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The Importance of Surge Suppression

Today I will discuss the Importance of Surge Suppression.

Most people never think about the importance of surge suppression, instead they simply plug their electronics into a wall outlet. It’s protected right? The answer is yes and no. If it is a modern plug (in the last couple of decades or so) then it is a three prong outlet meaning that it has a ground connection. But is it really grounded for additional protection? Most electricians did not actually connect the ground wire when installing electrical outlets on new homes in the 1990’s. Behind that wall outlet their probably is a ground wire, but it is not connected to anything to actually do anything.

What can be done to fix this problem?

  1. Have a licensed electrician check out the outlets with a polarity checker device. It plugs into the outlet and uses a color code to check if the wiring is not only connected properly for polarity, but also confirms if the outlet is grounded properly.
  2. Do NOT take it upon yourself to rewire this outlet if it is not installed or working correctly. Premium Audio does not take responsibility for you doing this project yourself. Instead we advise you to hire a licensed electrician to handle this for you.
  3. Once the outlet is properly wired you can move onto the next step.

The next step:

To further protect yourself and your electronics from potential harm we recommend a surge suppressor and not a surge protector. The two look vary similar at a glance, however the surge protector is basically just a way to use one outlet to connect multiple electrical cables to at once. Most have a power switch to turn off or on the devices plugged into it.

A surge suppressor on the other hand does so much more! It will most likely have an indicator light to alert you if the outlets are not properly grounded. Any really good surge suppressor will also come with a warranty if it fails to protect whats plugged into it. Typically they offer anywhere from a $20,000 to $300,000 replacement guarantee. Also some include a line filter to minimize any hum on the line (which is also a safety feature).

Surge suppressors are designed to handle a much higher joule rating than a surge protector. In fact surge protectors most likely will not even mention the joule rating. The higher the rating the better it is for protection. 900 joules is ok for say a laptop when traveling, but not enough for much else. 1500 joules or higher is ideal for a desktop computer with monitor (or dual monitors), computer speaker package, and a printer. This can also be used to protect your home theatre (using a separate one from the computer setup).

Since a decent surge suppressor can be had for $50 or less you owe it to yourself to purchase one to protect your electronics. Click here to see what is available. Remember to replace the surge suppressor if you suspect it to no longer we working properly or if it has been in use for quite some time.