Protection Against Power Surges
- by Mamparra
In our houses, a lot of us have electronic devices, household appliances, and laptops powered by electronic circuitry. Surges of electric current can cause damage that is frequently irreparable to a wide variety of electronic devices and home appliances. A power surge could even cause computers to lose data if it is strong enough. Furthermore, just like your computer and other electronics, even your air conditioning unit contains sensitive circuits that require surge protection, as stated in an article published by GreeDirect. In saying that, there are steps you can take to safeguard your valuables, and many of them are less complicated than you may at first imagine.
What Exactly is a Surge in Power?
The electrical voltage supply in South Africa is typically between 220 and 230 volts, and it has a frequency of 50 hertz. Surges of electricity are caused when the normal voltage is exceeded, resulting in a current that flows at a greater frequency and voltage. If the standard operating voltage is surpassed, there is a possibility that an electrical arc will be produced.
This results in the production of heat, and it is precisely this heat that is responsible for the harm that it caused to an electronic circuit board and, by extension, to the equipment or electronic device that it affects. The process of changing over to a different power grid can result in surges, and surges can also occur suddenly if there’s a problem with a power line or transformer in the immediate area. Load Shedding, as well as the possibility of lightning occurring during an electrical storm, are both potential causes of power surges.
If a high-powered electrical appliance, like a fridge or cooling system, turns on and off an excessive number of times, this can also cause a smaller surge in the power supply. Because the motors and condensers of this equipment generally take a significant amount of electricity to turn on and off, the surge that results from their doing so disrupts the normal flow of voltage throughout the electrical system. The damage that can be caused by even relatively minor power surges could be gradual and build up over time. A significant surge can end up causing more lasting damage instantaneously, but smaller interruptions generally seem to reduce the “lifespan” of a specific device or appliance over time.
Signs That a Power Surge Has Occurred in One of Your Home Appliances or Electronic Devices
- There is a problem with the time or the lights on a device or appliance.
- There is a possibility of a smoky or acrid smell emanating from the device or appliance’s immediate surroundings (especially near the power source).
- The tool or appliance either does not work or seems to be turned off.
- It’s possible that your surge protector or power strip needs to be reset.
Ways to Protect Yourself From the Potentially Hazardous Consequences of a Power Surge
Surges can occur when an energy company must carry out maintenance on its equipment, which can sometimes be necessary. Any other incidence is very likely to come as a complete surprise. Therefore, to safeguard your valuable items from being damaged by voltage spikes of any magnitude, whether they are minor or major, it may be helpful to make the following practices a habit:
Unplug Your Equipment
When they’re not in use or when a thunderstorm is approaching, unplug all electronic appliances and gadgets from their sources of power at the wall outlet. This will assist in saving your valuables, decrease the risk of damage, and reduce the amount of energy that will be wasted, all of which are valuable.
Get a UPS System
Think about investing in a UPS system (uninterruptible power supply). This helps safeguard your internet or fiber connections as well as electronics like a modem and router from potential harm. You will also be to keep using your electronic devices, including computers, even when there is a cycle load shedding taking place.
Make Use of a Power Strip That Offers Surge Protection
These types of power strips typically contain a fuse that is intended to blow if a voltage increase happens. This type of surge protector is built right into the power strip. When this occurs, the electricity supply is stopped from flowing into the equipment or device that you have plugged in, which protects it from damage that could have been caused by a surge.
Invest In Surge Protectors
In addition, to plug adaptors, make sure that your electrical mains board has surge protectors installed in it. When a power surge takes place, these generally redirect the extra energy into the round rather than letting it move into the circuit in which your possessions may be plugged. This keeps your valuables safer. Surge plug adaptors are a straightforward alternative that you can install on your own, but the installation of any protection on your DB boards must be handled by an electrician who is licensed to perform the work.
Get a Home Inspection
Permit an electrician to conduct a thorough inspection of your home’s electrical circuit board or fuse box to confirm that there is sufficient power available for your dwelling’s electronic gadgets and appliances. It’s possible that a problem with the circuit breaker is to blame if you’ve seen a handful of flickers or experienced power outages. A qualified electrician can assist you in ensuring that you will be able to upgrade appropriately should the need arise.
Not Overload Electrical Outlets
Take care not to inundate your electrical outlets, particularly those that are being used by appliances that consume a significant amount of electricity. Because they typically consume a significant amount of electricity and have delicate circuit boards, valuable items like computers, laptops, large screen TVs, internet modems, and routers must preferably not be plugged into the same electrical outlet. It is recommended that appliances such as air conditioning units, washing machines, and fridges each have their very own devoted plug-in source or power strip to plug into.
Cross-check Your Homeowners’ Insurance Plan Specifics
Does your plan include coverage for damage that occurs as a consequence of an electrical surge? It is an excellent idea to ensure that you are one hundred percent clear regarding whether or not your plan has taken into consideration the various types of risk situations that your possessions may be subjected to; having adequate cover should a power surge occur, culminating in the requirement for repairs or replacement.
In our houses, a lot of us have electronic devices, household appliances, and laptops powered by electronic circuitry. Surges of electric current can cause damage that is frequently irreparable to a wide variety of electronic devices and home appliances. A power surge could even cause computers to lose data if it is strong enough. Furthermore, …
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