Do you use an EMS/Smart surge protector on your RV?

Many RVers use a basic surge protector when they hook up their RV to shore power. The more advanced surge protectors are sometimes called an EMS, which means Electrical Management System. Some of these “Smart” EMS surge protectors are built right into an RV, while others like those shown below plug into a power pedestal, and then the RV’s electrical... Read More

Power pedestal testing (including at COE campgrounds), Part 3

By Mike Sokol Here’s Part 3 of my article about testing pedestals, which includes U.S Army Corps of Engineers (COE) campgrounds that won’t allow you to use your own meter probes. For a review of Part 2 of the article, click here. As a recap, you might remember that some Corps of Engineers campgrounds are no longer allowing you to... Read More

RV Electricity Newsletter by Mike Sokol – What’s new, you?

Dear Mike, What’s this I hear you’ll soon be starting your own RV Electricity Newsletter on RVtravel.com? What kind of topics will you be covering?– Mike Sokol Hey Mike, you sure are a good-looking guy… (Sorry, I can’t help myself) By golly, you’re right… I am indeed starting my own monthly RV Electricity Newsletter beginning this November, and need the... Read More

Does coiled extension cord heat up in storage bucket?

Hey Mike, I was thinking about getting a bucket to store my shore power extension cord, or maybe even one of those fancy reels. But my neighbor who’s an electrician told me that the coil of wire will create some sort of induction heating effect and the wire will get hot. He recommends that I pull the entire extension cord... Read More

What power extension cord for RV parked 90 feet from outlet?

  Mike, I was reading an article you wrote about 30A pedestals. I’ve just purchased a piece of land and there’s a new 30A RV outlet. The problem is that the plug is 90 feet away from my RV parking. I’m trying to keep it near the connection to the septic system. The RV is a 30A travel trailer with... Read More

Basic voltage measurements at a campground pedestal

  I just had a phone call from a nervous camper that went something like this: Hey Mike, Guess I should have read your columns more closely, but just what are the lowest and highest voltage readings acceptable at a campground pedestal? —Chuck Chuck, it does get a bit confusing at times since the acceptable voltage in the U.S. has... Read More

Should you unplug your RV during a lightning storm?

RVtravel.com editor Chuck Woodbury talks with RV electricity authority Mike Sokol of NoShockZone.org about whether it’s a good idea to unplug an RV from electric hookups during a lightning storm. Mike has the answer and an explanation about how a damaging strike can happen even if the strike occurs far away. Be sure to sign up for Mike’s new monthly... Read More

What’s a ground loop tester and do I need one?

  Hey Mike, I’ve read in several of your posts on various sites that you recommend a Ground Impedance Tester as the “Gold Standard.” What exactly is it and what does it cost? Should I use one for my own testing? —Stan B. Stan, So here’s the story on the Ground Loop Impedance Tester. These are pretty expensive devices for... Read More