Wednesday, November 9, 2011

More about the hike, and campground

After reading my post about our hike, Craig said he objected to my comment that he didn't stop for rests.

I admit I was wrong.  He did stop numerous times and offered me the best rocks to sit on!  

But, I spent more time watching where my feet were going than appreciating the view. I have a hard time walking and looking at the same time.  I don't want to trip or twist an ankle.

Next time, more stops to just look around. 

In answer to Merri.  We did carry water.  Even though it was cool, and I wasn't really thirsty, I took a water break.  I had water along for Craig, but he says he doesn't like to drink when hiking.  If he needed it, it was available. 

I have had the experience of drinking too much water in hot weather and having the feeling that it just sat in my stomach, and made me feel sick.  That's not good either.

The eight miles was round trip.

Now that I have read Karen's post  about the power problems they had today, I guess we were lucky we didn't damage our rig with the "iffy" power we had at the Pinnacles campground.  

When I looked at available campsites on line, the campground listed 30 amp power.  When we got there and parked, Craig saw that there was a 50 amp outlet.  The camp store was already closed, so we weren't able to ask about it.  

He plugged in.

All seemed OK for awhile, then the power went out.

We tried the 30 amp plug and it didn't work either.

One of the other RVers plugged a light into the 20 amp and it didn't work, so we tried it on the 20 amp in the post for the next site.  It worked, we moved, and plugged into the 30 amp outlet.  

Saturday morning we asked the ranger whether it was OK to plug into the 50 amp service, and he said it was.  So Craig switched it to the 50 amp service.  Everything seemed OK all day Saturday, but Sunday morning the power was out again.

We flagged down the campground lady as she rode by in her golf cart and she checked the breaker box (which was right across the road from us) and threw the breaker, restoring power.  

Craig said he thought they only had 30 amp breakers in the box.  

When I say everything seemed to work OK, I am wondering.  I do not know much about how power variations effect small appliances. I used the slow cooker on Sunday, and my corned beef, although cooked, did not get as tender as I expected it to. 

Were we experiencing "brown out" conditions? Would lower power effect the slow cooker?  

We do not have a surge protector (yet).  Until I read Karen's post, I didn't know they existed. 

So much to learn.  So many things to buy!

But I do have a little set aside for repairs and future tires.  Maybe a surge protector would be a good investment.  If our rig can use 50 amp or 30 amp, should we buy and carry both sizes? 

Craig thinks that a Class A diesel pusher should include its own surge protection.  Do you agree?
Advice about surge protection will be appreciated!


  1. You will never regret having a surge protector. It will pay for itself in the long run. Not all DP come with a surge protector. You can add that at time of purchase...whether you are having it built or purchasing a pre-existing unit. Our Dutch Star had the surge protector hard wired but you can buy those that attach to the electrical pedestal.

  2. It amazes me that manufacturers can charge what they can for these beasts and not include a surge protector for all the electronics on board.

    But, that just leaves the deed for the consumer. We couldn't buy one fast enough. It has saved us many times.

    Ours is a 50Amp Portable Surge Guard. We have a hasp and a lock on it, too. We don't want that thing to walk away!

    I don't know what low voltage will do to a slow cooker, but it can toast a heat pump or air conditioner. And an unprotected surge can have you chasing down electrical problems in your rig for a long time.

    That made us feel a lot better about making this purchase. Think of it as insurance!

    Don't plug in without it!

    Happy travels!

  3. Wouldn't be without our Surge Guard; read about it here:

  4. The very first thing we put in our rig was a hard wired suge protector. Ours monitors both incoming power and power from the generator, as sometimes generator power can be "dirty" also. You're right, there's a LOT to learn, but you'll get there.

  5. We had a Surge Guard surge protector hard-wired into the Montana when we took delivery. We bought it ourselves (around $275.00) and had them install it for us. Our power spiked one night on our property, and it kept our appliances safe!

  6. Enough good can't be said about surge guards. Buy a 50 amp protector and then a pigtail that converts 50 amp to 30 amp. No need to buy two surge guards.

  7. Leonard hard wired a Surge Guard protector in our rig. Would not be without it. When there is a surge it will shut down and then takes 2 minutes and 6 seconds to reset. This has something to do with the air conditioner compressor resetting. The first few times it happened we thought something had gone wrong. Now we remember and expect there will be a delay.

  8. I believe that a Surge Guard is essential. You can get ones that are portable which you just plug into the pedestal and then plug you power cord into it or you can get a hard wired one. Your coach is 50 amp so you need a 50 amp Surge Guard. It will also protect you if you are plugged into a 30 amp circuit. The important thing is that they protect you in multiple ways. They check each wire in the circuit and confirm that the power is correct: proper voltage and proper grounds. They limit the voltage coming into your rig to a safe band of about 105 volts to 130 volts. They automatically turn off the power if it is above or below these limits. They also protect against power surges. All of this is done automatically! When the problem is fixed then they will restore power for you. The danger of not having a Surge Guard is that every electronic or electric item is at risk. Think about the cost to replace the circuit board in a refrigerator, replace a microwave, your air conditioner, TVs, DVR, etc. You can also have problems with things that have heating elements in them. Also think about the capabilities of the work campers who have to fix the wiring in the campground pedestals and do it wrong. They are not licensed electricians! You need a Surge Guard!

  9. We also have a portable surge protector which Kevin locks to the pedestal and plugs our cord into. I don't really know how all of this works, but I do know we wouldn't be without it. It has saved us when lightening struck near our site and when we had low voltage at a campground in California. I would definitely recommend this be one of your first purchases.

  10. I have a portable surge guard and it saved our air conditioner one very hot summer day when one leg of the 50 amp circuit on the power pedestal burned out.

    Would be nice if manufacturers at least offered it as an option.

  11. The surge protector has saved us and our appliances and electronics many, many times. It's insurance to protect you and your coach. Best investment we ever made! They are not cheap but neither will be repairing the electronics on your coach once they get fried! Excellent comments and explanations from previous statements!


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