Surge protector is a device which protects electrical appliances from undergoing a power spike by restricting the amount of voltage that is being passed through via blockage or redirection to the ground.
Also known as Surge Protection Device (SPD) and Transient Voltage Surge Suppressor (TVSS), a surge protector is of great help during lightning as it will cut off the voltage which exceeded the threshold, so that the machines are shielded from damage. Hence, the surge protector is often found within the power distribution panel or switchboard where all wires and power sources meet.
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While choosing an appropriate surge protector, it is important for prospective users to note the following. First, know the differences between power strips and surge protectors. Power strip is not made to act as a protector, even though it comes with some sort of a circuit breaker. The function of power strip is to provide more power outlets, so that one can use various electric appliances at once. On the other hand, the primary role of a surge protector is to safeguard appliances from overwhelming voltage.
Second, the quality of a surge protector will depend on the amount of joules it can protect. Usually the higher amount of joules of protection, the better the surge protector. Higher joule of protection means that less energy is being absorbed by the device while more energy is being diverted to the ground.
Besides, it will also be useful to pay attention to the reaction of a surge protector. A surge protector never reacts instantly as voltage spikes do not happen immediately. In general, it takes at least several microseconds to reach the peak voltage hence a reliable surge protector should be able to react within a nanosecond so that it is able to catch the peak in time.
Third, recognise that there is more than one type of surge protector. In general, a surge protector works by blocking unwanted energy via a protective component found within a series circuit. While in a parallel circuit, excessive energy will be diverted away. Always beware that a power spike can come over at any wire hence it is always useful to acquire a surge protector in each of the wire, including the lower risk items like the phone line and TV cable line.
However, exercise the choice wisely. For example, it is not necessary to have a surge protector attached to a light bulb because it is not likely to cause great damage except for a faulty bulb. It is always a good practice to have surge protectors for high-end electronic appliances like home entertainment system etc. as they face a higher risk of a power spike, thus, the present of a surge protector is able to extend the life of these devices.
If you are still unsure to when and where to have a surge protector, contact us today on 02 8091 2343 to discuss your options further.