Powerful Problem for Kansans!

A powerful problem

No, this isn’t about elections, but it is a problem that we as Kansans face and need to work fix. It’s the weather and the problems it causes with your technological gizmos and gadget. You may not be protected even if you think you are.

This time of year we have lightening storms, and lots of them. Two clients this week had serious destruction caused by the lightening strikes. “They” say lightening never strikes the same place twice. In reality, it hits the same places quite often.

Computer owners often think they have a surge protector and actually don’t. Often times a power strip or “temporary power tap” is used synonymously with the word surge suppressor, and THEY ARE NOT the same. This wikipedia entry explains it well. Usually if it doesn’t say it suppresses surges, well, it doesn’t.

If your computer is plugged into one of these “relocatable power taps” or heaven forbid, the wall, you’ve got a problem. Even if your computer is plugged into a surge protector, that doesn’t mean you are protected. All surge protectors are not created equal and they don’t last forever.

A good quality surge protector is rated in joules. The more joules, the more protection. A minimum for modern electronics is generally 720 joules. Why that number? I have no idea, but the electrician folks tell me that’s the minimum they’ll install. Expect to pay about $20 for one. Stick with name brands from reputable dealers and read reviews. There’s counterfeit stuff out there so be careful!  If you don’t know the joules of your surge protector and it’s not marked, I’d recommend buying a new one.

Every time you get a new computer, getting a new surge protector is a great idea. Surge protectors sacrifice themselves in order to protect your computer, but you don’t always know when they reached end of life.  While shopping for a new one, try to get one that also protects your DSL or Cable line as surges can come through there and mess up your computer.  Here’s an example of one I like

Go check and see whether you are using a power strip or a surge protector.  I’d sure like to tell you about it in this blog rather than at a service call after the fact.

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