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The Best RV Surge Protectors (Both 30 and 50 Amp) for 2023

Writen by Dane Heldt

Fact checked by Robert Clark

RV owners often find themselves confused when searching for the best RV surge protector. These devices tend to have a lot more moving parts and determining factors than expected. Due to this, the entire search becomes rather stressful and overwhelming.

I intend to make these feelings disappear by offering a guide about these useful devices. This guide will cover every relevant topic about RV surge protectors, including their advantages, determining buying factors, how to use them, and much more.

best rv surge protector

This article will include 16 reviews of my favorite surge protectors available. These discussions should make sure a rig owner’s completely prepared to choose their perfect RV surge protector. It might even become an absolute piece of cake.

So keep reading, and I’ll make sure your buying experience doesn’t end with a terrible choice. I promise reading our article won’t be a decision that becomes one you regret. Let’s not waste any time and dive right into this process.


Best Overall Easy to Use Most Durable
Preview Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X

TRC 44750

Surge Guard 44280

Voltage 120 V 120 V 120 V
Amperage 30 A 30 A 30 A
Surge Protection 1,790J 510 J 2,100 J
Details Details Details

17 Best Surge Protector for RV Reviews

This section will contain 17 product reviews to ensure you gain a better grasp of what right RV surge protectors offer. It might even turn out one of these products is what you’ve been looking for this entire time.

1. Progressive Industries EMS-PT30X RV Surge Protector

Progressive Industries’s EMS-PT30X RV Surge Protector has become a favorite among rig owners for its many useful features. An excellent example would be this model’s easy using process, which puts it ahead of several rivaling options.

Many buyers were raving about this aspect in their reviews, citing its plug-and-play application being a godsend. I can’t do anything but back up these claims because I found using this model an absolute delight.

Its all-weather shield design is another impressive aspect, as it’ll protect the unit from any weather condition: rain, wind, sleet, snow, etc. This design will make sure it handles all these situations without any issue.

As a result, it becomes a rather durable device if you make an RV surge protector comparison among available options. I don’t see any reason to believe this model won’t last a solid five or more years. The performance provided by this unit isn’t anything to overlook, either.

It has a reputation for providing a rig’s devices excellent surge protection when plugged into those unreliable campground energy sources. Any rig owner can rest easy knowing their equipment and appliances are safe when using this unit.

You should also find the product’s locking bracket to be a valuable feature. This bracket will ensure the unit remains in place during the using process, making it reliable even in the toughest or bumpiest conditions.

It doesn’t hurt that the overall design is portable and compact as well. Both of these aspects will make utilizing and installing the model much easier. The sturdy pull handle will help in these areas, too, as it ensures easy maneuvering.

However, these features do come with one significant flaw, which is the price tag. You’ll have to pay a small fortune to gain the privilege of using this fantastic unit.

2. TRC 44750 30-Amp Portable Surge Guard

Our next option, TRC 44750 30-Amp Portable Surge Guard, has become a favorite option among travel trailer and RV owners. It earned this popularity with a list of some impressive and unique features. An excellent example would be its shock shield, which offers shock protection.

As a result, users can feel more comfortable with its overall durability and effectiveness. Its protection quality against ground faults is also quite impressive. It’ll automatically shut off power when encountering one to ensure electronics remain unaffected.

I was impressed with the product’s weather-resistant plug handles, as well. These handles should have no issues remaining in good shape for many years. Plus, they’ll make connecting and disconnecting the device a breeze.

Users shouldn’t overlook its lightweight design, either. As a result, this camper surge protector is easier to bring onboard trips whenever necessary. This quality will help when storing the device, too, which helps in crowded storage areas like on rigs.

I admit this surge protector for camper usage doesn’t have the highest joule rating on our list. Of course, this distinction goes to Arcon’s 19666 50-Amp Surge Protector. But its 510-joule rating should be more than enough for small rig owners, such as pop-up campers or Class B motorhomes.

Moreover, TRC was nice enough to offer the buyer a limited 1-year manufacturer warranty. I’m never going to recommend turning down these policies when offered. It ensures buyers have a little more protection against my clumsiness than with other devices.

Users can even get additional security by buying a 3-year or 4-year protection plan. These policies will cost a small extra fee, but it never hurts to add a little more safeguarding.

But I wish it came with a snap-on cover to help protect the main body. In other words, it leaves the reset module and button unprotected from exterior damage. It was mentioned more than once in the customer reviews.

3. Surge Guard 44280 Portable RV Surge Protector

Rig owners who want RV electrical protection for a 30-Amp service camper should consider the Surge Guard 44280 Portable RV Surge Protector. This model is made up of heavy-duty materials to ensure top-tier performance and durability.

You can also take comfort in this product’s UL listing, which means it went through rigorous testing before being put onto the market. I have no reason to believe this unit can’t protect your rig’s device and appliances safely.

I was thrilled to see this portable surge protector can provide multiple surge protections as well. It checks for open neutral, open ground, correct polarity, and reserved ground/lines. Due to this, it’ll ensure peak levels of safety during the using process.

The product’s weatherproof cover was another winning quality. As you might expect, this feature will ensure it doesn’t become affected by adverse weather conditions. It’s just another aspect to increase the product’s overall reliability for the person who buys it.

Aside from these features, the product’s price tag certainly caught my attention. I was shocked to see something with this number of unique aspects had such a low cost. This product should be a favorite among any bargain buyers reading our article.

The unit having a portable and compact design doesn’t hurt, either. It never hurts to have a product like this one, which is easy to maneuver and use. But this product isn’t a perfect RV surge protector as it does have one flaw.

Some customers felt the install process was a bit harder than with other models. It didn’t have to do with the design itself being complicated, but instead with the included directions. Some thought that the instructions were hard to follow.

4. Trc Surge Guard 44260 30-Amp Surge Protector

If you want a long-lasting surge protection for RV, look no further than Trc’s Surge Guard 44260 Entry Level Portable 30-Amp Surge Protector. This unit has earned a reputation for lasting a lot longer than most of its counterparts.

Its durability comes from the weather-resistant design, which makes it ideal for outdoor use. The unit won’t have any issues dealing with any weather situation that comes its way. A buyer can rely on this device being a long-term investment rather than a short-term one.

I was shocked to read how well it performed in those circumstances within these RV surge protector 30-amp reviews. You can attribute these results to features, such as its 6500A max spike current and 2,100 joules suppression rating.

The 6500A max spike current ensures this unit can detect a fault within the power supply instantly. It will offer quick results that are ideal if it deals with potential issues when connecting to a campground’s energy source.

Meanwhile, a 2,100 joules surge suppression rating ensures the unit can protect your RV and devices against power surge. It’s a reliable and robust unit that’s more than capable of meeting a rig owner’s needs when dealing with faulty electrical management systems.

Rig owners should also love this product’s LED indicators. Their inclusion makes it easy to keep tabs on power status. If there’s an issue, these lights will ensure the user knows about it within an instant. Honestly, you can’t ask for much more when considering an RV surge protector.

But I wasn’t too thrilled with this product’s weight. It’s a bit bulkier and heavier than other models on this list, making the unit a little less convenient.

5. Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X 50-Amp RV Surge Protector

The Progressive Industries EMS-PT50X Portable 50-Amp RV Surge Protector is another one from this manufacturer, which helps solidify their reputation as a top brand. It has every feature someone could be looking for in a 50-amp surge protector.

An excellent example would be its surge failure LED indicators, which alerts the user to a potential issue the moment it happens using LED lights. This offers a level of convenience subpar or less expensive models don’t provide.

I was also impressed by this Progressve Industries surge protector’s rugged pull handle that makes using and managing the unit much easier. Therefore, it’s just another feature capable of making a rig owner’s life much easier when using their brand new surge protector.

This product’s scrolling digital display is another feature included to make your life easier. It ensures keeping track of the using process doesn’t require much effort on your part. In fact, multiple buyers made it a point to note how much they appreciated this feature in their reviews.

Its sleek construction should be a favorite among RVers as well. It’ll make storing the unit more manageable than other models. It might not seem like a big deal, but any feature that can lessen an item’s storage capacity is always welcome.

As with our previous product, this model has a weather-resistant design. I don’t envision it having any problems functioning in any climate or condition encountered on an RVing. It’s a genuinely well-made and stable RV surge protector.

But its price tag may be a hard pill to swallow. However, there’s no denying this model is the best 50-amp RV surge protector available.


6. Camco 50-Amp RV Voltage Protector/Monitor

Finding a durable surge protector isn’t always an easy task. But Camco’s 50-Amp RV Voltage Protector/Monitor is one of the few models available that fit this description. It shouldn’t surprise you as Camco has been known to create reliable RV products in various markets.

This Camco surge protector durability comes from its heavy-duty construction, consisting of materials capable of dealing with adverse weather conditions. It ensures the product can endure whatever challenge might present itself.

I was also intrigued by this product’s high and low voltage protections, ensuring it can protect a camper from a low voltage or high voltage surge. It’ll keep your devices from getting any damage when these situations occur.

The automatic disconnection feature was another aspect worth mentioning. It’ll ensure the product shuts down when a power outage or other problem occurs. As a result, the device remains protected from any hazardous voltage.

Camco was kind of enough to equip it with an automatic reconnection feature as well. This aspect allows the unit to reconnect as soon as the power stabilizes. It’s a convenient and useful feature, which will make a rig owner’s experience with the device much less stressful.

I found this product’s LED diagnostic lights appealing with their ability to indicate any faults when connecting your electrical to a power pedestal. It’s a simple way of staying apprised about what’s happening during the using process.

However, its operation noise level was mentioned as a negative in a few reviews, so it may not be suitable for those who are sensitive to constant buzzing.The price tag on this RV power line conditioner isn’t ideal, but the results it offers are hard to argue against.

7. Southwire 34950 RV Surge Guard

Southwire’s 34950 RV Surge Guard is an excellent choice for a person who wants a portable RV surge protector. It’ll do an adequate job making sure your electronic devices are protected from surges when connected to a power pedestal.

You can also expect this unit to protect against other faults like open ground, open neutral, low voltage, high voltage, reverse polarity, and others. Southwire did a great job accounting for almost everything when building this surge protector.

Its design features are rather intriguing, too, such as its bright LCD digital display. This ensures a user can read the necessary information clearly and without difficulty. Keeping track of your power situation has never been easier.

This product has a reputation for being easy to use as well. Multiple buyers stated they were delighted by the device’s using process and felt it was much better than their prior models. This type of praise is always a relief to see for me, considering I tend to struggle with these tasks.

I was delighted to see this model has a 128-second reset time delay, which protects your AC compressor. This benefit becomes a massive relief as AC repairs should be avoided at all costs due to their extravagant price.

The product’s automatic power restoration was another nice touch. It gets rid of a potential hassle and makes the entire device more user-friendly. Southwire seems to really know what a rig owner would want when buying a surge protector for airstreams or motorhomes.

But I was disappointed to see a few customers reported issues with Southwire’s customer service. These issues aren’t a good look for an excellent brand like this one.

8. Surge Guard 44270 50-Amp Surge Protector

Surge Guard’s 44270 Entry Level Portable 50-Amp Surge Protector would be an excellent choice for rig owners who need 50-amp models. It should have no issues delivering every bit of surge protection required to ensure your rig remains free of power surge issues and failures.

The product’s overall design stands out as a notable trait because it’s well-constructed and straightforward. Beginners won’t even have trouble figuring out how to operate it and ensure their rig remains protected.

I was also a fan of its portability, which comes from the design being lightweight. This aspect ensures you can use it whenever it’s needed without hassle. It ends up being a versatile and useful device to have on board during your RV trips.

The product’s 4,200 joules suppression rating isn’t anything to overlook. It makes the unit a robust and reliable preventative force against surge issues. It’s not a slouch against other problems, either, as it offers full protection against open neutral or open ground cases.

You can expect this model to come with several familiar features discussed in our prior reviews as well. These aspects include weather-resistant design, ability to correct polarity instantly, Easy-T-Pull handles, and LED indicators.

These features work together to ensure the product’s user-friendly and convenient for whoever is using it. It’s more than fair to conclude that the unit achieved this goal based on the overwhelming praise in the customer review section.

This product did have one feature, which got a negative spin within some reviews. Its display light might be a source of frustration for being a little too weak. It’s a small issue that should not stop you from purchasing the product; however, you should consider this carefully if weak lights have caused you any stress before.

9. Surge Guard 35550 Hardwire RV Surge Protector

People looking to install their surge protector inside their rig permanently should consider buying Surge Guard 35550 Hardwire RV Surge Protector. It’s a hardwired option that’s easy to install for even a person with limited knowledge of wiring.

After this model’s installed, it’ll offer multiple surge protection modes to ensure your rig’s fully protected from various problems. The product should provide sufficient resistance against open ground, reverse polarity, open neutral, and other issues.

I was also taken aback by this product’s 3,850 joules power suppression rating, which is higher than most models available. This rating should offer more than surge protection to ensure everything onboard your rig can be used safely.

The product’s automatic reset function is another eye-catching trait. As you know, it’ll ensure the unit restarts when your power comes back. This aspect happens to be one of my favorites because it makes sure I don’t have to do anything manually.

It has a useful built-in 128-second reset time delay to ensure your AC’s compressor remains protected. This aspect is essential to ensure your AC unit stays in good condition and doesn’t need a replacement any time soon.

You should find its cost rather affordable based on competing price tags for hardwired RV surge protectors. It falls right into the average range for these types of devices. I’d even adventure to say it’s a bargain, considering its performance quality.

It was frustrating to see some people report shipping issues in their reviews, though. These types of errors are easily fixable and shouldn’t hamper a great product’s reputation.

10. Progressive Industries EMS-HW30C RV Surge Protector

Anyone looking to buy a 30-amp, hardwired model should take a long gander at Progressive Industries’ Hardwired EMS-HW30C RV Surge Protector. These types of surge protectors don’t get much better than this one.

For instance, this Progressive Industries surge protector offers the ability to save previous error codes. Why does this matter? It’ll make it much easier to troubleshoot electrical issues that occur down the road. This ability makes the product more capable of bouncing back from a fault or failure.

The device’s thermal, open neutral, open ground, A/C frequency protections are also appealing traits. All of these protections will help ensure your rig’s electrical system functions without a single hitch. In other words, this model’s fully equipped to keep everything running smoothly.

Most buyers end up loving this model’s lighted front as well. This aspect will show your power status metrics in an understandable and readable manner. It’s an overlooked, but crucial part of these devices offering top-tier results.

You don’t have to worry about the hardwiring aspect being challenging, either. This model is another one made by a brand that prides itself on making these tasks easy. As someone who struggles with them, I can’t say enough about how grateful I am for companies like Progressive Industries.

The product’s overall construction is another thing worth mentioning. It was made with heavy-duty materials, which should ensure long-term usage. I don’t see any reason to believe it will last less than five years.

However, I did notice a few grumblings about the product having a tight connection. This issue could make plugging it in a bit more complicated. But I can live with this nuisance considering everything else I’m getting from the unit.

11. Hughes Autoformers PWD30-EPO RV Surge Protector

Customers looking through Camping World’s selection won’t find another device quite like the Hughes Autoformers PWD30-EPO RV Surge Protector. It’s the only smart surge protector with emergency power off (EPO) capabilities available.

These capabilities come from this product’s Smart Circuit Analyzer, which shuts down power to your rig when a dangerous event happens. If this situation does occur, an alert will be sent to your smartphone to ensure you know what’s happening.

You can also rely on this app to allow wireless monitoring of amps, voltage, and watts. Given these features, I find it hard to believe a more convenient option is available for rig owners on today’s market.

It has an impressive plug-n-play application as well, which only has a 4-second time delay when plugging in. This aspect is another one showing Hughes Autoformers’ focus on ensuring their model’s as convenient as possible. After all, some models can take up to 2 minutes when getting started.

The product’s usage of 99% pure copper plugs, blades, and 10-gauge wire was another appealing trait. Its copper usage should evoke long-term durability, which ensures it can offer results for an extended period.

As with our previous Hughes Autoformer product, this model comes with comfortable pull plug handles and an anti-theft locking bracket. Both these features will ensure your usage of the product remains hassle-free and straightforward.

I did encounter some customers who noted the product was a bit bigger than expected. This issue isn’t a huge deal, but it could make maneuvering the device a bit more challenging. In any case, it shouldn’t be a reason to take the product off your consideration list.

12. Surge Guard Portable 50-Amp Surge Protector

Southwire’s Surge Guard Portable 50-Amp Surge Protector is an easy contender to be considered the best RV surge protector. Buyers would have a hard time finding an issue with this model regarding its overall performance.

In fact, this model does a great job protecting your devices against several issues: power surge, open ground, elevated ground line current, overheating receptacle, etc. I can’t think of a single potential problem this model wouldn’t handle with relative ease.

This device also offers numerous appealing features that any rig owner would love. This product’s heavy-duty brass receptacle ensures a stable, reliable connection, making the using process a much simpler task for everyone involved.

Buyers should find this product’s anti-theft lock rig a rather appealing trait as well. This aspect ensures thieves have a much tougher time stealing your surge protector. It’s an excellent addition to make sure the device remains with the people who bought it.

I was impressed with the product’s LCD display, which makes reading the data much more manageable. Multiple buyers were shocked by how easy reading the info was when facing specific difficulties like glares, which tends to be an issue for other models.

As someone with bad eyesight, you can imagine how much this aspect would be a blessing for me. Its low-noise level was another attribute worth mentioning as it’ll ensure you aren’t getting a headache every time it’s being used.

But I became a little annoyed when seeing this product’s price tag. It’s easily among the most expensive on our list, but it’s definitely a perfect RV surge protector fit.

13. Arcon 19666 50-Amp Surge Protector

If you’re looking for an affordable 50-amp option, Arcon’s 19666 50-Amp Surge Protector is right up your alley. This model might be our top-rated RV surge protector bargain, considering its great protection ability and low-cost. You can attribute the great protection results to features like its lightning strike defense system.

As the name suggests, it’ll ensure power surge caused by lightning strikes doesn’t cause your rig’s devices significant damage. This aspect could be invaluable to RVers who intend on camping in stormy areas, such as Florida.

I was also impressed by this product’s 7,200 Joules rating, which is the highest among any portable surge protectors. This rating indicates the product shouldn’t have issues offering sufficient protection for an extended period.

Arcon’s customer service is another appealing aspect based on this RV surge protector 50-amp review. In fact, several buyers made it a point to note how pleasant the experience was when calling in with their questions.

Honestly, praise for customer service isn’t a common occurrence in this market. Take note of it when you see more than a few buyers make positive or negative comments about it. But again, the main attraction for this product would be its price tag.

It’s a rare thing to find a useful 50-amp model within this price range. Therefore, bargain buyers should try to take full advantage of this deal. You might not come across a deal like this one ever again.

As for the product’s flaws, I couldn’t find a single fault about this model in customer reviews. It’s a simple, affordable surge protector ready to ensure spikes don’t damage your rig’s devices. What more could a rig owner want?

14. Hughes Autoformer PWD50 RV Smart Surge Protector

The Hughes Autoformer PWD50 50-AMP Portable RV Smart Surge Protector is another wireless option, which utilizes Bluetooth technology research. It provides the benefit of monitoring live park power conditions through an app on your smartphone.

As a result, users will be able to track voltage and current draw from almost anywhere. It makes the device much more user-friendly than most of other models available. But these Bluetooth capabilities aren’t the only thing to make the product an appealing option.

I was also intrigued by this product’s heavy-duty construction, which ensures top-flight durability. Buyers can expect the surge protector to last much longer than a standard model would, barring any unusual complications.

This product’s rainproof qualities only increase its durability to a higher level as well. It’s one of the main reasons this device has become a favorite in our RVing community. You’ll have a hard time finding a model more suited to deal with the lifestyle than this one.

But I can’t go any further without mentioning its ability to let users set custom alert thresholds. This aspect provides a level of control over its usage that doesn’t occur with inferior or subpar models. It’s another way this model continues to showcase its otherworldly amount of convenience.

Hughes Autoformer came through with another excellent product capable of making your time on the road much safer. There’s nothing a person can complain about with this product’s protection ability in terms of performance.

There were some complaints about the app being hard to navigate, though, as with a previous product from this brand. But I’m sure an update will come sooner or later, which will take care of this issue.

15. Southwire 44380 30-Amp Portable Surge Guard

If you’re looking for the best 30-Amp RV surge protector, it’ll be hard to beat the Southwire 44380 30-Amp Portable Surge Guard. This Southwire surge guard has a long list of traits capable of ensuring a faulty park power supply doesn’t cause you trouble.

The product’s LED fault chart alone should pique your interest. It ensures the device’s power analysis doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand. You can instead expect this product to offer relevant info in an understandable way.

RV owners can expect this info to reflect test results for open neutral, open ground, open circuit/no power, overheating plug, surge protection status, and reserve polarity. It’ll provide everything needed to stay on top of what’s occurring.

I found this device’s Easy-T-Pull plug handles rather appealing as well. These pull handles make using the product a much more relaxed and less frustrating task. It’s a convenient and useful addition to ensure the product becomes as user-friendly as possible.

As with some of the previous options, the product being CUL/UL listed should be another aspect to get buyers excited. It’s always a good idea to ensure a device is safe before buying, and this certification is about as close as you’ll get.

The product’s enclosed receptacle cover was another intriguing feature. It’ll help keep the receptacle from receiving any unnecessary damage to ensure long-lasting usage. Little details like these go a long way to maintaining surge protectors in good condition.

But some customers did complain about a few shipping issues with the device. It seems in some cases the product arrived late and within damaged packing. I still think this product is more than worth the risk, even with these shipping problems.

16. Progressive Industries HW50C Hardwired EMS RV Surge Guard

Progressive Industries’ HW50C Hardwired EMS RV Surge & Electrical Management happens to be the last product on our list. But don’t let its position fool you as this list ends off on a bang rather than a whimper.

This hardwired option features a top-tier microprocessor to ensure it offers peak protection levels for your rig’s devices. It provides the user with a sense of security with multi-mode surges, lost/open neutral, polarity, and voltage protections.

Each of these protections ensures it’ll help protect your RV against any issue, which could cause costly damage. The product’s setup process isn’t difficult, either, as many people found the permanent install easy enough to do by themselves.

Buyers were actually complimenting the product’s direction manual, which is a rare sight in this marketplace. In most cases, these manuals are often barely understandable and offer little to no help for the person doing the installation.

I would also like to point out this product’s digital display as a resounding positive. It happens to be very easy to read even in the worst lighting conditions. It ensures there will never be an issue with keeping track of the vital info provided by this surge protector.

Overall, this model ends up being an improvement over other models from this brand, like the Progressive Industries’ SSP-30xl Surge Protector. But even with these stellar features, I can’t deem the product to be a perfect one.

It was a huge bummer to see a few buyers complain about this brand, not honoring their lifetime warranty. But these incidents could be isolated cases because some positive reviews praised their warranty policy.

17. Hughes Autoformer BX4370 30-Amp Surge Protector

Buyers looking for an ultra-convenient option need to look at Hughes Autoformer’s BX4370 30-Amp Surge Protector. It utilizes Bluetooth technology to let you know those important metrics about the product’s using process.

In other words, you can keep track of everything within the palm of your hand. It makes use of an Android or iPhone app to ensure the process becomes even more straightforward. These two features are a rather rare find in this marketplace.

The product’s 2,400 joules surge suppression rating was another aspect to catch my eyes. It shouldn’t have any issues handling your rig’s power needs with this impressive rating. I have no doubt your devices will be protected and function safely.

Most users end up loving this unit’s easy-grip pull handles, as well. These handles increase its portability and ensure moving it doesn’t create any issues. It’ll make it easy to install and use, too, which is always a good thing.

Its all-weather assembly is also worth mentioning. This assembly consists of heavy-duty, weather-resistant materials that can function in almost any situation. You should expect this model to last a long, long time.

But none of these fantastic features are my favorite when it comes to this unit’s price. The product’s price tag earns this title, as it’s among the lowest on our entire list. Bargain buyers should be jumping at the chance to purchase this model, given its features and cost.

I was disappointed to see a few customers complaining about the app in this product’s reviews. It seems some people felt it was a bit difficult to navigate. But it’s not an issue that should stop you from considering this option.

RV Surge Protector Buyer’s Guide


An surge protector RV component is a vital part of your RV and shouldn’t be overlooked. After all, each of your rig’s appliances and electronics relies on a power source. These devices are often subjected to excessive voltage levels coming from this power source, causing them damage.

This issue is where having a power surge protector onboard comes into play. It’s a simple way to ensure your devices remain protected from excessive voltage. But you can’t buy any RV surge protector available on today’s market.

You need to find one suited for your particular situation. I will take you through certain vital factors that’ll help determine what option fits your needs.

Number of Ports

Every buyer will need to check each option’s amount of ports. This aspect will help determine whether these people need to change multiple surge protectors. Most models will come with four ports, but you’ll also find ones with more, such as 6, 8, or 12 ports.

As a result, you’ll need to figure out the number of required ports for your RV. It’s not a difficult task as it’ll depend on what appliances and how many are within your rig. If an RV owner only has a few devices, this person won’t need to buy an option with extra ports.

What You Plan on Plugging into the RV Surge Protector

One of the most important factors is knowing your appliances will differ when it comes to power consumption. These devices will suffer different levels of losses when an instance of excessive voltage occurs as well.

Both these aspects will play a pivotal role in choosing what surge protector type is needed for your rig. For instance, an RV with a fridge, phone, and TV will require an option known for being strong and reliable.

This reliable surge protector will help ensure your devices remain protected when dealing with excess voltage issues. It might not seem like a big deal, but I can promise you these incidents will occur more than once.

Safety Certifications

An overlooked aspect is the safety certifications provided to each model by organizations dedicated to ensuring these products work correctly. In this case, you’ll want to find an option that has received a certification for the Underwriter’s Laboratory (UL).

It’s called the UL seal, which ensures that your surge protector will function without providing safety issues. It indicates the device won’t become a major concern when something like excessive voltage occurs.

Power Rating

Each option’s power rating will be a significant factor in your final decision as well. You’ll need to determine the amount of power required by your rig’s electrical system for it to work correctly. It’s vital to buy a surge protector with a maximum energy consumption level rated above this figure.

Picking a surge protector with a higher rating will ensure there’s a little wiggle room. Therefore, an excessive voltage output from a power source won’t be such an issue. Your surge protector will have the capability to handle it.


A surge protector’s price tag can vary greatly from product to product. You’ll need to build a budget based on what you deem necessary features for your perfect option. This budget also must stay realistic to ensure it can be helpful during your search.

For instance, a person who wants an option with 12 ports will need to raise their budgetary limits to account for this extra feature. It’s the only way to ensure your constructed budget remains useful and makes things less stressful.

This realistic budget will then make things easier by limiting your choices down to a more manageable level. Due to this, you’ll only be picking from surge protectors capable of meeting your financial restrictions and performance needs.

Safety Features

RV owners must examine how safe each option is before deciding on what surge protector to buy. This task will include looking into their safety features embedded to ensure they can operate without issue.

Some of the features worth looking for include LED lights, auto/emergency shut-off switches, indicator alarms, and automatic problem detection. These design aspects will ensure a surge protector has no chance of surprising you with a dangerous situation.

I’d also suggest taking a look at each model’s customer reviews. These discussions should highlight any potential safety issues with the devices. If there’s a problem, I have no doubt someone experienced it before and wrote a negative review.


Most RV surge protectors will have a display, which keep a user composed of what’s happening with its usage. But some of them can be rather complicated and hard to read during certain parts of the day.

I’d recommend looking for an option with a simple, bright LED display to ensure these issues don’t occur. The customer reviews should help because nothing gets people angrier than products that complicate their usage.

Surge Protector Type

RV owners will have to decide what surge protector type fits their needs as well. You’ll have a choice between two possibilities, a hardwired model or a portable model. The hardwired type refers to options which are mounted and hardwired inside your vehicle.

People often decide to install these types right next to the power wheel. This placement will allow you to conceal the device from easy viewing inside your rig. Therefore, it’s less likely to get stolen. Hardwired models also eliminate the issue of having to hook up your surge protector regularly.

As you might expect, portable options are a bit different than their hardwired counterparts. One key difference is these devices will need to be hooked up into the pedestal before plugging it into your rig.

Most RV owners tend to love portable options because the installation doesn’t require any wiring work. It’s a simple matter of plugging it into this pedestal then into the unit. It’s also easily replaceable when it does become unusable.

Ease of Install

It’d be a huge mistake to overlook each model’s install process when making your decision. You’re going to want a surge protector with an easy usage and installation. It might seem like common sense, but some manufacturers make these processes more complicated than needed.

As a result, it’d be wise to look for a model with a simple and straightforward design to ensure installing is a breeze. Some brands make it even easier to examine this aspect by putting the install directions in the product description.

Noise Level

The surge protector’s noise level should weigh into your decision as well. Some models will produce an ungodly amount of sound during their usage. If you want to keep your sanity, I’d suggest avoiding these options at all costs.

Noise level happens to be another factor, which can be determined by reading other people’s experiences with each device. It’s the only way to ensure you don’t end up with a headache-causing-nightmare for a surge protector.

RV Surge Protector FAQs

Our FAQ section will take you through any topics that weren’t covered in the buying guide. These discussions should fill any information gaps and ensure you can make a responsible buying decision.

Who is this for?

The basics of an RV surge protector isn’t too hard to understand. One of these devices will protect your RV’s electrical system and ensure it runs safely. How does it work? You plug it into a power source located in your campground, and your rig’s cable gets plugged into the protector.

This surge protector will then protect your RV electrical management systems from issues caused by the power outlet. For instance, this power outlet could be wired incorrectly, or the voltage might be lower than expected.

Both these situations could cause a heap of issues for your devices because they require a consistent voltage level. A surge protector ensures these problems don’t occur and keeps your devices safe.

Due to this, an RV surge protector is a tool for any rig owner who wants to use devices inside their motorhome safely. It’s a vital component of making sure your RV adventures remain fun and enjoyable rather than an absolute nightmare.

Advantages and disadvantages of using an RV surge protector

The RV surge protector pros and cons list lean heavily on one side as it can provide several benefits to a rig owner’s adventures. One of the main ones is its ability to ensure your electronics and electrical appliances are protected from issues like power fluctuations. As any rig owner knows, campsites and RV parks don’t always offer reliable power sources.

A surge protector will provide peace of mind when issues like reverse polarity, open ground, and open neutral are detected. In other words, you can identify any potential problems before they do severe damage to your RV.

It also helps that many of them come with automatic features, which will turn off the power when a problem’s detected. This automatic shut-off will protect your RV and appliances from a high or low voltage that could cause excessive damage.

These benefits alone make investing in a top-tier RV surge detector necessary for any serious rig owner. But these devices do come with one significant disadvantage. Their price tags tend to be rather expensive, which isn’t great for a bargain buyer like me.

What is the best 50 amp surge protector for an RV?

My choice would go to Progressive Industries’ EMS-PT50X Portable 50-Amp RV Surge Protector. It has everything needed to thrive in this situation, but I’m afraid you’ll have to pay a small fortune for its services.

What is the best 30 amp surge protector for an RV?

Southwire’s 44380 30-Amp Portable Surge Guard is an ideal 30-amp option with its LED fault chart and easy using process. But honestly, any 30-amp model within our product review should be more than ready to meet your needs.

How do you calculate joule rating?

A surge protector joule rating measures how much energy the device can absorb before failing. So a person looking to calculate the correct joule rating for an RV surge protection device will need to consider what equipment is being protected.

For instance, anyone who isn’t using many devices won’t need a surge protector with a 3,000-joule rating. Instead, they could be okay with a 500-joule rating protector. So calculating your needs will heavily depend on how many joules are being used onboard the rig.

Do you really need a surge protector for your RV?

It’s common to ask yourself, “Do I need a surge protector for my RV?” After all, these devices are rather expensive. But the truth is a surge protector is a necessary purchase for any serious rig owner. Honestly, this device is one of the most vital investments for an RVer. It’s the only thing protecting your rig from faulty power sources, often found in campgrounds.

RV surge protectors ensure these power sources don’t cause surges that could cause severe damage to your rig’s devices. In some cases, these devices will even come with a 128-second time delay that can be useful for the AC compressor.

Top-tier models won’t only protect against surges, either. These devices will check for open ground, open neutral, reverse polarity, high voltage, and low voltage issues. Buying one ends up being a cost-effective way to ensure your RV doesn’t become a financial black hole.

How much surge protection do I need for RV?

Determining how much surge protection an RV needs depends on its amp rating. So pay close attention to the product description for each surge protector. It should provide you with an amp rating to match with RV’s amp service.

For instance, if your rig has 50-amp service, it’ll require a 50 amp surge protector for RV. Most modern RVers with higher electrical output will fall into this category. RVs with 50-amp plugs will have four prongs.

But some older motorhomes will have a 30-amp service and will need a 30 amp surge protector for RV. You can tell them apart by the plugs having three prongs rather than the four prongs on 50-amp RVs.

Can I use a 50 amp surge protector on a 30 amp RV?

A common question is whether a RV owner can use a 50-amp surge protector on a 30-amp rig? It’s possible, but there’s a caveat. It might not be a good idea because of some potential damage that came from this situation.

For instance, this 50-amp surge protector might not trigger when your 30-amp appliances draw more power than necessary. This reason alone should convey those RV owners with 30-amp rigs would be wise to go with a 30-amp surge protector.

Do RV surge protectors go bad?

Yes, these devices do go bad. A surge protector’s primary job consists of absorbing extra energy to ensure spikes don’t get passed onto your devices. Due to this, these devices end up consuming electrical damage over time. It becomes almost impossible to tell whether your surge protector has gone bad.

But some models will come with indication lights, which tell a user when a replacement is needed. You can tell by looking at the “Protected” or “Protection Present” LED on your surge protector’s front causing. If it’s green, your device remains usable.

What is the difference between a surge protector and an EMS?

The difference between an RV EMS Vs surge protector comes down to their respective protection levels. EMS offers complete protection to all your electronics from every power-related issue, including power surges, voltage spikes, improperly wired power units, and other problems.

But an RV power surge protector is more basic as it can only offer protection against voltage changes and unexplained power surges. Furthermore, these options are often cheaper and easier to use for inexperienced RVs.

How to install?

Installing RV surge protectors isn’t a hard task. It’s a simple matter of following the directions inside the manual, which come with your purchase. The best surge protectors will make the entire process simple and straightforward for even beginners.

It becomes imperative to research each model’s installation before making a final decision. It’ll make sure you buy an RV surge protector that doesn’t make your life a nightmare when setting it up.

If issues do occur, I’d suggest calling the manufacturer’s technical support. Most of the top brands offer excellent customer service and should guide you through it without issue. In any case, this process shouldn’t take much effort or thought on your part.

How to use?

Surge protectors aren’t tricky to use, either. But the directions might differ from product to product, which makes talking about it in general terms rather impossible. However, most models will make the using process a straightforward and difficulty-free experience.

I’d suggest reading through each product’s description and reviews to ensure this process doesn’t provide unusual complications. These resources will be vital in ensuring your buying experience ends with a smile on your face.

Any care and maintenance tips?

Surge protectors tend to start wearing out from the inside out. There isn’t much a person can to extend their lifespan besides being careful and using them correctly. I would recommend replacing them every three to five years, though, to ensure peak performance.

Otherwise, a rig owner could be stuck with a malfunctioning RV surge protector. This situation isn’t ideal and might cause some serious down the road. It’s better to get ahead of it and replace your surge protector within this three to five-year range.


After reading our article, finding the best RV surge protector shouldn’t be much of an issue. You just need to apply this information and the right choice should become clear. This perfect option will then provide their rig’s devices with a great deal of protection.

But if you come across any issues, feel free to let me know in the comment section. I’d love to help out in any way possible to ensure this process ends positively. After all, it’s the entire reason I wrote this article in the first place. Thanks for reading!

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