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Old 04-11-2012, 09:51 AM   #1
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Surge protector recommendations

I have decided to purchase a surge protector for my MH. I have done quite a bit of reading on both the Progressive Industies and TRW surge protectors and can decide on which one will do the best job for me. Does anyone have any recommendations either good or bad they would share with me. I would like to install a hard wired unit but I have a take up reel in the power compartment and was told it would be a hassle to install. (I'm not sure if the dealer just didn't want to install it and wanted me to buy a movable one).

Tony & Ruth........... FMCA#F416727
Newmar Dutch Star 4320, Spartan MM Chassis, Cat C9, Jeep Grand Cherokee Hemi, Blue Ox Aventa LX, and Brake Buddy. TST 507 TPMS
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:12 AM   #2
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I would go with the Progressive Industries just because of the lifetime warranty

'98 Gulf Stream Sunsport 325, 7.5L Banks Power Pack, Koni FSD's, Air Bags, ReadyBrute Elite,
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:26 AM   #3
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I bought the Progressive portable unit. I hax a short cord made up so I could plug it into the (electrical) bay and yet have the portability if needed. Even with a a power cord reel it would be easy to make up a in between cord to plug your unit into. Bought the progressive 50 amp unit because of their reputationa and the lifetime warrenty. good luck.....don't leave home without it!
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:33 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by EDALLSAILS
I bought the Progressive portable unit. I hax a short cord made up so I could plug it into the (electrical) bay and yet have the portability if needed. Even with a a power cord reel it would be easy to make up a in between cord to plug your unit into. Bought the progressive 50 amp unit because of their reputationa and the lifetime warrenty. good luck.....don't leave home without it!
I agree with all you said and here is a photo of my install of a portable 50 amp PI.

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Cliff,Tallulah and Buddy ( 1999-2012 )
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:45 AM   #5
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Surge Protector

I've had both TRW and Progressive Industries units --- and prefer the Progressive one. It seems to have better protection: look at the specs. I also like Progressive's readout: it's simple and clearly tells you what is going on. I installed it in the electrical bay rather than snake wire up into the living area of the coach. Make certain you have room in your electrical bay: we had on 06 DSDP 4320 and there was room for either unit. The electrical bay in our current unit, an 11 Essex, is cramped but there is room if you plan carefully. I think I had to relocate the 12v bay light and the cable TV outlet, but that was easy. As for installation, I've installed both of them (hard wired) myself; it's not terribly difficult and well within the capabilities of the average handyman. It's very easy to determine which wire goes where as the terminals on both the transfer relay and surge protector are clearly marked. The most difficult part is bending and securing the heavy guage wires running between the unit and the transfer switch. You can get electrical wire (6 ga is what you need) from either Home Depot or Lowes. Send me a PM and I'll send you a photo of my installation if that would help. I'd be happy to answer your questions by email or phone. And by the way, you made a wise choice to install a surge protector: in the last 9 years I've had about a dozen times when the system reacted to high or low voltage or a miswired pedestal. Joel
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Old 04-11-2012, 12:58 PM   #6
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We have a Progressive 50 Amp with the readout hardwired in the power compartment next to the reel. It's great and I think it saved our rig a couple of times. Took some time to install due the close quarters but I would do it again.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:12 PM   #7
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We have two portable/moveable units, the EMS-PT50C and EMS-PT30C. They have a metal tab with a hole in it, attached to the cord, so you can use a chain and padlock to secure it to the power pedestal.

We plug it into the power pedestal without the RV power cord attached to see what's what with the campground power. If all is well, we plug in our power cord and there is a 75 second delay before the circuit is completed.

P.I. fixed our 5 y/o 30 amp EMS at no charge when something went wrong.
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Old 04-11-2012, 02:18 PM   #8
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We have the Progressive and are really pleased. It has saved us several times one of which was an overvoltage that shut down power (and AC) in the middle of the night Several other times we have parked and the surge protector would not apply power to the coach because of low voltage on one leg. The park managers argued with us but when they put their meters on the pole we were proven right. I think the surge protectors are really important if you are in an old park like many in Canada.
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Old 04-11-2012, 02:32 PM   #9
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Another vote for Progressive. Saved us a few times, long story(s). Also found a park that was not wired properly, that is no ground wire on a 50 amp plug.
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Old 04-11-2012, 02:33 PM   #10
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Good idea getting a surge protector. We personally use the hard wired Progressive 50 amp unit and love it. Very clean installation next to the cord spool and great read out display. Works really well and I know of at least one occasion it saved us a lot of money. On the negative side, if and when we move into another coach (HA! I doubt it!) it can't come with us. Now the portable one looks like a winner too, but I would buy one of those locking units to lock it to the pedestal. Just my personal phobia.
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Old 04-11-2012, 03:11 PM   #11
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We too have the Progressive EMS-HW50C hardwired unit and have been VERY VERY happy with it and the company. We are full-timers and it has not only protected us several times from campground low voltage, but also a case where our Hughes auto-former (plugged in before the EMS) was damaged and wasn't putting out the incorrect voltage! Other times from power Surges, and also an intermittent "Open Ground" issue which turned out to be caused by a short in our main power cord, not the campground! Progressive was great to deal with for tech support and willing to send replacements boards if needed. We would definitely recommend them!

Here is a couple pics of our setup (hardwired in back of cabinet & dual remote display & switch):
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Old 04-11-2012, 04:25 PM   #12
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I also have a Progressive unit, I went with the portable model and am glad I did because I've had to send it back for repairs 5 times in the last 4 years, it would have been a real PIA if it was a hardwired model.
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:41 PM   #13
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We appear to be in the Minority as we have been using the TRC Surge Guard hardwired 50A.

Its been good for us this past 10 years plus. No service required during that time.
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:58 PM   #14
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Note that many post with the word EMS in the model. Be sure you pay up to get the EMS unit from whatever brand you purchase. Many manufactures offer Surge Protectors only, not the full Managed Systems... I do like the hard wired option.

Be sure to read the specs of the units in question, as the joules values can be a bit different.

I've had good luck with first a 30A portable, and now in this rig a 50A hard wired, TRC unit.

Best of luck on your choice, and understand the spec's when shopping, as they make a difference in your protection,

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