Our lifestyles have been built around and even require electricity to live comfortably and safely. We’ve come to a day and age where we can hardly live without our electric appliances. With that in mind, power surges pose a significant threat to your appliances and devices – and they are more common than you’d think.
Power surges are sudden spikes in electrical voltage that can cause significant harm to your home and devices. Understanding power surges is the first step to guard against them, so our pros at Veteran Air are here to help guide you through what you need to know to handle these surges.
Let’s get started!
Understanding Power Surges
A power surge, in simple terms, is an abrupt increase in electrical voltage significantly above the standard level. While your home typically operates at 120 volts, during a surge, this can spike much higher, overloading and damaging the circuitry of connected devices.
What Causes Power Surges?
Electrical surges can be triggered by several factors:
Severe weather events like lightning strikes can produce power surges. Other external issues like power line damage due to fallen trees, traffic accidents, or maintenance work can also cause surges.
Within your home, surges can occur when large appliances like air conditioners or refrigerators turn on and off. These appliances require a significant amount of electricity to start up, disrupting the steady flow of voltage in your home’s electrical system.
The Impact of Power Surges
A variety of household devices are susceptible to damage from power surges, including:
- Computers and Laptops: These devices contain sensitive electronic components that can be easily damaged by excess voltage.
- Televisions and Entertainment Systems: Modern TVs and related equipment are particularly vulnerable due to their complex circuitry.
- Kitchen Appliances: Refrigerators, microwaves, and dishwashers, among others, can suffer from shortened lifespans or immediate breakdowns due to surges.
- Heating and Cooling Systems: HVAC units can incur substantial damage from surges, leading to expensive repairs or replacements.
Preventing Power Surges
Here are some ways you can protect your household against damage from power surges.
These devices are essential in guarding against power surges, especially for sensitive electronics. Surge protectors work by diverting excess voltage away from your devices, preventing damage.
Most power strips have surge protection, however many smaller strips or outlet extenders do NOT. Be sure to check!
IMPORTANT > Know When to Call an Emergency Electrician
Whole-House Surge Protectors
For comprehensive protection, a whole-house surge protection system installed at your electrical panel is ideal. It acts as a barrier against external surges, safeguarding your entire home’s electrical system.
Unplug During Storms
If you don’t have a surge protector on certain devices, the simplest way to protect them during a lightning storm is to unplug them. While it may not always be practical, this method is 100% effective in preventing surge damage.
Regular Electrical Inspections
Be sure to schedule regular electrical inspections to certify that your home’s wiring is up to date and in good condition. Older homes or homes with DIY wiring modifications are particularly at risk for internal surges.
Proper Outlet Management
Avoid overloading outlets with too many devices, especially high-energy appliances. Distribute your appliances across multiple circuits to minimize the risk of surges.
While You’re Here > Preventing Common Electrical Hazards
Invest in Quality Appliances
If you have the means, choose appliances with built-in surge protection. These models can offer an added layer of defense against voltage spikes.
Keep Your Home Safe from Electrical Surges with Veteran Air
At Veteran Air, we’re committed to helping you maintain a safe and surge-free home. Our team of experts can assist in installing whole-house surge protectors, conducting thorough electrical inspections, and offering tailored advice to safeguard your appliances and devices.
Don’t let power surges disrupt your home life. Reach out to Veteran Air today!