5 Causes of Electrical Surges

As experienced electricians serving the Bucks County, PA, and Montgomery County, PA, areas, we’ve dealt with pretty much any electrical issue you can think of – and some issues you didn’t even know existed. Electricity is our business, and we don’t expect our customers to know the ins and outs of the charges and currents that power their lives.

As you know, we live to serve the community, not just through our superior, friendly services, but also through information. Power surges are a common occurrence within an electrical system, the effects of which can be damaging, but with the proper knowledge and the right electrician, you can make sure they’re no big deal.

Power Surge Primer: What Are They, and What Do They Do?

Whether or not you realized it, your home probably has experienced regular power surges during the time you’ve lived there. Most homes are powered by an alternating current of 120 volts – “alternating,” meaning, the voltage continually goes up and down. Power surges happen when the flow of electricity within the grid is interrupted, which can happen for a number of reasons – we’ll get to that shortly. A power surge dramatically spikes the voltage, or increases the electrical current flowing from power lines into your wall outlets. This can trip circuits but also damage electronics or appliances that happen to be plugged into an outlet.

Let’s take a look at what causes this to happen.

  • Lightning. Although it’s relatively uncommon, a lightning strike can cause a power surge by sending an immense amount of extra current coursing through power lines. These power lines feed your home, so naturally, this will spike the current running into your outlets. You’ve probably been told to unplug electronics during storms. This is why.
  • Use of heavy-duty electrical devices in the home. Power surges can originate within the home, coming from large appliances such as air conditioners as they switch on and off.
  • The utility company is a main source of outside-the-home power surges, whether because of problems with equipment or regular switches of the power grid.
  • Downed power lines can cause a major disruption in the flow of electricity in the immediate area, in addition to being dangerous. Always remember to report downed power lines in your area, and never go near them.
  • Faulty electrical wiring within a home can result in electricity not being distributed correctly, and as we’ve discussed, improper electrical flow is what causes power surges. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced electrician perform an audit of your home.

How can you protect your home from power surges?

First off, as you know, Wes Carver Electric is always here to take care of you! We know what it takes to keep your home’s electrical system running smoothly, from preventing problems to getting them taken care of quickly, whenever they occur.

With that in mind, we recommend being proactive on your end, and there are a few things you can do to help protect your home from power surges. Check out this quick video to learn more:

As noted in the video, a whole home surge protector is a great way to prevent the effects of power surges, and installing whole home surge protectors is just one of the many valuable services Wes Carver Electric provides its treasured customers.

Power surges happen, but there’s nothing to fear. You know you can always call your friendly neighborhood electricians for advice, or for electrical repairs throughout Bucks County, PA, and the surrounding areas. We hope we’ve helped inform you with this article, and please continue to check our blog for news and tips from the world of electricity!