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Power Surges - Be in the Know

You hear about them often. You may have even experienced one or two yourself. The damages caused can range anywhere from a dead microwave to an entire computer system being fried.

What exactly is a power surge? According to the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), a power surge is a sudden and unwanted increase in voltage that can damage or destroy electronic equipment.

How do power surges occur? Power surges occur when appliances cycle off and on. This could an appliance as large as an air condition unit for a regular residential home to something as small as a blow dryer. They also stem from lightning strikes and downed power lines.

Lightning strike surges are the least common type, but the most powerful and damage-inflicting. Although they can and generally do cause disastrous damages, the strike has to be less than a mile from the house to actually cause any damage. This is why they are so uncommon, especially in heavily populated residential areas.

More common surges occur from household appliances and downed power lines. The damages from these types of surges in generally much more minor than the previously discussed, but additionally the damages may not be evident for some time. You could have a surge occur in your home, but perhaps your washer and dryer do not stop working for a few months.

How do you protect your home from a power surge? That’s easy! Whole-home surge protectors. These suppressors are hard-wired to the home’s service panel. Installation does require a licensed electrician, to ensure proper installation and functionality of the suppressor. These suppressors should be rated to stop, at minimum, a 40,000AMP surge that occurs in your home.

It is a quick process and a very smart investment for your home. Don’t wait until you get a power surge to invest in a whole-home surge protector. Call our office with any questions or to get scheduled to have one installed today!

You can also check out the ESFI website for more information regarding surge protector safety and tips.

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