Power surges are among the more common reasons that your home might lose power. A lightning strike or too many chords in an outlet or faulty wiring that damages your home’s ability to withstand power surges. Power surges last less than a second but that burst of energy can damage portions of your home and electrical systems in ways you might not even realize.
Knowing what a power surge is and where it comes from can be the difference between damage in your home or worse.
Many people don’t understand power surges or the causes behind them. You can’t always prevent them, but you can know the causes behind some of them and practices that can lead to a power surge. Knowing some basic facts about your electricity in your home and the electrical causes behind a power surge can be incredibly beneficial to you, your property, and your family.
Below are some quick facts about power surges that you may not have known.
Causes of a power surge
As mentioned, a power surge is any brief burst of electricity that is too much for an electrical system to handle. They’re the cause behind power outages during thunderstorms when lightning hits a power line. Many can be caused by an outlet being overpowered by an electrical device (often a heater, hair dryer, or something else that produces heat). But bad wiring can also cause a power surge in what would otherwise be a functional device.
One way to combat power surges that come from use of surge protectors as an alternative to extension cords and as a way to get the most out of an outlet while protecting its electrical integrity. The best form of surge protector comes from those marked 600 joules or more, however, the ultimate option is a whole house surge protector which connects to the whole house’s electrical system.
Dangers of a power surge
The power going out is frustrating, but there are worse consequences to a power surge. A power surge can damage outlets or appliances in your home. The worst-case scenario is a power surge can actually cause a house fire or serious electrical damage to your home. They’re nothing to scoff at.
What Voltage Level is Considered a Surge?
Most homes utilize electricity at an alternating 120-volt current with the current bouncing between 0 and 169 volts throughout the day. Spikes outside this range is when it can become harmful since appliances in the US are designed for this specific range.
How Do I Fix a Power Surge?
Getting the power back on could be a matter of flipping breakers but it also more likely means you need to have your power company do it for you. A licensed electrician can take a look at your wiring to help prevent future surges by providing power surge protection.
Power surges are annoying and sometimes dangerous, know what causes them and how you can protect your home from them. The first step to safeguarding your home is consulting an electrical contractor.
Bratcher Electric is a full service electrical contracting firm that has been working with businesses and residents throughout Michigan for over 50 years. We take care of our customers by providing complete customer satisfaction for every job we perform; residential, commercial and industrial. Our electrical services include new home wiring, generator service and installation, electrical code and service upgrades, surge protection and much more! Contact us today to learn more about our electrical services!