Looking for the best surge protector or best power strip is a worthwhile endeavor.
The best surge protectors should protect your devices from power spikes, have plenty of outlets to handle all your electronics, and have multiple types of connections like USB and Ethernet.
While most consumers don’t pay too much attention to surge protectors, they’re a necessary bit of tech that helps protect electronics for major energy spikes. But it’s good to take surge protection seriously, as a major electrical event could leave your electronics damaged and out of commission.
Some surge protectors even take it a step beyond, combining surge protection with battery backup so you can safely power down sensitive electronic equipment such as game consoles and PCs.
In this article, we’re going to highlight some of the best surge protectors you can buy in 2022.
1. APC Back-UPS Pro 1500VA
If you’re prone to derechos or ice storms that knock out power, the APC Back-UPS Pro 1500VA is your tech’s lifesaver. Part-UPS and part-surge protector, it allows you to decide which of your items needs to be protected from spikes and which items you would prefer to be on the UPS supply. The UPS side offers up to 865W of battery life to keep tech functioning during power outages, while the surge protection side keeps any currents consistent and safe.
A PowerChute system also keeps you informed on what equipment is using how much voltage. If you prefer to shift some of the voltage elsewhere, you can do just that. You can even swap out to a stronger backup battery if you feel the one included isn’t suitable for your home.
- Clear LCD display
- 10 outlets, including five battery backup outlets
- Vertical orientation doesn’t take up as much space
- Hot swappable batteries
- Option to connect additional batteries
- Stepped sine wave like cheaper options
- No USB or additional charging outputs
- Big and heavy
2. APC Performance SurgeArrest 12
The best surge protector or best power strip in our opinion is the APC Performance SurgeArrest 12, model P12U2. The unit offers 4,320 joules of protection, along with 12 electrical plugs and two USB ports. The surge protector is relatively slim and compact, making it an easy-fit behind media consoles or televisions.
The SurgeArrest 12 also has a built-in fail safe mode, cutting off power once the internal components have been compromised. This will ensure your electronics stay safe, even if it means having to go pick up another unit. APC also offers a lifetime warranty and states on its website that if circuitry is damaged by heavy strike of power line surge and is unable to offer 100% protection, it will “replace your damaged SurgeArrest free of charge.”
- Fail Safe mode
- IEEE testing and certification
- Generous warranty
- More expensive than competition
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3. APC Power Strip with USB Charging Ports
Significantly smaller than the Back-UPS Pro Surge Protector, the APC Power Strip offers up to eight different outlets for protection. Should you forget your phone charger across the house, no worries—this surge protector comes with two USB ports for a charge of up to 2.4 amps.
Because it’s solely a surge protector, it weighs less than 2 pounds and can be easily transported around the house or tucked away behind a desk. While it has only eight outlets (but comes with up to 11 total), four of those are transformer outlets to protect your equipment. Best of all, it has a 2638 joules rating, so your office equipment will be protected from any power spikes.
- 2.4 amps USB charging ports
- Only eight outlets
4. Belkin 12 Outlet Surge Protector
Belkin’s 12 Outlet Surge Protector, model BV12234-08, is an excellent unit that provides plenty of protection, which is why it’s one of the best surge protectors and best power strips on the market. With 12 outlets and two USB charge ports, it matches the APC Performance SurgeArrest 12. It has a lower energy rating at 3,996Joules, but is still more than enough for most. It’s also available in white.
In terms of footprint, it’s relatively compact, and can easily sit below a home theater setup. It also has a clip towards the bottom for cable management. The BV12234-08 also has room for large adapters, a recessed power button to prevent accidental shutoffs and mounting holes to secure to walls, baseboard or furniture.
- Efficient design
- Power safety shut down
- Cable management
- Lesser equipment protection compared to competition
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5. BESTEK 6-Outlet Surge Protector
This BESTEK surge protector comes in two different colors and offers an unbeatable price for peace of mind. A power light indicates whether it’s protecting your tech from power surges and a built-in phosphor bronze conductor keeps up to 200 joules safe.
Overload protection and copper technology will keep anything plugged in from overcharging and overheating. Small and under 2 inches thick, the BESTEK can fit discreetly behind almost any small appliance or underneath a desk thanks to its 6-foot long extension cord.
- Great for lamps and phones
- 1875W protection
- Not great for computers and gaming consoles
- Cannot turn plug-ins for optimal usage
6. Anker PowerPort Strip 12
Anker is a brand more often found at online retailers like Amazon than at Best Buy. But the company has made a name for itself with its clean white aesthetic, value and quality. The Anker PowerPort Strip 12 is no exception.
As of publishing, the 6’ version can be found for between $26-27. That undercuts the competition by around $10. Not only that, it has the surge energy rating and equipment protection to match. Although, the warranty on the surge protector itself only lasts for 18 months.
As for protection, it has an overload protection feature that will flip the surge protector off during a major surge.
- Clean design
- Fast-charging USB ports
- High energy rating
- Limited warranty
What to Look for in a Surge Protector
Joules – Joules measure how much a protector can take during a power spike. The higher a joules rating, the higher the threshold a protector can withstand. Once the joules reach that threshold, be it one massive spike or a series of smaller spikes, the surge protector isn’t as effective, so higher is better.
Outlets – Will you need to charge your cell phone on this surge protector? If so, it might be in your best interest to look for one with USB ports. Swivel outlets are also important because setting up multiple cords can sometimes be tricky depending on the plug-in’s bulk. For example, a Nintendo Switch charger could take up less space if used on a swivel outlet.
Outlet protection types – Depending on the power surge protector, a light may indicate when the threshold of joules has been met, which means it’s time for a surge protector replacement. Some protectors don’t have these lights though, so it’s important to take a look and see if the surge protector that’s caught your eye can indicate whether it’s time for a replacement.
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