Storms and lightning strikes can cause powerful surges that can destroy electronics and cause data loss. Surge Protectors keep your loved devices safe from damage caused by power surges. As technology advances, there is an increased need for surge protection due to smaller and more sensitive electrical components in the devices we use everyday.
This Surge Protector Buying Guide will help you learn more about why surge protection is important, how surge protectors actually work, and what features to look for when choosing the best surge protector for you.
A power surge is a spike in the electrical current flowing through the wires of your house. They can damage common appliances, sensitive AV electronics and computer equipment. Different things cause power surges, including severe weather, wildlife, defective wiring or power company repairs.
Power surges happen all the time—not just during storm season. The investment you made in your home equipment can be wiped out in an instant. In addition to surges caused by storms, the average home can experience multiple "hidden" surges a day from other various sources. These smaller surges cause cumulative damage to electronics, shortening their life and eventually causing them to fail.
A surge protector safeguards electronics from the harmful effects of power surges and voltage spikes. Surge protectors have the ability to absorb and dissipate the power of a surge so that connected equipment is shielded from the surge.
Consider buying a surge protector with at least two more outlets than you need. That way, any new electronics you buy can benefit from surge protection without requiring that you unplug something else.
Take into account how far the surge protector is from the outlet and find a cord length to match.
There are a variety of shapes and sizes including strips, plug-in taps, compact and portable designs. If you're working around furniture, select a style with a low-profile plug, space-saving design or wall mounting capabilities.
SURGE PROTECTOR WITH USB: Consider how many USB ports (if any) you need and pay attention to the Amps. For charging a phone or other small device, only one amp (1A) is needed. However, if you're looking for a surge protector with USB, it is better to purchase one with at least 2A of charging power because it charges much faster.
DATA LINE PROTECTION: Occasionally surges can travel up phone and cable lines to damage the devices connected to them. For devices connected to phone or coax lines, you may consider choosing a surge protector that includes protection for inputs for cable/coax, phone/DSL/modem, and network and ethernet lines.
SAFETY FEATURES: Safety snap/lock covers protect children and prevent objects from coming in contact with unused outlets.
LIGHT INDICATORS: LED lights show you whether the surge protector is properly grounded and when your devices are protected. Surge protectors with Eye Indicator™ technology provide at-a-glance charging status of devices as well. The light shines red when charging, green once fully charged and blue when idle.
Tips for choosing the right surge protector for your home or office
Buying a surge protector is something everyone who uses electronics should do. A surge protector will keep your expensive electronics safe from any damage that can come as a result of a surge in the amount of electricity coming out of the outlets.
Buying a surge protector is something everyone who uses electronics should do. Because these surge protection serves such an important function, you need to make sure that you're purchasing the right one for you. This Q&A covers everything you need to know about choosing the right surge protector to keep your devices safe.
Preparing for Spring Storms: Safety kits and tips for severe weather
Your tech may be the last thing on your mind when a storm strikes, so it is important to plan ahead of time so that is one less thing to worry about.
Power strips don't offer surge protection. They simply provide numerous outlets.
Consider replacing every few storm seasons, or if your power gets knocked out.