Electrical Wiring in the Home/House wiring surge protection


Is a whole house surge protector needed?  http://www.smartenergytoday.net/clean-energy-guard/

Jim,   I have one,    in this day and age with voltage spikes and constantly changing feeds,  I rent mine from the utility   9 bucks a month or around there, with insurance of like 25.000 if a surge burns up a bunch of electronics,

I did not see a price on that Clean unit,  not familiar with it,   and some pretty bold claims,   it is full of technical speak,  such as capacitance and reducing kilowatt surges to even running currents,       if your power is that OFF from the utility  they are on the hook to clean it up to acceptable tolerances,     but with power spikes  and other surges becoming more common place,        a whole house protector is wise,    I would contact your utility and ask what they have as a program,   I would think it would be a top of the line unit,     and if they will supply one,  for a reasonable price   and something happens,  if you go third party   now you have to prove there was a surge,  and not an easy thing to do,     with the utility  still hard to prove,      but a good protector should prevent having to prove anything

If you get frequent brown outs, dims, power outages that last a few seconds   or the worse outages that bounce   off then on,  off then on,     often   by often more than once or twice a YEAR    complain to the utility first,     if you are loosing devices,  light bulbs burn out too often,    then you need to have them check your voltage VALUES      

But a surge protector will protect the damages from these spikes     car into power pole,    switching transients   so on,      breakers and even "surge Protectors"  you can buy at any electronics store are normally not much protection if any,     

I would advise to investigate the power company for their options  and most have them,    that would be your best whole house protection,     and one company to deal with   if there are problems,   

If you have a bunch of high dollar electronics,  I would suggest in addition  a firs class voltage conditioner/surge protecting device,   most are made to be rack mounted   

but not a problem   they will sit on a component stand just fine,  I have one on my big screen and audio shelves,    it has a voltage meter right in the front and you can monitor the voltage values anytime with a glance,      

It has 10 individual outlets,   25 amps I believe,    a good one will run $400 or so,   but if you have several thousand or more in gear,    worth it,  in addition to the whole house to protect the washer dryer, fridge  other electronic controlled devices  or plain motor loads,    

I just am not familiar with this brand you linked,    again  read carefully   it wont reduce your power usage,   it will do like old time dimmer,  and divert the energy to heat,  will reduce the inrush on motors to a degree,          

I would also suggest a unit called a Kill O Watt      about $40 bucks,   for 110 volt anything    you plug the device into it,   and it will give you amps, voltage, wattages   for just 40 bucks you can identify the energy hogs you might have,    

old refrigerators are often put in garages and basements for Holiday overloads,   but most leave them running and old fridges can eat up over $500 a year easy   for a part time place to put stuff,  not a good idea,    

So yes the idea of a whole house is very good,   I prefer if available   the utility to install, maintain it,  and if anything does surge  easier to deal with    

This device may do the same thing,   I just have no experience with it,    but in the overall     yes   find a whole house unit     at the very least    

These 700 joule units are mostly a waste of money,    to get protection from thousands of amps in a surge,    these $79.00 units are not going to cut it,,   better off with one that has the capacity to shut down or time out,     even  with devices plugged in but off, these things are ghost power users, just sitting there   doing nothing,   

You can find some really good power conditioners after the whole house for expensive electronics  go see them at places like guitar center,    where musicians have to protect that expensive gear as they plug into many different buildings and systems,  so you find the good stuff at those places,    then read up on what you find or they push on you,   see if you can get the same thing on line   same model,  make, year all that,    and if they are rack mount units,   again no problem  just sit them wherever,   

Mine has the typical pull out lamps  that pull out  are dimmable, and shine down on your other components if you have them,   pretty handy    make sure if you go that extra step    get one with a voltage meter easy to read on the front,     will tell you a lot about your voltage levels during the day, time of year so on,   

Need more help deciding,   get back to me and we will compare and go over whatever you find out or pick out,   

I FORGOT   From that link for that device it states:

Please Note: The Clean Energy Guard™ residential unit does not reduce the wattage used in a home and there for will not directly save you money on your monthly “power bill” But by protecting your whole home from spikes/surges and reducing the amps used by up to 50% you can keep thousand dollars in your pocket in the long run.

Will not reduce the wattage and not DIRECTLY save you money on monthly,     then next sentence but by protecting and reducing the amps used by up to 50%  ??????????????   Volts x amps = watts    I am not sure what they are trying to say,  there will be no reduction in amps,  power is power     cleaner power can help some devices operate more efficiently    but again if you power is so trashed that a voltage conditioner which this is not,   cleans out the trash in your electrical   then the utility is in most cases on the hook for that,    now some devices do introduce trash into your home circuits,  

I just dont like the words reduce amps by up to 50%    that to ME  is deceiving,   they say no direct savings then say reduce amps by 50%     well hell  if you can reduce amps used by anything it is a savings,    now a typical home,  it would have to have some really old appliances,   large shop or motor loads,   but it is a good idea like I said to get power strips that shut off,   keep uneeded lighting off,    devices that time out or sleep cut power waste  but to cut AMPS USED IN HALF  is a long shot at best,        when I read an ad that has that kind of confusing language suggesting indirectly you will benefit in power use    I have a problem with that,        maybe it works as well as the utility unit I have   but if you want CLEANED UP POWER    then you will have to go to a conditioner,  the second unit I described,  motors don't care too much about trash in the signal [voltage]   electronics can be effected by trash in the signal   what is trash?  Trash is basically induced voltages into existing lines,   some wifi can introduce trash,   it is just wayward signals of some voltage value that mess with maybe audio, tv picture,  things like that    overall reducing trash is going to be helpful to something very precise or sensitive,    for that reason this outfit and their widget gives me pause,,   they could write that without the lead on,     at least that is the way I took it,          of course lower the use of power where you can,     but their device is not going to to boot it uses power itself,        so do your homework on selection     sorry for forgetting I copied that off their page,     but that is my concern with this specific device   wording of the ad,   again yes  a power surge whole house is not absolutely needed,    if you are in an area with few electrical storms or storms period with lighting,  your power stays steady,  no brown outs,  no failing, flickering or stuff like that,    one probably could get by without a whole house unit and put that money to individual devices        if you have no issues   measure your voltage,   light bulbs dont burn dim or out too fast,   voltage in tolerance    plus or minus 10%  120 VAC  is a typical tolerance,  and believe it or not,  higher is often better on the end of the tolerance versus lower   lower voltage will make motors NOT AS Efficient   but a nice steady 119 is about all one can hope for,   power companies are allowed to send out AC at 59.5 hertz or frequency,    why    well it is not noticable,  in most cases,    and like anything else if they spin their generators slower their costs are less,  times millions of customers,     bunches of money     a hidden little secret few have any clue about even after I explain it,    single phase voltage is not going to get OUT OF PHASE as their is only one phase,    no phases to be out        again a true whole house should be a firewall from all the spikes and surges produced from any source before BEFORE entering your circuits,     want conditioned power   then we go to the power conditioner,   and a whole house conditioner is not practical at all,      hope that clears things up,          

   Will Babbitt  
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Will Babbitt


Electrical issues of all types, wiring, control, appliances, components, specialty in Electric MOTOR or APPARATUS trouble shooting, electric motors, electrical problems, single phase, three phase, DC, capacitors, elevator MG-Sets, modifications, reverse engineering, VFD Drives, single to three phase convertors. Repair of most any electrical/mechanical/electronic apparatus, OEM, AC, DC, Industrial Applications, Three phase, single phase failure mode, determining the root cause of the equipment failure BEFORE failure repeats, Antique appliances, electric motors, fans, ceiling fans, base mount fans, poor equipment performance, Modifications, habitual failures, vibration, redesign, obsolete issues, collectible items restored, rewinding. Owner of EMR Repair Inc www.emrrepair.com More information on electric motors, under Engineering/Motors Ask about any electrical or mechanical problems in the home, office, or even at your work. B2B or business to business CONSULTING I can do but it would be a much more complex issue, that would require a significant amount of time. repair@mearservice.com from there we can discuss and begin work on about anything. Industrial electric motors, controls, troubleshooting, vibration, alignment, any type of industrial or commercial electric/electrcical equipment For the home owner, renter, apartment if you have odd things going on, describe to me, photos are normally very helpful, appliances, heating and air conditioning issues, light switches, installation, DIY PROJECTS FOR THOSE NOT EDUCATED IN ELECTRICAL, we can do some things, but for safety and sanity reasons, I may refer you to a local electrician, and help you find one, help you with pricing and even speak directly with anyone you hire if you have issues,


Over thirty years with a major repair and sales company, VP of Operations, and former owner of my own specialty repair shops, MEAR Services local to Kansas City Missouri EMR Repair Inc., located in Kansas City Missouri, 2014 sold both businesses to JCI Industries, Lee's Summit Missouri wbabbitt@jciind.com Evaluation and repair of electrical/mechanical apparatus. Electrical and mechanical repairs, trouble shooting including, vibration and balance issues. About.com provides this service, and the huge costs to provide help on about any subject. They provide the servers, the people to vet the experts, costs that would be the same as operating a good sized business, They should be appreciated for what they do, the huge costs and the great help they provide for free, Electric motor questions, can be answered here but there is a dedicated category that has other experts to help and add to a solution. Other common questions, are noises in the walls, breakers tripping, devices not starting or shutting down for no apparent reason, smoke alarms buzzing, thermostat change outs, or sizing wire or needing information for a new project, but anything can be resolved, anything, with enough effort and patience, DIY, with electrical is possible, but in most cases the use of a simple ohm meter or volt meter is needed, they can be purchased at any hardware store for a few bucks. If you have smoke, or smell smoke, don't be writing me, call 911 the Fire Department has no problem looking for smoke smells, better then spraying water on a blazing fire. DO NOT GET CAUGHT INVESTIGATING AND TRAPPED IN A BASEMENT LOOKING FOR A BLOWER FAILING< As to the tip jar, it is up to you, it is appreciated, every expert spends out of pocket that I know, we spend on IP time, computer wear, printing documents, books, and of course our time, but if we prevent a $400 service call, we did well,

Former IBEW, EASA, IEEE, UL, ..............


10 plus years, various Technical Schools, followed by Industrial College Credit and non Credit Courses, electronics courses, experience in most any electrical apparatus, electric motors and generators, AC OR DC, fractional to above 5000HP, other electrical apparatus, slip rings, sleeve [plain] bearings, lubrication, identification-no data plate, control components, service and sales. I have continued night schools for decades, the list is extensive. I have been in the business of repairing most anything with wires or mechanical parts for decades, I have some helpful hints and directions you won't have to dig up. Or hopefully not have to pay a huge service call invoice to find.

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