Crucial Things to Know About a Power Surge: Cause, Effects, and More

Crucial Things to Know About a Power Surge: Cause, Effects, and More

Have you heard about power surges but still not sure what it is, what happens during one? Learn why you should protect yourself from a power surge here.

About 60-80% of power surges happen from internal sources within your home or office.

A power surge can come at any moment and cause instant damage to your expensive electrical devices! It happens when something boosts the electrical charge somewhere along your power lines.

If you’re wondering how a power surge can affect you and what you can do about it, then you’ve come to the right place.

Let’s talk about what a power surge is and how you can protect yourself from one. 

How Does a Power Surge Happen?

There are a number of ways that a power surge can occur in your home. One way that most people are familiar with is lightning. When lightning strikes near a powerline, this can affect the electrical pressure and cause a sudden surge of voltage. 

This can happen even if it’s underground, along electrical poles, or in a building. Luckily this is one of the least common causes of a power surge. There is no power surge protection for a direct lightning strike.

If you are aware of a lightning storm coming, your best bet is to unplug vulnerable devices.

More often power surges are caused by large electrical devices such as elevators, air conditioners, and refrigerators.

The components inside this equipment like compressors and motors, take a lot of electricity to run. Because these items require a ton of energy to switch on and off, it can create a large demand for power suddenly.

Even though these types of electronics won’t cause the same surge as a lightning strike, they can still cause significant damage. Whether it’s overtime or instantly, these power surges can hurt electrical components. Plus, they actually occur fairly often in most building’s electrical systems.

Another cause of power surges is faulty wiring within the equipment itself or downed power lines.

The complexity of an electric system from a power generator into the outlets in your home or office leaves room for error or failure. There are many instances when uneven power flow can occur. 

How Can You Protect Your Home?

In today’s world of expensive electronics, you probably own a number of devices that are difficult or impossible to replace yet critical to your daily life. That’s why surge protection for your home is so important.

If you tend to have frequent surges then it’s a good idea to contact an electrician. They can take a look at your wiring and also help you set up surge protection in your home.

Surge protection devices limit the voltage supplied by preventing volts from going above what is safe. You can install a whole-house surge arrestor which is usually installed near your electric meter. This protects your entire home or office from exceeding a dangerous range of voltage.

While these devices protect from surges due to outside sources such as utility company issues and transformer switching, it won’t protect your devices from power surges from within your home or office.

That’s why individual surge protectors for your most valuable devices are recommended.

Why Do You Need Surge Protectors?

As mentioned earlier, power surges are common and can destroy your electronic devices unexpectedly or overtime. This is because, in today’s modern world, technology such as computers, microwaves, and smart TVs contain sophisticated microprocessors.

Our current advanced technology is more susceptible to surges because they require a stable current at the right voltage due to their sensitive components. Surge protectors can be installed for your whole house or for particular devices to prevent damage. 

It goes without saying that you should purchase a surge protector for your computer. Some surge protectors come with an indicator light that reassures you it is functioning properly.

Not only is your computer itself an expensive device but the data on it may be irreplaceable. Investing in a quality surge protector is well worth it in the long run.

You should also consider using surge protectors on your other high-end electronic equipment. This includes your entertainment center such as a smart TV, gaming systems, and Blueray player.

What Surge Protector Should You Buy?

When it comes to protecting your valuables, you don’t want to waste money on a low-quality surge protector. There is a large range of performance and price when it comes to surge protectors.

It goes without saying that the cheaper surge protectors are most often the least effective in providing protection. However, you also don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to buy the top of the line system.

Ultimately you can decide how much you are willing to spend in exchange for the protection of valuable data. For your home, you can purchase individual surge protectors for outlets.

These come in a basic power strip that provides the least amount of protection for a low cost. A step up in quality is a power strip costing between $15 to $25.

A surge station that works well for your computer offers a higher level of voltage protection.  Some include built-in circuit breakers and can range from $30 to $100 each depending on their performance.

You may want to purchase a unit that includes an uninterruptable power supply (UPS). These will store power into a battery so you have time to save your work before your computer gets turned off.

Outsmart Power Surges

Are you looking for protection from a power surge in your home or office? Now that you know power surges are common and inevitable you may be ready to take steps to protect your electronics.

Luckily, you can purchase affordable surge protection for your outlets. However, you may also want to explore whole-home surge protection.

This must be installed by a qualified electrician but will protect your entire electrical system including large appliances, outlets, and light switches.

We can offer the professional service you are looking for. Check out our site to learn more about making your home safe from surges.

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