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Old 03-02-2014, 12:44 PM   #1
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Surge protectors

Haven't seen this addressed -Are surge protectors necessary? 50 amp and/or 30 amp both necessary?Big price differences-what features are most important(recommendations of specific brands appreciated)?Also, I plan on getting satellite T.V. but will only need service/subscription intermittantly-what dish and service best for this(don't need to watch T.V. while driving). Thanks in advance. PS-my rig is an '02 Winnie 34'diesel,if that matters for any of the above.
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Old 03-02-2014, 12:47 PM   #2
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Hello and.......

Here is some reading for you till others start to post........
2012 Essex 4544 2011 Jeep JK, M&G Braking, 2014 MTI 27' Hog Hauler, Wireless brake control, 2006 Ultra & 1989 Springer
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Old 03-02-2014, 01:20 PM   #3
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It is great to have you on the forum!

As mentioned earlier, surge protectors have been thoroughly discussed in this forum. The search window at the top of each page can reveal a lot of info. If you have a 50 amp service supplying your RV you should get a 50 amp protector, same for a 30 amp service. The best for the buck I have found is Progressive Industries and their customer service is exemplary. The only decision is hardwired or portable, both provide the same protection and peace of mind. Yes they are pricey, but so is replacing electrical equipment aboard.

Again a search for satellite info, on the forum, will work well. I have a roof top dome. When it fails I will replace with a portable Pathway X2 for my Dish service. Portable units have come a long way and are an affordable alternative for my needs.

All the best as you equip yourself for the wonderful world of RVing. Disclaimer: the surgeon general has determined reading this forum regularly will shrink swollen wallets.
George R. - Fulltiming since January '03
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Old 03-02-2014, 02:27 PM   #4
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Hi doodah,
A surge protector is necessary. It is insurance. It is only appreciated if you need it. The 2 top brands are Progressive and Surge Guard. Both work, buy the one you like the most. I have Surge Guard. Purchase the size that matches your coach (50 or 30 AMP)

The TailGater from CW and Dish might work for you. Go to - tailgater sat dish - Camping World and take a look.
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Old 03-02-2014, 02:30 PM   #5
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Surge Guard also. Some people prefer the hardwired due to theft concerns of the portable units. Can't help with the TV question as we have the 6 or 7 channel crank up antenna.
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Old 03-02-2014, 02:36 PM   #6
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Recommend you get one. Several models available.

I've had 2 motorhomes (over the years) hit by lightning while parked on the pad behind my house. Damaged wiring on both. Once it hit a tree and came in through the ground wire, other came in through the house and the power lines. Since hard wiring the "50amp Surge Guard" HW-RV50, lightning has taken phones and a TV in the house but not affected the MH. It has also dropped low or fluctuating voltage at RV parks. At one dog show it would not connect, voltmeter showed 90 volts at their panel...
Hard wire install is not difficult.
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Old 03-02-2014, 02:52 PM   #7
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I have the Progressive, the best thing about it is the remote indicator that shows status of incoming power... from the front of the coach, I can instantly see status of L1/L2 and how much amps is used, awesome!
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Old 03-02-2014, 03:01 PM   #8
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Hi and welcome to the forum.

I'll agree with all of the input you've gotten so far on surge protectors.

As for the satellite service, use our search feature to get lots of good info but for the needs you describe, it has sounded to me as though Dish Network might be your best bet. Two things you'll need to decide is if you want HD and if you want a DVR. The hardware and services you you purchase will depend on the answers to these questions.

Best of luck

Rick, Nancy, Peanut & Lola our Westie Dogs & Bailey the Sheltie.

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Old 03-02-2014, 03:54 PM   #9
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Are surge protectors necessary? No. But as GaryKD posted, it is an insurance policy.

RVs come with sophisticated electronics that may not survive power surges. So the question comes down to whether you are comfortable with the cost of replacing those electronics that you have in your RV. A/C units, fridge, furnace, inverters, televisions, computers, Satellite receivers, entertainment systems all can be affected.

In selecting surge protection, you should take into account the maximum amount of surge energy suppression (expressed in joules), the minimum amount of voltage let-through (that amount of volts your system sees before the SP works) and the minimum amount of response time (the time it takes for the SP to work).

Note that surge protection is not the same as power monitoring and protection, even though the one may be packaged with the other.
Dan (RVM67), Yvonne & 2 nutty mutts
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Old 03-02-2014, 04:02 PM   #10
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Are you 30a. Or 50a
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:06 PM   #11
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I had a TRC Surge Guard and I had trouble with it in year #2. Called the company and they were no help. Replaced with the Progressive Industries brand and have had zero problems.
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:28 PM   #12
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Surge Protectors do more than just protect against surges in MH. They protect you against miswired shore power pedestals. I had one where owner of the campground met me when I came in late and guided me to my spot. I could not get power to my coach because my power monitoring equipment would not let power through. The guy told me his electrician had not been able to come over that day so he wired this pedestal himself and he was sure he wired it right. I had him move me to an older part of his campground. I do not know how he miswired it but I might have saved myself the price of a new tv, power inverter, refrigerator, microwave, etc. those surge guards get pretty cheap in comparison to that.

Sattelite antenna, dish or directv I have had both liked both. I have dish now but that was because I wanted a hopper system. To me you only have two choices. are you going to mount on top of the coach or on the ground. On the ground get a direct or dish manual aim antenna. At the last campground I was at a lot of guys had those I watched them set them up. They did it with just a compass and someone in the house watching signal strength. For a small amount of money get a signal strength meter and an ap for a smart phone ( or a compass) and not hard. If you are going to get something for the top of the motor home. Get a winegard traveler in my opinion everything else is cheaper but a waste of money. It is a pain in the behind to have to wait for the antenna to switch to a new satellite when you change channels. or if you want to watch the game in the living room or outside under the awning and the wife wants to watch something else inside or in the back you cannot do it unless the channels are on the same satellite and they never seem to be in my opinion. The traveler cures all of those issues. Dish can handle 3 recievers off of the traveler antenna for dish and direct tv can handle 4. You can get individual tv recievers and a external hd to make it a dvr or you can get a hopper dvr if you have dish or a geninie with direct. I do not know anything about the genie because I have dish. I have the hopper in the living room and it can record 3 channels at the same time. It has a remote receiver they call a joey and it is in the bedroom. The joey can watch any channel or watch what is on the hoppers dvr. I have a over the air adapter on the hopper it connects to the external crank up tv and I can do a channel scan on the hopper then record local channels from the crank up antenna. I also found the traveler with its bigger antenna does better in areas where you have some trees. The traveler is totally automatic push a button and it deploys and finds the satellite automatically.
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:38 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by gemini5362 View Post
Surge Protectors do more than just protect against surges in MH...
Just so new folks don't buy a "surge protector", surge protectors are inexpensive devices that solely protect against surges.

Many use the term "surge protector" to describe the more robust energy or power management devices. I would leave home without one. I use Progressive Industries product with their lifetime warranty. The other dominant product is made by TRC and have both products.
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Old 03-03-2014, 08:03 AM   #14
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Thanks for all of the suggestions-they're very helpful! My RV is wired for 50 amp.service-I have deduced from the comments that if I buy a 50 amp surge protector it will still be effective if I plug into a 30 amp supply-correct? Also,I have an original-equipment roof mounted antenna that doesn"t seem to pick up any signals-I was planning on buying something to replace it and going with a Dish receiver/subscription.Should I get the receiver and subscription first and see if the current antenna works with this set-up?Would any new antennae be compatible/mount to the current roof system(i.e. replace the antenna but still function with the current retract/rotate mechanism)?
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