In an increasingly technologically advanced world, we are becoming more and more dependent on our electronics to perform different functions in our day-to-day lives. As our devices become more and more capable of things, they also become packed with more and more delicate electronic components. These components are sensitive and can easily be damaged or permanently destroyed by an unexpected surge of electrical energy.
When we depend on our electronics for so much, a destroyed device could be devastating. Losing data could lead to tremendous issues or even permanent loss of something that could have been extremely important. At best the issue is annoying and at worst it could be catastrophic. If you want to protect your electronics from damage that could lead to failure, here are a few tips to follow.
Unplug Devices You Aren’t Using
The easiest way to protect an electronic device from damage as a result of a power surge is to simply not leave that device plugged in. A surge through your electrical grid can’t directly harm anything that isn’t connected to your electrical system in the first place, so making a habit out of unplugging anything you aren’t using is perhaps the best and most affordable way of protecting yourself.
This habit also helps you address another major issue that most people tend to ignore in their homes: vampiric power drain. Even though your device might be shut off, it still might be draining a small amount of power to continue operating in its “powered down” state. Our smart home devices are notorious for this—because they require a constant internet and data connection, they are constantly running a Wi-Fi connectivity circuit, and that means they are always draining just a small amount of power from the grid. Over time, this adds up to a not-insignificant amount of energy that will drive up costs. The only way to stop this is to fully unplug the device.
Unplug Devices During Inclement Weather
One of the leading causes of surges is damage to the electrical transmission grid caused by inclement weather like high winds, thunderstorms, hail, and more. If a major storm is coming your way, one of your preparation steps should be to unplug your most important devices and prevent them from possibly becoming damaged by a sudden surge.
This means unplugging things like your television, major appliances, and any computers that are used as sensitive or valuable data storage centers. At best, you should only need to unplug these devices for a few minutes until the storm passes. However, we also understand if you need to maintain an internet connection in order to continue receiving updates on storm behavior, so consider leaving your modem and router connected.
Install a Surge Protector
If unplugging a device simply isn’t feasible or practical, then the next best thing you can do is place protection on the power supply feeding these devices. A surge protection device does just that. Surge protectors are sort of like a pressure release valve for a plumbing device—when the pressure gets too great, the release valve opens and allows the excess water to bleed off to a place where it can be safely disposed of. With an electrical surge protector, the excess energy is bled off to prevent it from permanently damaging valuable electrical devices or even your home’s infrastructure.
There are two types of surge protection devices: surge protection outlets and whole-home surge protectors. Surge outlets are what most people think of when they think of surge protection: a type of power strip that has a surge protector built into it. Anything you plug into this strip will be covered by the surge protector, providing safety. However, the other type of surge protector offers greater protection over a wider area—a whole-home surge protection system. These surge protectors are installed at your main electrical panel and provide surge protection for your entire home. Therefore, your entire home will be covered in the event of a supply-side power surge.For more information about installing a surge protection system in your home, call Lightning Bug Electric at (404) 471-3847 today!