Best Surge Protector Test Results: Plug-in SPDs (3): In-the-Field aka Real World application.
These pictures show two of three routers damaged during the Real World surge protector comparison. Two routers damaged were the same model (Router 1). A computer monitor was also damaged.
Below are pictures and test results of plug-in Surge Protective Devices (SPDs) used in the test. These units were protecting the power side of a home network that included multiple electronic devices:
Each surge protector was in-the-field at some point during the 5 year span of our review. The three different SPD units are displayed below with results. Two of the surge protectors were replaced within an eighteen month period.
During the 18 month period: one monitor and 3 separate cable routers were damaged and had to be replaced. When the 3rd surge protector device was installed the problems ceased.
Without the presence of large external surge events, it's reasonable to conclude the equipment was damaged by internal transient voltage. It's also reasonable to concludede most of the transients were RingWave type surges. The first two surge protectors did not provide RingWave protective designs.
However, one of the two devices did provide EMI/RFI filtration. EMI/RFI filtration is not the best option against RingWave Surges. SPDs that provide Sinewave Tracking or Frequency Responsive CircuitryTM are more effective.
Only the third SPD claimed and provided RingWave Suppression Technology.
The electronic equipment lost do to damage over the 18 month period:
First power surge protector used to protect equipment. Using this SPD, one monitor and one cable router had to be replaced over a 6 month period.
Second power surge protector used to protect equipment. Using this SPD, two cable routers had to be replaced over a 12 month period.
Third power surge protector used to protect equipment. This SPD has been in service for 3.5 years. Update: SPD has been in service for 10+ years.
No equipment has been replace do to surge related damaged. Additional plug-in devices and a Portable/Travel SPD have been purchased as a result.
Test results from the Real World comparison leads to one simple conclusion.
All surge protectors are not created equal. SPDs do not always perform as claimed... in the field... regardless of what marketing materials might state. Remember, all three units were marketed to protect electronics. Only one succeeded.
It's important to realize there are different types of surge activity. As noted previously, there are Impulse type and RingWave type surges. In environments that produce both surge types, SPDs that protect against both Impulse and RingWave transients provide the best surge protection results. The Real World comparison certainly make this case.
Carefully review SPD technology types, design characteristics, quality and dependability claims prior to purchase.
Helpful SPD Review Tips: Identify Quality Surge Protectors.
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