Monitor - PC - Printer - Router and Modem Surge Protector Comparison Results

These are pictures of two of the three routers that were damaged during our historical comparison. There were two routers damaged that were the same model (Router 1). More info on them below...

modem surge protectoRouter 1
modem surge protectorRouter 2

Below are pictures of the actual plug-in suppressor units used in our example to protect the power side of a home network that included multiple electronic devices.

One printer, 2 computers, 2 monitors, and a router were using these surge protective devices.

Each of these protector units were in the field at some point during the five year time span of our review.

There are three different protection units displayed.

Two of the power surge protector units were replaced within an eighteen month period as they were apparently not effective.

During the 18 month period: one monitor and 3 separate cable routers were damaged and had to be replaced. It wasn't until the 3rd surge protector unit was installed that the problems ceased.

During the 18 month time span there were no power outages, lightning strikes or other large electrical anomalies of note.

Without the presence of large surge events, it's reasonable to determine the damage to the equipment was caused by continuous internal transient voltage.

Internal transient voltage is a result of everyday electrical equipment operation within ones home or facility.

It is also reasonable to determine that most of the internal transients were of the ringwave type surges. The first two surge protectors did not provide real ringwave protective circuitry.

However, the second unit did provide EMI/RFI circuitry, which some confuse as being the same as high quality ringwave protective circuitry - known as Sinewave Tracking (don't be confused).

Only the third unit claimed and provided ringwave protection circuitry.

Equipment Type Damaged

The equipment lost do to damage over the 18 month period.

  • Compaq Presario Monitor

  • U.S. Robotics Broadband Router

  • U.S. Robotics Broadband Router

  • Linksys Broadband Router

Surge Protector Units

                                                                          Unit 1

plug in surge protectorUnit 1

This unit was the first power surge protector used to protect the electrical gear. Using this particular device...one monitor and one cable router had to be replaced. This was over a 6 month period.

Unit 2

plug in surge protectorUnit 2

This unit was the second power surge protector used to protect the electrical gear. Using this particular device two cable router units had to be replaced. This was over a 12 month period.

Unit 3

plug in surge protectorUnit 3. Still Fully Functioning after 10 Years

This unit was the third and final power surge protector used to protect the electrical gear. This particular device has been in service for 3.5 years. Update: Unit has been in service for 10 years.

No connected equipment has needed to be replaced. It's also worth noting that those annoying computer glitches or lock-ups that can happen at the worst time have also been reduced to virtually zero.

Needless to say, this unit has been a great modem surge protector as well as an overall power surge protector for all other equipment connected in this general home network scenario.

So effective in fact, I now have two of these plug-in type units as well as a portable/travel unit currently protecting my sensitive home electronics.

What The Results Determine

The results of our in the field comparison leads to one conclusion.

All surge protectors are not created equal and they do not always perform as claimed...in the field...regardless of what marketing materials at times might say.

Again, all three units were marketed to protect electronics and only one succeeded.

Another point that should be noted is the importance of understanding what types of surges are active in a particular environment. As noted previously, there are impulse type surges and ringwave type surges.

In an environment that produces both types of surges - surge protectors that protect against impulse and ringwave transients provide the best surge protector options.

The results of our historical comparison certainly make this case.

One should take into account the types of technologies, design functionality, quality and dependability of the surge protector units before purchase.

It doesn't matter if it's a whole home surge protector, industrial power surge protector, modem surge protector, cable router surge protector, data cable surge protector or a plug-in unit - there is no substitute for quality and performance.

If you demand results...

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