Originally Posted by Loboclone
You will read many posts saying Hard wire is the way to go...............however we did a hard wire a year ago. It lasted 4 months and failed. Cost an arm and 2 legs to get removed by a electrician. I will never do a hard wire again, pedestal mount is for me. At least I can replace it without an issue or electrician when traveling.
I'm not a big fan of a hard wired unit. Why do I want a device inside that is designed to take a hit from a surge and protect whatever is downstream electrically from it? I have seen protection devices that actually experienced "non passive failure" while absorbing this hit. I had rather this type of failure happen outside. And it can be replaced easily from the pedestal also, unless it caught fire and melted itself to the pedestal, but even that would be outside. Again, outside is best for me.
I have a PT50C that has been hanging around outside for the past 5.5 years and hasn't walked off yet which I know is the concern of some. I full time and I do mean it has been outside for 5.5 years. I used to think the flashing LED panel at night was an invitation to "here I am come get me" so I put a piece of tape over the LED. It fell off somewhere along the line and I just haven't put it back. Besides, I like to look at the voltage occasionally.
The OP said he was looking for a good surge protector that wouldn't break the bank. Unfortunately I don't think he will find that in the same unit. A good one (EMS is better than a simple surge protector) is going to cost some bucks, but a lot less than the damage that can occur without one or just a plain surge protector. After almost 6 years full time and lots of parks, I have seen damage from power issues and not all of it is from lightning strikes. RV park power systems are usually old and it takes an EMS system to spot their problems before damage can occur to your rig.
I am so paranoid about where I plug in I actually have 2 PT50C's. One in service and a brand new one in a box ready to be used if the primary one gets zapped and has to go back to the factory for warranty service (lifetime warranty).