Is surge protector’s reading sufficient to be safe from “hot skin”?

  RV Electricity with Mike Sokol Dear Mike, Thank you so much for your discussion of “hot skin.” I recently got a shock touching my small trailer and found out I had a bad extension cord. A question: I use a surge protector between shore power and my trailer. The protector claims to detect lack of power, reversed polarity, open... Read More

Trail-Lite RV has pump and electrical issues

  Dear Gary, I recently purchased a 2007 R-Vision Trail-Lite RV. I live in Iowa and am trying to winterize it but when I put the RV antifreeze in, I can’t get it to circulate throughout the system. Am I doing something wrong or do you think I have a bad pump? The owner’s manual has very sparse information. I... Read More

Make plug-in electric heaters safer with SmartPlug

  By Bob Difley Portable heaters are a convenient way to ward off the season’s chill, but these devices increase amperage loads that poorly maintained electrical systems can’t handle. SmartPlug Systems, maker of the revolutionary SmartPlug, offers tips to identify potential safety hazards in a shore power system, and ways to safeguard against overheating and possible fire. With a traditional... Read More

RV electricity: Reader asks meaning of AC power

  Reader Question: Forgive my electrical ignorance but doesn’t “AC” mean “alternating current”? Does that mean that the hot and neutral wires are constantly reversing? Mike’s response: The “Hot” wire is also known as the “Line”, and it is indeed energized with 120 volts AC (in the USA). The Neutral wire is “bonded” to the earth ground rod(s) at the incoming... Read More

Mystery of the smokin’ shore power connection

  By Chris DoughertyChris Dougherty is a certified RV technician. Here is a letter he received from a reader while he was serving as RVtravel.com’s technical editor. Dear Chris,A couple weekends ago, we were using close to the rated 30 amp draw on our trailer with fridge, water heater, periodic microwave, HVAC, etc., when my son suddenly told me that... Read More

Troubleshooting Onan genset “won’t-starts”

  By Chris DoughertyChris Dougherty is a certified RV technician. Here is a letter he received from a reader while he was serving as RVtravel.com’s technical editor. Dear Chris,I’m having a dilemma with my Onan generator. It won’t stay running and it quits when I take my finger off the START button, or cuts out and dies if it decides... Read More