Protecting Your Household from Power Spikes
Spring weather means that the snow and ice have finally melted and warmer weather is on its way. However, the snow of winter is usually replaced with the rain of spring. An increase in thunderstorms and heavy rain conditions can wreak havoc on your electronic systems. Some areas may lose power multiple times throughout the spring season, as storms knock down and damage power lines. Power surges and excessive loss of power can ultimately damage your electronics, especially if they are not protected.
Prepare for storms
Although you cannot realistically prepare for every storm that comes this spring, you usually can prepare for the bigger ones. Weather measurements tools are more advanced than ever and have the ability to give you sufficient warning when a strong storm is coming. It may be a good idea to unplug important electronics that are not currently prevented. Unplug things like appliances, computers, and chargers. This can help prevent surges that could ruin your devices, or become a fire hazard.
Beware of power spikes
Another problem to be aware of is the possibility of a power spike. A surge typically measures less than 500V and lasts less than 2 seconds. A spike, on the other hand, is much shorter in duration, less than one thousandth of a second, but can measure into the thousands of volts. A power spike can ruin your electronics, as well as your USB cables, cat5e cables, and crossover cables within seconds. Protect your devices and USB cables with preparation.
Install surge protectors
Although surge protectors may not prevent every surge from occurring, they are effective in reducing damage. When you are shopping for surge protectors, make sure they have an UL rating of 1449, lower clamping voltage (close to 120 volts is safer, but UL standards are 300 volts), and that it absorbs at least 600 joules of energy. These specific speculations ensure that they provide the most protection. Make sure the surge protectors are protecting all high powered and expensive equipment, as well as things like USB cables and 75 ft Ethernet cable.
Your surge protector should protect major damages from occurring to your home and electronics. However, it is also important to evaluate your insurance policy and ensure that any possible damages are covered. You may also find that some electronic and product warranties also provide their own insurance or coverage policy. In most cases, the cost of the surge protector is well worth its cost, even with insurance coverages.
Whole house surge protectors are designed to divert excess voltage from your home. Most insurance claims for this damage exceed $10,000. However, the $250 price tag for a main service panel surge protector will easily pay for itself. The deductible that you pay for claiming damages on your home insurance will be much more than the cost of the surge protector. The claim is also likely to raise your insurance premiums.
Have extra cables
Things like USB cables and other types of cables are relatively affordable. If the surge or power spike simply damages the cable, these can easily be replaced. If your electronic device is also not working, the problem could be with either item. It may be beneficial to have extra cables around to test products in order to diagnose the problem. Cables can usually be purchased in bulk USB cables or bulk fiber optic cables.
You pay a lot of money for the electronics and appliances in your home. As the weather shifts from cold and snow to warm and rainy, ensure that these products are well protected. Frequent thunderstorms can cause loss of power that results in power surges or power spikes. Too many of these spikes can actually damage your high valued items. They can also be a fire hazard. Protect these items with whole home surge protectors and ensure that these items are covered on your insurance claim, should you have large scale damage this spring. Always have extra USB cables around for diagnosis purposes and prepare for bigger storms.