Protect your Electronics in the Event of a Power Surge
Using a designated surge protector will ensure your electronics are protected in the event of a power surge.
What is a power surge?
A power surge is an increase in voltage above the usual level of flow of electricity. Not all power surges will break your electronics, but over time they can put extra strain on its components. This will cause your electronics to wear down more quickly than if they were surge protected.
Why do power surges happen?
Power surges can happen for a variety of reasons – for example, when a high-power demand electrical device in your home such as an air conditioner turns on. They can also sometimes happen when the power comes back on after an outage. This is why it is recommended that you unplug electronics and turn off light switches when the power goes out.
Surge protectors can also protect your devices from faulty wiring or improper grounding in your home. If your lights dim, or if your circuit breakers trip or fuses burn out frequently, contact a licensed electrician to inspect your home’s wiring.
While surge protectors can help protect your devices in many instances, in the event of a lightning storm most surge protectors would not be able to withstand the surge caused by a lightning strike. For that reason, it is always best to unplug your electronics when a lightning storm occurs.
Choosing a surge protector
When shopping for a surge protector, ensure it is Canadian Standards Association (CSA) or Underwriter’s Laboratory (UL) certified. Otherwise you may be purchasing a product that does not meet minimum safety standards or is not equipped to protect your devices.
Here are some other tips to help protect your electronics:
- Remember that not all power bars are surge protectors
- Unplug electronics during a lightning storm or power outage
- Limit the number of devices plugged into a single outlet
- Only use extension cords that are properly rated for the required electrical load and only use them temporarily
- Use three-pronged plugs and extension cords when possible
- Install a surge suppressor or an uninterruptible power supply (with surge suppression) for any sensitive or important electronic devices