What Do Surge Protectors Actually Do?

A surge protector is a device used to protect your technology from random power spikes and damage. A power strike can happen from internal and external forces happening in and around your home. It is important to always keep your most expensive and valuable electronics plugged into a surge protector.

What Is The Difference Between A Power Strip And A Surge Protector?

Most people think that power strips and surge protectors are the same item; sadly, they are not. The difference between a surge protector and power strip is simple.

  • A power strip plugs into your wall outlet and allows for multiple items to be used at once. This is what you use to plug multiple items into the outlet at once.
  • A surge protector is like a power strip in the sense that it also allows for multiple items to be plugged into the wall outlet. It has an extra bonus because it protects these electronics from being fried. Electronics are fried from a power strike that causes an increase in power for a short moment.

What Causes A Power Strike?

A power strike can be caused by a number of different things such as:

  • Lightning
  • Power outages
  • Short circuits
  • Hair dryers
  • Power tools

About 80 percent of all power strikes happen inside the home. This is from running the dishwasher, someone blow dryer their hair, and your child playing video games at the same time. All these items have such high energy that they causes these power strikes. It happens so fast that people normally do not notice them.

How Can Surge Protectors Help?

The standard electrical outlet doesn’t have any protection against power strikes. Surge Protectors use a system that diverts the energy to the safe threshold to protect all our your electronics.

There are two common ways a surge protector is made: A MOV or a Gas Discharge Arrestor. They both do the same thing, but the gas discharge arrestor, uses gas tubes inside to divert the energy to a safe place.

When Should I Use A Surge Protector?

The best time to use one is all the time! However, it does not need to be used on every electronic in the house. The ones it needs to be used on is the most expensive ones like the TV, Computer, Cell Phone charger, and others.

A surge protector does not last forever. It is hard to tell when one dies or stops properly working, but you can buy ones with indication lights on the top. A common surge protector is about $8.00- $50.00 This all depends on the electronics that are plugged in and how much protection you want. Commonly, the cheaper the protector the less it will be helpful when a power strike occurs.

Furthermore, one of the most important things to research when looking for a surge protector is the Joules Rating. The higher the rating the the more and higher power strikes the protector can handle.

A surge protector is an important item in a household. Another important item is an up-to-date electrical system. A surge protector will not help it your system is outdated.

For help on electrical repairs and other high power electrical items, call us today!

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