Older homes and surges in power
Question: We have an older home and seem to have a lot of surges in power. We have purchased a surge protector for our computer but wonder if we need them for our other more expensive appliances.
Answer: Homeowners possessing numerous expensive appliances such as VCRs and computers should equip their house with a whole-house surge suppressor rather than individual plug-in surge protectors. Power surges can occur very easily, be it from turning on a home appliance or from receiving an energy surge from a nearby source, and these frequent surges can gradually break down a home's wiring insulation. A whole-house surge suppressor, which several companies will install complete with a $10,000 damage warranty, will offer the best protection for expensive appliances. These suppressors can either be mounted on the circuit break box, mounted under the electric meter, or installed into a snap-in circuit breaker. The level of protection depends on the model, but certain features to look for are the magnitude of the surge that can be dissipated, the speed of reaction, and the amount of voltage that triggers a surge block. Some new suppressors are also designed to protect a home's phone, cable, and modem lines. Ó2008 Information.Inc.