How much money do you think you have invested in electronic devices and equipment in your home? Let’s think about the myriad of electronics likely to be found in the modern home. The list could include some or all of the following:

  • home theatre
  • desktop computers
  • lap top computers
  • tablet devices
  • mobile phone chargers
  • stereo sound systems
  • digital radios
  • televisions
  • wireless routers
  • modems
  • gaming consoles

The list is endless and seems to grow year on year. So, for most home owners, the dollar investment in home electronics is significant. This investment can be at risk due to electrical surges that can damage sensitive electronic devices.

Electrical Surges – What Are They And Where Do They Come From?

When we get electrical arcing or when a highly inductive device like a fridge motor starts up, we have the possibility of electrical ‘spikes’ or very rapid peaks in electricity, being sent around our homes’ electrical wiring. These spikes, though very short in duration, typically milliseconds (thousandths of a second) or even microseconds (millionths of a second), can carry very high amounts of electrical energy. This is because even though the pulse duration is short, the electrical current can be in the tens of thousands of amps. These high energy spikes can pose a serious risk of damage to the electronic devices listed above that you have invested your hard earned money in. Electrical spikes can cause semiconductors, capacitors and resistors – the basic electronic building block of modern consumer electronics, to fail – literally burn out or cause them to fail in time.

Surge Power Boards To The Rescue

Ok, so we potentially have these high energy ‘power spikes’ zapping around our electrical circuits in

Surge Power Board

Typical Surge Power Board

our homes and putting at risk our precious gaming consoles and other beloved electronic items and devices. What can we do to protect the,? One solution is to purchase a surge power board. A surge power board, as pictured to the right, looks, superficially like a standard power board that we use to plug multiple plugs into. The difference lies in what is inside the surge power board devices. Inside them are a series of specially designed electrical filter circuits, made from an array of electrical capacitors, resistors and transient voltage suppressors or T.V.S.’s. T.V.S.’s are semiconductor devices that, once they encounter an electrical pulse of energy, very quickly divert that pulse to electrical ground, thereby stopping them damaging your electronic equipment. In other words the pulse no longer enters your stereo sound systems’ electronics, potentially blowing them up, but instead send the spike straight to eath potential where it can do no damage.

Cost Of Surge Power Boards

Surge Power Boards have become relatively inexpensive over the last 10 years and every household should invest in them to protect sensitive electronic equipment. You can purchase them from most electrical wholesales, Bunnings or the majority of home electronics retailers. Typical prices range from $60 up to around $200. As licensed electricians we think they represent a sound investment when talking into account the money most Australians invest in electronic equipment these days.