Most homeowners know the value of having proper insulation, sealing air leaks around the home’s exterior shell and maintaining HVAC equipment so that it operates efficiently. But did you also know that you need a surge protector to prevent often costly damage to home equipment?
What is a power surge?
Small variations in the voltage that runs through power lines can lead to a power surge. They generally only last for a split second, but stronger surges, like those from lightning, can cause enough damage to require a homeowner to replace a lot of costly equipment, like a heating and cooling system.
There are two types of power surges that make using a surge protector a necessity:
- Strong surges, which can reach into the thousands in terms of voltage, are generally caused by lightning, but are not very common.
- Smaller surges happen in every home and on a frequent basis–when the furnace cycles on, for instance. These smaller surges will cause damage to your home equipment over time, slowly eroding the components inside electrical equipment–a process called “electronic rust.”
When do power surges occur?
The majority of surges happen inside the home, generally when higher-powered equipment starts and stops. For instance, when your air conditioner starts up, it diverts power from other equipment for its own use. When it powers down, that extra energy is sent back through the wires, creating a surge.
Other factors can also contribute to a power surge, such as lightning, faulty wiring or a downed power line.
What can you do to protect your home?
The best way to protect your home is to use:
- Whole-house protection, installed at the point where your home receives its main supply of electricity
- Power strips, so that all of your home equipment is plugged in to a protective device
With a surge protector, you can rest assured that your home equipment will be protected from damage over time from power surges, and you’ll have the maximum protection possible during power failures and storms. For help, contact Arpi’s Industries today! We’ve been serving greater Calgary-area homeowners for over 55 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about surge protectors and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.