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Old 06-18-2020, 09:23 AM   #1
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Surge guard

I’m thinking of purchasing a 30A surge guard. As most of you know, they’re pretty expensive and there are many manufacturers to chose from. I’d appreciate any thoughts and experiences with ones you have purchased. Thanks!
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Old 06-18-2020, 09:50 AM   #2
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This topic has been discussed many times and you will get a varied response. Do you want a portable one or a permanently installed one? Do you want the low end surge protector or the higher end ones that actually protect you from multiple issues? And in this case, you get what you pay for. There have been countless examples of those who had electrical issues (usually from older campgrounds) and were not protected resulting in very expensive repairs. We went with the Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

We have been very happy with ours and if we sell this motorhome and get another 30 amp service one, we can take it with us. We did purchase a "bike lock" that we attach it to the pedestal to prevent an easy theft. Good luck!

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Old 06-18-2020, 10:25 AM   #3
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I'll tell you the one I wish I'd bought. This one not only allows you to monitor remotely, but automatically shuts off power if voltage is below 104 or over 132, and will turn back on if it returns to normal for 90 seconds.

https://www.amazon.com/Power-Watchdo...omotive&sr=1-1
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Old 06-18-2020, 10:55 AM   #4
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I'll tell you the one I wish I'd bought. This one not only allows you to monitor remotely, but automatically shuts off power if voltage is below 104 or over 132, and will turn back on if it returns to normal for 90 seconds.

https://www.amazon.com/Power-Watchdo...omotive&sr=1-1
I have this model. Cut my cord and bought female and male ends so I could keep it inside my power cubby and not in the elements. The Bluetooth inside that cubby (metal) means I have to be within 10 feet inside but that's OK.

I pulled up to a pedestal this past weekend and heard three clicks then nothing. I have been using at home and at another campsite with no trouble. Turned out the power at the pedestal had something wrong so we moved. Glad in this case I didn't hook up directly!

The unit is pretty big just so you know. And the lit dog face means it's easy to see (and attract the not so good folks?). I do like that the app shows energy used, what it's currently pulling and voltage. All nice to have.
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Old 06-18-2020, 11:03 AM   #5
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I pulled up to a pedestal this past weekend and heard three clicks then nothing. I have been using at home and at another campsite with no trouble. Turned out the power at the pedestal had something wrong so we moved. Glad in this case I didn't hook up directly!
Yes, it also shuts off on "open ground or open neutral as well as more . . .." Does it not tell you what the issue is? I could see it might not if it only sends you the information by bluetooth and shuts off when it senses the condition.
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Old 06-18-2020, 11:18 AM   #6
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Yes, it also shuts off on "open ground or open neutral as well as more . . .." Does it not tell you what the issue is? I could see it might not if it only sends you the information by bluetooth and shuts off when it senses the condition.
There are codes on the unit for errors but in this case they were blank. Don't know why not but took to another pedestal and it worked so we moved.
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Old 06-18-2020, 11:30 AM   #7
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There are codes on the unit for errors but in this case they were blank. Don't know why not but took to another pedestal and it worked so we moved.
Remind me to bring my multimeter with me when I go camping.
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Old 06-18-2020, 11:37 AM   #8
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Agreed and I do carry one.

Luckily where we were camping it was non reserved and another choice was available. We reported to maintenance but never saw anyone check it (it's possible but didn't see them). Hopefully they fixed before someone else was a victim OR it didn't power up at all. That reminds me I should probably just email them since we flagged someone down and they might have forgoten.
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Old 06-18-2020, 02:18 PM   #9
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https://www.progressiveindustries.net/ems-pt30x

Their stuff is the Cadillac of EMS systems for RVs.
Best price for one is probably at
www.bestconverter.com

I bought mine from them a few years ago. It's been bulletproof to date.
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Old 06-18-2020, 02:21 PM   #10
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I probably should mention the one I bought, not knowing of the other one I linked already. Same company, but without the automatic shutoff feature, so it does have Bluetooth. Less than half price.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 07-31-2020, 11:09 AM   #11
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Winnie Vista 31be - Adding SurgeGuard 30A (35530)

Week 4 with our 2016 Vista and few issues during camping were quickly resolved.

I'm now installing a hardware Southwire 35530 EMS into the electrical and wondered if I need to bypass the EMS? Why, because the Winnebago requires I plug back into the 30amp socket when not plugged into shore power to complete the circuit. I've read where bypass is a good thing should the EMS fail.. I would still have to worry about the male connector as I would do these in parallel but primarily use the EMS and coil the other male connector. So not sure if the Southwire EMS would impact the plug back loop....

This may be more related to Southwire for answer but maybe someone on the board has already installed? Do all campers perform this loopback with the shore line?
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Old 07-31-2020, 11:39 AM   #12
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I have this model. Cut my cord and bought female and male ends so I could keep it inside my power cubby and not in the elements. The Bluetooth inside that cubby (metal) means I have to be within 10 feet inside but that's OK.

I pulled up to a pedestal this past weekend and heard three clicks then nothing. I have been using at home and at another campsite with no trouble. Turned out the power at the pedestal had something wrong so we moved. Glad in this case I didn't hook up directly!

The unit is pretty big just so you know. And the lit dog face means it's easy to see (and attract the not so good folks?). I do like that the app shows energy used, what it's currently pulling and voltage. All nice to have.
I did the exact same thing, with the exact same model. Love the Bluetooth monitoring on the Hughes with the phone app.

But not before I had initially bought an older version of this one from Southwire.

https://www.amazon.com/Southwire-Sur...216580&sr=8-18

This newer Southwire model is also Bluetooth capable, but with a mounted (optional) display. It doesn’t give one nearly the information that the Hughes display does on your phone’s app.

So now, I have both. I leave the Southwire one plugged into our post at home, and the Hughes is locked in the power bay when traveling. Call it double redundancy, when at home.
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Old 07-31-2020, 05:49 PM   #13
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I decided to get the Hughes with the Bluetooth. One of the reasons is the surge protector can be replaced if it’s damaged, so you do not need to buy a new unit. The information on the Bluetooth is awesome. Another feature it was designed by an engineer who is an RVer. Once plugged in, it analyzes everything in 4 seconds, then a relay closes to provide service to your unit.
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:55 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Goodspike View Post
I'll tell you the one I wish I'd bought. This one not only allows you to monitor remotely, but automatically shuts off power if voltage is below 104 or over 132, and will turn back on if it returns to normal for 90 seconds.

https://www.amazon.com/Power-Watchdo...omotive&sr=1-1
Followed the link and got this:

Currently unavailable.
We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock.


but found this:

https://www.amazon.com/Autoformer-Wa...%2C184&sr=1-22
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Old 08-02-2020, 12:09 PM   #15
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Followed the link and got this:

Currently unavailable.
We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock.


but found this:

https://www.amazon.com/Autoformer-Wa...%2C184&sr=1-22
Apparently the same, but one is for hardwiring. A bit expensive, but that might be a good way to create a 50 to 30 amp dogbone adapter.
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Old 08-02-2020, 12:44 PM   #16
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I bet with the huge demand for RVs due to the virus, accessories may be in short supply as well. I got mine about 2 months ago.
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Old 08-02-2020, 02:29 PM   #17
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All of them look interesting, and I am sure they are worthwhile, but what is to keep someone from just walking off with it when you are not in your RV or at night when you might not realize that you have lost your power?
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Old 08-02-2020, 02:46 PM   #18
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I went with the Progressive Industries Hard Wired 30 Amp unit, EMS-HW30C. I spliced it into the umbilical just after the connection box, and mounted the unit on the aft bulkhead in the power bay, with the readout onto the cover for slide mechanism, facing outboard.
My thoughts for the Hard Wired unit is that it is truly a "Fit and Forget" device. I do not have to add it to my camp set up and breakdown list, nor ever worry about it mysteriously walking off the pedestal all by itself.
I chose to hook it up so that both the generator and shore power pedestal power is monitored and protected.

https://www.progressiveindustries.net/ems-hw30c
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Old 08-02-2020, 04:12 PM   #19
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Another vote for the hardwired Progressive unit.
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Old 08-02-2020, 04:58 PM   #20
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All of them look interesting, and I am sure they are worthwhile, but what is to keep someone from just walking off with it when you are not in your RV or at night when you might not realize that you have lost your power?
The Hughe’s comes with a steel ring attached to it. I bought the Stanley cable lock for mine. It comes with a 6’ cable. I’ve seen some neighbors using a lock and chain. It’s not totally full proof, but it is a deterrent.
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