The Best RV Surge Protector For Your Camping Needs

The way to protect your RV and electrical devices from damage due to power spikes and other elements from the outside world is with the use of surge protectors. You also want to use the best RV surge protector when you want to use more outlets. Buying this is easy, but the price and performance for this vary greatly. Therefore, you should have an idea about these products and what you need for your vehicle.

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How Does A Surge Protector Work?

Ideally, the more joules of protection the surge protector has, the better it can perform. For example, the unit has the capacity to give 1,000 joules of protection; then it is able to withstand about 1,000 joules attacks.

There are several factors that can increase the voltage of electricity, such as when the electric potential energy lasts for about 1-2 nanoseconds, which creates a spike, and when the increase in voltage lasts for 3 or more nanoseconds, thus creating a surge.

When there is a high amount of spike or surge, it can potentially damage an electrical device. Basically, a wire will "burst" when the electrical pressure is extremely high. In case your equipment survives the increase in voltage, the surge can still wear it down eventually, as the surge can put extra pressure on the components.

Is It Necessary To Use It?​

Burning RV

Your RV is basically your mobile home that contains lots of electronics and wires. Whenever you park it in between your journey, you connect your vehicle to a park power pedestal. When something goes wrong with that external power, it can adversely affect your electrical devices and damage your RV. Thunderstorms, too low voltage, too high voltage, faulty connections, are common reasons for fluctuations and spikes.

Electrical systems that have been damaged are a costly affair, not to mention that irregularities of power can fry your motor home. While the power that you get from the park or campground is beyond your control, there is something you can do to regulate the power and protect your vehicle and gear from damages by using the best RV surge protector.

What They Can Also Do​

You can say that surge protector is your first line of defence, once it is installed between the power line and your RV. Note that it is available in portable units as well, but the idea is still the same.

Besides from being your shield against bad power, they are also smart and sacrificial. They have the ability to cut the power when they face electrical problems. The smarter ones are designed to do this. With regard to sacrificing themselves, they can do it if they cannot shut off the power. Instead, they allow themselves to get fried and force to cut power in case of major power crisis.

Let's hope that it never gets to that point, but in case you find your surge protector get fried, it means the unit saved you and your vehicle by sacrificing itself.

Types Of Surge Protectors​

These two types of surge protectors are both recommended. You simply choose what works best for you:​

1. Portable

To be able to use this unit, at first, you need to hook up to a power pedestal, and then plug your RV. There is no need for any wiring works in order to plug into an electrical pedestal. No installation process is needed. A portable unit can perform well in any weather conditions.

Remember that when using portable surge protectors, they can easily get stolen. You may use locks to prevent this. Also, if the pedestal you are hooking up is a bit short, a portable unit can drag on the ground.


2. Hard-Wired

This type is more compact than a portable unit. Using this type of surge protectors means you need to hardwire it inside the components of your RV. Basically, you look for the wiring, typically beside the power reel, to draw power from the electrical pedestal outside.

Considering it is positioned inside your vehicle, it removes the problem of getting stolen or leaving it behind. However, it requires correct wiring job to install it; otherwise, you find yourself doing some additional work if it gets fried and needs replacement.​

What To Look For

Amperage Rating. The amperage rating of the surge protector should be suitable for the electrical system in your RV. It is the current that runs through the appliances in your vehicle. The two types of amperages are 30 amp and 50 amp. Buy 30-amp surge protector if you have a 30-amp rig.​

If you are using a lower electrical footprint for your RV, a 30-amp unit is good enough. If you are using many appliances in your RV, you might need a 50-amp protector. Having said that, it is possible to hook up to a 30-amp pedestal even if you are using a 50-amp protector. Simply use an adapter plug to attach the two protectors.

Features of the Unit. When buying your surge protector, look for these features to help protect your appliances from all sorts of power failures. The unit should have protection from:​

  • Low voltage
  • High voltage
  • Open ground (or neutral)
  • Accidental 240V plug in
  • Time delay
  • Reverse polarity.

Manufacture Guarantees. This is also an important factor when buying the best RV surge protector. Choose the one that confidently stands for what they are offering to the consumers. They should have good customer service and a lot of satisfied customers backing them up.

Best Surge Protector On The Market Today - 2018 Reviews

Camco Dogbone RV Circuit Analyzer With Power Grip Handles, Integrated Surge Protection and Fault Indication (125V 30M/30F Amp)

The Camco 55312 surge protector protects your electrical devices by reading incorrect wiring of electrical boxes. In a campground, it would be useful in detecting a fault in the ground power system.

This integrated surge protection unit is made from the USA. It generates 2,100 joules of protection. It is also weather-resistant making it a reliable product even in bad weather conditions. You can be sure of this intelligent RV surge protector and the circuit analyzer by Camco can really perform.

The 55312 125V Dogbone features diagnostic lights, which identify faults to the power box before you hook up your RV. Its grip handle is a safety feature for easy attaching and reattaching the unit.


Pros

  • Easy to read
  • Has LEDs to indicate status of power and ensure correct wiring
  • Reasonably priced
  • Has the right size
  • Prevents power surges
  • Good, fun design.

Cons

  • A bit bulky for some
  • Low manufacturing quality
  • Difficult to plug in tight connection
  • Cannot be used with an adapter
  • A few users that its yellow color is attracting too much attention especially to the thieves.
Surge Guard 34830 Portable Model with LCD Display - 30 Amp

While it does its job well in protecting your RV and gear from voltage spikes, it also has the ability to shut off power whenever it detects problems in the wiring of the pedestal.

The 34830 portable unit features LED display to show amperage usage and incoming line voltage. It determines if power runs smoothly to your motor vehicle. This feature can also tell and display if there is a fault in the process. You can guarantee that it will automatically disconnect to your RV if it identifies neutral, open ground, low voltage, or high voltage.

This 30 amp surge protector comes with 2,450 joules of protection. When the unit does not detect any fault, the LED light illuminates the green power on display, and gives power following the 128 seconds of delay. While you enjoy its power, it continues to protect and monitor any power issues that may occur.


Pros

  • It does not need installation
  • Provides complete power protection
  • Has LED display
  • Weather resistant.

Cons

  • You need to buy lock to avoid getting stolen
  • The unit could easily drag on the ground, particularly on low electrical pedestal
  • The manufacturer does not give round-the-clock service
  • One-year product warranty.
Progressive Industries SSP-30XL Surge Protector with Cover - 30 Amp

The SSP-30XL 30 amp by Progressive Industries is a top quality unit, in which you can use with any electrical rig service. This RV surge protector actively protects your equipment from spikes due to lightning hits.

While it detects and signals you of any electrical issues such as reverse polarity, open or neutral ground, the model is not capable of disconnecting power when it identifies a fault.

The SSP-30XL is thermally protected. It comes with a Lexan cover to give additional protection to the plug especially from harsh weather.

For the 30 amp surge protection, it has 22,500 amps and 825 joules. Moreover, it guarantees customer and technical support any time of any day.


Pros

  • Can perform well up to 6 months and more
  • Lightweight
  • No installation needed
  • Weather resistant
  • With integrated locking bracket
  • With Lexan cover
  • UL/CSA listed
  • Prevents major power surges
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Good value for the money.

Cons

  • It is designed for vertical orientation only
  • Can be easily stolen
  • It is susceptible to power quality problems, as it only provides surge protection
  • LED screen is a bit hard to see and read in the dark.
Surge Guard 35550 Hardwire Model - 50 Amp

The 50 amp Hardwire by Surge Guard disconnects electrical power to your motor home when it discovers a problem. When using this unit as you go camping with your RV and park on a campground, no need to worry about reverse polarity, neutral or open ground, low or high voltage being undetected. The 355355 surge protector does it for you.

It can save all your electronics from damage, for example, if you use an extension cord with faulty wiring, as this smart surge protection automatically disconnects power to your RV. Once resolved, the unit reconnects power to the vehicle at 128 seconds.

The 35550 Surge Guard gives 6,500 amps and 3,850 joules of protection. You have the option to use a remote LCD display. In addition, it is installed inside your RV, this eliminating damage, theft, and other external issues.


Pros

  • Multi-mode surge protection
  • Easy installation
  • Shut Off automatically when issues are discovered
  • CUL listed
  • Automatic power restoration.

Cons

  • The 128 seconds of starting power is too long for some users
  • Tricky installation as you can only mount it horizontally
  • Only one-year warranty.
Surge Guard 44270 Entry Level Portable Surge Protector - 50 Amp

This portable surge protector with 50 amp will send a signal to you in case it identifies an irregular situation. Its LED lights will signal you if there is a reverse polarity, neutral or open ground. Before you use the 44270 surge guard, you need to check the circuit breaker if it is turned off at the power pedestal. The power cord of your RV should be plugged to the 44270 female end part.

The LEDs will indicate a green light if there is no fault at the electrical pedestal and surge protection is active. When all lights become green, it means it is good to go. When there is no any light indicator, you may find an issue in the unit.

The 44270 by Technology Research comes with a water-resistant design, making it ideal for external use. It also features a T-pull handle that makes it easy for you to connect and disconnect from the pedestal. The model has a one-year warranty.


Pros

  • Helps protect from electrical surges
  • There is no need to install
  • Cost-effective
  • With T-pull handle
  • With LED lights.

Cons

  • This unit has a tendency to drag on the ground especially on short power pedestal
  • Only provides surge protection
  • It is quite easy to remove and steal. It is best to purchase a lock for it
  • Only 1 year warranty.

Conclusion

Did you enjoy the list of reviews about the best RV surge protectors on the market today? I would love to hear from what you think in the comments, and please share this article if you like it and agree with me the importance of having the best RV surge protector with you while on the road.

I feel secure that my RV and everything inside it, including us, the passengers, are protected from bad power. It doesn't matter if you are a constant or occasional RVer, I seriously think that you should buy a good, long-lasting surge protector. It is a great investment while saving your life and belongings at the same time.​

The Best RV Surge Protector For Your Camping Needs
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