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Home Surge Protection

Electrical Surge Protection

  

Inside or Outside: Where do Power Surges Come From?
The majority of power surges originate from appliances inside the home and office buildings. Many opinions are written that suggest anywhere from 40 and up to 80 percent of all power surges are caused by items that draw heavy loads on your electrical system like air conditioners, dryers, ovens and office machinery, specifically large laser printers. Another source of a power surge comes from the outside. This occurs when the utility line power spikes or drops above and below normal operating parameters. Lastly, residents of Colorado Springs, Colorado and all of El Paso County are very familiar with peculiar weather patterns, intermittent power outages and the lightning storms throughout the Front Range area. Lightning strikes to homes, telephone lines, satellite dishes and nearby power lines can force a huge amount of electricity into your home or office - the ultimate surge!

According to the National Weather Service, Colorado ranks 7th in the nation (Florida ranks first) for lightning strike-related deaths. From 1959 to 2004, 126 people have died after being struck by lightning. See the electrical safety section to learn about protecting yourself during lightning storms.

Just as people must take proper precautions to avoid the effects electricity like touching live bare electric wires and seeking shelter from lighting, your property's electrical system also needs protection. Your house or place of business is probably electrically grounded and in compliance with national and local building code but did you know everything plugged into your electrical, phone and TV outlets may not be completely guarded from electrical power surges?

Although your property is grounded, sensitive electronic equipment, appliances and other electrical devices may not be fully protected against surges of electricity that may enter your home and office.

 

What is Affected by Power Surges?
Homes and offices today have televisions, radios, audio distribution components, home theater systems, security and burglar alarm systems and one or more computers. Nearly every appliance like refrigerators, microwaves, stoves, furnaces, central air conditioners, dishwashers, clothes washers and dryers contain microprocessor circuit boards to control their operation. All this equipment can easily be damaged by a power surge. Power surge-related breakdowns cost property owners billions of dollars annually. The ever-increasing growth of computer-processor based devices in the marketplace will only push this annual cost skywards.

The Cost of a Power Surge...

What will it cost you to replace every appliance, component and device in your home or office?
To give you an idea - based on the average life span of individual appliances and equipment, the cost could range from $5,000.00 to $18,000.00. If you factor in the inconvenience of buying each item, arranging for delivery and installation, the price in terms of cost and your valuable time combined is considerably more. Also, think of the loss of pictures and important documents stored on your computer.

What Can Done to Protect Against Electrical Surges?
You have probably protected some of your equipment already. If you have a "power strip" that is also a surge protector for your computer, monitor and printer then you have limited protection against fluctuations in the electricity flowing into those components. The level of protection is usually stated on the product packaging. Some surge protector/power strip manufacturers offer warranties that will pay for damaged equipment in the event their product fails to provide the advertised level of protection. Be aware that a direct lightning strike to your property will result in damage and no level of protection - within a reasonable budget - will prevent this!

 

Whole House Surge Protection

 

To secure peace of mind and to protect your entire property from harmful electrical surges, there is a modern solution. The answer is a simple device that is connected to the main electrical service panel. The device monitors your grounding system for excessive voltage levels between neutral and ground. If it detects an unusual level, power is shut down before it affects the inside of your property. Although not the single fix, whole house surge protection can give you a distinct advantage of protection for your internal electrical wiring and what is plugged into each outlet.

Whole house surge protection should be installed by a licensed electrical contractor because it involves working inside the electrical panel where live wires coming into the property exist (even with the main breaker turned off). Call a licensed electrician to ask about surge protection today. Installing a whole house surge protector usually takes two hours or less for a lifetime of protection. Call your "Electrical Service Experts" today. (970) 570-9816.

NOTE: Whole house surge protection guards all electrical circuits inside the home. Antennas, cable and satellite television coaxial cables, telephone and other outdoor wiring leading into the home from other locations may be a source of electrical surges. Ask your licensed electrician about ways to protect against these hazards.

Call (970) 570-9816 to discuss your surge protection needs with Mancos Electric - the licensed electrical contractor of choice in Colorado Springs and the surrounding area.

 

Tips on How to Prevent Electrical Surge Damage

 

  • Use an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) for computer equipment and sensitive components
  • In addition to whole house surge protection, use quality power strips/ surge protectors for computers
  • Ensure surge protection devices are Underwriters Laboratories (UL) rated. Look for "UL" on packaging
  • Buy the best quality you can afford. Surge protection extends the life of components and computers
  • If unprotected from surges, unplug sensitive computers and electrical devices during lightning storms
  • Use a power conditioning/surge suppressor unit for home theater protection
  • Install in-line telephone wire surge suppressors to guard against telephone system damage

    Installing a high quality coaxial /video line (RG-6) surge suppressor will prevent lightning damage to connected components like televisions, VCRs, cable/satellite tuners, audio/visual receivers, etc.


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