Can a Power Surge Damage Your HVAC? Tips for Protecting Your HVAC System

plugging in a plug

As a homeowner in the scorching heat of Las Vegas, your air conditioner is essential for your comfort and well-being. While it may feel less important in the scorching summer, your heating system is just as vital in the cold desert nights. And if you have a heat pump providing your heating AND cooling, you want to make extra sure that nothing happens to it. With that in mind, have you ever wondered what could happen if a power surge occurs and affects your HVAC system?

Let’s take a look at the potential dangers of power surges and ideas for how to protect your HVAC system using surge protectors.

Understanding Power Surges and Their Potential Impact on Your Air Conditioner, Heater, or Heat Pump

A power surge is a sudden increase in voltage that can happen due to lightning strikes, utility grid malfunctions, or even household appliances cycling on and off. And yes, these voltage spikes can pose a serious threat to your electrical devices.

So, the question is: Can a power surge damage your air conditioner or HVAC system?

Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Power surges can wreak havoc on your HVAC's sensitive electrical components, causing malfunctions and potentially leading to costly repairs. A surge in voltage can overload the system, damaging circuit boards, AC or heat pump compressors, motors, wires, capacitors, and other crucial parts.

If your air conditioner or heat pump stopped working after a power surge or is not blowing cold air, the surge has likely caused internal damage to your AC. The same is true if your heater won’t blow warm air.

Can You Plug an Air Conditioner into a Surge Protector?

Unfortunately, no. Even window air conditioners shouldn’t be plugged into a surge protector. Since air conditioners can draw a lot of power, especially on a scorching day in Spring Valley, Paradise, or Henderson, all AC units with a plug need to connect directly to an outlet. Surge protector power strips that you can buy in stores may malfunction or start a fire when overloaded by the demands of an AC.

Larger central cooling systems require a dedicated surge protector to be installed at the electrical panel. It's best to consult with a professional electrician to determine the appropriate surge protection solution for your specific setup.

The Importance of HVAC Power Surge Protectors

To safeguard your HVAC system from potential damage caused by power surges, consider having a power surge protector for your air conditioner installed. These electrical protection systems are designed to detect and divert excess electrical energy away from your air conditioner, preventing it from reaching and damaging the sensitive components. By investing in a whole-home surge protector, you can provide an extra layer of protection to your entire HVAC system and prevent avoidable breakdowns.

Addressing Electrical Problems with Your Air Conditioner

Power surges can lead to various electrical problems in your air conditioner or heat pump. These issues can range from faulty wiring to damaged capacitors or relays. If you notice any of the following signs, it's important to contact a professional HVAC technician to diagnose and resolve the problem:

  • AC not blowing cold air after a power surge, or not cooling your home effectively.
  • Frequent tripping of circuit breakers when the AC runs.
  • Strange noises such as buzzing or clicking sounds coming from the air conditioner.
  • Unusual smells such as burning odors emanating from the unit.

A trained HVAC professional will have the expertise to identify and rectify these air conditioner electrical problems promptly, ensuring optimal performance and longevity of your air conditioning system.

Protect Your Comfort with One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Las Vegas

In the blistering heat of a Las Vegas summer, your air conditioner is a lifeline to comfort. If you’ve experienced a power surge or are facing electrical problems with your air conditioner or heat pump, reach out to the trusted HVAC professionals at One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Las Vegas.

We can assess the situation, provide the necessary repairs, and offer guidance on surge protection solutions tailored to your needs. Book an appointment online or call us at (702) 602-8801 today!