You cannot run large kitchen appliances like refrigerators, small appliances like microwaves, and hair styling tools on surge protectors. But what about modems and routers? Can you plug them into power strips and surge protectors? What happens if you do? Could they interfere with your internet connection?
Should A Router Be Plugged Into Surge Protector?
You can plug a router into a surge protector. Surge protectors defend against surges and spikes.
Some people will argue that a surge protector is incapable of effectively stopping surges emanating from lightning strikes. But a surge protector is better than nothing. More importantly, lightning strikes do not happen every single day.
On the other hand, ordinary surges and spikes happen all the time. They can occur as a result of a malfunction on the mainline, loose wiring, and even the presence of heavy-duty appliances whose power consumption spikes whenever they switch on.
If you can plug ordinary computing devices into a surge protector, you can do the same to routers and modems.
Is Surge Protector Necessary for A Router?
If your region is prone to frequent surges and spikes, you need a surge protector. Otherwise, a surge could destroy all your equipment, including the router.
Surge protectors are not a luxury. They bring several benefits to the table, including:
1). Prevent Surges
This is their primary function. A surge protector will prevent a router from burning out. I also encourage you to get uninterruptible power supplies.
In a way, they are better than ordinary surge protectors. First of all, they have surge protection mechanisms. They can offer the same defense against surges and spikes you find in conventional surge protectors.
Secondly, they have inbuilt batteries that allow the router to remain operational in the event of a power outage. If you want to buy a UPS for your computer, you might as well secure a unit that can accommodate the computer as well as the router.
Surge protectors will not stop a direct lightning strike. But they will stop conventional surges and spikes. But what happens when the surge protector encounters a surge so powerful that it destroys the surge protector and the router?
The best surge protectors are made by manufacturers whose policies compel them to reimburse consumers whose equipment was destroyed by a surge. Their policies will only cover the cost of repair and replacement to an extent.
If you read their documentation, it will specify the repair and replacement amounts they are willing to cover. In many cases, they offer hundreds of thousands of dollars in compensation, which is far more than the cost of a router.
Therefore, a surge protector reduces the cost of repair and replacement. Don’t assume that every surge protector offers a warranty.
3). Defend Brownouts
Surge protectors can defend against brownouts. Brownouts will reduce the lifespan of your equipment.
Even if the surges in your area are few and far in between, a surge protector will give you peace of mind. It will give you the assurance that your router will stand the test of time. After all, even though surges are rare in your community, they can still happen. And when they do, you won’t see it coming.
However, you should know that a surge protector can have drawbacks. Keep the following in mind:
Drawbacks of Using Surge Protector For Router
- Surge protectors with a coax can interfere with your router. Plugging a router into the coax line could cause your internet connection to drop.
- Poor quality capacitors can interfere with the router’s operations by introducing a high capacitance to the signal flow.
- Appliances plugged into a surge protector can interfere with the Wi-Fi signals of a router plugged into the same surge protector. Some have also experienced lower bandwidth on the use of surge protectors, not to mention an increase in the amount of noise.
Many people have disputed these suggestions. From what they have seen, a surge protector does not pose a threat to the functions of a router, not unless you connect the router to the coax line of the surge protector.
According to these people, many consumers blame surge protectors for signal interference and a slower bandwidth when their routers are either defective or poor quality.
Can You Plug a Modem into a Surge Protector?
You can plug a modem into a surge protector. A poorly designed surge protector may cause interference via the capacitance. But in most cases, you don’t have any reason to worry.
Surge protectors with a coax line may present a challenge. But ordinary surge protectors can be trusted to defend your modem without affecting your internet connection.
Can You Plug a router into an Extension Cord?
The presence of an extension cord does not affect the operations of a router. An extension cord can reduce the amount of power being delivered, especially if the extension cord is very long.
The length increases resistance which, in turn, increases the voltage drop.
A router uses less than 0.48kW each day. That translates into roughly $2 or less each month.
The voltage drop caused by an extension cord matters where heavy-duty items like microwaves and fridges are concerned. In fact, significant resistance in an extension cord can lead to overheating.
But a router doesn’t consume enough power to introduce these same risks. The average extension cord is also incapable of interfering with a router’s signal.
Many electrical professionals will encourage you to avoid extension cords because of the various dangers associated with their use.
However, outside of this general warning, extension cords are safe. You can use them to power your router.
Can You Plug a Modem into An Extension Cord?
Modems are not heavy-duty items. They do not use enough electricity to causes overheating. Additionally, you don’t have to worry about the voltage drop preventing the modem from getting the power it needs. It doesn’t use that much power, to begin with.
You are supposed to avoid extension cords because they will overheat and start fires if you overload them. They can also prevent powerful appliances from working correctly if they are too long.
This is because the increase in length causes the resistance to rise. An elevation in the resistance will lead to a spike in the voltage drop, a phenomenon that reduces the amount of electricity the extension cord is transmitting to the appliance.
If a long extension cord cannot transmit the volume of power the appliance needs, the appliance may draw even more electricity to compensate for this voltage drop, a development that can cause the extension cord to overheat.
But this concern doesn’t affect modems.
Energy Use Calculator says that they consume roughly 6 watts a day and that is only if you leave them on for 24 hours, which most people tend to do.
Can You Plug A Modem and Router into a Power Strip?
A power strip is just as harmless to a modem or router as extension cords and surge protectors. In fact, surge protectors are far better than power strips. They do not interfere with a router or modem’s functions and yet they also offer surge protection.
Unless their manuals say otherwise, power strips cannot protect you from a surge protector. They are dangerous when used to operate heavy-duty items. They are more likely to overload. But routers and modems cannot overload a power strip.