Power surges are short bursts of electricity that can range from a few volts to a few hundred thousand. Lightning strikes, downed power lines, the sudden turning-on of high powered devices, and more can all lead to power surges. Surges themselves can vary from unnoticeable to disastrous, but they all leave their mark in some way.
Larger surges like those caused by utility companies and lightning are the most dangerous. These can completely fry the electrical components of refrigerators or other appliances. Furthermore, affected areas are at greater risk of electrical fire. These surges can cause homeowners a lot of heartache as they are not only expensive to repair after the fact, but cause a very serious risk to life and property. Smaller surges may create shocks or cause electronics to degrade faster. This means that anything plugged in to the wall will experience a decreased life expectancy with every surge.
Surge protectors can’t eliminate the risks of a surge entirely, but they can absorb the vast majority of the blow. They work by attempting to limit the voltage to an electrical device by either blocking or shorting current. The intention is to reduce the voltage below a safe threshold. Surge protectors generally come in two different forms: as power strips used inside or a device built into the power panel.
Strips vs Whole House Protection
Strip protectors are used to protect your electronics from minor surges caused by sources temporarily downed power lines or even the motors in your own electrical appliances. This type of protection helps your electronics live longer, since they won’t be slowly broken down by small surges over time. Whole house protection offers a higher level of electrical insurance. Remember those hundreds of thousands of volts we mentioned before? Strip protectors are no match for that kind of power. In the case of a massive surge, a whole house surge protection system will protect your home and everything in it.
As electricity experts who have been in the business for a lot of years (30 of them in fact!), we’ve discovered from experience that the best way to keep your home safe is to integrate power strips and a whole house system for the highest protection. Contact us today to get started!