Most of those new to RVing haven’t considered the possible danger posed to their rig by the power at a campground or RV park. Electrical problems at campgrounds and RV parks are pretty common. While serious damage to your rig is unlikely, there’s always the possibility that your electrical system could be damaged, as well as anything that’s plugged in, like your TV or computer. The truth is, an unexpected power surge could result in costly repairs to your trailer or motorhome.
Fortunately, it’s very easy to protect your RV and avoid the possibility of electrical problems. With a good quality RV surge protector, you can rest assured that the power anywhere is safe to use.
What is a Surge Protector?
A surge protector protects your RV from power surges in electrical voltage. This could be caused by a short circuit, lightning, or many other reasons. If a power surge does happen, the surge protector burns out instead of your RV’s electrical system. You’ll need to buy a surge protector that’s rated for your RV electrical system; that means you’ll buy either a 30 amp or a 50 amp surge protector.
There are really only pros to using a surge protector, and the only downside is the potential for theft, as well as the price; surge protectors are relatively expensive. The least expensive surge protectors will cost you around $100, and the most expensive surge protectors can cost you more than $300. The least expensive hardwired surge protectors will cost you anywhere from $175 to $300, plus the cost if you need to have someone install it for you.
Hardwired vs Portable Surge Protectors
There are two types of RV surge protectors: hardwired and portable. A hardwired surge protector directly wires into the RV’s electrical system, and a portable surge protector is plugged directly into the power pedestal.
Pros and Cons of a Hardwired Surge Protectors
It’s always on, no need to remember to use it
It can’t be stolen
It’s more expensive
You can’t take it with you if you sell your RV
It may require professional installation
Pros and Cons of a Portable Surge Protector
Simple to use
You need to remember to use it
You could accidentally leave it at the campground
It can be easily stolen
To solve the potential problem of theft, you can wrap a chain and lock the portable surge protector to the pedestal. However, that’s just one more thing you’ll need to remember!
The potential for electrical problems at a campground is a very real issue. An unprotected power surge could cost you much more than the price of buying a surge protector. That is why investing in a surge protector is something every RV owner must do.
A good quality surge protector will give you more peace of mind while you’re traveling. And the good news is, when you don’t have to worry about power surges, RV living will be much more carefree.