Did you get what you really wanted during the holidays this year? Maybe that new smartphone you've been eyeing, or that extra-big HDTV? Perhaps you even got a new laptop or tablet. Whatever your favorite gift was, if it plugs into the wall, it could be at risk of electrical surge damage.

Power surges happen all the time, and homeowners usually aren't even aware when they occur. That's because the typical power surge won't completely fry a gadget or appliance -- but it might do a small, imperceptible amount of damage that slightly shortens the life of the device. Add up hundreds of these surges over time, and you could be talking about years of life shaved off of your favorite electronics.

Where Do Surges Come From?

If you think of surge protection as a safeguard against damage from lightning strikes, think again. Surges caused by direct lighting strikes to a home are rare and usually so destructive that a surge protection system can't mitigate all the damage.

Most surges begin and end in your own home, and are generated by a major appliance starting up. Have you ever noticed the lights briefly dimming when the air conditioner kicks on? That's a sign of a power surge. These are the types of surges that damage your electronics one tiny bit at a time.

Other surges may originate at the electrical utility and travel along the power lines into your home. And during bad weather, it's much more likely that you'll get a surge because a fallen branch took down a power line than to experience a direct surge from a lightning strike.

Get Yourself Protected

Surge protection strips or adapters can offer critical protection for select devices, but this isn't the ideal solution. First of all, these adapters are often clunky and bulky, and they can only be used to protect a few things at a time.

They're also delicate, and can be rendered ineffective with just a single major surge. If there's no indicator light that shows whether surge protection is active, you may think you're protected when really you're not.

Whole-home surge protection is the best solution for the protection of all the devices and appliances in your home. Wired into your main electrical panel, a whole-home surge protector extends that protection to every outlet in your home, as well as to major appliances like your air conditioner and refrigerator. These devices can also withstand numerous surges and last for years.

If you're interested in getting this level of protection for the appliances and devices in your home, reach out to a licensed local electrician today for a no-obligation consultation.

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