whole house surge protector installation

Power surges can affect the functioning of machines such as televisions, modems and computers. All electronic appliances fall into this category. The whole-house surge protecter is able to tame the beast that is power surges and ensures the appliances on the other end are safe without causing any damage.
This system will protect all of your electronic appliances and devices plugged into multiple outlets throughout your home. A surge protector for your home is essential to protect you from uninvited power surges, especially if you live in an area that is subject to frequent storms.

What is a power surge?
Surge protectors for the home are installed to protect it from lightning strikes, or even power lines that have fallen. Power surges are not discriminating, they can affect any appliance.

The majority of people believe that by connecting their devices to a surge protector with multiple outlets (power strips), they will be protected from power surges. Unfortunately, this is not the way surges work. The primary electrical panel in your home must be hardwired with protection by a certified electrican.

What causes power surges?
The power surge can travel through miles of power lines to strike your home during a storm, even if lightning does not strike near or on your house. The power surge could be caused by a malfunctioning appliance in your home that increases its power consumption on a sunny day.

One of the most common reasons for the power surges can be traced down to heavy electricity-consuming appliances like air conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines, and similar power hogs. These are a few of the reasons that power surges occur:

Downed power lines
Faulty electrical wiring
Transformers that cause problems
Lightning is a rare but powerful cause of surges. It can induce millions of volts in wiring and overwhelm even the best surge protectors.

What is a surge protector?
The surge protector is a sophisticated system that is safer than the standard power strip. Surge protectors are installed in the main electrical panel of your home where they act as a pressure relief valve. The surge protector allows current to pass through but when a power surge occurs, it redirects the excess voltage to the ground wire. This acts as a diversion for your expensive electronic equipment.

The reaction time for a good surge protector is less than one nanosecond. The surge protector will restore the electricity to the appliances once the voltage returns to normal. However, a strong surge caused by lightning can cause the fuses or lights in the protector to be damaged or melt.

How does a surge protector work?
Surge protectors work on two levels. It protects your household from the “big guy” which is the power surges, and it also ensures that the appliances connected to individual circuits are working normally.

An electrician must connect a typical surge protector/suppressor to the service panel. This takes about two hours. Surge protectors are expected to reduce the impact of a surge up to 40,000 amps.

Plug-in surge protectors can be used to stop surges, but they cannot eliminate them completely. Around 15% of the surge current could leak. Prices, quality, plug-points and sizes vary.

How to Install a Surge Protector for the Whole House
It is recommended that you hire a licensed electrician to do this work. Interfering with your home’s primary power supply can be dangerous. If you have done similar jobs in the past, and are familiar with the tools needed to complete the task then this is the best option for you. You may need a few tools to install and setup a surge protector for your whole home:

Wire Strippers
Flathead screwdrivers
Electrical Insulation Tape
Hammer and Nails
Voltage Detector
Drill or Driver

Prepare the Surge Protector for Primary Panel Box
Step 1: Shut off the power. Step 1.
To ensure safety, locate the main electrical panel in your home and turn off the primary breakers switch. Do this before opening the electrical box to begin the work. It is best to use a voltage meter to check if the panel has been completely de-energized. There can be still live cables in the panel even after power is turned off. When the lid has been opened, look for a circular knockout. You can push the guard slightly back to mount your surge protector.

Step 2. Mounting surge protector
After you have created a suitable opening for the surge protector, you can now insert its wires. Keep these wires apart by first looping them to make connecting them easier.

Look at the manual that came along with your surge protection and see if it is threaded or screw type. If neither, it is best to follow the instructions in the manual.

The surge protector can be mounted either inside or outside the panel casing. If you ask us, however, we would recommend mounting them outside as they are limited in lifespan and could need to be replaced after a large surge charge.

Step 3. Strip and remove the surge protector cables
The inner wiring of the surge protector will need to be exposed. This will then be connected to the section of the stripper marked ’14 AWG.’ This will ensure that the cable is not scarred.

Connect the ground bar to the green cables located on the right. The neutral white wire must be connected on the bus to the right, where the other white cables are. The black wire, which is the final one, must now be connected to the circuit breaker dipole & mounted near the primary cables.

Step 4. Change the cover of the panel and test
After you have checked that everything is in the correct place, you can now proceed to replace the cover and main screws. Do not turn the main power switch on yet. After the panel has been fixed, make sure that it is solid and all screws have been properly secured. Now you can turn on the main power break.

Switch on the dipole breakers, which are connected to the black cables, and check the lights in the main box. Compare the results with the user manual. If it works, then you’ve done an excellent job.

The Benefits of Whole-Home Surge Protection
Power surges can be caused by lightning storms, electrical appliances that go haywire or any other unpredictable event. You can benefit from a whole-house surge protecter by:

Stopping power surges from reaching home appliances
Directing excess surge power away electronic appliances
If the surges have been extremely powerful, show the damage to the system to warn you. Replace the unit or parts to protect your home again.

We all know by now how damaging power surges are, especially those caused by lightning. They can also travel a long distance. A surge protector can provide you and your family with peace of mind, knowing that your electronics will not be affected by any power surges.

If you do not have a surge protection unit, it is difficult to detect surges unless your appliances start malfunctioning. The house surge protector can be maintained and checked regularly to ensure that your electronic appliances and those of your family are protected.


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