Why is My Old Surge Protector Not Working?

Why is My Old Surge Protector Not Working?
Why is My Old Surge Protector Not Working?

If your surge protector is not working properly, you should find the main cause of this problem. Today we are going to be discussing the Surge Protectors and how the one you are using at home probably isn’t working properly.

Why is My Old Surge Protector Not Working? Your surge protector may not be working properly because of old wires, heavy equipment, brown wires, or damaged hardware. It is recommended that you replace your surge protector for home theater every 2 to 3 years.

So let’s dive into things, so starting off, I would like to go over what a surge protector isn’t.
So first off you know that old brown or old white extension cable that’s long, it has three outlets on it, that’s not what we are looking for, that’s an extension cable, and it’s crap you shouldn’t use it for any high-end electronics.

The next is just a standard power strip now; this could be considered a surge protector in a way, but more than likely, it’s not going to protect against very high surges at all. So anything above just a shallow level, it’s not going to save anything, it’s probably just going to get fried.

So definitely watch out for those you know it’s going to be labeled a surge protector but look at the specs on it, and we’re going to go over those later exactly what you need to look for when you’re looking for a new product.

Next is a power conditioner, now a power conditioner is similar to a surge protector in that it’s changing the power, but with power conditioning, it’s actually taking dirty power that’s coming out of the outlets, normalizing that voltage, and sending that to your device or whatever’s plugged into it. So typically, the household voltage varies, so it goes high, goes low, and goes high. You should use a power conditioner with a home theater system.

The power conditioner sends out a steady stream, keeping it as level as possible, and that’s actually going to save the electronics a little bit, it’s going to make them last a little bit longer, it’s going to filter out some of that dirty power. This can cause problems in the soundbar when watching Netflix.

Lastly, a UPS or an uninterrupted power supply, now this has a battery in it, so essentially, if the power goes out, then this battery kicks on and keeps all of your equipment running. So it doesn’t shut off improperly, so it gives you time to shut everything down, make sure you save all your files and everything, in case you know the power doesn’t come back on.

But a lot of UPS do include surge protectors on them, but not all of them do, so that is something to watch out for. This is a must if you have a dual voice coil subwoofer.

Why is My Old Surge Protector Not Working?

There are many reasons that can cause problems in the surge protector. In this article, we have explained everything you need to know about these and their usage with a home theater system.

What is a surge?

Surge is a spike in voltage in your power, so frequently referred to surges are lightning strikes, so if a nearby lightning strikes or lightning strikes your home strikes the power wires, you could see a surge of electricity.

The same goes for if you have large appliances, so if you were to turn on a refrigerator or a huge TV, a home theater system or a soundbar are bad about it, and speakers are bad about it.

If that overloads that circuit, then that could cause a surge, and it could potentially damage some of your electronics since why we use these devices.

Working of the surge protector

Now what it does is, that when an incoming voltage is higher than what the clamping voltage is, it’s going to reroute that voltage to the ground cable. That ground is that little bottom pin on your plugins; if you’re in America, it’s that bottom pin, and that usually routes outside directly into the ground. That’s why they call it the ground.

So if a surge of electricity comes through that’s higher than that clamping voltage, it reroutes it back to the ground, away from all of your sensitive electronics.

check if your surge protector is bad

It is very difficult to know when your surge protector is bad. A lot of them have a little LED light, basically saying yes, you’re protected, or no, you’re not protected.

However, studies have shown that these lights are not always accurate, they don’t have a level showing how depleted the surge protector is, as far as the surge protecting goes.

Basically, how that works is, it has a maximum number of joules that it can handle, whether that be you know 600, 2100, 3000, the numbers definitely vary on the quality of the device, but it can handle a certain amount of joules and once it’s handled that amount of joules are protected against that much joules, it will no longer work.

Now in an ideal environment, the LED light on the surge protector would either change to red or turn off, indicating that okay this surge protector is no longer working, and if a surge were to come through, your electronics would be protected.

However, that’s not the case, a lot of these LED lights don’t operate properly, or there’s no easy way to indicate whether or not it is working. So that’s one of the major downsides with these, and this is why we need to constantly change out these over time.

When to replace a surge protector?

So I would say every three or four years whether you’ve been hit by electricity or by a lightning strike or something like that, you should probably swap out your most important surge protector.

So the one going into your home theater equipment with very sensitive and expensive electronics, you probably want to change it every few years, just to make sure you’re okay, whether that protected light is on or off. Bose home theater system is the best in the market.

A definitely good idea to just swap it out, no matter what, because you want to make sure that it’s protected because if it’s not, in an instant, you could lose a lot of really expensive electronics, you just really don’t want that.

Buy a new surge protector

So now when you’re looking to buy a new surge protector, there are a few different specs that we want to look at, the first one being the number of joules that it can
handle. Essentially the higher number the joules that a surge protector can handle, the better. You can easily extend the HDMI length and keep your system protected.

So you don’t want one that can handle 600 or 700, you want a device that can handle 1500, 2000, 2500, the higher number, the better with this.

The next thing we want to look at is if a product is UL Certified or not now UL stands for Underwriters Laboratories, and basically, this is a company that tests different products and makes sure that they meet a specific set of standards.

Now, these standards are set pretty high to make sure that these products are durable, they’ll last and work the way that they’re supposed to, and they’re
just overall decent products.

If a product isn’t good and it doesn’t work the way that it should, it won’t get UL listed. That’s why this is a pretty important spec to kind of look at, especially with a surge protector just because it’s an essential and very important part of your setup.

The next is the clamping voltage, which is the maximum amount of volts that can pass through the surge protector before it routes that to the ground or routes the surge of electricity to the ground. So typically, the lower number, the better for this.


Some of the best surge protectors are known as having around a 400 clamping voltage.
A lot of these companies offer some type of insurance for the products that are connected to this protector.

So, for instance, one of the main companies that I am using offers a pretty high insurance policy for whatever devices are connected to it.

So if anything were you know if I had my soundbar and a bunch of other equipment plugged into the surge protector as long as it is still under warranty and it’s still working right, if all my equipment were to get fried, then the insurance company will cover up to a certain amount.

Now, this varies from company to company. So again I really want to urge you to replace all of your old surge protectors every once in a while.

It’s always important to keep a surge protector on your stuff; we’ve had many instances of people getting their electronics fried just because they’re not using these.

So do it now and take some of those notes that I have added into consideration when you’re buying one like UL certification, Joules, clamping voltage, and the warranty / you know replacement policy or refund policy for your equipment so keep all those four in