Time To Replace Your Power Strip Surge Protector

December 9, 2019

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If you’re using surge protectors in your home, you might want to consider replacing them, especially if you can’t remember when you bought the ones currently in use. Come to find out, your average surge protector doesn’t last forever and will lose its protective powers and instead just be functioning as a standard power strip. A typical surge protector uses a component called a metal oxide varistor (MOV). When the voltage spikes, the surge protector effectively diverts that extra voltage to the MOV component. This component degrades when it’s exposed to either a small number of large surges or a larger number of smaller surges. The additional energy doesn’t damage your devices — it stays in the surge protector, where it degrades the MOV. In other words, your surge protector can only absorb so many surges before it stops functioning as a surge protector and starts functioning as a power strip. Surge protector lifespans aren’t measured in years — they’re measured in joules. It’s all about how many joules your surge protector has absorbed. But, the older your surge protector is, the more it’s likely degraded. So when is it time to replace that surge protector? Well, the longer it’s been, the more at risk you are. If you know your surge protector has absorbed a serious power surge, you should probably replace it immediately. Many people recommend replacing a surge protector every two years or so, but any recommendation like this one can only be a rule of thumb.

SOURCE: How To Geek

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