On Sunday, June 9, 2019 a massive storm ripped through the heart of Dallas, including much of North Dallas spreading all the way up as far north as Frisco, Plano, and Carrollton. The storm was known as a “microburst,” which to put it simply is a sudden release of a lot of weather energy over a small area in an extremely short amount of time. The powerful force caused an immense amount of damage, knocking over massive trees, taking out traffic lights, and putting electrical infrastructure completely out of commission.
If you were one of the hundreds of thousands of customers impacted by these outages, there’s a good chance your home may have suffered some damage to your electrical systems as well. When trees hit power lines or torrential rains and winds cause electrical lines to malfunction, it’s not impossible for a surge to happen. Surges are sudden bursts in voltage or current that come from an unregulated electrical connection—conditions which could happen for a split second during a major storm like we experienced on Sunday.
Signs of a Power Surge
Oncor is scrambling to try and restore power for the more than 300,000 customers who were impacted, but there’s a good chance that when your connection is restored that you may discover further damage to your home if you were impacted by a surge. Before attempting to turn the lights back on and go back to life as normal, it’s important to inspect your home for signs you may have experienced a surge.
- Blackened or burned appearance in electrical outlets
- Blown out lightbulbs
- Smell of burnt or charred plastic or rubber around an outlet
- Tripped breakers or surge protectors requiring resetting
- A circuit breaker panel with many or all breaker switches tripped
- Signs of heat damage, including burning or melting, in your breaker panel
- Dead or inactive phone or data cables and connections
If you spot any of these signs, then you should absolutely make sure you call a professional for an inspection before plugging anything in or attempting you use your electricity again. A surge can cause immense damage to your electrical system and make your electricity unsafe to use in any capacity. You may need significant repairs before your electrical system is safe to use again.
Preventing a Power Surge
If you want to prevent a power surge in the future, we strongly advise outfitting your home with a whole-home surge protector. These devices are somewhat like a large circuit breaker for your entire home—when too much voltage or current flows through them, they trip and shut off, disconnecting your electrical network and preventing potentially immense or irreparable damage to your home.
If your home has been impacted by the recent storms, call ElectricMan and let our Dallas electricians come to you for an inspection as soon as possible. Schedule yours by calling (972) 362-1804 today.