Common Causes of Power Surges

CMI Lighting- power surges

Learn more about power surges and their most common causes.

A power surge is an event when electrical power surges at a higher rate the normal. As you may be aware, in the United States the vast majority of our devices operate on an average of 120 volts; However, when a surge of power comes in that is a much higher voltage than this, a power surge occurs. This typically results in reduced performance from our devices or even damage to the internals of those devices at worst. Power surges can have several causes, some of which you can control by bringing in a professional electrician to deal with. Here are some of the more common reasons why a power surge might occur.

Lighting Strike

When lighting directly strikes a power line, it can produce a very high voltage which can then flow through the electrical systems into homes and commercial settings. This can damage any device that is not plugged into a surge protector, so ensure that all devices that are not plugged into a surge protector are disconnected before a storm takes place. Otherwise, there’s really not much that you can control in this situation.

Power Outage

A power outage can also cause a power surge. The actual outage simply stops the flow of electricity in the grid, so there’s no danger when the lights go out. It’s when the power grid restarts that a power surge is likely because there is usually a sudden jump in current whenever the grid does restart. Again, the main thing you can do here is to ensure all devices are plugged into surge protectors.

Electrical Overload

Here’s where we get into causes that a professional electrician can help remedy for you and your business. A single electrical circuit can be overdrawn due to having way too many devices plugged into it at the same time. The circuit becomes overwhelmed and has to draw an excess amount of power, which can lead to a power surge. Here, a professional electrician can help assess the load on your board and make upgrades to help it handle the amount of power that you need without leaving your devices at risk of a surge.

Bad Wiring

Another common internal cause of power surges is faulty wiring. This is especially common in areas where wiring is exposed or damaged – however, it’s not always apparent that rewiring needs to occur. An experienced electrician can assess your wiring situation and ensure that all damage and improper wiring is fixed quickly.


With over 35 years in the industry, CMI has an array of equipment to handle the logistics of any in-house job. We also frequently provide solutions to property managers and upcoming developments. CMI Companies provides services in Mid-Atlantic Region and proudly serves clients in Northern Virginia, Maryland, Richmond, Southern Virginia, Manassas, Prince William County, Fairfax County, Rockville, and Prince George’s County. Also, check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.



This entry was posted on Friday, April 15th, 2022 at 1:36 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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