Surge Protectors: Getting the Right One

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Make sure you have a surge protector that will defend your devices from sudden power changes.

Surge Protector

Surge protectors are often a topic of discussion this time of year especially with the number of thunderstorms during the summer.  We’re all familiar with the spikes in electricity caused by nearby lightning strikes.  However, any sudden changes in the current could damage electrical components, including sudden blackouts or brownouts.  All of these factors are a concern this time of year – and surge protectors can help with any of them.

When we think of surge protectors, a common “power strip” of electrical outlets probably comes to mind.  However, not all power strips include surge protector technologies.  If you’re looking for protection from electrical spikes by using a power strip, always check to make sure it also doubles as a surge protector.  You should also plug all devices that are connected into a power strip with a surge protector.  For example, all the components of your home theater system should be connected to a surge protector.  If even one part of the system is unprotected, a power surge could make its way from that device into others via audio/video or other cables.  This defeats the use of the surge protector on other components.

If you’re considering a surge protector, another quality to look for is the rating.  All surge protectors have this specification, which is measured in Joules.  The higher the number, the better the device will protect the equipment.

If power strips aren’t for you then you may wish to invest in a whole house surge protector.  An example is a surge protector hooked into your residence’s circuit breaker panel.  These surge protectors can service a large part of these systems without the need for power strips at each outlet.

It’s worth noting that no surge protector can stop a surge from a direct lightning strike.  These have so much energy that any surge protector is easily overwhelmed – it would be like trying to stop a tidal wave with a curb.

If you’d like to discuss any sort of surge protectors, give McCauley Electrical Service a call at 678-362-2881.  We’re happy to discuss ways to protect your electronic devices from sudden power surges.