7 Best RV Surge Protectors of 2021

by Joshua Thomas

As an RV owner, there are certain measures you need to take in order to protect your vehicle and its additional components from damage. One such measure is investing in a surge protector so that you can keep your internal electrical appliances in working order.

A surge protector is basically an electrical appliance that protects electrical devices from power spikes. It works by limiting the power that passes through by either grounding or blocking the excess voltage that is above the allowed threshold.

It is a very essential tool to have but you must have the best one for the job. This article looks at some of the best RV surge protectors so as to help you pick the most suitable one for protecting your vehicle.

Top Rv Surge Protectors of 2021 by Editors

Top Rv Surge Protectors of 2021 by Editors
Top Rv Surge Protectors of 2021 by Editors

Summary of 7 Best RV Surge Protectors

IMAGE PRODUCT FEATURES
Technology Research 34830 Surge Protector With LCD Display

1. Technology Research 34830 (Best Overall)

  • Small and lightweight portable 30-Amp surge protector
  • Dissipates up to 2450J in power spikes
  • LCD screen for easy monitoring
Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X RV Surge Protector

2. Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X

  • Portable 30-Amp surge protector
  • Secure locking bracket ties it to the power pedestal to prevent theft
  • Weatherproof construction
Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW30 Portable RV Surge Protector

3. Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW30

  • Hardwired 30-Amp surge protector
  • LCD screen for easy navigation
  • Protects against several electrical faults
TRC Surge Guard 44260 Portable Surge Protector

4. TRC 44260

  • Small and lightweight 30-Amp surge protector
  • Tests for multiple power faults
  • Handles up to 2100J in energy power spikes
Camco Power Defender 30 Amps Surge Protector

5. Camco 55301

  • Practical voltage-operating range (102-132V AC)
  • Handles up to 2450J in power spikes
  • Diagnostic lights for visual fault indication
Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW50 Hardwired RV Surge Protector

6. Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW50

  • Hardwired 50-Amp surge protector
  • Digital display for easy monitoring
  • Provides protection from multiple parameters
Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X Portable RV Surge Protector

7. Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X

  • Portable 50-Amp surge protector
  • Protects against power spikes (3580J), low and high voltage, reverse polarity, etc.
  • Weatherproof

1. Technology Research 34830 - Best Overall

Technology Research 34830 Surge Protector With LCD Display
Technology Research 34830 Surge Protector With LCD Display
  • Surge Power: 30 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 2450J
  • Time reset delay: 128 Seconds

Technology Research's 34380 is the top rated RV surge protector on our list. The product is small and lightweight, making it easy to use and handle as you plug or unplug it to power pedestals on camping grounds.

Despite being small, it provides enough protection by monitoring the voltage and amp draw continuously. If the amp draw exceeds 30 Amps, it automatically shuts off, turns the notification light red and shows the current state on its LCD screen.

Apart from this, it also monitors for any signs of reverse polarity such as elevated ground voltage and miswired pedestals. This ensures that your appliances are protected from inverse pole powering, which can ruin their electrical circuitry.

On surge protection, this appliance can dissipate up to 2450 Joules of energy spikes, making it safe to use with most appliances such as TV's, laptops and routers. Spikes that exceed 2450 Joules will fry this protector, rendering it useless.

It comes with a 1-year warranty that guarantees a replacement or a refund for any manufacturer defects.

Pros

  • Continuously monitors voltage and amp draw, displaying the results on an LCD screen
  • Monitors reverse polarity immediately after being plugged in
  • Can tolerate a huge power surge
  • Lightweight for easy handling

Cons

  • Small size and light weight mean that it lacks some essential components for effective functioning

2. Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X RV Surge Protector

Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X RV Surge Protector
Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X RV Surge Protector
  • Surge Power: 30 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 3-Mode / 1,790J / 44,000A
  • Time reset delay: 136 Seconds

The EMS-PT30X is quite an expensive surge protector and to help you safeguard it, a locking bracket is built-in that enables you to lock it onto the power pedestal so that it cannot be stolen at camp.

Aside from this, the unit has a 3-mode protection and surge protection from power exceeding 30 Amps and 120 Volts.

An LCD display is included for indicating the various operational values such as the current voltage, and this enables you to easily monitor the cause of power cuts and the status of the protector unit.

On extreme power spikes, the product can withstand up to 1790 Joules of energy or 44,000 Amps of power. Any more than this will make it fail and require replacement.

Construction wise, the protector is quite big in size and weight, and has a tough Lexan housing that shields all its internal components from the elements. This makes it very convenient to use because portable surge protectors are usually left outside on the power pedestal.

Pros

  • 3-mode protection
  • Weatherproof protective cover
  • Security locking bracket
  • LCD display for easy monitoring

Cons

  • Expensive

3. Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW30 RV Surge Protector

Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW30 Portable RV Surge Protector
Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW30 Portable RV Surge Protector
  • Surge Power: 30 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 3-Mode / 1,790J / 44,000A
  • Time reset delay: 136 Seconds

This hardwired surge protector is fully equipped with several protection features that include reverse polarity, open ground, high voltage, low voltage, high frequency, and low-frequency protection, effectively making it the best 30-Amp RV surge protector.

The product has a rating of 30 Amps at 120 Volts, which means that any power spike or draw that exceeds these values will lead to a cutoff. After this, normal operations will resume once the power has stabilized for at least 136 seconds.

To help you understand what caused the cutoff, this unit has an error code list on its upper side and also features an LCD screen that displays the power source information, including the error code of what caused it to shut off.

However, if the energy spike exceeds 1790 Joules or a current of 44,000 Amps, the surge protector will cease operations because its electrical components will be fried by this huge power surge.

The good thing, however, is that most of its replacement parts are plug and play and thus, it is very easy to maintain. Additionally, it comes with a lifetime warranty that assures you of a full refund or replacement if this appliance gets damaged due to a manufacturer defect.

Pros

  • LCD screen for easy navigation through the power source information
  • Protects against multiple factors
  • Easy to maintain

Cons

  • Low surge protection rating

4. TRC 44260 RV Surge Protector

TRC Surge Guard 44260 Portable Surge Protector
TRC Surge Guard 44260 Portable Surge Protector
  • Surge Power: 30 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 2100J
  • Time reset delay: 128 Seconds

This surge protector also has a dog bone design but is much smaller and lightweight as compared to the Camco 55312. It also functions in a similar way to the 55312 because it incorporates the use of diagnostic lights instead of a digital display for relaying certain error codes.

The appliance tests for an open neutral, open ground and reverse polarity, indicating the results by using different lighting codes on its diagnostic lights.

On surge protection, the unit can effectively dissipate up to 2100 Joules of energy, enabling you to keep your RV's appliances in working condition by providing reliable protection.

Pros

  • Small and lightweight
  • Tests for multiple power properties
  • Can handle a relatively large power surge

Cons

  • Poor build quality

5. Camco 55301 RV Surge Protector

Camco Power Defender 30 Amps Surge Protector
Camco Power Defender 30 Amps Surge Protector
  • Surge Power: 30 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 2450J
  • Time reset delay: 140 Seconds

The Camco Power Defender utilizes an LED light diagnosis system to show the errors that cause it to shut down power to the RV.

As opposed to the regular 120 Volt rating, this one has a 102 to 132 Volt AC rating, making it more practical. This is because almost all electrical devices are designed to handle a voltage range around the 120 Volt figure.

If the power supply exceeds 132 V or goes below 102 V for more than 10 seconds, this protector automatically shuts off and only resets once the power has stabilized for at least 140 Seconds.

In case of a power spike, this protector can suppress energy surges that reach up to 2450J, making it capable of handling quite a lot in order to keep your appliances safe.

On the downside, it is designed to be waterproof but is not very effective at keeping the water out when exposed to the elements. However, it comes with a 1-year warranty that may take care of such damages.

Pros

  • Allows a practical operating voltage and thus does not cut off power regularly
  • Can suppress a large amount of energy
  • An LED diagnostic lighting system for diagnosing power problems

Cons

  • Not very durable, especially when exposed to water

6. Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW50 RV Surge Protector

Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW50 Hardwired RV Surge Protector
Progressive Industries EMS-LCHW50 Hardwired RV Surge Protector
  • Surge Power: 50 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 5-Mode / 3,580J / 88,000A
  • Time reset delay: 136 Seconds

The EMS-LCHW50 is very costly, but it has the features to show for it. For starters, it is a hardwired protector, which means that it must be fixed inside the RV and thus, it is not susceptible to weather changes like portable protectors.

This unit has a digital display that can be scrolled through continuously so as to accurately display all the power source information such as voltage, current and error codes.

In terms of protection, the unit protects the RV's appliances from multi-mode surges as well as from high/ low frequencies, high/ low voltage, an open ground and reverse polarity. This effectively means that you get an all-round protection, making it worth the money.

The product can withstand 3580 Joules of energy spikes, making it very powerful and durable because it can dissipate a lot of energy. Additionally, it comes with a lifetime warranty that makes the deal even better.

Pros

  • Digital display for easy monitoring
  • Provides protection from multiple angles
  • Able to withstand large energy spikes
  • Not susceptible to weather changes

Cons

  • Expensive

7. Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X RV Surge Protector

Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X Portable RV Surge Protector
Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X Portable RV Surge Protector
  • Surge Power: 50 Amps
  • Surge Protection: 5-Mode / 3,580J / 88,000A
  • Time reset delay: 136 Seconds

The EMS-PT50X is the most expensive surge protector in our list. However, it combines the provision of surge protection, with capabilities of handling up to 3580 Joules of power spikes and electrical system management to protect your RV's appliances from things such as reverse polarity, open ground, low and high voltage etc.

This unit is portable and has an all-weather shield assembly that helps it safeguard the circuits in the inside from the elements.

It can also operate at temperatures between -40ºC to +105ºC, making it usable both during winter and summer, making it one of the best 50 Amp as well as the best Progressive RV surge protectors.

Pros

  • All weather protective shield
  • Can operate in extremely cold and hot conditions
  • Able to handle big power spikes
  • Protects against reverse polarity, open ground as well as low and high voltage

Cons

  • Expensive

How to Buy the Best RV Surge Protectors

How To Buy The Best RV Surge Protector
How To Buy The Best RV Surge Protector

1. 50 Amps or 30 Amps Surge Protector

The Amp rating of a surge protector should be determined by the size of your RV, specifically, the number of appliances that you have on the inside.

Amperes basically denote the amount of current that the protector can handle and can permit through. Therefore, if you have a big RV (Class A or a large Class C), with multiple appliances inside, you will need a 50 Amps protector.

A 30 Amps protector is sufficient for a small RV.

2. Types of RV Surge Protector

There are two types of RV surge protectors. These are:

  • Hardwired: this type is permanently attached to the inside of your RV and thus, offers benefits such as not being affected by weather elements and being safe on the inside; it cannot be stolen. The good thing about this type is that it is always connected, meaning that you will never forget to protect your appliances once you plug in your RV.
  • Portable: Portable surge protectors are very easy to use because they are plug and play. They are connected directly to the power pedestal on the outside, which means that they must be weatherproof. Each unit must also have a security locking bracket for securing it to the pedestal so that it cannot be stolen.

3. Surge Protection

Surge protection is given in Joule ratings. This figure determines the amount of heat energy that the unit can effectively dissipate as a result of power spikes caused by things such as lightning.

A higher number means greater protection as well as a longer service life because it can handle high energy spikes.

Ideally, a figure above 1500 Joules is good but the best rating should be over 2000 Joules.

4. Weight

This is a big factor to consider because you wouldn't want to burden your RV with extra weight. It is a much bigger issue when it comes to portable protectors because carrying the unit to the power pedestal and back can be a big issue if it is too heavy.

5. Visual Display

Some surge protectors have LCD displays for indicating the power source information and errors while others have diagnostic lights.

Although diagnostic lights still work, the best RV electrical surge protector should have a digital display because, for instance, it will show you the exact voltage and current of the power source, making it more accurate to diagnose the cause of power cutoffs.

6. Weather Resistance

This is a factor that must be considered when buying a portable surge protector. Since the unit is left outside, it must be weatherproof so that its internal circuitry is not harmed by precipitation.

7. Warranty

It is necessary to have a valid warranty on any electrical appliance and especially, an RV surge protector because it is an expensive product and very essential to have.

With a warranty, you will at least be assured of a safe investment because once it gets damaged due to a manufacturer's error, you will either get a replacement or a full refund.

Conclusion

Considering all these specifications and factors to consider, it's easy to see why an RV owner can pick the wrong RV surge protector if he/she does not have the correct information.

Hopefully, this review will help you pick the best unit for your motorhome and let you concentrate on your traveling as opposed to your power issues.

About Joshua Thomas

Joshua Thomas just simply loves cars and willing to work on them whenever there's chance... sometimes for free.

He started CarCareTotal back in 2017 from the advices of total strangers who witnessed his amazing skills in car repairs here and there.

His goal with this creation is to help car owners better learn how to maintain and repair their cars; as such, the site would cover alot of areas: troubleshooting, product recommendations, tips & tricks.

Joshua received Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering at San Diego State University.

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