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What is surge protection?

Surge protection is a method of safeguarding electronic devices from voltage spikes that can damage or destroy them. These spikes, which can be caused by lightning strikes, power outages, or other electrical disruptions, can cause irreparable harm to sensitive electronics such as computers, televisions, and home entertainment systems.

How does surge protection work?

Surge protectors work by diverting excess voltage away from the devices they are connected to. They do this by using a metal oxide varistor (MOV) to absorb the extra voltage and redirect it to the ground wire in the electrical system. This prevents the excess voltage from reaching the device and causing damage.

Types of surge protectors

There are several types of surge protectors available, including:

  • Power strips: These are the most common type of surge protector and are designed to be plugged into an electrical outlet. They usually have multiple outlets and a switch to turn off all connected devices.
  • Wall-mounted surge protectors: These are similar to power strips but are designed to be mounted directly onto a wall outlet. They are a good option if you have limited space.
  • Whole-house surge protectors: These are installed at the main electrical panel and provide protection for the entire house. They are the most effective type of surge protector, but also the most expensive.

Choosing the right surge protector

When choosing a surge protector, it’s important to consider the following factors:

  • Joule rating: This refers to the amount of energy the surge protector can absorb before it fails. A higher joule rating means better protection.
  • Clamping voltage: This is the voltage at which the surge protector starts to divert excess voltage. A lower clamping voltage means better protection.
  • Number of outlets: Make sure the surge protector has enough outlets for all the devices you need to protect.
  • Warranty: Look for a surge protector with a warranty that covers connected devices in case of damage.


Surge protection is an important consideration for anyone who uses electronic devices. By using a surge protector, you can protect your devices from voltage spikes and ensure they last as long as possible. When choosing a surge protector, be sure to consider the joule rating, clamping voltage, number of outlets, and warranty.