Whole House Surge Suppression
AFter my mother lost both a microwave and the control board in the refrigerator, I decided to install a whole house surge suppressor. Since I was only going to be there a day or so, I had to find one fast. Ended up with a unit from Mersen that was the only one available from any electrical supply house in the city. Everyone said they could get one, but shipping would take too long. I looked at a GE and a Leviton unit, but ended up with the Mersen unit. The company has been around for awhile, so hope it ends up being reliable. Anyway, for someone considering this, IF you have room in your panel, it's only about a 10-minute job. Poke out a 1/2" knockout in the panel, insert the three wires (L1, L2, N), slip the nut over the wires and tighten it up. Add the N to the buss bar, put L1 and L2 on the lugs of a 240vac 20A breaker, snap the breaker into the box, turn the breaker on, check that the indicator lights are green, and put the cover back on after knocking out for the new breaker.
Anyway, she sees regular short duration power outages. Already had a UPS and a few surge suppressors on important things (the cable box and the wireless router often needed a hard reset to get them in sync and working properly after a power outage - the powered up at different rates and often wouldn't connect properly and after installing a UPS, she hasn't had this problem). These were the first major appliances to die during a storm, but hopefully, other than a direct strike, this should certainly help. It was about $125 overnighted from Amazon (which was about $30 less than the local place after taxes). If I hadn't had one day, I would have bought it locally.
I've had a similar device on my home for decades, and have never lost a major appliance or other electronic device while neighbors have (same power feed), so I believe in both the concept and the need.
It's a relatively inexpensive addition (you can pay more for higher power dissipation if you want) that should have some real benefits. It makes the surge suppression at the major item more effective since you're protected from the outside via the panel and at the point of use by a local strip.