Power surges are something every electrician is familiar with, and many homeowners have unfortunately experienced their aftereffects. Power surges can be caused by a variety of factors, both natural and artificial. Protecting your home and possessions is done through the use of surge protectors, which can be point-of-use or whole-house installations. Read on to learn more about power surges and keeping yourself safe.
Anatomy of a Surge
Power surges occur when overvoltage is carried through electrical supply lines. The scale of a power surge can range from nearly undetectable, such as those that occur almost daily within our homes, to city-affecting surges that can cause blackouts.
One of the most common sources of power surges is through high-powered devices. This can be your refrigerator, which can cause a minor surge every time it turns on. This surge travels throughout your home's electrical system, and may not cause any damage. Over time, however, these surges can take their toll on your electrical system.
Large power surges can occur due to lightning strikes or malfunctions at power plants. These surges enter your home from the outside, and can cause large amounts of damage. Depending upon the source of a power surge, your measures of protection will vary.
Protecting against a Power Surge
Many homeowners are familiar with point-of-use surge protectors. These plug into your wall outlet, and then have attached power strips so multiple components can be plugged into a single outlet. Keep in mind that power strips and surge protectors are not one and the same. It is important that you choose a surge protector that is labeled as such to protect sensitive components such as your computer or media center.
Whole-house surge protectors are designed to interrupt the flow of a severe power surge before it enters your house. These need to be installed by a qualified electrician, and will help keep your home safe in the event of severe storms and other causes of surges.
Learn more about keeping your home and possessions safe from power surges when you contact TAP and Sons Electric at (480) 507-2900. Your electrical service panel plays a large part in keeping your home safe from surges, so consider our lifetime warranty when you replace your panel.