Our houses are full of devices that we rely on every day. This includes your computers, charging phones, televisions, refrigerator, washer, and dryer. These are things that we would be devastated to lose in the event of a surge that ruins the item. Surge protection strips used to be a solid option to protect these items. But, with the growth of technology comes our need for whole home surge protection. Here are 5 things you need to know.
1.You need to worry about the small surges just as much as the big ones
Most homeowners are worried about protecting their home from large power surges. Many think the only surge they need to worry about is when lightning hits their house. However, the majority of surges are short intense bursts. And, they are not caused by lightning, but internally within the house. They are caused by things like your AC unit and other appliances with motors. Over time these small surges will damage your electronics, thus reducing their lifespan.
2.You need it
The use of electronics has expanded like wildfire over the last several years. Not only do we have more handheld devices, but many of our appliances are also becoming smart appliances. We have smart televisions, washing machines, and refrigerators. That means more than ever you need a whole home surge protector. In the past, you could get away with plugging your television or computer into a surge strip, but there are too many important electronics and appliances in your house that you need to protect from surges now.
3.You need to get the right protection
Not all homes need the same type of protection. You need to make sure that you are purchasing a surge protector that can handle the surges that you may face. If not, you are wasting your time and the whole home surge protection will not work. Most homes are not typically going to experience one large surge that is over 10kA. This is true even if lightning has struck down the line and is traveling to your house. However, if you install a surge protector that has a 10kA limit and you receive a surge for the same, you could use the entire capacity at once meaning you will need a new surge protector.
It is recommended that you find one that has a limit of at least 80kA. This means there will still be life left on the protector even if you experience several larger surges. If you have multiple panels in your house you should protect them with a rating that is at least half of the main unit.
4.You protect your other appliances
Larger machines such as your AC unit should run on their own circuit. If an appliance on its own circuit sends off a surge it is sending it directly back to the panel. If you don’t have a surge protector for your whole house this surge could effect everything else that is connected. However, a surge protector can shunt it in order to save the rest of the appliances and electronics in your house. One of the biggest culprits of surges are backup generators that are set to kick on in the even that you experience a power outage.
5.You want to layer it
When it comes to surge protection it isn’t an either/or choice. It is always better to go with both a surge protector strip at your appliance along with a whole house surge protector. Think of this as a layering effect. If an appliance that is sending out surges is on the same electrical circuit as other appliances or electronics, the surge could run your item before it reaches the main panel where your whole house surge protection is.
Electronics and appliances are expensive and not something you want to replace if you can help it. Make sure you have the right surge protectors in your house. Layer your protection and make sure you have the enough to protect your entire house and multiple panels if needed.