Want to know how to protect your PC from power surges?
The End. Thanks for reading.
Ok, just kidding. It’s not the end of the blog. For most of us, buying a couple surge protectors is the right option in terms of cost and convenience. But here’s a few things you should know first.
Surge Protectors Aren’t Forever
The surge protectors that you plug into an outlet work by either absorbing excess electricity within themselves or by diverting it into your home’s ground wire. (That’s the round prong below the two flat prongs, if you’re wondering.) As you might imagine, they can’t do this indefinitely. Eventually, all that power damages them too.
How do you know when your surge protector’s strength is on the wane? Some will tell you. Some won’t. Some come with a joules rating (how much energy they can handle, either cumulatively or at one fell swoop). Some don’t. A good rule of thumb is to replace your surge protectors if there’s been a nearby lightning strike. If you live in a place that regularly experiences power fluctuations, you may want to regularly replace your power surge protectors.
Power Strips Aren’t Really Surge Protectors
Surge protectors look beefy. Power strips don’t. Surge protectors manage the flow of electricity before it hits your devices. Power strips pretty much just let it flow. They might offer a little protection, like a circuit breaker that trips when too much power comes in, but not enough. Don’t confuse the two unless you do the following.
Unplugging Is For Cool People.
Even if you have real, actual surge protectors in place, I recommend unplugging for three reasons:
During storm season, I usually unplug everything I can reach before I go to bed and before I leave the house. Excessive? Probably. Safe? Definitely.