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Do You Experience Frequent Power Surges?


Constant power surges can be a huge hassle for homeowners. One moment you’re watching Big Brother Canada with the girls and the next you’re staring at a black screen. Next thing you know, you’re spending an hour of your wine night bent behind the T.V. and trying to get it to turn on again. One power surge won’t usually do too much damage, but multiple surges can be a sign that all is not well in your electrical system. In this week’s article, we are going to explore what causes electrical surges, what damage they can cause, and what you can do about it.

The Causes

  • Lightening.
  • High-Power Electrical Devices.
  • Faulty Wiring.
  • Utility Company Equipment.
  • Downed Power Lines.

While this list is in no way exhaustive, it does paint a fairly clear picture of the main culprits that cause power surges. Electricians often differentiate between the causes and categorize them as either external or internal surges. External surges are the ones caused by outside sources such as lightning. Internal  surges are those that originate within the home, such as when high-powered electrical devices are turned on. External tend to be the most damaging, but internal occur more regularly. Most of the time you may not even notice, but too often and these surges can fry your electrical system.

The Effects

Power surges can cause an arc of electrical current within appliances. This arc generates an incredible amount of heat, oftentimes damaging the electronic circuit boards or other components. In some cases, this may wreck your electronics to a point where they stop working. Even if your appliances continue to work after repeated surges, their electrical components could be eroding inside.

The Fix

There are a number of ways to protect against power surges. Unsurprisingly, it depends completely on the cause of the surge. Frequent internal surges may indicate something wrong with your circuit breaker. Have an electrician take a look to ensure that your panel is tripping only when it is supposed to. As mentioned above, internal surges can be caused by your own appliances. If you can narrow down the appliance, you can adjust its circuit. Surge protection devices can also help by diverting the surge to the ground instead of your appliances.

If you are experiencing frequent power surges, don’t turn a blind eye. Contact a certified electrician right away to mitigate any hazards hiding in your home.

Written by 4-Star Electric

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