Are you ready for this year’s monsoon season?
According to the National Weather Service, North Arizona can expect heavy rains, lightning strikes, high winds, and dust storms from mid-June to mid-September every year.
These intermittent weather patterns that occur during the summer monsoon season don’t only pose a threat to your home’s infrastructure, but especially to its electrical systems.
For instance, if lightning strikes the power lines around your home, it can send a surge of electricity that can ruin your everyday appliances.
Even quick power outages due to dust or lightning storms can cause small surges that can degrade the performance of your electronics at home.
So, how do you protect your electronics and appliances from damage?
The best way to protect your home is to get a whole house surge protector.
To help you prepare, we’ve put together a two-part, in-depth guide to protecting your home during the monsoon season!
What Is A Whole House Surge Protector and Why Do You Need It?
A whole-house surge protector monitors the flow of electricity in your home and protects your appliances from voltage spikes by blocking its flow or shorting it to ground.
Think of them as the guards of your electric systems at home.
When there’s too much electric current surging through your wires (either due to power outage or lightning), these devices will prevent the excess current from flowing to your appliances.
Why Do You Need It?
Any system powered by electricity is susceptible to voltage spikes.
During the monsoon season in Northern Arizona, power surges occur more often due to lightning or quick power outages.
However, a power surge isn’t just caused by external forces.
Tripped circuits, short circuits, and power interruptions can also cause a surge of electricity that can damage your home’s electronics.
These surges may only occur every now and then, but the damage they can cause to your home can become problematic in the long run.
To protect your home all-year-round, it’s best to have whole-house surge protectors installed
Surge protectors can prevent:
- Circuit boards from frying, particularly in highly sensitive electronic home appliances (washers, dryers, stoves, fridges, dishwashers, computers, smart devices, TVs, LED light bulbs, etc.)
- Mini-bursts of excess energy from major appliances cycling on and off, which contribute to as much as 80 percent of the power surges in your home, slowly degrading your appliances and shortening their lifespans.
- Overvoltage from downed utility lines and other homes in your vicinity affecting the flow of current into your home and resulting in damaging voltage fluctuations.
Do whole house surge protectors really protect against lightning?
Yes! A whole-house surge protector is designed to defend you against big, dangerous power surges caused by a lightning strike.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you should stop using the venerable plug-in surge suppressors. In fact, the best protection comes by using both types in conjunction.
These will fully protect your home from all types of power surges!
Benefits for Whole-House Surge Protectors
- Helps increase the lifespan of your appliances.
At least 80% of power surges are generated internally. A small power surge may not seem alarming, but over time, they can degrade the performance of your appliances.
Installing whole-house surge protection can help protect your devices and make them last.
- Offers a complete electrical system protection
With a whole house surge protector, you’re not only protecting your appliances, but you’re also protecting the entire electrical system of your home.
In the case of a transient surge that comes from a home appliance on a dedicated circuit, surge protection will send this surge back to the breaker panel.
This ensures all of your other electrical appliances at home will be protected.
- Varying options depending on your needs
There are several whole-house systems available for various voltage needs.
It’s best to contact your local electrician to consult on what type of surge protection systems would work best for you.
Homeowners in Northern Arizona should also consider the monsoon season when dealing with electrical surges.
During these monsoon seasons, a surge protector with an 80kA rating would be a smart investment.
Whole House Surge Protection: Can You Do It Yourself?
As with any electrical job, it’s strongly recommended that you let a professional electrician install your surge protector devices for you.
Typically, whole-house protectors are connected to the service box or the electrical panel. Your large appliances may need to be wired to the systems as well.
It may be tempting to make this installation a DIY project, but you may end up regretting it when your surge protectors fail to protect your home.
A bad installation may not make your devices run properly or worse, could cause more damage.
For best results and for the safety of your home, your appliances, and your family, consult a professional for whole-home surge protection installation.
Monsoon Tips From The Electric Pros of Prescott, AZ
Assurance Electrical has been in the business of electrical service for 20 years.
We’ve dealt with every electrical issue a Prescott homeowner can face, especially during the monsoon seasons.
Other than installing a surge protector, we also recommend:
- Clearing your roof. In early June, it’s best to check on your roof and clear it of any debris, like twigs or sharp rocks that may cause leaks.
- Clean up your drainage systems. Many electrical issues are related to indoor flooding. Call your local plumber to make sure your drainage systems are working properly.
- Trim and thin your trees. Keeping your trees trimmed and thin will prevent falling branches from breaking your windows or roof.
Do you want more tips to keep your electric systems safe this monsoon season? Write a comment below and we’ll answer it in the second part of our Monsoon Preparation Guide!
Jeff Brandlin is the founder of Assurance Electrical Services, LLC. He started in the electrical industry when he was 21 and had worked in several electrical firms before founding Assurance Electrical. Jeff is dedicated to providing the best quality service to his clients and always puts their needs first. Outside work, Jeff enjoys spending time with his wife and children.