Imagine you are at home during a thunderstorm. You and your family working are working away on your respective computers, and zap, a nearby lightning strike causes a power surge to flow through your home’s electrical wiring and ethernet cables. Computers go down, data is lost, the television stops working and your home’s smart appliances go on the blink. A whole-home surge protector could have saved you a whole lot of trouble.
Do You Need a Whole-Home Surge Protector or Are Power Strips Enough?
Most people know enough to plug their computers into high voltage surge protectors with backup batteries. But what about the computers in your TV and your smart appliances like your refrigerator and washing machine? Many new appliances come with their own computers that talk to the internet; this new technology is called internet of things (IoT). Electrical surges can damage or destroy these expensive devices. Whole-home surge protectors can protect all of the electronics and appliances in your home, including those items hard-wired into your electrical systems that cannot be protected on power strips.
What Causes Power Surges?
What are the causes of power surges? Several things can cause power surges that can damage your home’s electrical systems:
- Lightning strikes near your home
- Compressors that turn on and off in appliances such as air conditioners and refrigerators
- Power surges originating from your electric utility company during power grid switching
Large increases in voltage above an appliance’s normal operating voltage can cause an arc of electrical current within the appliance, and the heat generated in the arc can damage electronic circuit boards and other electrical components.
Smaller, repeated power surges can cause damage, too, and could be the reason your TV or cordless phone mysteriously stops working. These smaller surges can cause damage slowly, so your computer or TV may continue to function until the integrity of the electronic components finally erodes. This shortens the life span of appliances and electronics.
What is the Best Type of Surge Protector?
There are two types of surge protection; point-of-use and service entrance. Point-of-use surge protectors includes devices such as power strips with surge protectors that protect the devices plugged into them. Service entrance surge suppression devices, also known as whole-home surge protectors, mount on your main electrical panel or at the base of your electric meter.
Whole-home surge protectors protect all of your home electronics and all of the items on your electrical system, including lights, motors, outlets, light switches. They protect the items that are hard-wired into your electrical system, like your oven and CO/smoke detectors that cannot be placed on point-of-use surge protectors. Whole-home surge protectors also provide a second tier of protection to devices on point-of-use surge protectors.
There are many types of whole-home surge protection options and depending upon your home you may need more than one. Installation of these devices is not for novices. Working on high-capacity power circuits can be dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing, and many manufacturers recommend hiring an electrician to perform the installation. Our Anthony PHCE electricians will assess the best protection for you home and install it for you, so you know it is working correctly.
Call a Qualified Anthony PHCE Electrician
Today’s homeowners possess a sizeable investment in home electronics and appliances. Whole-home surge protection is a smart investment to prevent damage to, and extend the life of, the electrical items and systems in your home. Call our Anthony PHCE electricians today at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y 268-4669 (913) or (816).