Is Whole-House Surge Protection Necessary?

When thinking about options for an electrical wiring upgrade in your home, the issue of adequate surge suppression is an important consideration. Power surges are brief spikes in the electrical power entering your home. Though they occur in less than a blink of an eye, the intensity of increased voltage can damage electrical devices connected to your wiring. Inexpensive plug-in surge suppressors offer some protection. However, individual suppressors should be considered as a second layer of protection after a whole-house surge suppressor has been installed.

electrical wiring upgradeA whole-house surge protector installed by a qualified professional electrician at your main electrical panel continuously “sniffs” incoming electricity before it enters household circuits. If a surge is detected, the suppressor automatically diverts the dangerously high voltage to ground to protect all electrical appliances and devices. Here’s why whole-house protection is necessary:

  • Lightning strikes pose a major threat to expensive electrical components. In fact, lightning is the most frequent cause of damage to central air conditioners, requiring replacement of the entire unit. Lightning need not directly strike your house to inflict damage—a nearby strike can send an intense surge through power lines and into your home circuits. Plug-in suppressors alone are often insufficient to guard against a voltage spike caused by lightning. A whole-house suppressor instantly blocks the surge from entering home circuits to provide comprehensive lightning protection.
  • Other outside sources of power surges also require protection at the main electrical panel. These include voltage spikes that frequently occur when grid power is restored after a blackout, as well as surges due to downed power lines in a storm.
  • Individual plug-in suppressors can’t protect electronics that aren’t plugged in to begin with. Many expensive electrical devices, including major appliances like stoves, washers and dishwashers, as well as HVAC equipment including central A/C and furnace components, are hard-wired directly into your house electrical circuits. Only a whole-house suppressor that protects all circuits from surges originating outside the house can protect hard-wired devices.

For more details about an electrical wiring upgrade including the benefits of whole-house surge suppression, contact Apollo Home Heating, Cooling and Plumbing.