Here is a whole-house surge protector installation guide.
Electric power can typically move via any wiring. Therefore, every gadget powered by electricity in your home is susceptible to a power surge.
To hinder such a situation, you’ll need a whole-house surge protector. It’s a device that stops voltage spikes and surges that may destroy your gadgets.
Installing Whole House Surge Protector
Mounting this device requires extensive knowledge and abilities. That’s why many homeowners are wary of performing such operations independently.
If you are one of them, you have less to worry about. This article will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to install this device.
What’s a Whole House Surge Protector?
This electric device allows power to flow from the wall socket to linked equipment. It’s usually installed in the home’s main service panel to guard against events creating a rapid voltage spike.
When an electrical surge exceeds the threshold, the protector instantly redirects the current into metal oxide varistors (MOVs). This component will either block or divert the aberrant voltage to the ground.
By installing this device, you’ll protect your ethernet wires, phones, cables, etc., from surges.
Steps to Mount a Whole House Surge Protector
Having understood a surge protector, let’s show you how to install one. Now, mounting a whole house surge protector is a challenging activity.
It will require a lot of practical skills and an understanding of electronics. However, the following steps will help you complete your mission successfully.
Cut Off the Main Power
Usually, when performing electrical repairs or installation, you should shut off the electricity.
Doing so will eliminate the risk of getting shocked or fired. To turn off the power, locate the primary breaker switch on your panel and push it to the off position.
Once done, use a voltage tester to see if the panel is still current.
If none, you can move on to remove the pane covers. You can use your screwdriver or power drill to expose both circuit breakers.
Get the Panel Ready for Installation
After shutting off the power, the next step is to get the panel ready for mounting. Here, you’re to remove the knockout plug from the side of the board.
This will make room for the surge protector cables. You can remove the knockout using a nail punch and hammer or pliers.
However, you’ll need to be careful not to draw lines that shouldn’t be removed. Once you’ve created a hole for the surge protector, you can feed in the wires through the opening.
Mount the device either inside the panel or outside. But preferably, you mount it out because it has a limited lifespan.
Connect the Wires
Before connecting, you must know that this system comprises four wires.
We have green, white, and two black wires. The wire in green serves as a grounding line. It provides a safe conduit for excess power to be discharged to Earth.
Then the white wire is neutral. It’s designed to complete the circuit and balance voltage. Lastly, the two black cables are for hot current, which travels from the breaker to the surge protector.
Use a wire stripper to remove the protective coating or insulation from each wire end. Next, you use a screwdriver or plier to insert these wires through their corresponding clamp hole and tighten them.
The green cable should be connected to the right-hand ground bus bar.
Then the white line should be connected to the right-hand neutral bus bar. As for the black wires, one of them should be attached to the load terminal on the breaker.
Then the second one should be connected to the line terminal on the breaker. Once you’re done, you reassemble the main electrical panel.
Replace the Electrical Panel Cover
This is the last step of installing a whole-house surge protector. You can begin reassembling by replacing the panel’s four primary screws.
Use the remaining screws to fill in any gaps or holes. While doing that, ensure the cover is correctly aligned with the panel. Additionally, make sure the lid fits snugly and securely over the board.
You can remove any warning signals you may have put into preventing anyone from turning it on while working. When everything is clear, you can reactivate the main breaker.
You can switch the dipole breaker using your two black wires. After turning the electricity on, check the surge protector indicator to see if it’s working correctly.
Your surge protector is broken whenever the indicator light turns red or makes strange sounds. Therefore, you’ll need to change it immediately.
You’ll undoubtedly need some tools to mount a whole-house surge protector.
Some tools you’ll require include a cable clamp, contact voltage tester, wire strippers, pair of pliers, and power drill or screwdriver.
Other personal supplies are insulated work boots, electrical safety gloves, an eye protection class, a double pole circuit breaker, and more.
Cost of Installing a Whole-house Surge Protector
Mounting this device takes more time and energy; it’s also risky. If you can’t do it yourself, you should invite professionals for standard installation.
However, it’ll cost you some money. Now, the question is, how much will it cost to have this system installed?
Averagely, it will cost you around $70 to $700 to have a whole house surge-protected mounted. Then the minimum price is $300 in most cities across the country.
However, certain factors may influence the cost of mounting this system. Among them are location, panel size, labor, surge protector features, local market circumstance, and more.
Cause of Power Surge
It’s also critical you know what causes a power surge.
This will help you take preventive actions to prevent your properties from getting fired. Now, power surges are majorly caused by sudden power outages and lightning strikes.
When there’s a power outage, it can damage the wiring in your home and cause voltage spikes. This will further damage anything that’s powered directly through the electrical system.
However, lightning strikes are more dangerous than outages. They generate vast energy to fry all your electronics in a gulp.
We have much to discuss concerning installing a whole-house surge protector, but time is fast gone. However, you’ve seen how to mount such a system.
Additionally, you can see some tools you’ll need for operation and what causes power outages. If you can’t mount this device yourself, call an expert electrician.