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Old 10-06-2015, 07:22 AM   #1
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Surge protector

I have been seeing ads for surge protectors. Do I need one? How many of you out there have them? If I should get one, do I go with a less expensive one ( around $60) or a more expensive one ( around $300)? I am looking at the portable kind, not the permanent install. Thanks
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Old 10-06-2015, 09:09 AM   #2
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Definitely. I have one and used to not use it in the barn at home where we store our coach plugged into 30 amp service. This summer we took a nasty lightning strike near the house and I had to replace a whole bunch of low voltage controls in Pete. A Thread describing the whole ordeal is on here somewhere.

I think it would have helped or at least burnt it up and saved the other gear. I use it at home too now. I have the cheaper one but need to get the expensive portable.


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Old 10-06-2015, 09:15 AM   #3
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At very least you should put "surge protection" on your appliances. I added to Converter and Microwave...

Now, I have a permanent install. The permanent install makes theft unlikely and I have a status panel telling me what the power is BEFORE I turn on the master breaker inside. When running I get "voltage and Amperage" being used by EACH power leg. This tells me if the Park/site has issues before something gets damaged !!!!
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Old 10-06-2015, 09:18 AM   #4
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I researched this quite a bit yesterday and ordered one. This seems to be the best out there, lifetime warranty and protects against surges, low or high voltage, crossed polarity, bad grounds, etc. Reasonably priced insurance I decided after reading the experiences of some others. www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003AL23TC
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Old 10-06-2015, 09:32 AM   #5
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We finally got one of the less expensive portable surge protectors about a year ago. Prior to getting it, we had camped out in our Airstreams for nine years (1,400 nights) without one.

Brian
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Old 10-06-2015, 10:09 AM   #6
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Power Monitors & Protection

Quote:
Originally Posted by loberg View Post
... Do I need one? ...
We have one of the type mentioned in this thread. Over a period of about five years of traveling, the device has detected four cases where the protection provided was valuable.

Many people will go for years (a lifetime?) and never have the need for these devices. I look at these devices as a type of insurance; which, in our case, has paid off four times.

There is also a peace of mind factor involved. I place value in knowing that I have the protection, even if it is never required.

Other people will feel differently on this matter.
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Old 10-06-2015, 11:56 AM   #7
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Thought - The insurance these provide certainly will have a monetary payoff if it protects you (The $300 spent on the surge protector is offset could be more than covered by the electronics that were not damaged and the labor to place).

But they also have a Heartache payoff. Imagine if you're on your dream trip and a surge blows out all your stuff. That could really ruin a trip, and trips have value.

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Old 10-06-2015, 01:14 PM   #8
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During my rebuild I added 2 30A inlets one for the coach the other for the washer and dryer.
Each inlet goes to a surge protector then goes to each main breaker.

This coach will have a lot of electronic devices with circuit boards that make it worth protection. Refer, microwave, water heater DSI, TV, Audio system, DVD player, seater station, Washer, Dryer, Converter, Computers and iPhone. Also A/C, and Maxxair fans.

These surge protectors also delay the power 140 seconds before resetting if the power is interrupted to protect the A/C compressor.
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Old 10-06-2015, 02:49 PM   #9
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Cool External/Internal Surge

Quote:
Originally Posted by cwf View Post
At very least you should put "surge protection" on your appliances. I added to Converter and Microwave...

Now, I have a permanent install. The permanent install makes theft unlikely and I have a status panel telling me what the power is BEFORE I turn on the master breaker inside. When running I get "voltage and Amperage" being used by EACH power leg. This tells me if the Park/site has issues before something gets damaged !!!!
Isn't there an issue of a surge within the trailer from appliances turning on or off? How about surges from battery power while going from TV alternator charging vs. not charging?
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Old 10-06-2015, 02:52 PM   #10
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Cool Which apparatus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cwf View Post
At very least you should put "surge protection" on your appliances. I added to Converter and Microwave...

Now, I have a permanent install. The permanent install makes theft unlikely and I have a status panel telling me what the power is BEFORE I turn on the master breaker inside. When running I get "voltage and Amperage" being used by EACH power leg. This tells me if the Park/site has issues before something gets damaged !!!!
For those of who are not familar with electrical apparatus, except 'plug it in and turn it on', which devices do you use for what you describe?

Jer
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Old 10-07-2015, 09:38 AM   #11
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I have a background in electrical engineering.

I believe that surge protectors are a poor tradeoff in cost and weight, for reasons I've written about at length in the past. Read my previous posts if you're interested in the details, and save your money.
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Old 10-07-2015, 10:01 AM   #12
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Quote:
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I have a background in electrical engineering.

I believe that surge protectors are a poor tradeoff in cost and weight, for reasons I've written about at length in the past. Read my previous posts if you're interested in the details, and save your money.
Jammer has the 'cred' for the engineer capability. His posts have always been very helpful to me. Yes, I trust his evaluation.

I am only speaking for myself....from 37 years experience 'in the field' where lots of "wow, it's never done that before" happenings... diagnosing and repairing stuff for a Big Blue Company who made computers.... and folks laughed off 'static discharge' damaging electrical components...and 'electrical surges'....and poor power supply...etc, etc..

Our 1999 was used WITHOUT any "surge protection" for many years and no significant issues... that we know of. When we started using it regularly we had some 'bad campground' electrical issues, which were transitory (that means, temporary, intermittent)... Here, then gone!

On one camping trip, one of those 'transitory' things happened and both our Converter and Microwave failed ... Should not happen, right?

So, it is really just trying to do things to protect....and your comfort level will drive that.
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Old 10-07-2015, 07:23 PM   #13
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We've never been 'hooked-up' while 'camping' in the Classic....no surge with our Honda. (but I do have a dogbone, wired so I can use it, if wanted)


We got the Surge Protector for use at home on the pad. Our power company is noted for their 30min outages and the associated voltage fluctuations and spikes when service is restored. BSTS

Bob
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Old 10-07-2015, 07:45 PM   #14
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After about 1,000 nights camping with our Airstream, much of it with hookups, we began to notice campground power can be quite variable in quality and quantity. So we bought a good portable surge protector and are using it most of the time.
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