Here’s How Power Surges Harm Your Electronics and Appliances

Posted By On 05-07-2022

Everybody is familiar with the idea of lightning harming our appliances. You may even have the habit of unplugging as many electronics as you can during a lightning storm. But how does this exactly work, and how can it harm your electronics? The simple answer is through a power surge.

What Is a Power Surge?

A power surge is a short, dramatic increase in the flow of electricity. This increase can last anywhere from a fraction of a second to a few minutes. A power surge occurs when a higher voltage than usual is applied to your power lines.

Although power surges usually last for only a few seconds, the effects can last far longer. A surge may cause your electronics to not function properly or even break down.

How Does a Power Surge Cause Damage?

Homes usually function with a fixed electrical power form. In Canada, this is 120V with 60Hz, although this may differ globally. However, regardless of the power form your home operates in, it is important to note that this is not constant.

The current is often alternating with minimum and peak voltage. For Canada, it begins at 0 and peaks at 169V. Because this is the standard, most appliances and electronics can withstand only this voltage of power.

As mentioned above, a power surge is an increase in the flow of electricity. This increase is usually way above the peak voltage that electronics are made to function at. Because of this, the electronics heat up and the insides parts, such as the circuit board, end up burning and breaking resulting in your damaged device.

Where Do Power Surges Come From?

While the most well-known form of power surges comes from lightning, another cause is your electric company's power grid switching. This may not be something you are aware of happening all the time.

One day you may be surprised that your electronics suddenly stopped working. It's not caused by some mysterious, dark force, rather could just be a result of your electric company causing constant power surges that went by undetected.

How to Avoid or Prevent Power Surges?

While there is no way to completely stop power surges, there are some ways to make sure your devices stay safe. One of them is the point-of-use surge protection devices (SPDs). While it does not stop or prevent surges, it redirects them towards the ground.

You can get these devices along with a good grounding system and other devices that are known to prevent power surges. There are special electrical outlets that offer surge protection and many other devices made to be safe during a power surge can be found; you just need to learn which ones they are.

Just be sure to note which devices are safe during a power surge to prevent any harm. Remember that the power surge is not being suppressed and only redirected, so the surge is still there and can very much cause harm if you are not being careful.


Electrical surges are a fact of life, and they can be a pain to deal with. While they cannot be completely prevented, there are ways to make sure your electronics do not get damaged. You can use surge protectors and add additional devices to your home to protect it from the surges. It is also important to be mindful of what you have that is electronic and be sure to check the warranty for each electronic you have to make sure you know how much your items are protected.

If you need professional appliance technicians in Canada, you can contact us at Pro Appliance. Our team of experts will ensure that we return any broken appliances in top shape. Contact us to learn more.

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