Although a power surge only needs a split second to occur, a massive spike in voltage has the ability to wreak havoc in your home by damaging home appliances, electronic devices, and electric outlets.
Since homeowners are always worried about how to prevent power surges, we wanted to share helpful information on this particular common topic. That said, it’s not always possible to prevent power surges.
Some causes like weather and power surge from electric companies are very much impossible to control. However, if you were adequately prepared for a power surge at all times, it’s actually possible to minimize the damage caused by a power surge.
What Causes a Power Surge?
A residential generator is usually a good solution that ensures your home has power for when a power grid goes offline, downed power line, or when there’s a major weather disaster. It is also very helpful to understand a related occurrence, which is a power surge.
A power surge refers to a very quick spike in electricity that is much higher than the designated voltage level that travels through the electric outlets of a home. This spike in voltage is capable of damaging or destroying any electronic equipment plugged into the outlets.
Here are some reasons why a power surge occurs:
It is common for severe storms that have damaging winds to travel and hover over an area, particularly during the monsoon periods. If lightning strikes a home’s electrical system, the system, unfortunately, accepts the excess load, and this often causes a power surge to occur.
Power Grid Failure
Any damage causes to a power grid, has the ability to create a power surge. Especially after a failed power grid has been fixed, the sudden jump in electrical current also creates a power surge.
Excessive Electrical Load
Storms and power spikes have the ability to cause an excessive electrical load. That said, there are still other reasons for this to happen. For instance, plugging in one too many appliances into a single outlet, plugging in a heavy appliance than allowed for a circuit, or simply overloading an extension cord can also cause a power surge.
Faulty or Damaged Wiring
Another main culprit for power surges is faulty or damaged wiring. If your wiring is damaged, was wrongly installed, or exposed in any way, then you can expect a power surge to occur at some point.
Wiring issues within a home aren’t apartments to homeowners. If your circuit breakers trip frequently, notice burn marks on an outlet, notice a burning smell, or hear a buzzing sound from the outlets, it’s high time you call in an electrical to see where the problem lies.
How to Prevent Power Surges?
Most preventative measures can’t offer full protection against lightning strike damage. Moreover, it is crucial to know that you should always expect a power surge when an outage occurs. Therefore, when there’s a massive storm, it’s always advisable to unplug all home appliances and electrical devices.
You might not be able to pinpoint every power grid failure or storm, but we have shared some suggestions that can be helpful in mitigating damage to appliances and electronics.
Unplug Appliances and Electronics during a Storm
This might just be the single most effective way to protect your home appliances, electronics, computers, and gaming systems.
Use Surge Protectors
Surge protectors that have a high joule rating can help your appliances when there’s a power surge. You can also consider investing in appliance-grade surge protectors for your refrigerators, computer, HVAC system, among other things.
Whole-House Surge Protector
A whole-house surge protector is similar to a surge protector but protects all your home appliances and electronics during a power surge.
Invest in Energy-Efficient Appliances
Today new appliances, such as refrigerators or air conditioning units, are specifically designed to be more efficient, which also helps save on electricity bills. This is because they draw less energy and are more resistant to power surges in comparison to older appliances models.
Distribute Your Appliances and Electronics
Since your electrical outlets, power strips, and extension cords can as easily become overburdened. This is why it’s wise to distribute your appliance between power outlets and surge protectors.
For instance, you can use dedicated surge projectors and outlets for each individual heavy appliance, rather than combining them. This will help prevent outlets from overburdening themselves.
Get an Electrician to Evaluate Your Wiring
It is worth calling in a licensed electrician to evaluate your wiring, especially if you’re living in an older home. Old and outage wiring may cause power surges. In fact, even if you’re living in a newer home, it’s always helpful to have your wiring evaluated.
There’s no way to stop a power surge from entering your house unless you get a whole-house surge protector, but it may not always be in your budget. Therefore, we have shared a few tips on how you can prevent power surges.