It's better to be safe than sorry
If you own a gaming desktop or laptop, power tools, and basically any household appliances, you should invest in a surge protector. The most common cause of an electric surge inside your home is faulty wiring or an overload of the electric outlets. An external surge typically happens immediately after the sudden restoration of electricity after a power outage. Small Current Transformer
Aside from electric equipment malfunctions, surges can also be caused by lightning strikes near your home or to the power grid. So it’s only a matter of time until you experience one and your electronics are at risk.
There is a common misconception that all power strips provide surge protection for electronics, but sadly this isn’t true. In this article, we’ll discuss why buying a reliable surge protector is important and review some of the best products on the market that will help safeguard your electronics.
Surge protectors are small appliances that convert the AC plug into multiple sockets. However, they are not your typical extension cords, as they come with a filter that prevents a power surge from impacting your electronic devices. They are equipped with a surge suppressor, also known as a surge arrester.
This device prevents peak AC voltage from exceeding a specific limit. Otherwise, the electric current would damage your devices. This limit varies depending on where you live. It’s 120 volts in the United States, while in Europe it’s 230 volts.
There are many power surge protectors for sale online and offline. You can purchase them anywhere these days. But you should know how to choose the best power surge protector to protect your expensive electronic devices. The materials they’re made of and the quality of the build varies greatly from product to product. Reputable brands can guarantee the quality of their electronics so avoid buying from no-name companies.
The most important thing you should look for in surge protectors is their joule rating (labeled as J). This is an international unit of energy, and it will tell you how much electricity the protector absorbs before the filter stops being effective. The higher the joule count, the more filtering the device can perform.
That also means it will last longer. Most surge protectors work by using Metal Oxide Varistors, or MOV for short. These will reroute the energy back to its source or into a grounding line. This is why you need to make sure your power outlets are equipped with a grounding prong.
The Belkin Power Strip Surge Protector is an excellent product if you need a heavy-duty piece of equipment to protect all your connected devices. It even has a 1-in-2-out RJ11 power bar for telephone protection to ensure a continuous connection. Also, this product offers coaxial cable protection as well.
This Belkin surge protector has a 12 AC outlet system so you can connect everything you need. You can charge your laptop, camera, phone, and other devices all at once. You can rest assured your devices will be protected from power spikes, overloads, short circuits, and lightning strikes. Although it has a large number of outlets, they are widely spaced so you can connect large plugs and chargers without wasting any slots.
If you need a power surge protector that’ll stay out of your way consider getting this APC Essential. It has no cord as it’s mounted directly on the wall. It has six outlets which are more than enough for a home office or your living room. The best part is that the APC Essential also has two USB ports with 2.4 amps of charging power.
However, this APC power surge protector is on the lower side of surge arrest with a range of only 1080 joules. This should be enough for regular household devices or PC peripherals, but make sure not to use it for any heavy-duty appliances such as medical equipment, heaters, or even gaming consoles.
If you need a simple and very light extension cord with surge protection, consider Amazon Basics. It is a budget-friendly surge protector power strip with one transformer outlet. It also has a built-in switch that allows you to turn all of your electrical devices off, at the same time.
Two USB ports allow you to charge your phones and tablets without occupying the outlets. The red-protected LED indicator illuminates to let you know that the power is on. It also comes with a 6-foot long cord so you can reach and plug almost any device in your room. That said, this surge protector has 3-line protection, perfect for small appliances and gadgets such as cameras, phones, tablets, and lamps. A 15-amp circuit breaker is a very neat additional safety feature of this Amazon Basics surge protector.
The HITRENDS power strip has 6 outlets and 6 USB charging ports making it a 12-in-1 surge protector. It sounds like a lot, but this power strip will let you charge and plug in 12 devices at once. This is great for offices or large family homes (or if you’re a tech enthusiast!).
The multiple, 3-line protection systems will keep your connected equipment safe from power surges, lightning strikes, overloads, and short circuits. The USB ports will detect your devices easily and charge them at the maximum speed of 2.4 amps. The high quality of this surge protector is guaranteed by a fire-resistant PC shell, and copper wires instead of aluminum.
If you are often on the go, and need a portable surge protector, the Tripp Lite might be a solution for you. Its 660J rating can quickly recognize power problems and protect your devices. The two diagnostic LED lights, protected and grounded, display the power and protection status of your devices.
Tripp Lite is a small and light 3-outlet surge protector with a direct plug-in design. This little power cube conforms to current UL 1449 3rd edition safety standards. With it, you can instantly convert any wall outlet into a power surge protector, although it’s not ideal for large appliances.
Anker is a reputable company known for its simple but clean design and high-quality items. Their power strip surge protector will get you the best quality for money you’re spending. It comes with 12 outlets and 3 USB ports, as well as a handy 6ft cable. You can power your whole workstation, home theater, or entertainment center. The charging with the Anker Power Strip surge protector is high-speed due to the PowerIQ technology it uses.
Anker uses only the best quality materials for its devices, and this power strip is no exception. Extra safety is achieved with a thick rubber coating, fire-resistant PC casing, and integrated copper wiring.
TP-Link’s Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Strip is a voice-controlled surge protector and it comes with its own mobile app. All six outlets are smart, and you can use Google’s assistant Alexa or Microsoft’s Cortana to control them independently. Use the mobile app to group the plugs and control them, or to schedule charging the devices. This power surge protector is designed for smart homes.
If that’s not enough, this power strip also includes three USB ports for fast charging for your mobile devices. And if you’re worried about power consumption, you can use the app to monitor how much electricity each of the devices is using. You can even control and reduce power consumption by adjusting the charging speed.
With its unique design, the APC Desk Mount Power Station is an amazing option for decluttering your work station. It can perfectly fit on the edge of a desk or even on a cubicle wall. This makes it more accessible and an ideal option for small offices. Its surge rating is not that impressive, but at 1080 joules it’s more than enough to protect all your small devices and gadgets.
The USB ports are also designed with an office in mind. There are two USB-A and one USB-C port for charging or connecting your mobile devices. Each of them provides 4.8 amps of charging power. This is perfect for charging smartphones or tablets, though not enough for laptops and PCs.
The Belkin Pivotplug is a heavy-duty surge protector. Its protection rating of 4320 joules will allow you to protect almost anything from sudden power surges. Its plugs can be pivoted up to 90 degrees upwards so you can plug several large adapters simultaneously, without having to micromanage the space. Although there are four outlets on each side of this device and four more in the middle, there are no USB ports.
Aside from the 12 outlets, the Belkin Pivotplug boasts a coaxial cable and phone or fax line protection. Also, It has two indicator lights and the green one will turn off once the surge arrest is all used up. This way you’ll know when this device is no longer protecting your appliances.
If you’re looking for a power surge protector that has a modern design and will easily blend in with your house or office decor, consider the Accell Power Air. It’s round and you can easily place it on your nightstand, work desk, or kitchen counter. The round design is carefully thought out to allow maximum space between the sockets, so you can plug in large adapters.
This surge protector also has two USB ports with a 2.4 amp output to charge your phone and tablet quickly. If you look on the side of the Accell Power Air, you’ll find a red 15 amp resettable circuit breaker that provides extra protection. A big round power button that controls the Power Air is placed at the top center and is easily accessible even with all sockets in use.
Just because you weren’t affected by a power surge yet doesn’t mean you shouldn’t start protecting your electronics. You never know when the next surge comes and how much damage it will do. So invest in a reliable surge protector as soon as possible to safeguard all your devices.
Nicolae is a Jack of all trades technology writer with a focus on hardware, programming languages, and AI image-processing software. Over the last five years, he has ghostwritten numerous tech how-to guides and books on a variety of topics ranging from Linux to C# programming and game development. Nicolae loves everything that has to do with technology and his goal is to share his knowledge and experience with others. Read Nicolae's Full Bio
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