Electrical storm got you worried about surge protection? Here’s how to protect your home.
Updated: Feb 28
What is a power surge? It’s a spike in your home’s electrical current. They are sometimes caused by electrical strikes (we have a few of those around here, right?) downed power lines, and surges from your power utility, but 80% of surges originate from right inside your home—when electrical equipment like refrigerators and air conditioners cycle on and off.
Are power surges bad?
Unfortunately, power surges can cause damage to your home electronics, “burning out” computer monitors, expensive flat-screen TVs, and other equipment. In some cases, they can even cause fires. This is particularly the case if you have faulty wiring somewhere in your home.
To protect your home, may we suggest surge protection layering?
Just like dressing for a fall day, protecting your home from power surges works best with a couple of layers. This is because you need two types of protection, depending on how big a power surge you are dealing with.
Layer 1: Point-of-use surge protectors.
Usually, these look like your standard power strip. You plug them into the outlet and then plug those expensive bits of electronic equipment into them. When buying your surge protector, make sure you look for the one with the highest Joule rating, which shows how big an electrical spike the strip can absorb. Look for something rated 600 Joules or higher.
You can also have your local electrician install a special surge-protecting outlet instead of the power strip where you plug in your fancy electronics. These work in much the same way as the standard strip protectors.
The problem is that even the best point-of-use surge protectors only go so high. And if you get a power surge that is larger than they can handle, they might actually overheat and catch fire themselves.
Layer 2: Whole-home surge protectors.
This is where your second layer comes in. Your local electrician can install what is known as a whole-home surge protector to protect your home from larger power surges. This is a single device that is connected to your main electrical panel. It turns away extra voltage before it even enters your home. This is the ultimate level of protection from damage to your electrical equipment and fires.
So, to make sure you’re covered in all cases, have an electrician install a whole-home surge protector, and then make sure you have point-of-use protection at your outlets as well. That way you’re well-layered for all weather!
IES Home Electrical Services is a McKinney-based electrical company dedicated to providing area homeowners with the best quality of work and unparalleled customer service, backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Proudly serving McKinney, Frisco, Prosper, Celina, Gunter, Anna, Aubrey, Bonham, Crossroads, Melissa, Sherman, Farmersville, Little Elm, Princeton, Prosper, Van Alstyne, Hackberry, and Denison.
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