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Old 12-29-2010, 01:17 AM   #1
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Surge Guard-Transfer Switch - Information

I went out to an Alpine Coach yesterday because the shore power input to the SG-TS was popping in and out. I disconnected shore power and turned off the master switches and removed the cover, and nothing was burned, and all the connections were tight. Replaced the cover, and discovered the 30-50 Amp pigtail was cracked and burned on the 30A male end. So we replaced that to lower the electrical resistance into the coach from shore power. Plugged it back in, turned on shore power and it kept popping in and out.

So I went back to my high voltage days and remember we sometimes had one circuit that was just noisy for no apparent reason. In those cases filters can be added because it very costly to replace a 500KVA transformer because it has a noisy winding, when everything else check out ok. The winding might be noisy for a variety of reason, bad coating on the winding, is one reason.

To solve this clients issues, I told him to ask the park to allow him to move to another section which I believed would solve his problem, and this is the same park/section where three years ago, he toasted his original transfer switch (WRV replaced it under warranty), he did and today he called me to report the problem went away as soon as he moved.

So if you have had or done the wiring checks that have been suggested herein on this forum and know your genset connections and the SG/TS wires have been checked and tightened, have had no other problems in other parks and all of a sudden you do, try moving to another spot on a different transformer, and see it that fixes the issue. Noisy transformers cause the frequency to vary a bit, and this will cause the unit to kick in and out, because that is its job.

Now, that is not to say these units donít fail, they do, but before I would order a new one, I would try the above to see if that fixes the issue for a while. I have been asked to order a spare unit for this client, and I will do so, and he can carry it with him. There also might be one other reason for your shore power to not work, this is the temperature sensor on the batteries and connected to the Xantrex Inverter. If moving does not fix it, and you still donít get shore power in, disconnect this sensor from the inverter and see if that solves the problem, if so, call Xantrex to order a new one, ask them to ship you one, donít let them put you off to camping world, as they cannot get them.

A Digital VOM cannot tell you if you have a noisy connection at the pedestal, you need specialized equipment to determine that. And remember, turn off the breaker before you plug in, and turn off the breaker before you pull out the plug. I have found many breakers on, and I always check the pedestal power prior to plugging in to one. If it looks ratty, or the insulating plastic is broken or has a gap allowing arching between poles, move to another site or have the park replace the receptacle before you plug in.
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:16 AM   #2
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A Digital VOM cannot tell you if you have a noisy connection at the pedestal, you need specialized equipment to determine that. And remember, turn off the breaker before you plug in, and turn off the breaker before you pull out the plug. I have found many breakers on, and I always check the pedestal power prior to plugging in to one. If it looks ratty, or the insulating plastic is broken or has a gap allowing arching between poles, move to another site or have the park replace the receptacle before you plug in.
Old Rv'er, You know, I was following your post and when it concluded suggesting specialiazed equipment. I thought that I would suggest that a Progressive EMS-HW50C EMS System would have told you everything you need to know with an error code from E0 to E10 about the condition of the power at the pedestal.

This new equipment is the reason why I discontinued using my previous 34560 Surge Guard.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:03 PM   #3
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The improved informational output of the EMS is why if I need to replace the SurgeGuard at some point, I'd switch to the EMS. Mo info- mo bettah.
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Old 12-29-2010, 10:27 PM   #4
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Mike, the only thing I can see which might be an issue is the amount of space the EMS takes up. If it would go back into the space of the present Surge Guard, then yes, it's a go. If I have to move something, and there is no space to move anything around in there, then the SG would be better from that standpoint. It's about 325.00 wholesale, and about 125 higher than the SG model. Assume that silver junction box above in the pictures is something not included with the EMS unit and available at lowes or HD. If not, then that has to be priced into the parts costs. It looks like a standard connection box, but may not be. Here is the link to their products: Master Catalog Nice unit!

FWIW - It appears the surgeguard website is down or something because I cannot get it to come up. Lets hope everything is good with them.
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Old 12-29-2010, 10:35 PM   #5
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A fellow RV'er had one installed at Indio last year. I watched the install and all they installed was the black box. The silver box in the picture is the existing transfer switch.

I plan on replacing my surge guard with the EMS in the future.
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Old 12-29-2010, 10:37 PM   #6
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I found the measurements for the EMS, 5"W x 9Ĺ"L x 4Ĺ"H. 5" 5"W x 9Ĺ"L x 4Ĺ"HW x 9Ĺ"L x 4Ĺ"H
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:11 PM   #7
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Since the current Surge Guard is also a transfer swtich, we would need to come up with another option, unless we wired the EMS in before the SG one. That is if I understand this properly. Our SG has worked fine for us up till now, hopefully it will continue to do so.
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:15 PM   #8
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This is a picture of my current SurgeGuard:


I can just replace it with the EMS when the time comes.
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:30 PM   #9
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This is a picture of my current SurgeGuard: I can just replace it with the EMS when the time comes.
I did! If you look at the installation in "My Blog" it looks really clean. One thing about the Progressive EMS, if it blows up, you can fix it yourself and be back in commission in no time. If you blow up the Surge Guard you'll have to send it back to TRC to get it fixed IF it can be fixed. If you look at the holes in the back wall, that's how long the TRC was so the EMS has a smaller footprint. I have since filled in the holes with silicone - not to worry.

The Progressive EMS can be repaired by the replacement of a small PC card. No soldering, plug and play.

What I love about the EMS is the remote monitoring display. I can leave it where it is or run a data cable into the coach and easily mount it in the "One-Place." I was advised against this since the display is bright at night and the wall would be blinking like 42nd Street!

What looks like a telco cable is actually a data cable. Straight in and out no twist like a phone cable. It does terminate using RJ11 modular plugs and jacks.
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:36 PM   #10
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If you blow up the Surge Guard you'll have to send it back to TRC to get it fixed IF it can be fixed.
That is why I made mine "portable". If it fails I can unplug it, plug the cable ends back together, and then ship it back for repairs.
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:54 PM   #11
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All well and good for Other brand MH's. Alpines have space considerations in the space where they placed the SG. And APEX models are even more limited in space.

The SG is also a transfer switch, and it's tied into the Silverleaf on APEX models as well, so it can work with the AGS (Automatic Generator Start) System and the Xantrex Inverter. Our coaches are way more complex than many other models, so what might work for you, and may work for some alpines may not work for all of us.

DriVer - since the EMS is not a transfer switch, where/what model did you get to replace the one built into the SG unit you replaced it with?
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