Huntley was founded in 1995 and headquartered in Shenzhen, Huntley specializes in the development, design, and manufacturing of air purifiers, PC power supplies, industrial power supplies, surge protectors, adapters and chargers for over 20 years with branch companies and cooperating factories around the world. Considering that most homes have multiple electrical and electronic devices and appliances with sensitive components, the last thing you want is to leave all that expensive equipment vulnerable to drastic power fluctuations.
Our selection of whole house surge protectors is designed to provide entry-point defense against such energy spikes, regardless of their origins. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
Simply having newer 3-pronged plugs in your household is no guarantee of this, since a handyman may have installed these outlets without ensuring that your wiring has a grounding device, so it’s a sensible idea to have a licensed electrician check. This makes it significantly easier to maintain than the old-school units which have to be hardwired into place as frequently as they get damaged.
Type 1 or service entrance SPD's go before your main breaker and can ground large external voltage spikes. The models which make up this list are Type 2 or whole-house surge protectors, which are installed after your circuit panel as the next entry barrier.
While the PEEL Var may have surged -protection capabilities, it’s a device that primarily offers power factor correction, which can help save energy costs in buildings that use the PFC billing method. Also, remember that while most companies theoretically offer compensation for damaged electronics at the hands of their malfunctioning surge protectors, actually claiming for this can be difficult, so it’s always good to have a homeowner’s insurance policy that covers power surges.
The modular design of the makes it a good choice for protecting large appliances and HVAC systems. Finally, added the PEEL Var due to its ability to reduce energy consumption and recycle power.
A couple of uninspiring internships in engineering later however, and after some time spent soul-searching and traveling across Asia and East Africa, he now lives and works in Dubai. The Wiki is a participant in associate programs from Amazon, Walmart, eBay, Target, and others, and may earn advertising fees when you use our links to these websites.
The surge protector will protect your RV from an electrical surge that can be sent through the power pedestal. These power protection models safeguard against things like low and high voltage.
So if the electricity you are plugged into is running at a very low voltage like 100 or less (normal is 120v), the surge protector will cut power so your RV equipment isn’t running on that low voltage which can cause serious damage. If perhaps it is wired backwards or there is no ground, the surge protector will tell you that and not allow this potentially dangerous situation enter your RV.
I recently received the South wire Surge Guard Model 34931 to review and try out on our RV. This particular model protects against power surges, low (<102v) and high (>136v) voltage, open ground and neutral, overheating plug or receptacle, reverse polarity, misfired pedestal and high neutral.
Living in several campgrounds over the past few years, we have seen many potential problems related to electricity. One campground would continuously drop under 100 volts in the early evening during the summer.
This was because most people had their air conditioners going and were either running their microwave and some sort of electrical heating device to cook food. This really could have damaged my refrigerator because RV fridges are sensitive to improper voltages.
It continuously displays the voltage that is coming into the RV as well as the amount of amps I’m currently using. This is a small thing, but I really like the fact that I don’t have to stand there for 2+ minutes watching it count down before I know the power is good and the RV is on.
They’ve also added a plastic ring around the top wire portion of the unit. This is a great addition because these units aren’t cheap, and it’s nice knowing you can secure it using a lock when you leave your campsite.
Another very cool feature of this Surge Guard is that it is compatible with a wireless LCD. The display is meant to be mounted somewhere in your RV, so you can monitor the electricity without having to go out to check the surge protector.
It will find your Surge Guard (you can verify this by matching the numbers on the unit with the ones that show on the display). It’s a small investment that protects all of your expensive appliances and electronics in the RV.
*Disclosure: South wire provided an RV surge protector to review for this post. From the systems that provide our entertainment to those that keep our homes comfortable year-round, the great advances in technology over the last century have made life easier, more enjoyable, and simply better all around, in ways both major and minor.
To a far greater extent than most people appreciate, the power grid isn’t perfect, and when it inevitably hiccups, it endangers the appliances you depend on and for which you spent a small fortune. According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, power disturbances cost homeowners a whopping $79 billion each year.
And almost as important, the Compressor Defender™ lets you count on your central air conditioning to keep your home comfortable through the hottest months of the year, no matter how many surges or brownouts summer brings. With exposure to multiple power disturbances, its internal metal-oxide various gradually deteriorate, although thanks to its state-of-the-art TUMOR® Technology, the Compressor Defender™ eliminates many potentially hazardous failure modes associated with older, increasingly outmoded electrical protection options.
And with the power grid under increased strain due to mounting electricity demand and the upswing in extreme weather, don’t we all want a little peace of mind? It's going to stop minor spikes but if you work in this field (protection) you learn a famous quote about such strikes, and then you know to ask the client to define in detail exactly what we are protecting this from.
When in doubt a check of the service entrance grounding mechanism will tell if you can make good use of whole house protection. Your electrical provider should perform a simple test at no charge.
As an industrial electrician this problem arose with a 170,000 sq ft facility with a LAN and 14 corporate servers to protect. Located in central Tennessee we had lightning storms for 8 months of the year and the use of an upgraded ground system along with whole house protection and a large UPS installed on each server rack kept us running even when the area experienced power outages caused by lightning strikes on the local electrical sub-stations.
The same can be accomplished at home by using a good quality UPS installed after a properly grounded service entry with a UL rated service entry surge suppressor. The 2 plates of a capacitor can store a charge until enough voltage is reached and the insulator is no longer sufficient to separate the charges.3.
OR simple inductive fer rite cores that you can snap in place around the wires through-out the house. The service feed was underground and was inside a plastic pipe.
I did have natural gas service and its bike was directly buried. The telephone had a 2' ground rod. What I did to protect my home for under $100.00: 1) using my lawn edger, I cut a 3” deep trench around my property and then every 4' across the property in a cross pattern with a trench directly connected near the service entrance.
I laid copper wire into these trenches, soldering them together at every cross point ; 2) I drove 10'-15' (3-5 m) ground rods every 30' around and across my property connecting the rods to the grounded wires (this was easiest during the rainy season); 3) I tied this ground system to the service entrance using copper wire. As an electrician, I doubt you installed 15ft copper ground rods and other material for less than $100.
The other thing is you must have had a lightening hit close enough to cause EMP/RFI damage much like a nuclear bomb would do when detonated. Remember to unplug devices that are plugged in with the phone cord during electrical storms.
Do surge protectors merely give us a false sense of security For basic over voltage protection most will do fine, if you have a properly grounded power distribution system.
Those that use spark gap type protection only last through a number of spark cycles and should be replaced as a matter of preventative maintenance after a couple of years or sooner if your power experiences a lot of outages. Those that are simply low pass filters (Inductors and capacitors) can tend to last longer, but be much less effective.
These are NOT good, even a little, during a lightning storm or other more extreme weather activity. Your typical power spike occurs so quickly, that the internal components of these lower priced devices can't respond in time.
Normally they have 2 sections on these devices, a group of outlets that offer surge protection akin to the surge protector strips mentioned above, and a group that offers surge protection with battery backup. These, again, are not super effective in electrical storms or the such, they are better than the devices above, but if you live in an area with extreme weather conditions your best bet is to still unplug your systems from the wall while these electrical storms are occurring.
This means that the power drops and spikes that occur in every home's (and business) electrical system are balanced out to a steady current of power being fed to your devices. These devices can be purchased at places like Home Depot or Lowes for a lot less than people think (quite a few models can be found for right around $50).
The key is to have the device attached to the main ground of the house (or building). This then takes random lightning strikes and other types of power surges and puts them straight to ground where they can do minimal harm.
I personally place battery backups on all my expensive equipment (computers, TV's, stereos, basically anything that would seriously hit my pocketbook if I had to replace it due to a power surge) and then use higher quality power strips anywhere else. The only guaranteed protection against a big lightning strike or other type of surge is to NOT have your devices attached to the houses electrical system when they happen.
Hope that helps, and as a disclaimer, I am FAR from an electrician, just done some of my own research and I would appreciate any modifications or corrections to anything I stated above as I would hate to steer anyone in the wrong direction. Like Greg above, I use a backup battery, have surge protector at my main electrical panel, and Always unplug all expensive equipment, telephone, and cables lines prior to thunderstorms or when leaving town.
However, you need to have your computer gear on one circuit breaker (surge protected) in your main electrical box. You don't want your backup battery backing up miscellaneous stuff in your house.
PS If you are backing up to an external drive, disconnect and unplug it when the backup is complete. I beg to differ on your opinion re Battery Backup or UPS protection.
That external ground fault breaker was for the upstairs floor of the house. My electronic equipment, including my computer and 62-inch big screen did not even blink.
I looked out to see the electrical utility pole (about 40 ft from my house) transformer on fire. I discovered my external ground fault breaker was smoking and fortunately did not catch fire.
When power was restored my electronic devices suffered no damage whatsoever. I am still using these devices today, including my UPS battery backup / surge protection.
Lightning is a million of volts arc that travels 20 plus miles through open air. There have been cases of lightning hitting a tree in a yard, traveling through the tree root system and pieces of pipe and old chain buried in the yard and entering a home through its own ground system.
All the systems mentioned in these comments give varying degrees of protection (and I use all of them), but the only way to be completely safe is to disconnect from power, phone and cable lines. Little switches, fuses, spark gaps and Vows can only deal with relatively low voltages, take a look at the insulators on the cross city power lines near your home, they can be over a foot long, and they are only dealing with around 13,000 volts.
I live in central Florida one of the heaviest lightning areas in the US and no I don't always unplug all my electronics during storms and in the last 10 years all I've lost is two cable modems (which the cable company happily replaced). I also have a house surge protector by Florida Light & Power and pay only $5 a month for that.
The reason for all the APC's is because we get a lot of mini outages, and they can do more harm than a regular one. When I first moved here years ago, I was not aware of the magnitude of the many thousands of strikes that we get down here.
The summer rainy season in the Tampa Bay area produces over 40,000 lightning strikes per storm! The salesman there said that 90% of his PC and TV repairs are from lightning taking out circuit boards.
Many of these lightning strikes are “caught” by the electric company's circuit protection. I was advised by my TV repairman that these flickering can cause problems in circuit boards.
Four and five hundred clamping voltage protectors have minimal protection with 330v being preferred. My way around the flickering problem, was to purchase a small UPS for my HDTV instead of just a surge protector.
It eliminated the cost of replacing the surge protector after a lightning hit which then just becomes a wire. The kind that plug into the main circuit breaker box of the house.
I have a died ac panel protector installed at circuit breaker panel.APC backup for computer,,,individual surge protectors in every room to protect TVs.also since Florida is the worst state for lightening I had time delay and hard start kit installed on my ac,,,nothing kills an ac compressor faster than a power surge which are so common in Florida. Essential prerequisite for surge protection is a high quality ground.
No matter how good the toilet (surge protection device) the waste is going nowhere but back at you and your equipment! I had tested my home grounding system a couple of years ago before I retired from the VIA Hospital here where I served for 30+ years in their Biomedical Engineering dept, using one I borrowed from the shop.
Here's an example of the type of device: http://www.duncaninstr.com/st2301.htm There are others that will allow clamping in tighter wiring situations. A meter bypass wire was present though. Once that was done I had a Sine Control unit installed at the power panel for the house.
At the hospital we had experienced dramatic reduction in equipment failure rates once appropriate Sine Control units were installed on affected circuits. See http://www.sinecontrol.com/product_pdf_files/SCT_Series_4_2009.pdf for the specific one I have or this for the product line including some plug in varieties.
While surge protectors and UPS's may provide little protection against a heavy lightning strike, the ones which function as electrical line conditioners can be a great benefit to electronics. Most UPS's and some of the more expensive surge protectors have at least some line conditioning to significantly reduce electronic noise.
All the electronics I have plugged into a UPS or surge protector with line conditioning have had a good life span. I used to work for a company that offered hole home surge protection, by adding a surge protector at the panel and individual surge outlets help in the long term effects of small bumps in the power grid, but nothing they sold offered protection from lightning. Unplug your power cord, coax cable and phone lines from your most values electronics is the only way to totally isolate them.
I read that and got to the part where he said he was happily at work while lightening was flashing all around. Those UPS's are there to give you time to save your work and do a proper shut down.