Whole House Surge Protection: A Smart Home’s Best Defense

Whole House Surge Protection: A Smart Home’s Best Defense

Homeowners have access to more sophisticated and connected tech than ever before, but there is still an underlying threat to everything electric in the home.

Electric surges can strike a home’s appliances at any time, with reasons ranging from an internal wiring problem to lightning strikes.

Selling the Idea of Surge Protection

According to a report by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), most power surges are low voltage and won’t noticeably affect appliances. But even these lower voltage power surges can have long-term effects.

When appliances are continuously hit by these low voltage surges, the inside components start to degrade. This affects their lifespan and reliability. Larger surges are much worse. While they’re less common, powerful surges can start fires in appliances that have already begun deteriorating.

Surge protectors, like this, only offer a second level of defense.
Surge protectors, like this, offer a second level of defense.

“My equipment racks always have surge protection. When you have such a high concentration of high-value equipment, you’d be crazy not to include a surge protector,” says Daniel Solly of Digital Logic Systems.   

Multifamily buildings are at a higher risk because of the increased number of homeowners and devices in use. The home’s power network is under greater strain, leaving it vulnerable to unexpected power surges.

RELATED: Surge Protection and the Overlooked Threats

Surge Protection Solutions

When most people hear the term surge protection, they imagine simple plug-in strips. While those are basically effective, they should really be considering a second line of defense against dangerous surges.

The real protection comes from professionally installed whole house surge protectors that work from the main circuit board to divert surges away from the home and into the ground. 

Whole house surge protectors are typically rated to stop at least a 40,000 amp surge, and many come with features to alert once a surge is detected. It’s crucial to know when a surge has hit to ensure that secondary surge protection systems are still working. The more surges they’ve already stopped, the more likely they’ve started to deteriorate.

Surges in the Smart Home

Professionally installed whole house surge protectors display any volts that entered the home on the main screen
One of Furman’s professionally installed whole-house surge protectors.

According to Solly, another major benefit of surge protection is the application within the smart home for remote connections and feedback.

“With the addition of some strategically placed Blue Bolt gear, we can give the customer a heads up before they actually find the problem,” says Solly. “Having the ability to remotely power cycle a device for a client is invaluable.”

Builders and integrators that install whole home surge protection can count on fewer future service calls due to these protected appliances lasting much longer.

About The Author

Michael Black is a staff writer and content coordinator at TecHome Builder. He has a particular interest in new solar developments and smart energy systems and is always looking for the next smart home trend to cover. As the youngest member of the TecHome team, Michael brings a passion that keeps the team energized. He also is instrumental in leading our social media efforts.

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