Whole House Surge Protection Type 1: Meter Based Surge Protector

We blogged awhile back about whole house surge protection, and why it’s important to have whole house surge protective devices installed in your home. We also covered the basics on what a surge is, and how it enters your home, and how it can destroy your electronics. (Please visit the blog here for additional information) Today, we will go over a specific type of surge protective device not mentioned in that blog, which is considered whole house surge protection type 1, (meter based surge protector).


What Is Whole House Surge Protection? 

To recap from our previous blog on whole house surge protection, this is protection for your devices, appliances, computers etc. throughout your entire home from surges (an increase of electrical voltage) that can occur outside the home from things like a lightning strike on a utility line, work being done on the utility line, a storm that destroys the power lines, falling trees, etc.

Because our appliances, electronics, and other machinery that are hooked up in our homes can only handle so much electrical voltage to operate, surges can have really damaging effects on these electronics. This extra voltage (the surge) can damage the appliance wiring, or even fry the appliance completely.

Whole house surge protectors are devices, a.k.a surge protective devices (SPDs) that are installed on the base of your meter, in your main electrical panel, and throughout your home with power strips (this one you are most familiar with).


What Is Whole House Surge Protection Type 1?

Whole house surge protection type 1 refers to a SPD (surge protective device) that mounts onto the outside meter of your home (pictured below). This is the first line of defense against surges. It’s a meter based surge protector that reduces extra voltage (surge) from the power grid, before it reaches your main electrical panel.

This type 1 surge protector that mounts onto your meter protects your home from 20% of power surges that occur externally like mentioned before (downed power lines, during work being done on the utility lines, lightning strikes on the utility lines, etc.).


whole house surge protection type 1 (meter based surge protector)

whole house surge protection type 1 (meter based surge protector)


What Are Type 2 and Type 3 Surge Protective Devices?

Because we call the meter based surge protectors the first line of defense, it is recommended that you also have type 2 and type 3 surge protection for your home. We won’t go into too much detail with these until another blog, but type 2 is a device that is installed onto your main electrical panel, and type 3 are hardwired surge receptacles (used for large appliances like your refrigerator), and plug-in power strips (used for things like computers).

80% of surges take place inside the house due to your large appliances with motors cycling on and off. This is why you should install type 2 and type 3 surge protectors for protection of your appliances and electronic devices in your home.


Why You Should Have A Meter Based Surge Protector Installed

The installation of whole house surge protection type 1 (meter based surge protector) allows your home to be protected from outside surges that occur from the power grid. With all three types of surge protectors mentioned above, your home is better protected from external and internal surges. Here’s how all three SPDs are connected:

Type 2 devices that are installed on your main electrical panel also help with absorbing some of the surge from the outside that may leak in from type 1 (meter based). Along with type 3 (power strips and hardwired receptacles) that protect appliances and devices from internal surges, these three layers of protection protect your home better against surges. 


Hire A Licensed Electrician For Whole House Surge Protection

For installing surge protection devices (more so type 1 and type 2), it’s crucial to hire a licensed electrician for safety and compliance. Call KB Electric LLC today for installations in the Montgomery County, PA area, as well as Bucks, Berks, Delaware, Chester, and Philadelphia counties. (267) 467-3178