Think of whole house surge protection, like the doorman at a nightclub; the big, bulky guys with attitudes. While physical strength is important in the job of a doorman, they need a variety of other abilities to succeed as well. It allows in only the electricity your home needs and not the unwanted over-voltages from the utility provider. The whole-house surge protector then protects your devices from any trouble that can occur from surges inside the house.
Whole-house surge protective devices (SPDs) are typically wired to the electric service box and located nearby to protect all the appliances and electrical systems in a home. If you use surge protection strips for your electronic equipment it has within it something called an MOV, metal oxide varistors. An MOV shunts the surges heading towards your valued items. A whole -house surge protector are built to shunt larger surges and can last for years.
Homes have more electronics than ever. LED lights have a little circuit boards contained within. Washers and dryers have small circuit boards within them too. There is much to protect in a home, a lot of technology we’re plugging into our homes.
Surges come from more than just lightning. 80% of surges are transient (short yet intense bursts) and we’re the ones who are generating them. Generators or the motors you have in a/c and appliances introduce a small surge of electricity into the electrical line. It is rare that one large surge will take out appliances and everything at one time. Mini surges will add up over the years, affect the performance of the electronics and cut short the anticipated life expectancy.
Overvoltage on the utility lines can also harm systems in the home and this tends to be the main reason for a whole house surge protection at the main electric panel. There is really no surge protection for a direct lightning strike. If a direct lightning strike concerns, look into a lightning rod.
If an appliance or device sends a surge through a circuit that’s shared among other devices and not dedicated, then those other outlets could be susceptible to a surge, which is why you don’t want it just at the electrical panel. Surge protection should be layered in the house to be at both the electrical service to protect the whole house and at the point of use to protect sensitive electronics. Power conditioners with surge suppression capability along with the ability to provide filtered power to a/v equipment are recommended for many home theater and home entertainment systems.