5 Best Whole House Surge Protector Reviews – Must Read Before Buying!

According to the consumer report, an average American home has approximately $15000 worth of electronic devices like heavy duty machines, refrigerator, printers, televison, hair dryer, dishwasher, light bulbs and vacuum cleaner.

Have you ever thought how vulnerable these electronic devices are due to power surges? If not, we have got you covered. In this detailed post we would be mainly telling you about the top rated, best whole house surge protectors which would help you to protect your electronic items from frequent power surges.

best-whole-house-surge-protector

A simple kind of power surge happens when factors like lightning or power outages cause an abrupt spike in electricity supply. This spike in electricity causes sparks or can also lead to fire or damage of gadgets and appliances.

The power surge protectors help by absorbing all the excess heat energy and diverts the over-voltage to the ground wire thus eradicating it. There are different kinds of surge protection devices that provide different levels of protection.

Knowing the depth of this problem, we reviewed more than 10 different surge protectors out of which we skimmed the list to just five top rated surge protectors. Let’s check them first before we move on to their detailed reviews.

The power surges that are caused by the strikes of lightning can generate a power of upto 10 billion Watts. This same intensity could power 60 American homes for one day.

This kind of electrical surges cannot be handled by some simple power strips. These can heavily damage the appliances at your home.

You need strong and durable surge protectors to prevent such high voltage spikes.

Let us now learn more about these surge protectors.

5 Best Whole House Surge Protectors & Reviews

Before choosing an ideal whole house surge protector, we need you to understand some basics.

The standard system voltage in US is 120V while in UK it is 240V. Thus appliances in US are designed to work within a standard input voltage of 110-120V while in the UK it ranges from 220-240V.

For the mentioned power surge protectors, do check the range of volts they support depending whether you are living in US or UK.

1. Siemens FS140– Best Whole House Surge Protector

Siemens is well know for its quality assured products and consumer service especially in the Energy and Healthcare segment. It is a brand which has continuously proven its mettle in technology.

The FS140 is the most expensive surge protection device on this list. It is certain, it would have some features which makes it stand different from its competition.

Siemens FS140 Whole House Surge Protection
75 Reviews
Siemens FS140 Whole House Surge Protection
  • UL 1449 listed.
  • The most technologically advanced surge protector.
  • Comes with Standard Limited Warranty.

The three-stage protection system helps you to handle all small and large power surges.

The best part is its inbuilt digital notification system. There aren’t only visual alerts by the means of LED lights but also an alarm for notifying you in case of an emergency or adverse condition.

It is engineered to handle 120/240 volts and is a type 2 surge protection device. This surge protection device is backed with a ten year warranty by Siemens.

It comes with a commercial grade NEMA 4X enclosure which enables its installation both indoors as well outdoors.

Let’s dive in to find more features:

Here are some prominent features of the Siemens FS140 Whole House Surge Protection Device:-

  • Has support for 120/240 volts.
  • This is a type 2 surge protection device.
  • Has a tough plastic enclosure.
  • There is an audible alarm for providing notifications.
  • Compatible with almost all brands of breakers and load centers.
  • It is NEMA type 4 rated.
  • A limited warranty of ten years is also provided by Siemens.
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2. Intermatic IG1240RC3

Intermatic has been heavily investing in cutting edge technology and has been providing you with the best in class weatherproofing products and household electronics. This surge protection device is engineered for various applications.

Sale
Intermatic IG1240RC3 Whole Home Type-1 or 2 Surge Protection Device
96 Reviews
Intermatic IG1240RC3 Whole Home Type-1 or 2 Surge Protection Device
  • Green light indicator to state it is working fine.
  • Impressive customer support.
  • 1-Year warranty.

It is designed to be only installed on 120/240 volt AC panels. A green LED status light is present on this for any kind of indications.

The type 1 function comprises installing it outdoor before the service entrances and type 2 function includes installing it after service entrances.

Here are some of its salient features:

  • Made for 120/240 VAC single phase demands.
  • Can be installed in type 1 and type 2 locations.
  • Has separate components which are thermally guarded.
  • A green LED indicator light is present.
  • Mounting feet is attached enduringly.
  • Has a polycarbonate plastic enclosure.
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3. EATON CHSPT2ULTRA

This Eaton surge protection device is a well-known home surge protector. There are a lot of reasons to choose this surge protection device over other brands.

This is a third edition device, so Eaton has definitely added some new features and has upgraded it a bit if we compare it to the previous versions or editions.

Sale
EATON CHSPT2ULTRA Ultimate Surge Protection 3rd Edition, 2.38' Length, 5.25' Width 7.5' Height
325 Reviews
EATON CHSPT2ULTRA Ultimate Surge Protection 3rd Edition, 2.38" Length, 5.25" Width 7.5" Height
  • UL Certified surge protector under the UL 1449 3rd Edition.
  • .Modes of Protection: Neutral to Ground (N-G), Line to Neutral (L-N), Line to Ground (L-G) on both incoming lines and Line to Line (L-L).
  • Works perfect for US/UK regions.

The good thing is that this surge protection device has a NEMA 4 rating and is also UL approved which adds a credibility to it. It is a type 2 surge protection device.

Mounting this device is pretty simple as Eaton has already provided a mounting panel with the bundle. The connections on this are straightforward to some extent. Though, we would suggest that you get it installed by an electrician.

This ultimate surge protection device can be used both indoors and outdoors.

Time to check it’s features:

  • Made for 120/240 VAC so it works worldwide.
  • Has NEMA 4 rating and is UL approved so it is very safe.
  • Has LED light indicators.
  • A mounting panel is provided with this surge protection device.
  • It has a Maximum Surge Current Capacity of 108kA.
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4. Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK– Highly Recommended Whole House Surge Protector

The Intermatic Smart Guard uses thermally protected metal oxide varistor surge protection technology which is not put to use in any other standard surge protection devices.

Certainly, it is a bit expensive if you compare it to the other surge protection devices. Though, customer reviews tell us that that it is worth every penny.

Sale
Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK Whole Home Surge Protector
68 Reviews
Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK Whole Home Surge Protector
  • Outstanding customer reviews.
  • Expensive but truly a one time investment.
  • Easy to install.

This surge protection device is dispatched with a flush mounting kit and three consumable modules.

There are also some built-in LED light indicators that give indications when safety is compromised. The big advantage of this surge protection device is that the modules are replaceable. There is no need to change the entire unit now.

Intermatic has designed this series of surge protection devices for both type 1 and type 2 applications. The type 1 applications comprise outdoor installation before utility meter cabinets and service entrances. The type 2 comprises installation after service entrance.

Here are some its features:

  • It has six modes of protection.
  • A module power switch is present which lets you disconnect power when you are replacing the modules.
  • Has modules indicating LED lights for safety.
  • There are replaceable modules which make everything a tad easier.
  • 50,000 connected equipment warranty.
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5. Leviton 51120-1 Panel Protector

Leviton is a pretty big electronics brand. The Leviton 51120-1 is particularly designed for small houses or businesses. This surge protection device is a bit more expensive than the other option but it surely provides some great features which cannot be left unnoticed.

Sale
Leviton 51120-1 Panel Protector, 120/240-Volt
103 Reviews
Leviton 51120-1 Panel Protector, 120/240-Volt
  • Designed for single-phase applications in apartment buildings and homes.
  • Wide compatibility with easy installation.
  • 10 Years Limited Lifetime Warranty.

The capacity of this surge protection device is of 120/240 volts. There is a J-box enclosure which makes the whole unit self-contained.

No need to modify the current breaker box or create a new mount for this surge protection device. The only concern is that it is only a type 2 surge protector so it cannot be used outdoors.

The Leviton 51120-1 has a four-course protection arrangement. It also comes with a real-time diagnostics so you can easily and regularly check the status.

Time to check its features.

  • Has support for 120/240 volts.
  • It has a quality J-box metal enclosure.
  • Also has LED lights for indication.
  • It is a type 2 protection device so it only works indoors.
  • It has real-time diagnostics so that a regular check can be maintained.
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Specification Comparison of Whole House Surge Protectors

Recommended Buy
Siemens FS140 Whole House Surge Protection
Intermatic IG1240RC3 Whole Home Type-1 or 2 Surge Protection Device
EATON CHSPT2ULTRA Ultimate Surge Protection 3rd Edition, 2.38" Length, 5.25" Width 7.5" Height
Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK Whole Home Surge Protector
Leviton 51120-1 Panel Protector, 120/240-Volt
Model
Siemens FS140
Intermatic IG1240RC3
EATON CHSPT2ULTRA
Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK
Leviton 51120-1
MCOV
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 150V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 300V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 150V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 300V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
  • 150V for L-N
  • 300V for L-L
VPR
  • 600V for L-N
  • 600V for N-G
  • 600V for L-G
  • 900V for L-L
  • 700V for L-N
  • 700V for N-G
  • 1200V for L-G
  • 1200V for L-L
  • 600V for L-N
  • 800V for N-G
  • 600V for L-G
  • 1000V for L-L
  • 1500 for LL
  • 700 for NG
  • 1500 for LG
  • 800 for LL
  • 800V for L-N
  • 1200V for L-L
MSCC
140kA
n = 20kA (note: MSCC not indicated)
108kA (note: In = 20kA)
not mentioned
50kA
SCCR
100kA
100kA
22kA
10kA
10kA
Modes of protection
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
L-N, L-L
Recommended Buy
Siemens FS140 Whole House Surge Protection
Model
Siemens FS140
MCOV
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 150V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
VPR
  • 600V for L-N
  • 600V for N-G
  • 600V for L-G
  • 900V for L-L
MSCC
140kA
SCCR
100kA
Modes of protection
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
Buy from
Intermatic IG1240RC3 Whole Home Type-1 or 2 Surge Protection Device
Model
Intermatic IG1240RC3
MCOV
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 300V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
VPR
  • 700V for L-N
  • 700V for N-G
  • 1200V for L-G
  • 1200V for L-L
MSCC
n = 20kA (note: MSCC not indicated)
SCCR
100kA
Modes of protection
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
Buy from
EATON CHSPT2ULTRA Ultimate Surge Protection 3rd Edition, 2.38" Length, 5.25" Width 7.5" Height
Model
EATON CHSPT2ULTRA
MCOV
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 150V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
VPR
  • 600V for L-N
  • 800V for N-G
  • 600V for L-G
  • 1000V for L-L
MSCC
108kA (note: In = 20kA)
SCCR
22kA
Modes of protection
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
Buy from
Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK Whole Home Surge Protector
Model
Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK
MCOV
  • 150V for L-N
  • 150 V for N-G
  • 300V for L-G
  • 300V for L-L
VPR
  • 1500 for LL
  • 700 for NG
  • 1500 for LG
  • 800 for LL
MSCC
not mentioned
SCCR
10kA
Modes of protection
L-N, N-G, L-G, L-L
Buy from
Leviton 51120-1 Panel Protector, 120/240-Volt
Model
Leviton 51120-1
MCOV
  • 150V for L-N
  • 300V for L-L
VPR
  • 800V for L-N
  • 1200V for L-L
MSCC
50kA
SCCR
10kA
Modes of protection
L-N, L-L
Buy from

MCOV (Maximum Continuous Operating Voltage) – It is the maximum root-mean square (rms) value of the power frequency voltage that may be applied continuously between the terminals of the arrester.

VPR (Voltage Protection Rating) – It is the measure of the let-through voltage, which is the maximum voltage a surge protector will let through to connected devices. Lower the VPR, better the protection.

MSCC (Maximum Surge Current Capacity) – It is the maximum current that can pass through the surge protector in one surge event. More the number, better is the protection.

SCCR (Short Circuit Current Rating) – It depicts the maximum level of short-circuit current that a component or assembly can withstand. More the better is the surge protector.

What To Look For In A Whole House Surge Protection Device

Choosing the right whole house surge protection device is critical. Firstly, you should check the amount of current (MSCC) that can be managed by the device that you are going to buy.

The higher the rating of the surge protection device, the better it is for you and your home. Since higher rating means that more electrical spikes or bigger intensity can be handled by them.

You should also make certain that the surge protection device that you are going to buy has some sort of certification from an independent laboratory.

Furthermore, the surge protection device should also have all the important little features that are generally present in a decent whole house surge protection device. Like, the LED light indicators should be present as they are really important. Without these indications you would not be able to keep a status check.

The body or the enclosure should be tough too. If any kind of damage occurs to the body, your investment would be wasted.

Other Factors to Consider

  • Enclosure type – Do check if the device could be used indoor/outdoor. While some devices are compatible both ways, some are only restricted to be used indoors.
  • Warranty – This is very important. We recommend Siemens FS 140 for providing 10 year warranty on their surge protector.
  • Response time – Though, most of the brands do not publish this. Ideally, a surge protector should act within nanoseconds if lightening occurs.
  • Notification – Whether you like the LED indicator or a proper alert, check it while buying the right product.
  • Dimensions – Surge protectors are small and compact. Though, do check the dimensions for your convenience.

Our Top Recommendation

The collective cost of electrical appliances of an average American home can range from $15000 to $30000. Keeping in mind that a lot of your daily usage appliances are at risk from heavy surges caused due to lightening, it is evident that you should always buy only a top rated whole house surge protector device.

We do not always recommend the most pricy option while covering products. However, this is the first time we recommend that you go with the most expensive option in our list i.e. Siemens FS140 whole house surge protector.

First of all, this device has the Maximum Surge Current Capacity of 140kA which means, it can deal with a lot more current and voltage fluctuations caused by lightening.

How To Properly Install A Whole House Surge Protector

Hiring a professional electrician is the best thing that you can do for installing a whole house surge protector, this is by far the easiest method.

Accessing the panel box can be a bit of a problem for most of you so a hiring a professional for this job would ensure that the task happens more accurately and safely.

If you do not want to spend some bucks on hiring a professional electrician or just simply want to do the task yourself then read the instructions provided carefully, though we do not recommend it.

Turning off the main electricity from the main panel box is very crucial. Always perform this step before actually opening the panel box. An active panel can prove to be very dangerous and you can easily get electrocuted by it. Then follow the steps provided by the manufacturer as the process can be different for every surge protection device.

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How Does A Whole House Surge Protector Actually Work

The basic job of a whole house surge protector is to keep the electrical equipment and the appliances safe. By keeping them safe, we are referring to the sudden spikes in electrical supply.

The voltage is kept in check or limited by these surge protection devices. Either the current is completely blocked or redirected to the ground if there are any signs of damage.

Do Whole House Surge Protection Device Last Long?

These whole house surge protection devices have a definite life span and we all know that at some point of time they will be rendered useless. The component in the power surge protector gradually degrades with the number and the intensity of the surges it receives.

In other words, the life of a whole house surge protection device completely depends upon two factors- the number of surges and the intensity of the surge.

Whole House Surge Protector Reviews
  • Intermatic IG1240RC3
  • EATON CHSPT2ULTRA
  • Intermatic Smart Guard IG2240-IMSK
  • Leviton 51120-1
  • Siemens FS140
4.3

Summary

It is very important that you go with the right surge protector that would prevent your appliances from heavy surges causes due to thunder and lightening.

There aren’t many brands which are available in the market. As suggested in this post, we have covered the top five whole house surge protectors that you can choose from.

Last update on 2019-09-23 at 01:33 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API