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Thread: Here is why we bought an EMS

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    Here is why we bought an EMS

    When we pulled into the first spot at the campground we are staying in currently and plugged in our AC power, our hard-wired Progressive 50 Amp EMS complained very loudly and refused to allow power into the coach. I was never sure if it was our 30 Amp dogleg or the pedestal outlet. But our neighbor came out and pointed out that every other spot was 50 amp and the empty slot next door was a 50, so we moved and haven't had any issues here.

    Tonight, we saw a Class C motorhome pull into the slot next to us (that we had problems with). I advised the lady driving the coach to hook up their AC cord before setting up to make sure there were no problems. When she plugged it in, something popped inside the coach. Her son and grandchildren were inside and the children indicated that something was smoking.

    The son and I found that what was later determined to be the 120/12V converter had essentially shorted out and was smoldering. We grabbed the fire extinguisher and finally got the smoldering components put out. Val kept the children busy in our trailer while we aired out the motorhome.

    I can't say for sure that the converter in their motor home was just defective and that was its time to go or what, but I'm sure glad our EMS suggested we move to another site. We did measure the pedestal outlet with my digital meter and it was showing 122 VAC between ground and one leg. The other leg showed a couple of volts to ground. I never did see what error my EMS threw when we had hooked up to it.

    They left with thanks that I was able to help out in what could have been a terrible situation and now are much more familiar with how to operate their fire extinguisher. Fortunately, they have family in town and were heading there to spend the night.
    Malcolm Talley
    2015 Big Country 3650RL

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    Senior Member 4ever's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    Good that everyone is OK and that you were there to assist. Also, good to have the EMS.

    2014 Landmark, Grand Canyon
    2011, F350 Lariet Crew Cab, 4x4 Dually, 6.7 Diesel
    Heartland Owners Club # 1754

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    Senior Member Greengas's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    My Landmark came with a built in surge suppressor/transfer switch. Is this the same thing as the EMS and if not can I add it to my coach?

    Ronn and Sarah Greengas
    Traveling the World Together
    Since 1981

    Current Truck: 2017 F350 SRW LB 4x4 The "Bronze Goddess" w/Anderson Hitch
    Previous Truck: 2012 F350 SRW SB 4x4 Airlift 5000 Air Bags with Wireless Remote
    Current Coach: 2014 Landmark San Antonio
    Previous Coach: 2012 Open Range Roamer 316rl
    Colorado Rally - Sep 2013
    Colorado Rally - May 2014

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    Senior Member Lou_and_Bette's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    Quote Originally Posted by MCT View Post
    advised the lady driving the coach to hook up their AC cord before setting up to make sure there were no problems.
    Exactly why I bought the portable EMS so I could check before doing anything else, like backing in to a site only to find there was a problem with the electric. It has only happened once so far, but checked one site and found there was 230 volts down one leg and 20 or so volts down the other...I'm sure that if I had hooked up with no protection something would have been fried in the rig
    Lou and Bette - R.I.P. Milo (the Maltese) we will miss him
    2013 F450
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    Moderator danemayer's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    Quote Originally Posted by Greengas View Post
    My Landmark came with a built in surge suppressor/transfer switch. Is this the same thing as the EMS and if not can I add it to my coach?
    Ronn,

    I believe your Landmark has this device which provides some protection. From the spec sheet, it looks to me like it protects against some common problems but doesn't protect against low or high voltage conditions, accidental 240V conditions and a few other things.

    You can add a portable or in-line EMS. The contenders are Progressive and TRC. One thing to consider is the warranty. I believe Progressive went to a lifetime warranty in 2012. I don't know if TRC has followed. You can take a look at the manuals here.


    Dan and Ann Mayer & fur baby Callie the Rally Dog
    2011 Landmark Rushmore
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    Past Heartland Ambassador kakampers's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    Quote Originally Posted by Greengas View Post
    My Landmark came with a built in surge suppressor/transfer switch. Is this the same thing as the EMS and if not can I add it to my coach?
    The EMS by Progressive protects against alot more than just surges...It has stopped High Voltage, Low Voltage, High Cycles, open ground situations, and with 50 amp it protects both legs...pretty much everything you can think of electrically. It is a first line of defense as it will NOT allow power to the coach if detects any issues with the power supply.

    We have had a hardwired EMS added to both of our Heartlands...will never be without one. When we ordered the Landmark, that was the first thing we bought to install as soon as we received the coach....
    Ken & Kathy - H.O.C. #1077
    '17 GMC 3500HD Denali 4WD DRW Long Bed w/Nav, Sunroof, Curt 24Q, WIFI, Sprayed liner, Deep Ruby Metallic!
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    We did the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lou_and_Bette View Post
    Exactly why I bought the portable EMS so I could check before doing anything else, like backing in to a site only to find there was a problem with the electric. It has only happened once so far, but checked one site and found there was 230 volts down one leg and 20 or so volts down the other...I'm sure that if I had hooked up with no protection something would have been fried in the rig

  8. Print this Post   #8
    Senior Member Greengas's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    Quote Originally Posted by danemayer View Post
    Ronn,

    I believe your Landmark has this device which provides some protection. From the spec sheet, it looks to me like it protects against some common problems but doesn't protect against low or high voltage conditions, accidental 240V conditions and a few other things.

    You can add a portable or in-line EMS. The contenders are Progressive and TRC. One thing to consider is the warranty. I believe Progressive went to a lifetime warranty in 2012. I don't know if TRC has followed. You can take a look at the manuals here.
    Dan

    so if I add an EMS to my coach I would put it in-line but in front of my current surge suppressor, correct? And doing that would not change the way that my current set up works right? I don't have a generator right now but if I add one in the future I would still want the transfer switch to operate correctly. And how difficult of a job is it to install?

    Ronn and Sarah Greengas
    Traveling the World Together
    Since 1981

    Current Truck: 2017 F350 SRW LB 4x4 The "Bronze Goddess" w/Anderson Hitch
    Previous Truck: 2012 F350 SRW SB 4x4 Airlift 5000 Air Bags with Wireless Remote
    Current Coach: 2014 Landmark San Antonio
    Previous Coach: 2012 Open Range Roamer 316rl
    Colorado Rally - Sep 2013
    Colorado Rally - May 2014

  9. Print this Post   #9
    Moderator danemayer's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    Ronn,

    Some people would say it's not too hard. I think the hardest part is working with #6 wire which people usually describe as a pain - in a cramped space.

    I've been lying on my back with my head in the plumbing area doing too many other mods already. I'm happy with the portable EMS.

    If you go inline, I think you want to be in between the power cord and the transfer switch.


    Dan and Ann Mayer & fur baby Callie the Rally Dog
    2011 Landmark Rushmore
    • MorRyde 8K Independent Suspension
    • 8K Kodiak Disc Brakes
    • RV Comfort Systems Cheap Heat
    • MorRyde 33x90 Sliding Cargo Tray
    • Torklift Glowstep Revolution Aluminum Steps & Dirt Destroyer

    2014 RAM 3500 Laramie
    • Cummins 6.7 Diesel, AISIN Transmission
    • 4x4, Long box, Crew Cab, DRW 3.73
    • Hensley BD3 TrailerSaver Hitch
    • Garmin RV760 GPS


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  10. Print this Post   #10
    Senior Member scottyb's Avatar
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    Re: Here is why we bought an EMS

    If your transfer switch is for a generator, I would install it after the transfer switch and before the panel. That way it will guard against any voltage issues your generator might create if something goes awry. That's where I installed ours. As Dan mentioned, the tight quarters is the biggest obstacle.
    2007 Newmar Mountain Aire 4528 Diesel Pusher
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