How to protect your home from power surges?
A power surge is an unexpected increase in electrical current in a circuit that can cause the deterioration of the electrical circuit itself or cause damage to electronics connected to the circuit such as appliances. Power surges are one of the leading causes of electrical damage, which is why setting up protective measures against them is a necessity.
What causes power surges?
There are many causes of power surges that can cause damage to your home. Here are some of the most common:
· Appliances inside your home
· Defective electrical wiring
· Power fluctuations In the grid
· Sudden increase in power usage in the grid
· Accidents that involve power lines, posts and other electrical infrastructure
There are many minor causes of a power surge, but the ones listed above are the main culprits.
Are power surges that dangerous?
Though they may not always be as dramatic as a lightning strike, the average house experiences minute power surges around 20 times a day. And these small surges cause damage in your electric devices, which adds up. After these small power surges, your devices will wear out and eventually stop working. So, how to protect our homes from this kind of electrical problem?
How to protect your homes from power surges?
Electricity is fluid and very unpredictable, that is why installing a system that will protect you completely from power surges is difficult. However, due to technology, here are some of the devices and systems that can help prevent power surge damages.
Use surge protectors
One of the simplest ways of protecting your home from power surges is to use surge protectors. These devices are usually plugged in to the outlet and divert power spikes to a grounding wire before they can get to your appliances. They can prevent the surge from damaging the electrical systems inside your appliance. You can easily ask purchase surge protectors at computer and electrical stores. UPS devices, which we connect our devices are not alternatives for surge protectors.
When are UPS needed?
An Uninterruptible Power Source (UPS) is a small device, which acts as a power backup when a blackout occurs. It also helps regulate the voltage when the power is fluctuating. However, it is not that reliable to protect against severe power surges.
Use surge arrestors
The main difference between surge protectors and surge arrestors is where they are located. A surge arrestor is usually installed where the power from the grid comes into your house. It is similar in function to the fuse box, but instead of protecting appliances from current surges, a surge arrestor protects the entire house from a sudden rise in voltage. You can talk to your electrician to have your home fitted with these devices to protect your homes from damage due to surges.
Regular inspection of electrical wiring
Faulty electrical wiring is another cause of power surges in a house. Degraded wires or wires that have been damaged can have little to no resistance to power surges. A homeowner needs to have their electrical wiring inspected regularly. It will help you maintain the safety and integrity of your home and your electronics.
You’ll know if there’s faulty wiring if:
1. There’s a distinctive buzzing sound near the wire. If left alone, it could lead to a power surge that will damage any electronics plugged into the socket the faulty wiring goes to.
2. If there are visible signs of burns or the smell of burning plastic near the wiring in question.
3. The circuit breakers always trip. It is a sign that the electricity is fluctuating more or less due to sudden power surges.
Finally, unplug everything when not in use.
The next thing you can do to protect your appliances from surges is to unplug them when not in use. Some appliances have internal devices continually working even when it has been turned ‘off’. Computers, refrigerators, and devices with microchips are examples. Whenever there is a high likelihood of surges such as when there’s a thunderstorm, it is wise to unplug vulnerable gadget and appliances. You’ll be sure that all unplug appliances will never be prone or damaged to power surges.
In the end, protection against power surges boils down to thinking in advance. The saying ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ applies here as thousands of dollars’ worth of repairs and replacement of damaged electrical devices can be the result. So, if you’re upgrading your home, protect it by making sure you have a decent amount of protection against surges.