Last month, we discussed adding surge protection to your home and the topic didn’t get a lot of attention. However, since then, we’ve received a rising number of calls about people experiencing ghosts in their home or “possessed” houses. The lights are flickering. There are strange noises throughout the home. It feels like someone’s watching you when you know you’re alone. And then there are other things like the fact that LED lamps aren’t lasting long, or appliances are failing to work properly before the warrantee is up. In one case, the dishwasher stopped working after a few months.
This can be terrifying! You don’t know if you’ve got a ghost in your home—which most people wouldn’t believe anyway, but a few of us do. Just saying. Frankie is a paranormal investigator in her spare time. A lot of the time—and Frankie can attest to this because she seeks proof of the paranormal—it’s something electrical going wrong in the home.
If you remember when we talked about surge protection last month, we mentioned that this is a problem that can get gradually worse as the home gets older. In Alaska, we know we’re going to be without power at least once in the winter and again in the summer. It’s like death and taxes up here. When that power drops, it’s not just a quick and easy power drop. There’s typically a surge—or ten—that runs through the house. Sometimes, it’ll kick back on and then go back off. And then when the power comes back on again, there’s another surge.
That surge is a vibration of energy (or joules) coursing through each of your outlets and wire connections. This is why you can sometimes hear humming from various devices (harmonics). It can surge through your electronics, your appliances, and loosen all sorts of things. Over time, it can do a lot of damage.
So, today, we want to tell you how you can stop this. Why? Because this is serious and we want you to take action, and because appliances are expensive and only getting pricier! We want to help you protect your investment. Instead of running from your house screaming because the cost is going to be too much, do these simple things first.
Wait. Stop. What’s EMF?
Frankie here. I’ve been a paranormal investigator for nine years. When people contact me for a potential paranormal investigation, I listen for keywords. When they say things like, “I feel like someone’s watching me when I’m at my computer,” or “I sometimes hear humming or voices,” I know there’s an EMF, or electric magnetic frequency spike in that area. I know that something electrical is going on. So, I’ll start there.
When I hear them say, “My child feels threated when they’re in bed,” I look at outlets or devices such as TVs, computers, or plug-in alarm clocks that could be throwing off large amounts of EMF. I’m asking the owner things like, “Have you experienced a lot of brown outs or loss of power? Are there a lot of power surges in your home? Do you use surge protection power strips?”
If there’s a claim about hearing voices, I delve a little deeper. Electricity makes noise to the point that we measure the sound level. Does it happen when the heater kicks on? Or when the water heater turns on? Or when the electric oven is heating up? If so, I’ll start there and look at potential loose connections.
That’s, honestly, most of my paranormal investigations. I’m not even kidding. I go through and do an electrical inspection, open up outlets and light fixtures, tighten connections, offer surge protection ideas, and their ghosts are gone.
I know it seems funny to say it out loud, but if you’re feeling like someone is watching you when you know you’re alone or hear voices when there should be none, it could be electric magnetic frequency. EMF is a real thing. It happens when a circuit is out of balance. Or it could be a loose connection or an overloaded circuit—when you have too many things plugged into the same circuit. It could be a bad light fixture, or an appliance nearing the end of its life cycle.
The first thing you need to understand is that you’re not stupid.
The second thing is that it could be a really easy fix.
The third thing you need to know is that you’re not alone. There are a lot of homeowners in our area experiencing this same thing.
It’s not always shoddy workmanship. It can be, especially if it’s a new home, but in most cases, it’s the power surges rushing through your home each time the power drops and comes back up. But don’t worry. In any case, here’s a plan and it’s easy!
Call An Electrician To Inspect Your Panel
First and foremost, if you’re experiencing flickering lights, LED lamps needing to be replaced within months of being swapped out, appliances dying or failing to function, hearing weird sounds in the home, smelling weird “heat” smells, or if you’re feeling like someone is watching you, call an electrician to inspect your home panel.
What we’ve noticed in a lot of these house calls is that there are loose connections in the panel. Tightening those connections and cleaning up the neutral bar clears a lot of these issues and it’s an easy one-trip fix.
Install A Panel Surge Suppressor
The second thing to do is to install a surge suppressor in or near the panel. This needs to be done by a licensed electrician. Not all panel surge protectors are created the same. Like all things, different manufacturers produce different quality products. If you have an electrician coming out to inspect your panel, they can add that surge suppressor at the same time. Just take a picture of the inside of your panel cover, and text it to Frankie at 907-531-4328 when you call the office to schedule your appointment. She’ll make sure to get the right suppressor ordered and in the hands of our electrician before he comes to your home.
Put Surge Protector Power Strips On Your Electronics
Power strips are a daily-use item in our homes, but a lot of us don’t use surge protectors. Why? They’re more expensive.
The cheaper ones only protect for 1,000 joules. That seems like a lot, but what you don’t realize is that each time our house is hit with a power surge, that protector diverts 1,000 joules of electricity the first time, but then it decreases each time after that. Most surge protectors have a life span of 3-5 years, but in our area, it’s much shorter. They last for about 2 years with any real affect.
Starting with a surge protector with a higher energy suppression rating is a good bet. We recommend using surge protectors with at least a 3,000 joules rating. Plug electronics like TVs, gaming systems, and computers into these power strips and be sure not to completely load them.
Put Surge Protectors On Your Appliances
That power surge is so large, a single protector won’t protect your home from the complete electrical attack. This is why we recommend stacking your power surge protectors.
Appliances—like your dishwasher, washer and dryer, and refrigerator—are all very expensive investments. So, this is the number one thing we recommend putting additional surge protection devices on.
You need to make sure that the protection device is rated for the appliance. Refrigerators, dishwashers, and washing machines are rated at 20A. So, make sure your appliance surge arrestor is rated for that as well.
Dryers are rated for 30A, so make sure your surge protector is capable of protecting up to 30A.
And most electric ovens and ranges are 50A, so make sure your surge protector is rated for 50A.
It’s important to understand that doing one of these and not the rest will definitely help, but if you want to protect your home for the long haul, it’s the best idea to do them all. This is an easy plan to put into motion, and All Phase Electric is here to help.
All projects big and small, All Phase Electric can do them all.
But half of this, you can do on your own.
Don’t wait! Contact us today!