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Does My RV Need a Surge Protector

by Jeffery
(Chula Vista)

Pictured Above Progressive Industries PT30C 30 Amp Portable Electrical Management System

Pictured Above Progressive Industries PT30C 30 Amp Portable Electrical Management System

Does the 2013 Forest River 3050S Sunseeker need a 30 amp surge protector and if so, what kind is best?

ANSWER: Hi Jeffery thanks for submitting your question on our Ask An RV Question Page

I can guarantee you that any RVer who has experienced a power surge in their RV and did not have a Surge Protector on their RV would give you a resounding "YES" you need a Surge Protector on your RV; because they are now paying a lot of money to repair damage to their RV that could have been prevented by a Surge Protector or Electric Management System.

In my personal opinion all RVers should have some sort of voltage protection for their RVs. All it takes is one voltage spike (surge) on an unprotected RV to cause thousands of dollars of damage to the RV's appliances and electrical systems. So investing in a voltage protection device for your RV makes financial sense, just like having an insurance policy on your RV.

Basically there are two types of Voltage Protection Devices you can get for your RV.

Surge Protector: These devices provide basic protection of your RV's electrical systems from Power Surges (Spikes) caused by lightning Strikes on nearby power lines, etc. Normally these are simply devices that you plug into the shore power box directly and then plug your RV into the device.

These Surge (spike) Protectors such as the SSP Series from Progressive Industries are readily available and can cost less than $100.00 for the 30 Amp model and less then $110.00 for the 50 Amp model.

Again these devices only provide basic protection to your RV and do not prevent damage to your RV's electrical system from prolonged exposure to high or low voltage situations.

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Electrical Management Systems: These provide the basic Surge Protection like the Surge Protector above, but in addition they provide:

* Prolonged High low voltage protection.

* Open neutral protection.

* AC frequency protection.

* 220 Volt protection in case you plug your RV into 220 Volts by accident.

These Electrical Management Systems are available in both portable and hard wired versions and range in price from $260.00 to $460.00.

Below is a video that outlines how to install a hard wired Electrical Management System in an RV.

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I hope that this information has been helpful to you.

Do you have any suggestions or comments on this topic? You can add them to this page by clicking on the "Click Here To Post Comments" link located near the bottom of this page.

Happy RVing

RVing Al

Comments for Does My RV Need a Surge Protector

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RV that grunts
by: Anonymous

Are the "grunts" a result of spikes? They sound like power (AC?) trying to turn on. Other times the ac does try to turn on but immediately cuts off. Today I purchased a TRC 44260. Will this stop the grunts? Could the problem be at the power pole? I am property sitting on a private site. I'm ready to pull up stakes.

RV that grunts
by: Anonymous

My motorcoach makes, "grunts" @ various intervals sometimes quite loud, causing slight, brief dimming of power. Other times it is ok. Ive had to hit reset at the pole 2x. Sometimes the ac cuts off. Turned off or waiting seems to refresh it. Sometimes when turning on a light, ac shuts down. I've tried process of elimination no answer,I've had it in the shop, but they couldn't replicate it. After reading about surgers, hoping one could solve the mystery. And protect my unit. I plan to get one regardless and hope it resolves the issue. I am plugged directly into a power pole with 30 amp.
Advice greatly appreciated

rv voltage management system
by: Tom W

I have a 2010 Forrest river sunseeker 3120. I never used a surge protector until one day my rv got zapped by lightning. It burned up my inverter. after that costly repair, I purchased a progressive industries 30 amp protector. I never had any problems since. A very wise investment. A must have for all rv owners.

by: Alan Stanley

My father-in-law had every electronic device inside his fifth wheel fried, while parked at home, due to a power spike. What a nightmare! Upon his telling me this, I immediately bought one for my travel trailer and use it 100% of the time - even when hooked up to the generator.

Last winter. I was camping at a state park during a snowstorm. Power went out and the few of us there ran our generators. When power was restored, the surge protector wouldn't allow me to use the power - the voltage was too low. I informed the other camper and we all continued using our generators until my surge protector deemed the power safe.

A $200-$300 surge protector is CHEAP insurance against over $1000 worth of repairs or replacements. We're talking, at minimum, your RV power converter, microwave, frig and water heater (all have circuit boards that can fry).

So Right
by: Steven Langridge

My OEM power switch box came standered with a power surge protection.

in a word YES!
by: Anonymous

We installed one in the first days of our travel trailer ownership and to date it has worked for us at least....once a month.

The one we have is installed inside and protects against low current, high current, overlaid, lightening, and a bunch of stuff I don't understand. I can't tell you the number of times people around us have had trouble with things like melting cords, overloaded breakers, lighting, and we didn't.

The best example was a stupid squirrel at a private campground decided to get fired on a transformer and there was a surge and every single RV hooked up in our row suffered some kind of electrical damage, except us. It is much more important in the USA than in Canada because of the difference between regulations on electrical grids but just this morning in Friendly Manitoba, our surge protector kicked in and isolated our travel trailer from the electrical grid when a lightening strike during a severe storm took out power. You put a lock on your door, why not on your electric supply?

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