When to Replace Surge Protectors

When To Replace Surge Protectors

when to replace your surge protector

Photo: Tony Webster, Flickr Creative Commons

Summer weather is here, and we couldn’t be happier. After that awful winter, we’ll take all the sunshine we can get, even if it comes with a side of Philly humidity.

That being said, one of the things we’re encouraging homeowners to keep in mind this summer is replacing their surge protectors. These devices aren’t made to last forever, and there definitely comes a time when they stop protecting your technology altogether.

As the Main Line electrician people trust, we’re happy to give you the lowdown on why and when to replace surge protectors.

What Are Surge Protectors?

If you’re totally new to surge protectors, you should first know how important they are. During a power surge, the surge protector will absorb the extra electricity, preventing it from frying your expensive devices. If your television, computer, fridge, washer, dryer, and other pricey appliances aren’t already plugged into a surge protector, they should be. One rogue power surge and they could be zapped!

Why Do Surge Protectors Need to be Replaced?

The lifespan of surge protectors depends upon the number of joules they were created to absorb. (A joule is a unit of measurement for electricity.) During a power surge, the surge protector takes a hit and uses up some of limited number of joules it was manufactured to absorb. For example, if the surge protector has a 1000-joule limit, and a power surge causes it to absorb 100 joule hits, it would have 900 joules left before it ceased to protect your devices.

Better-quality surge protectors are designed to take in more joules, but that doesn’t mean even these don’t someday hit their limit.

How Do You Know When to Replace Surge Protectors?

The truth is that it’s almost impossible to tell when a surge protector has stopped working and become nothing more than outlet. Some surge protectors come with warning lights, but these aren’t that accurate, so we wouldn’t encourage our clients to trust them.

A good rule of thumb is to replace your surge protectors every two years or so. Summer is a great time to do this, because then you can be sure you have a fresh surge protector keeping your appliances safe from the usual thunderstorms.

Need some help finding the right surge protectors for your home appliances? We can help! Along with the other general wiring we do on a regular basis, our Main Line electricians routinely equip homes with surge protectors you can count on.

Did you like this post? See our other blog post about saving energy in summertime!