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What is a surge protector and why should I get one

Power surges are a common and potentially dangerous occurrence that causes millions of dollars in damage to homes and electronic devices each year.

In order to protect your home and business, it is important to understand what a power surge is and how a surge protector can be used to prevent them from causing damage. A southern MD builder will be able to assist you with assessing your risk and choosing the best prevention method.
An electrical surge is an increase in electricity significantly above the designated level in flow of electricity for any given device. The burst of electricity travels through a home’s electronic grid, causing damage to cords and circuitry, which are not designed to handle such levels of electricity. This can ruin a device, cause fires, and even cause some devices to burst. The cause of a surge can vary, but lighting strikes are a common culprit, as are malfunctions to power transformers.

Surge protectors are designed to protect electronics by cutting off the electric circuit at the first sign of an increase in electricity, called transient voltage. The protector acts a bottleneck and first line defense by connecting the main power line feeding into a building to several other smaller electronic devices. A surge travels along a circuit into the protector before it can branch out to the other appliances. When the voltage spike enters the surge protector it triggers a breaker that will limit the amount of electricity that passes through or completely ground the electricity.

There are several different kinds of surge protectors available on the market, the most common being a simple power strip. This surge protector is a small row of outlets that allow several appliances and devices to plug directly into it. They’re commonly used in spaces where several devices need to be plugged in near each other, such as near a computer desk. Cheap strips may not offer the best protection when compared with more expensive brands. Higher quality strips may also have connections for other cord types, such as coaxed and USB, which can also propagate a power surge.

A home surge protector is much larger and protects an entire home. Instead of allowing small devices to plug into it, it connects directly to the main power line. All power travels through it and out to the power outlets of the home. This will catch a surge as it enters the building as opposed to catching it as it flows from the power outlet towards the appliance. Though these units are much more expensive than their smaller counterparts, the peace of mind that they deliver may make the investment well worth the cost. Your local southern MD builder will be able to choose the home surge protector ideal for your home.

It is important to understand how surge protectors work so you can better protect your home and electronic devices. A surge can ruin expensive equipment, cause damage to homes, and potentially start life threatening fires. Please contact a southern MD home improvement company  to discuss the risks of power surges and what can be done to protect your home and business.