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Surges are very brief increases (spikes) in voltage. Many people equate surges with lightning, but there are many other causes that most people don’t even recognize. From outside your home, brief surges can occur when a tree branch falls into a line or a car hits a power pole. Internal surges can occur when motors or pumps turn off or when you turn your vacuum cleaner on and off. (A large vacuum cleaner can generate a 6000-volt spike!)
Surge Protection Devices (SPDs) are like pressure safety valves on a boiler, which release dangerous excess pressure from the system. SPDs are installed across the power supply in parallel with the equipment to be protected. At normal operating voltages, the SPDs do not affect the system. When a transient voltage occurs, the SPD diverts the transient energy/current back to its source or ground. This limits (clamps) the voltage amplitude to a safer level. After the transient is diverted the SPD will automatically reset back to its original state.
Yes, for full coverage it is best to have a multi-stage protection approach. Think of an electrical surge as a large tidal wave, each protection stage knocks out a huge portion of the surge until there is nothing left to hurt or damage your equipment.
We have worked with over 100 utilities around the country and find that they all take extra steps to provide surge protection on the electrical distribution system. This surge protection is tough enough to work on high voltage lines but is not refined enough to protect sensitive electronics.
No, as long as there is access to your meter.
Yes, it is required, and generally the power will be off for less than 15 minutes during the installation.
Both the meter-base protector and plug-in protectors have indicator lights to let you know that they are functioning properly.
Blinking clocks and DVD players are caused by power interruptions, not electrical surges. Surge protection equipment will not reduce or prevent power interruptions.
These sensitive electronics are unique in that they have two or more sources of entry for a surge. Our premium plug-in protectors offer both the standard electrical protection as well as the necessary phone, cable, or satellite protection.
A typical surge travels at (1/1000th) of a second. Circuit breakers take approximately (170/1000th) of a second, or 170 times as long, to respond to excess current. In other words, electrical surges will come and go long before a circuit breaker can operate.
A meter base protector is a high-energy surge protection device that is installed directly behind the electric meter at your home. All power coming into your home runs through the meter base protector, making it the first stage of protection against power surges.
No, which is why we recommend our layered protection. The meter base protector, the first layer of protection, offers excellent protection for major appliances such as dishwashers, washers, dryers, refrigerators, and freezers. While this covers the majority of power surge protection, a small portion of power surges can still pass through interior wiring, where they can damage sensitive electronics. For these sensitive electronics, we offer our second layer of protection, premium plug-in protectors, which are up to six times stronger than those found in retail stores.
The vast majority of lightning strikes you can hear or see occur nearby your home. These strikes may send surges into your home through electrical, cable, or phone lines. Our surge protection equipment is designed to protect against these common surges. Service entrance protectors are not designed to protect your home from a direct lightning strike, but fortunately, the odds of lightning striking your home are very low.
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