Why A Surge Protector Is The Simple Tech Gadget That You Absolutely Need

A surge protector is an electrical device that is used to protect equipment against power surges and voltage spikes while blocking voltage over a safe threshold (approximately 120 V). When a threshold is over 120V, a surge protector shorts to ground voltage or blocks the voltage. Without a surge protector, anything higher than 120V can create component issues, such as permanent damage, reduced lifespan of internal devices, burned wires and data loss.

A surge protector is usually installed in communications structures, process control systems, power distribution panels or other substantial industrialized systems. Smaller versions are typically installed in electrical service entrances located office buildings and residences.

Surge protectors help keep your electronics safe from unexpected surges in power. It keeps sudden bursts or other issues from power sources and lines from frying your pricey computers, phones, and tablets.

If you’re spending a tidy sum on electronics as many do these days  the last thing you want is for them to get fried when something goes wrong with the power line. In addition to creating more plug-in opportunities, surge protectors help fortify your plugged-in devices from a surge in the electric power supply by preventing it from sizzling your beloved gadgets.

They’re pretty much an essential for around the house, as well as for offices consider them a better substitute for your basic power strip, bringing with them the extra-protective powers. They come in all sizes, shapes, and capacities for plugs these days, including ports for USBs.

Surge protectors are also incredibly handy in travel situations. After all, it’s hard enough to find one available outlet at the airport, much less two or three for your laptop, phone, and Kindle. Some are made to cope with standard voltages in countries around the world, while others are designed in a cube or other compact shape so they have a minimal footprint on tiny cruise tables or hostel bunks.

It’s important to consider what gadgets you’ll be plugging into it — and how many. That will help determine the amount and type of ports and outlets you should look for in your surge protector.

Take a look at the configuration of the outlets and ports, too: If you picture the types of plugs you might be connecting then you'll want to make sure there is enough space around them to maximize the amount of outlets you can use at once. It doesn’t hurt to get three or four more outlets than you currently need so you have wiggle room for unconventionally shaped plugs or places for extra plugs

Surge protector components and features include:

  • An iron core transformer transfers alternating current (AC) power but cannot absorb sudden surges.
  • A zener diode protects against common circuit spikes and is sometimes combined with a transient voltage suppression diode.
  • If a circuit breaker is out or blows a fuse, a surge protector provides internal protection and protects against device and exterior surges.
  • Uninterruptible power supply takes in spikes using a low pass filter and allows external power beyond the battery, which supplies uninterrupted power.
  • A metal oxide varistor (MOV) is thermal fused and limits voltage three to four times that of a regular current. Parallel MOV connections expand life expectancy and increase current capacity. If exposed to many large transients or numerous small transients, MOVs can self-destruct.