A surge protector is a firewall between your expensive or cheap electronic appliances and the electricity coming in from the wall socket. It is just like a superhero for all your electronic appliances that sacrifices its own life over and over again to save them until it is dead. Every house can face power spikes that can cause harm or permanent damage to your devices connected to the electricity, but with a surge protector, you are on a safe side.
They range from simple, cheap power strips to more expensive units with extra features and double the performance of a simple one. If you are searching for a surge protector for a home office then look no more because in this article we will be discussing some points to consider while shopping for them, followed by a list of best surge protectors available in the market.
Types of Surge Protectors
Power Strip Surge Protectors
These surge protectors have a flexible cord so that you can make close connections with your appliances. They normally have 6-12 outlets in which you connect your electronic instruments. Some power strip surge protectors also have mounting holes that allow you to hang them on a wall.
Wall-mount surge protectors
Unlike the above-mentioned, wall-mount surge protectors don’t have a cord. Instead, they feature about 2 to 6 outlets. They are more portable and can easily be plugged into the electronic device housing.
Types of connection on a surge protector
Power strikes are not only limited to the electric lines, they can travel along any wiring that transmits current. Surge protectors that are ideal for home offices or home entertainment systems include different types of connections for Coaxial (Coax) cable, Ethernet cable and phone cord. These different connections can help protect devices like modems, telephones, cable/satellite equipment and computer networking devices etc.
Here are some points you must consider to shop for the most appropriate surge protector:
Number of outlets
Make sure you get a surge protector that has enough outlets to fulfill your requirements. For instance, if you have about 4 to 6 electronic devices, you can get a power strip surge protector that has 6 outlets. Buying a surge protector with the right number of outlets will make sure that you don’t have to daisy chain surge protectors (connecting multiple surge protectors in series), which can be a hazard.
Types of connections needed
Before buying a surge protector, think about the things you are going to plug into it. In a home office, you would need to plug different types of electronic gear such as your TV, modem and networking wires etc. so choose a more robust surge protector than the one that only has AC voltage outlets.
UL 1449 Standard Certified
A surge protector that is certified by Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL 1449) standards would be the best buy without any doubt. These certified surge protectors are tested to make sure they actually protect the equipment you plug into them.
Absorption/electric rating and clamping voltage
Absorption/electric rating is extremely important as you are buying a surge protector to absorb those power spikes without damaging your expensive appliances. Higher the rating, better the quality would be. For a home office, you should get one that can absorb at least 1000 joules or higher.
Clamping voltage in simple words is the voltage that will trigger the surge protector. Here, the lower the better. Look for clamping voltage around 400V or less.
Power spikes can occur in any of the 3 lines i.e. hot, neutral and ground. Pick a protector that provides 3-line protection to tackle surges in all the lines.
Many renowned manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty on their surge protectors and some also offer insurance in case the power surge does get through. Check to see what they get covered and how to claim the warranty if the surge protector fails.
Here are the hand-picked best surge protectors of 2018:
This power strip surge protector by Tripp Lite provides 7 outlets and a 7ft long cord that ensures you enjoy a seamless experience while making bulk connections. It is an ideal surge protector for a home office as you can easily plug into your PC, laptop, printer, scanner, router, modems, and any other home office appliance. It is certified under UL 1449 3rd edition standards and has a high absorption rating of 2160 joules, which means you get maximum protection for your connected devices.
It has a right-angle plug that helps save more space for your furniture and can easily fit into the power socket without a problem. The two LEDs on it allow you to monitor the connections and surges. At a glance, these LEDs can let you know when you are grounded when you are protected. The 7 outlets are designed in a way that 2 of them can easily be used to plug bulkier adapters without covering the remaining 5 outlets.
One more interesting thing about it is that the manufacturer also provides a lifetime warranty and a $75,000 insurance that covers any equipment damaged by a power surge.
- Space saving and compact design
- LEDs for monitoring
- High absorption rating
- Comes with a lifetime warranty and insurance
- Certified under UL 1449 standards
- The switch can easily be shut off by mistake
The Belkin BE112230-08 is one of the best-selling power strip surge protectors that is ideal for home and office use. It has a long 8ft cord and 12 outlets that are enough for connecting every device of a home office. Its clamping voltage is 500V, which is considered rather high, as we already know that the lower, the better.
This surge protector offers 3940 joules of protection to all your plugged devices. The built-in voltage detection and intelligent circuitry efficiently detects and responds to your appliance’s power needs. There are two LED lights; Green and Red. The former indicates that your equipment is secured and the later one indicates that your plugged equipment is not properly grounded. It is designed in a way that you can easily plug in both oversized and normal power adapters without blocking other outlets. Besides 12 AC outlets, it also features coaxial cable protection and 1-in 2-out RJ11 telephone/fax protection.
With this surge protector, you are backed up with a lifetime and $300,000 connected-equipment warranty.
- Has a high absorption rating
- Has multiple sockets
- Excellent design to support oversized power adapters
- Has safety covers on every outlet for children safety.
- Comes with a Lifetime warranty
- Great in filtering noise
- High clamping voltage
- Customers complaints about the manufacturer not fulfilling equipment insurance claims
- No circuit breaker
The APC P8T3 surge protector is able to protect up to 8 different electronic devices and two USB-powered phones. You can efficiently utilize all 8 outlets as it isn’t like regular strips; it is wider and can easily accommodate oversized plugs without covering other outlets. It has a 6ft cord with a right-angle plug that can be adjusted for devices in different angles.
2525 joules of absorption rating and EMI/RFI ensures that your electronic appliances get the right protection against power surges. Its USB ports supply 2.4amps of charging power that is enough to charge your phones and other USB-powered devices without any issues.
The manufacturer provides a lifetime and $150,000 connected-equipment warranty.
- Great design to accommodate large adapters
- LED indicators
- Right-angle cord lasts long because of its rotation ability
- High absorption rating
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
- Complaints about passing power even after expiry of the protection
This power strip surge protector by ECHOGEAR provides 8 total outlets from which 6 can be rotated to keep oversized adapters out of the way and 2 fixed outlets for normal plugs. It has 2160J of absorption rating that is sufficient for protecting home office appliances. Their MOV technology is encased in ceramic that makes it fireproof and much safer for your home office.
One of the biggest reasons for the short lifespan of your appliances is the production of interference in the power supply caused by heavy-duty electronic gear. This surge protector features EMI/RFI electricity filtering that removes those harmful signals and increases the lifespan of your appliances.
It is UL safety certified that ensures its quality performance and protection. The manufacturer also provides a 5-year and $25,000 connected-equipment guarantee.
- High absorption rating
- Fireproof MOV technology for increased protection
- Equipped with a built-in circuit breaker switch
- Features EMI/RFI filtering
- Complaints about not enough tension in the outlets– things get unplugged easily
This is the only wall-mounted surge protector in our list. It is also manufactured by one of the most renowned companies, Belkin. This protector provides 6 outlets and 1240 joule absorption rate that is sufficient for low-power home office appliances such as computers, peripherals, TV and more. You can also protect your home office phone, fax machine and modems with its built-in phone line splitter and solid-state protection.
It also has two LEDs that indicate if your devices are protected and grounded. As it is a wall-mounted surge protector, it doesn’t have any cord and needs to be directly plugged into the power socket/ electric device housing.
The manufacturer offers a limited lifetime and $50,000 connected-equipment warranty.
- Filters EMI/RFI noise up to 43dB
- Low-profile design
- Provides protection to phone, modem and fax machine
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
- Complaints about an extremely short lifespan
These were our best recommendations for surge protectors. Make sure you follow the guide thoroughly to get familiar with some technical terms that can help you pick the right one for you. If you are still not sure which one to pick then we will help you out again. Opt for Belkin BE112230-08 12-Outlet Power Strip Surge Protector if you want one with more outlets and increased protection. If you want to protect low-power home office appliances and looking for an affordable one then consider buying Belkin 6-Outlet SurgeMaster Wall-Mount Surge Protector.
Here are some safety guidelines for using a surge protector:
- Use them in dry locations; indoors recommended.
- Never exceed its absorption rating
- Don’t connect any water-associated products with it.
- Make sure your children and pets stay away from the cord
- Don’t daisy chain the surge protectors (plugging a surge protector into another)