dual pronged power cord

How to Protect Your Home Against a Power Surge

Power surges are often associated with thunderstorms and lightning. In reality, your home is actively having small, short power surges throughout the day. Think of when you use an appliance that requires a lot of energy — your washing machine, air conditioner, or stove — when you finish using them and turn them off, your home experiences a small temporary surge as that energy is distributed back throughout your home. 

But what do you do after a power surge, or how do you prevent one from happening? At DRO Insurance, we’re here to ensure you, your home, and your valuables are safe and protected. We’re sharing a few things to look out for and how to protect your home from serious damage. 

When it comes to power surges, the first step is to identify the electrical devices and appliances that could be damaged or destroyed from a power surge. Common items include:

  • Computers
  • Televisions
  • Refrigerators
  • Ovens
  • Dishwashers
  • Microwaves
  • Washers/dryers
  • Security systems
  • Anything with a microprocessor

How to prevent a power surge:

  1. Install surge protectors throughout your home. Protect your most sensitive and valuable electronics from power surges by plugging them into a power strip with surge protectors. 
  2. Unplug your most sensitive electronics before a major storm. If you know a storm is heading your way, unplug major devices and appliances such as televisions and computers. Although surge protectors are great, the best method to prevent a power surge is to disconnect.
  3. Consider every outlet throughout your home and how many electronics are plugged into them. Certain areas, such as your kitchen, will have many appliances that require a lot of energy. Make sure to have large appliances such as your stove and refrigerator plugged into different outlets.
  4. Consider a whole-home surge protection system. Talk to your electrician about this, a whole-home surge protector acts as a gateway for electrical currents and can prevent sudden surges. 

If you experience a power surge, be proactive and safe. Inspect your home for any signs of damage and document anything that’s been seriously affected. The majority of your electronics will need a proper reset to get them up and running smoothly again. 

Signs your home may have experienced a power surge:

  • Look for signs of flickering or brightening. Have the lights flickered or your TV or computer monitor suddenly become momentarily brighter?
  • Check for a system reset or blinking clock. Some devices go into rest mode when the power stops or surges. Clocks suddenly start blinking the wrong time.
  • Do you smell an acrid smell? A burst of power can fry electrical circuits and lines, leaving a noticeable burnt smell.
  • Inspect your circuit breaker. A surge can trip circuit breakers — likely preventing more device damage or even a fire.

If your home experiences severe damages from a power surge such as a fire or electrical issue, please contact your local authorities and electrical company. Talk to a DRO Insurance agent today to review your homeowner’s insurance coverage and policy to ensure your home and valuables are protected.