If you live in a region that experiences frequent power fluctuations and blackouts, you may be concerned about the safety of your new PC or the essential data stored on it. Perhaps you live in an old house with a few outlets that don’t give consistent power and require more outlets that won’t trip your circuit breaker or damage your computer.
These may appear to be compelling reasons to purchase a surge protector, but you may ask: Should I plug my PC into a surge protector or the wall? This article outlines the advantages of utilizing a surge protector as well as how to select the best one for your needs.
Should I plug my PC into a surge protector or the wall?
In short, you should plug your PC into a surge protector. A surge protector is highly recommended because it can safeguard your computer’s power-sensitive components from abrupt voltage spikes caused by accidents, power-hungry appliances, bad wiring methods, and lightning. It transfers excess voltage to ground, protecting your electronics from damage.
To know more why you should plug PC into a surge protector, let’s read: Can a PC survive a power surge?
Despite the fact that most modern PC components include some sort of surge protection, any occurrence that trips your circuit breaker might potentially damage your PC parts. With a strong surge, you risk losing your digital data or the entire system if you do not have a surge protector. It also helps reduce electric noise from other household appliances in your home, such as your best air purifier.
Because they are the initial components through which electricity travels, the power supply and motherboard are the most vulnerable.
What Is a Power Surge?
In the United States, the electrical voltage in a standard wall outlet is 120 volts, however it can safely range between 0 and 169 volts. The constant voltage flow is occasionally disrupted and exceeds 169 volts.
A power surge is a brief, rapid rise in voltage. Although a lightning strike is the most powerful cause of a surge, a fault in a neighboring electrical line is the most common. A voltage spike can also be caused by turning on or off a high-powered electrical item in your home.
When a surge occurs, the power entering a computer or other electrical device exceeds its normal operating voltage, and the heat generated by the extra current might destroy its delicate components.
The capacitors, in particular, receive more electrical charge than they can handle, resulting in a short circuit. Although a power surge only lasts a fraction of a second, it can severely damage your computer. As a result, if you want to keep your PC safe, you must employ some safeguards.
A surge protector is one method of safeguarding your computer or other electronic devices from a power surge.
Check out: How often should you replace a surge protector?
How Does A Surge Protector Protect My PC?
To safeguard your computer from damage caused by a power surge, either prevent the power overflow (which is impossible) or block the excess voltage from reaching your device.
A surge protector protects your computer against voltage fluctuations by deflecting harmful electricity and allowing just a safe amount of energy to enter your device.
Some of the advantages of employing a surge protector are stated below:
1. Protects the motherboard
The motherboard is the central platform that connects all of your computer’s components. It is the core hub via which all other components and peripherals communicate.
As a result, if your motherboard is dead or damaged, your computer will die. Although a high-quality motherboard is not easily damaged, it is susceptible to overheating.
A strong power surge can also destroy it. If the motherboard is damaged, you must replace it, and you must find one that is compatible with all of the other components. This process is typically difficult and does not have a happy finish. There’s no telling which element of your computer will be harmed if it receives an electric shock.
Learn more about Are cheap surge protectors OK?
Using a decent surge protector is one of the simplest methods to save yourself from extra labor and worry.
2. Protects Your Data
All of your digital stuff is stored on your computer’s hard disk. Any hard drive damage might have serious repercussions, including the irreversible loss of your data. A physical shock or voltage spikes can cause hard drive damage. Hard drives and 2.5-inch SSDs have PSU-specific connectors, whereas NVME M.2 drives are installed on the motherboard.
A power surge will have no effect on the mechanical components of your hard drive. Even so, it has the potential to destroy the bottom control board as well as the circuitry. You may be able to recover the data, but your odds are poor, and you will still need to replace the damaged hard disk with a new one.
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Use a surge protector to detect excess voltage and safeguard your hard drive from damage if you want to keep your data safe.
3. Protects your battery and charger
Your laptop requires a proper charger as well as a healthy battery that can hold a charge. If a power surge occurs while your laptop is connected in, both the battery and the charger are at risk. If a power surge damages either component, you may be unable to switch on your laptop.
Alternatively, the battery may fail, requiring you to be permanently plugged in when using your computer.
If you wish to stay mobile, consider using a surge protector to preserve your laptop’s battery.
4. Extends the overall life of your computer
While significant power surges might kill your computer, small but frequent voltage rises will gradually damage the sensitive components and shorten the life of your computer. A surge protector can safeguard your computer from large surges as well as unexpected shutdowns caused by power outages.
These entire outages might cause file or drive corruption and shorten the life of your computer.
If you plug your computer into a conventional surge protector, it will be safe for a longer amount of time, and you will not have to pay for expensive repairs or even replacements later on.