Wire will be ran. The place is a mess!
The raceway I chose is black and shouldn’t be too obvious (read: wife approved). It’s got a strong 3M adhesive so I needed to be careful of placement. I cut and then test fit all the pieces without peeling the protective strip off the adhesive. I also prepped the walls by cleaning them with alcohol for the best bond possible. Romex can be very rigid and I don’t want them popping off the wall.
This is the outlet location that will be for the dinette. So that I know how much length I’d need, I ran out to the furthest endpoint first, which will be the outlet near the couch. I had to loop the wire here so I could not only power this outlet, but daisy-chain the last one as well. I was sure to keep enough spacing on the raceway channel intersections so I could use the trim pieces. If they’re too close the won’t snap together properly.
This is at the couch location, the furthest outlet. This outlet is actually more in the middle of the slide-out, but the intention is to power user’s devices on the couch as well as the wireless sub and rear speakers.
With the couch outlet now wired up and ready to test, I went back to the original install under the bench of the dinette. I cut the female plug off the Noco receptacle and opted to direct wire the Romex into it. Since I’m able to remove power at the “jumper” I didn’t see a need to do anything special here. I used twist caps and heat-shrink tubing to terminate the ends. Then I secured the whole length with captive fasteners to the wall so there won’t be any abrasion or contact with the storage drawer’s hardware (raceway adhesive won’t adhere to fabric.).
Success! I’m always sure to test my work, especially when it’s inside of a tinderbox like an RV. This Sperry Instruments GFI6302 GFCI Outlet Tester is very useful and super inexpensive. I have one in every tool box and drawer at home and RV (about a dozen).
The couch is done, next up is the dinette. I put things back together for this pic. What do you think, is the couch outlet an eyesore?
I split the wires by the dinette in preparation for the gang box and receptacle. Though I use the adhesive, I still secure the gang box with 4 fasteners to the wall.
One thing to note here is the very little clearance with this receptacle/gang combination. It was important for me to separate the neutral and hot leads to either side of the gang box as much as possible. The receptacle is 1.70″ and the gang is 1.89″ – not much room for bunched up wires.
This is how it went in… just.
There’s an outlet here, promise! This was a collaboration with the wife. We both didn’t want to see the outlet so obvious. So I intentionally set it just below the table so we can still see what we’re plugging in while sitting down, but it isn’t standing out.
Overhead shot of both outlets.
Ready to blog about this project! (My power brick is sitting atop the outlet)
Check out our other upgrades! Have any questions about this project? Please chat below and I’ll try to respond in a reasonable time. Remember, we have full-time careers and this blog is just a hobby. ☺️
Best regards – RVTherapy