Burton Kelso, Tech Expert
How to Protect Your Smart Home from Power Surges During Storm Season
If you're one of the fortunate ones like me and you have some smart home devices or a complete smart home, you get to enjoy the automation that comes with it. The good news about smart home automation is it can offer you convenience and peace of mind making it possible to automate your home with your smartphone acting as command central. The bad news is your smart home devices are just as susceptible to power surges and lightening strikes just like your other home electronics. There's nothing you can do to keep storms like tornadoes, hurricanes and thunder storms away, but here are some things you can do to make sure a lightning strike or a power surge doesn't ruin your expensive smart home hubs and other connected devices.
1. Keep your devices plugged into a surge protector or battery backup. Surge protectors play a big role in keeping your smart home and associated devices protected. Even the smallest power surge during a storm can ruin your devices. If you don't want to install surge protectors in your home, many utility companies offer entire home surge protection which can keep your smart home safe from lightning and power surges. If you want to keep your smart home hubs powered during severe storms, get a battery backup. These devices not power protect your devices from power surges, they can also provide a limited amount of power to keep your smart home running until power is restored.
2.Periodically check the status of your surge protectors. Battery backups and surge protectors sustain damage every time a strong power surge or lightening strike occurs. Eventually these devices will fail, leaving your smart home at risk. Many surge protectors have status lights to let you know when they are no longer doing their job. Keep your eye out for these indicators and replace these non functioning devices as soon as possible.
3. Consider connecting your smart home devices to your WiFi Network. When you connect your smart home hubs with a wired Ethernet cable, it makes it more vulnerable to lightning strikes or power surges that comes into your home through your Internet cables. I’ve seen dozens of modems and routers get struck by lightning and take out every device that was hard-wired to them. If you connect your devices via Wi-Fi, you reduce the risk of your smart home tech getting ruined, because power surges can't be transmitted over Wi-FI.
4. If severe weather is in your immediate area, unplug your smart home devices. A good surge protector can do a decent job of protecting your devices, but nothing can protect your smart home from a direct lightning strike. In the even of severe weather, unplug your devices and your surge protectors to prevent them from being taken out by lightning strikes. It's impossible for lightning to take out a device that isn’t connected to an outlet. .
Having a smart home can be a good thing, but make sure you take steps to keep your smart home devices from getting destroyed during severe weather.
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