Do I Need A Surge Protector For My RV?

Do you often travel by driving your RV? Then it is a must for you to install an RV surge protector within your vehicle. If you do not have a surge protector, then you will be living on the edge.

This device serves as your insurance from the unexpected. Without it, you are putting your RV at risk of catching a fire or dealing with an accident caused by surges.

What is an RV Surge Protector?​

Camco 50 AMP Power Defender Voltage Protector With Integrated Surge Protection, Includes Easy To Use PowerGrip Handles

An RV surge protector is a vital device in any recreational vehicle considering the fact that it offers basic protection for all the electrical systems in the RV. The protection that it offers is usually from power spikes or surges triggered by lightning strikes from power lines that are nearby.

It is possible for this surge protector to start working once you directly plug it into a shore power then plug your vehicle into it. You need this device since all RVs require some forms of protection against voltage.

Note that it only takes a single voltage surge or spike on a vehicle without protection to trigger costly damages to your onboard electrical systems and appliances.

With that in mind, it definitely makes a lot of financial sense if you invest in a device, which offers protection from voltage spikes. It works as an insurance policy as it protects your vehicle from damage.

Protecting your RV from the mentioned instances is actually possible through two means of protection. The first one is the RV surge protector itself while the other one is the energy management system or the EMS. The surge protector serves as an entry-level solution designed to keep your rig protected.

What it does is it protects your vehicle from issues related to shore power, especially that affecting the pedestal. It also tends to shut down in case the power supply gets dangerously high or low.

If you wish to enjoy a more extensive protection then go for the energy management system or EMS. It offers protection to the issues already mentioned above while also performing other important functions, such as managing the way and the specific time your onboard appliances utilize power.

Such power management is crucial in ensuring that the electrical system in your recreational vehicle can prevent overloading. The problem with EMS is that it is more expensive than the standard surge protector.

What is good about selecting the perfect RV surge protector for your needs is that the whole process is easy. In case you own a 50-amp service, you will just have to invest in a surge protector designed for RVs that run at 50 amps, too.​

In case your RV takes advantage of a 30-amp service, then you have an assurance that the 30-amp protector is also adequate. The price of these devices also differ but you can find high-priced ones based on the specific level of protection they offer.

Despite the need to spend on this device, it is still a small price, especially once you realize how effective it is in saving your vehicle not only from electrical issues but also fires.

Is a Surge Protector Really Necessary?​

Surge Protectors

As mentioned earlier, your surge protector has the primary purpose of offering protection to the electrical appliances(RV refrigerator, RV TV, RV air conditioner...) and system in your recreational vehicle. It is either a portable or a hardwired device. It is a vital part of any recreational vehicle as it offers the first line of defense against potential problems affecting your source of power.

In case it detects a scenario, which seems dangerous to your vehicle, it will start performing its protective function by cutting the power to your vehicle. Depending on what model of this device you choose, it can provide relevant information as to the reason why it cuts the power.

With that, you will know exactly how you can handle the situation and save your RV and its contents from harm. The things that the surge protector can protect your recreational vehicle from are:​

Poor and faulty wiring

Poor Wire

It should be noted that it is now easy to find great RV parks with most of the things that an RV owner or enthusiast needs, there are still instances when you will be parking in older parks that also come with older electrical systems. Some of these systems might have poor wiring.​

Such wiring might also get damaged due to its long years of use. Being around for quite a long time might also cause these wires to be eaten by mice or rats. It is actually possible for you to use a voltage meter as a means of checking the power in a park.

However, it is still better to use a surge protector, which can truly provide a high level of protection from any change in the electrical system of an RV park, specifically in terms of its wiring.

Low or high voltage​

Low or High Voltages

 Another reason why a surge protector is a necessity for all recreational vehicles is that it is capable of acting as a barrier between the electrical system in a park or campground and your recreational vehicle in case low and high voltage takes place.​

Keep in mind that sudden boosts in power tend to occur all of a sudden and without anyone expecting it. In most cases, lightning strikes may cause this problem. Some RV owners are actually capable of protecting themselves just by unplugging in case of storms.

However, it is still more convenient to have an immediate source of protection, which comes in the form of the RV surge protector. This device is also designed in such a way that it can offer your vehicle protection during low-voltage situations.


These situations are uncommon but if these happen, expect them to seriously harm your electrical appliances and systems. It is possible for these low voltage scenarios to take place during the summer, especially because it causes a campground or park to be full of recreational vehicles that use AC units, demanding the consumption of too much power.

The mentioned scenarios are just actually some of the many things that your RV surge protector can protect your RV from. There are still a lot more that it can do, thereby proving how good of an investment this device is.​

Do I Need A Surge Protector For My RV?
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