The Importance of Surge Protectors for Your RV: Safeguarding Your Journey

Every seasoned RV owner knows that while the freedom of the open road is exhilarating, it also comes with its fair share of responsibilities. One such responsibility is safeguarding your home on wheels from electrical malfunctions and power surges. This is where a crucial yet often overlooked accessory comes in – the RV surge protector. I personally consider this a “day one” purchase and an absolutely essential item for every RV’er.

Why Do You Need an RV Surge Protector?

As you travel from one campground to another, you’ll inevitably encounter varying power sources. Some may be perfectly stable, while others might suffer from occasional surges, electrical faults, or low voltage that can damage your RV’s electrical system and the appliances within it.

An RV surge protector is designed to manage these fluctuations and anomalies. It serves as a defense mechanism between your RV and the power source, guarding your vehicle against potential damage from inconsistent power supplies.

What Can Happen Without a Surge Protector?

Without an RV surge protector, your RV is exposed to potential electrical issues, including but not limited to:

  • Power Surges: A sudden spike in electrical power can damage sensitive electronics and shorten the life of your appliances.
  • Electrical Faults: Faulty wiring at a power pedestal can lead to dangerous conditions like reversed polarity or open ground.
  • Low Voltage: Prolonged periods of low voltage can harm appliances, particularly air conditioning units.

Any of these issues can lead to expensive repairs or replacements, which can be easily avoided with the use of a good-quality surge protector.

Choosing the Right Surge Protector

When selecting a surge protector for your RV, consider the following factors:

  • Type of RV: Ensure the surge protector you choose is suitable for your RV. There are different models for 30-amp and 50-amp RV systems.
  • Joule Rating: The higher the joule rating, the more energy the surge protector can absorb. A higher rating means more protection for your RV.
  • UL Certification: Look for surge protectors that are UL certified, as this means they meet specific safety standards.
  • Price: Surge protectors can range in price based on their features. While it might be tempting to save money on this accessory, remember that it protects your significant investment in your RV and its contents.


  • EMS-PT30/50X  highly recommended model is the Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X (for 30-amp) or EMS-PT50X (for 50-amp). These units not only protect against surges, but also against high and low voltage, open ground, and more.

  • Surge Guard 34830: Designed for 30-amp RVs (with a 50-amp model also available), the Surge Guard 34830 provides excellent protection against power surges, voltage drops, and wiring issues. It continuously monitors for voltage and amp draw and has an automatic reset feature on power restoration. It also boasts a 10-second startup sequence and a built-in intelligence system to prevent damage from open neutral conditions in the power supply.
  • Camco Dogbone RV Circuit Analyzer: A more budget-friendly option, the Camco Dogbone provides basic surge protection and also analyzes circuits to verify pedestal power. It features integrated surge protection up to 2100 joules and checks for reverse polarity, open neutral, and other wiring issues. Designed with convenience in mind, it has an easy pull handle and is weather-resistant with a power grip plug


As with any investment, protecting your RV requires attention to detail and a proactive approach to maintenance. Investing in a surge protector can save you from dealing with the stress and cost of unexpected electrical damage. So, before you hit the road for your next adventure, ensure your RV is equipped with a reliable surge protector – your ticket to peace of mind as you explore the open road.

Remember, in the world of RVing, it’s always better to be safe than sorry!


I'm Jay, the founder of RV Pro Source. I'm a Certified NRVIA Inspector and an RVTAA Registered RV Tech. I utilized these qualifications and first-hand experience to offer insight, advice, and services that cater to all RV owners.

Got an RV question? Don't hesitate to reach out to me via my social media platforms. I'm always here to help guide your RV journey!

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