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How to Prevent and Protect Against Electrical Surges

Home Insurance

By Joanne Lemna | July 31, 2017

There’s a particularly fierce lightning storm brewing outside. The first thought that rushes into your mind: Is my house protected against an electrical surge?

An electrical surge occurs when there is a drastic increase in power voltage going into your home. This then can trigger anything from the destruction of your panel box to the major disruption to your appliances. If the surge is severe enough it could even cause fires. You can see why being proactive and protecting against such surges is extremely important when it comes to your family’s safety.

Here are just a few ways how to prevent and protect against electrical surges:

1)    The Whole House Surge Protector

While this is a more expensive way to protect against electrical surges a whole house surge protection system can bring you a great deal of peace of mind. This will divert power spikes and redirect them away from the house and its major appliances. Unlike plug-in surge protectors this is not a do it yourself project. An experienced electrician is needed to install a whole house surge protector.

2)    Plug-in Surge Protectors

Unlike the whole house unit these you can purchase just about anywhere and plug them in yourself. Especially with your more sensitive (and expensive) equipment such as computers and televisions these help to basically “absorb the hit.��? Not all surge protectors are created equal however so spend a little time and look for the most effective brands and types.

3)    Avoid Circuit Overload

This is a pretty simple fix as well. The more you have plugged into an outlet the better chance it will have of overloading that particular circuit and thus doing some damage to the appliances plugged into it. Just be careful. And remember a circuit is not just a single outlet but a string of outlets and switches that operate via one wire. Figure out where exactly the circuits are in your home and avoid putting too much strain on any one.

4)    Test Your Grounds

Unless you live in a fairly old home your outlets will all be grounded. This ground wire is precisely for protecting against power spikes and surges. Sometimes however the ground can be faulty. You can buy testing kits at most home stores or even better you may want to have a professional electrician test them for you.

Electrical fires and exploding appliances can easily be avoided. Just by taking a bit of time to ensure that your circuits aren’t strained that everything is working as it should and that you are using surge protection wherever possible you can help ensure the safety of your home and family.

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