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Surge protector for PCs??? Are they needed?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I never have used a surge protector for my sig rig PC.

I have had thunderstorms, where I was on my PC, and the power went off and my PC shutdown. Nothing ever happened to my hardware however.

Do these surge protectors prevent damage to hardware? Do they actually help?

I just built a PC for my friend pharmacist and he looked at me like I was crazy because I don't use a surge protector.

So what do you guys think?
post #2 of 11
i think its better to be safe then sorry if you live in area with lots of thunderstorms, i was running apc smart ups 1500VA and surge protector back in place where i lived since voltage was jumpy and lots of shortages. low voltage killed my motherboard and cpu back then i was using cooler master silent 1000w power supply.

Do some power supplies have some kind of protection against low input voltage (example if your voltage is from 180-240v )?
    
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post #3 of 11
You have been lucky (tho that sounds like the power just went out). If your house or lines really get zapped a surge protector probably won't do a damn thing to help. But it's a real crapshoot---likely nothing will ever happen but I still don't take a chance and actually unplug power from my main rig and display also disconnect the ethernet from the cable modem when there is an active thunderstorm. Your ISPs equipment could get zapped miles away and it could travel all the way to your network and kill every ethernet port in the house. Google "lightning killed my PC" (and/or ethernet port)...lots of hits!

Pun intended. tongue.gif
Edited by wrigleyvillain - 6/3/13 at 4:35pm
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post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wrigleyvillain View Post

You have been lucky (tho that sounds like the power just went out). If your house or lines really get zapped a surge protector probably won't do a damn thing to help. But it's a real crapshoot---likely nothing will ever happen but I still don't take a chance and actually unplug power from my main rig and display also disconnect the ethernet from the cable modem when there is an active thunderstorm. Your ISPs equipment could get zapped miles away and it could travel all the way to your network and kill every ethernet port in the house. Google "lightning killed my PC" (and/or ethernet port)...lots of hits!

Pun intended. tongue.gif

Really? I live in Indiana and there is a CRAP LOAD of the thunderstorms.

So people rigs can actually fry from lightning? What?

And surge protectors wouldn't do anything?

I 've always just GAMED through thunderstorms... Now I feel disgusted - so my computer could have been potentially ruined?

So your advising just unplugging the computer during a thunderstorm? and that surge protectors or power strips are worthless???
post #5 of 11

It depends on the source of the surge.  If lightning hits the power line going into your house, I doubt any surge suppressor is going to be able to handle that load, but for more "routine" surges they do work.  Comparing the price of your machine and the cost of a decent surge suppressor, I'd say it's a good idea to plug your stuff into one.

post #6 of 11
I will add that if it costs you a lot when your computer randomly turns off, eg you make a very high hourly rate and work on your PC, that a surge protector is basically mandatory, one with power backup is really nice. the other day there was a storm, and I haven't added a surge protector/backup power to my system yet. cost me about $100 cause I was tired and hadn't saved my work as often as usual, and I don't make no high hourly rate... I actually had one laying around too. im sure you can find a decent surge/backup power unit for a couple hundred bucks. you can see how it can quickly become cost efficient.

if u only use for gaming just get a decent little protector one, no need for backup power. I have a power bar plug thing that has one in it, most excellent dudes.
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post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jollyburner View Post

I will add that if it costs you a lot when your computer randomly turns off, eg you make a very high hourly rate and work on your PC, that a surge protector is basically mandatory, one with power backup is really nice. the other day there was a storm, and I haven't added a surge protector/backup power to my system yet. cost me about $100 cause I was tired and hadn't saved my work as often as usual, and I don't make no high hourly rate... I actually had one laying around too. im sure you can find a decent surge/backup power unit for a couple hundred bucks. you can see how it can quickly become cost efficient.

if u only use for gaming just get a decent little protector one, no need for backup power. I have a power bar plug thing that has one in it, most excellent dudes.

Yeah in this case you want a UPS not a basic surge protector.

Quote:
Originally Posted by XxAlbertoxX View Post

Really? I live in Indiana and there is a CRAP LOAD of the thunderstorms.

So people rigs can actually fry from lightning? What?

And surge protectors wouldn't do anything?

I 've always just GAMED through thunderstorms... Now I feel disgusted - so my computer could have been potentially ruined?

So your advising just unplugging the computer during a thunderstorm? and that surge protectors or power strips are worthless???

Well while thunderstorms are common frying your PC from one is not but it absolutely can and does happen. Like I said, Google it for examples and tales of woe. I'm not risking my nice new 27" Korean display! smile.gif
Edited by wrigleyvillain - 6/4/13 at 7:46am
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post #8 of 11
I wouldn't risk my stuff with 1 of those regardless of how efficient it might be.

yes thunderstorms can easily fry the crap out of your PC or some parts of it, years ago I used to be just like you not caring about it and saying there's no way something will happen... well Mr.lightning thought otherwise and struck some random power line somewhere in my area taking all the power out, after that I press the power button and poof nothing happens I thought the whole thing fried so I opened it up and lo and behold the network card has a HUGE hole burnt into it right at the middle luckily everything worked fine after I removed it and double checked everything.

every time there's a thunderstorm I simply unplug important things in the house I know it might be a bit paranoid but I'm not bill gates and don't really fancy buying stuff again if I get unlucky...better safe than sorry thumb.gif.
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post #9 of 11
Damn! Yep, like I said, it can come in either over power lines or over the copper phone line or cable if that's what you use and take out the network port (or in this case the whole card). In some cases, all the network ports if you have a large home network. This can happen if ISP equipment is struck or even your house itself.
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post #10 of 11
I think that ideally you want a UPS to power your rig so that it is protected from surges and power outages.

Personally I have one of these:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00009RIP6/ref=oh_details_o03_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I literally only have it because of this, which is listed in the product description:

'Lifetime £175,000 Connected Equipment warranty to insure protection for your connected equipment and give you peace of mind'
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