HTPC power protection low surge  

  1. Posts : 25

    HTPC power protection low surge

    How can i protect a small HTPC hooked up to my TV from surging? Every now and then not always my mini fridge will kick on or off and cut the TV power for a second. which turns off the tv and right back on. Im guessing a surge? I want the pc to be protected from this. What should i do? upgrade the power-strip? or get a cheap PSU for backups?

    please move to right place if this is wrong area to ask.
      My Computer

  2. Posts : 29,370
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 22H2

    Power strips do not compensate for voltage drop, they can't add energy. I assume the fridge motor is sufficient to draw down on most of circuit and the TV built in protection shuts itself off.

    Now a UPS can compensate for this brown out but you would have to investigate whether the unit you are looking at has voltage protection, some don't, and if you can adjust it tight enough to kick in before the TV protection kicks in.

    I have a new APC unit and low voltage starts at 88v. Really useless. In a 120v target that is -32v or 25% drop.

    I have a TV plugged into another APC, a good size unit, and the TV won't operate on battery. It is a small TV, not a monster. Not sure what it is sensing.

    You might see if there is a second circuit in the room that you can isolate the fridge on. Lots of time there isn't. Easy to test, shut breaker off and test all plugs. If you need an extension cord make sure it is at least 14 gauge wire to handle fridge load.

    Other may have other experiences.

      My Computer

  3. Posts : 4,453
    Win 11 Pro 22000.708

    I think that you want an AVR (automatic voltage regulator). That maintains the line voltage in the event of drops or over-voltages.

    I doubt that you'd find the voltage regulation feature in any power strip.

    You can also buy a UPS (uninterruptable power supply) that includes the AVR function. That is what I use, on a more power-hungry PC. Make sure to size it based on the peak wattage that your HTPC could demand. UPS manufacturers like to list their devices based on the peak VAs (volt amperes) that they can drives, which is relevant only for reactive (inductive or capacitive) loads. The peak wattage is always much less.
      My Computers

  4. Posts : 9,609
    Mac OS Catalina

    You need a UPS.
      My Computer

  5. Posts : 28

    l3izz said:
    How can i protect a small HTPC hooked up to my TV from surging? ... . Im guessing a surge?.
    A surge is a voltage that approaches or exceeds 1000 volts. You have defined a flicker or noise. A flicker wold be a voltage dropping towards zero. Noise is a voltage that can be single digits. Three completely different an unrelated electrical anomalies.

    Long before asking for a solution, first an anomaly must be defined. Clearly, if a refrigerator is creating a surge, then it is destroying itself. And maybe other household appliances. Above numbers make that obvious.

    If a refrigerator is creating a flicker, then an incandescent bulb (not CFL or LED) powered from the same receptacle would also flicker. If not, then voltage is just fine. Move on to other suspects. If that bulb flickers, then start by addressing workmanship problem with wires inside walls.

    If noise, a TV is not powering off. The digital signal is lost due to electrical noise. Then the TV must reestablish a new digital signal connection. Address the reason for that noise. But again, long before any honest reply can recommend a solution, first an anomaly must be defined.

    Clearly that is not a surge. Discussed are other unrelated, viable, and potential suspects.
      My Computer


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