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Old 10-29-2012, 07:46 AM   #21
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earth I'm not a professionial or anything, but I would make sure your protector is somewhere in the middle between you and your power supply. I have a 50/30 ponytial that allow me to plug into the 50 amp at most camp sites, other end is a 30 amp female, which is where I plug my 30 amp surge protector. I'd assume by do this I'm hopeing to at least get enough power for the 30 amps...... not sure, just something I've always done, after not using it the very first time I plugged in and blowing the GFCI in one of my outlets I learned my lesson......

Others here may have more info and be able to explain....
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:49 AM   #22
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First off, you will only need the size power conditioner required for your camper.

If you have a 30 amp service camper, you only need a 30 amp power conditioner.
If you have a 50 amp service camper, you will need a 50 amp (2 leg) power conditioner.

Additionally power conditioners serve other needs besides "surge" (voltage spike) protection. It will prevent UNDER voltage damage by disconnecting power when the voltage sags below a safe level; reconnect when the voltage recovers; disconnect power when the voltage is high or incorrectly wired (like a 50 amp service loosing it's neural due to corrosion, which will put 220 to your camper); reconnect automatically when service is repaired and some will even correct low voltage to safe levels when heat and heavy usage reduces voltage on a campground run of sites (like an autotransformer will). Here is the autotransformer power conditioner I use.

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ers-26202.html

I installed mine inside and use it all the time. I added incoming and outgoing voltmeters, and an incoming amp meter to monitor and condition my AC power at all times. I used the existing plugs and sockets (cut the main power cord and installed a plug and socket long enough to connect if I needed to bypass if anything ever happened to my power conditioner).

Note: The red light shows a bad ground wire (since fixed) and the low incoming voltage of 113 volts and being conditioned back up to 120 volts and camper currently drawing 15.2 amps).
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:54 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth Station View Post
ok ........ a question We currently have a 50 amp surge protector. Next weekend we are camping with 30 amp. Do we plug the 50 amp into the RV then connect the 50/30 thingy in??? We never plug in without the surge protector. Just not sure with a park that is 30 amp!! I hope this makes sense! Thanks.........
Plug your 50 amp surge protector into a "pigtail" adapter like this one.

Dogbone Adapter with Handle,30 Amp Male to 50 Amp Female - Amazon.com
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Old 10-29-2012, 08:23 AM   #24
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Found this online, for your reading pleasure

Quote:
Alternating Current/Reverse Polarity
By Don Casey
Revised by BoatUS editors in April 2012

Since alternating current, by definition, flows in one direction then the other, what is meant by polarity when applied to an AC shorepower connection? And why is polarity so important on a boat? Even though the current flow reverses, the "hot" wire is connected to the generator at the power plant and the "neutral" wire is connected to ground there. That means the electricity flows to us through the hot wire. All switches and circuit breakers must be in this side of the circuit to disconnect the load from the power.

Now suppose connections to the dockside receptacle are reversed. That puts all the AC breakers on the boat in the neutral side of the circuit. An overload might still trip the breaker, but since the breaker is in the neutral side, the circuit is unprotected from a short. Current will continue to flow until the circuit burns open. A fire aboard is the likely consequence.

Reversed polarity also presents a serious shock risk. Turning off a breaker appears to remove power from the circuit because it turns off all appliances connected to that circuit. But with reversed polarity you have disconnected the appliance from ground, not from power. The circuit is still live!

If your AC switch panel does not have a polarity tester, buy a plug-in tester and use it. Most also detect an open grounding wire and other dangerous conditions.
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Old 10-29-2012, 10:15 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Road-King View Post
Found this online, for your reading pleasure
Russ,

Thank you for an additional input to the "Herkbrary." That has to be the most concise reason for AC polarity I have ever read. Thank you again.

Herk
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Old 10-29-2012, 10:48 AM   #26
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Most "spike protectors" use MOV varistor semiconductors. (Varistor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) as westom says.

They just "shunt" overvoltage to ground. Some types blow after they do that and they no longer protect your devices after they do. Cheap "spike protectors" have an "idiot light" to show when they are working and it either stays on or goes out when the strip is not providing protection anymore (depends on who made it).

More expensive ones have circuits that reset after passing the surge and will last through many spikes.

As to what causes spikes, the biggest myth is it is caused by "lightning hitting your computer". Most spikes are caused by traffic accidents that knock down power poles or tree branches hitting power lines during wind storms.

Momentary power outages cause rapid drops in voltage and then when the transformer can resupply power to the line the rapid increase in voltage can "spike" or "surge" above the set voltage of 120 (in the US) and modulate till it is "normal." This spike can be many hundreds of volts above the target voltage for tiny fractions of a second and travel at high momentary amperage besides. Taken together this massive momentary power (measured in Joules) is delivered to your electronics and can overwhelm your gear. Cheap surge protectors have low Joule ratings and can not handle higher spikes or multiple ones (like wind blowing branches into power wires).

Spike and surge protection is just one part of powerline safety as I said earlier. Also as westom said, there are many types of surge protector and if you have a lot of expensive electronics located in more than one place in your house it may be cheaper in the long run to surge protect your house rather than the outlet you plug electronics into.

You can buy a 220VAC format "breaker type" surge protector that goes into your breaker box in the first position (upper left) in your panel that will provide "whole house" surge protection as your first line of defense and then use a high end outlet type surge protector at your HDTV and surround stereo.

A Tool For Everything: Home

Siemens QSA2020SPD Whole House Surge Protection With Two 20 Amp Circuit Breakers

Leviton 51120-1 Whole House Surge Suppressor / Surge Protector - Smarthome

Monster - 8-Outlet Blackout PowerCenter Surge Protector - MP HDP 900G

In any event in an RV, it is in my opinion critical to have much more than simple "surge protection" since nearly all damaging powerline troubles have less to do with surges than improperly wired pedestals and bad park power.
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Old 10-29-2012, 01:41 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by camper_Lucy View Post
reverse polarity in a DC system will destroy batteries and electronics.
Nobody - obviously - said anything about DC voltages. AC voltage polarity, if reversed, does not damage an appliance. Helpful is to read what was posted before making irrelevant denials.

Again, everyone who uses the phrase "surge protector" also should be describing which type. Different devices are all called "surge protector". For example, a line conditioner that compensates only for minor low voltages does nothing for potentially harmful low voltages. Some even call that a surge protector. Another surge protector for microsecond spikes (that might damage electronics) may also melt or smoke when exposed to lower but excessive voltages. Too completely different anomalies. That protector only addresses one.

A common protector (listed by manufacturer name) simply disconnects power when voltage goes slightly too low or too high. A switch. It may or may not also contain another device (also called a surge protector) for high voltage spikes that might damage electronics. The phrase "surge protector" is a blanket descriptor for different devices.

Use of 'surge protector' that does not specificaly state which anomaly is insufficient information. Even some electricians (who learn how to connect wires - not how electricity works) may not know this stuff.

A typical "surge protector" for campgrounds will disconnect AC mains when voltage goes slightly too high or low (potentially harmful to electric motors - not electronics). It might report some 'safety' ground defects. It cannot report any defective 'earth' ground.

It might also report reverse polarity. Reverse polarity (nobody was discussing DC polarity) does not harm appliances or create a fire. But suggests a campground electrician may have created other mistakes (ie improperly wired pedestals) that you do not want to learn about the hard way. An electrician must be quite careless to reverse polarity.
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Old 10-29-2012, 02:29 PM   #28
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Since you seem not to have taken the time to read my review of the Franks unit, I will post the relevant section again.

************************************************** *******

If you have a Franks unit already DO NOT waste your money buying a surge protector. You do not need it.

He makes 3 different power conditioners. He makes a 30 amp; a 50-70 amp and a 100 amp unit.

They ALL have these standard and some proprietary features:

Low Voltage shutdown - 93 volts (it will boost any voltage 93 volts or higher up to 16%)

High Voltage shutdown - 129 volts (it will detect and clamp any spike exceeding 130 volts; shutting off power to your camper before damage can occur. Including improperly wired 220 socket.)

Built in reset-able circuit protection on side of case. Say you plug into a 50 amp service on the pole with a 30 amp camper through the Franks unit and because of low voltage on the incoming service requires boost. This could pull more than 30 amps through the Franks unit trying to provide the full 30 amps to your camper at the boosted voltage. The internal circuit protection protects the Franks unit from overload.

The Franks 2 stage booster has the highest percentage boost available and provides it in two steps (8% and 16%) to give you the maximum current at the highest possible normal voltage.

All AUTOMATIC re-start of service after a shutdown. As soon as normal voltage is restored, the Franks unit will restart automatically to continue providing uninterrupted power service.

INTEGRAL SURGE PROTECTION - The highest available of all autotransformers out there and higher than most stand alone surge protectors.

30 amp unit - 3500 Joules
50 amp unit - 7000 Joules
100 amp unit - 9,000 Joules

This unit is proprietary to Frank's Electronics and available only through his web site. Voltage Booster

While occasionally seen on eBay, they are re-sellers of Frank's units. He would prefer that the units were ordered through his web site.
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:23 PM   #29
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Herk how much are the franks?
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Old 10-29-2012, 08:40 PM   #30
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Herk how much are the franks?
His phone number is in the review. If you mention the forum he has been receptive to a "forum discount." Everything has been going up in price (but I think he has been holding the line at the price I paid 3 years ago).

The 30 amp one is about 100 bucks more than an equivalent surge/low voltage cut out unit from Camping World. I know some members recently bought units and may want to share what they paid.
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Old 10-29-2012, 09:24 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herk7769

His phone number is in the review. If you mention the forum he has been receptive to a "forum discount." Everything has been going up in price (but I think he has been holding the line at the price I paid 3 years ago).

The 30 amp one is about 100 bucks more than an equivalent surge/low voltage cut out unit from Camping World. I know some members recently bought units and may want to share what they paid.
Thanks!
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:58 AM   #32
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I will back up Herk on the need for something more than a good power monitor / surge unit and as anyone who is a regular on here knows I was pretty dead set against using one earlier this year. DUring our trip through the northern states and southern Ontario this summer there were 3 campgrounds that the Progressive Industries EMS unit actually shut power down to the trailer due to low voltage conditions. Just using the Keurig coffee machine on one occassion killed power. So as I said at the start I am now a believer and there will be a Franks unit in our trailer somewhere before we leave in July for Goshen again. DO yourselves a favour and at least give the Franks unit fair consideration I don't believe you will regret it. BTW 2 of the CG's were quite well used KOA's the 3rd was a very popular and beautiful CG just outside Cookstown Ontario.
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Old 10-30-2012, 11:53 AM   #33
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Go with Herk, he knows. A surge protector alone will not do the job. Low voltage is a very big problem at RV parks. A electric managing system is a better choice. Mine shuts off.
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Old 10-30-2012, 01:24 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by cdrdevine View Post
Do I really need to buy a 30 amp and 50 amp

This was the OP. He never came back to answer our questions but boys you sure gave HIM some answers!
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