Ways to Protect the Home From Dangerous Power Surges

How a Whole House Surge Protector Shields the Home

Most people think of a power surge as coming from a lightning strike. And while this can be the cause, it’s not what homeowners should be worried about. Power surges often come through the power lines and travel through the house, destroying electronics as they go. The causes can range from a downed power line, fluctuating electrical demand on the local grid, faulty or old wiring, and even the cycling of appliances inside the house. These causes, plus the cost of not having surge protection for the whole house, are why one should prepare every home with a whole-home surge protector.

What Power Surges Can Do

dangers of power surgesPower surges can wreak havoc on a home’s electronics. And in an age where homes seem to accumulate more gadgets every year, the cost of not having protection increases all the time. A strong enough power surge can travel through the house faster than a heartbeat, frying all the expensive appliances plugged into the walls. This includes refrigerators, dishwashers, ovens, computers, televisions, gaming systems, and even the HVAC system.

Not only do homeowners need to consider the cost of replacing all those appliances, but also the cost of losing things that aren’t replaceable. Things like family photos, business records, videos, or anything else stored on local computers can be gone instantly. While cloud storage can help, many homeowners underestimate how much information they have stored on the hard drive of their computers.

Whole House Surge Protector Benefits

surge protectors Luckily, installing a whole house surge protector can prevent a power surge from wreaking havoc on the home’s electronics. These surge protectors are wired directly into the home’s electrical system, acting as a filter that keeps the surge from moving through the house. Doing this protects the sensitive circuitry in the home’s appliances.

Whole house surge protectors can also guard against surges inside the home. These are short transient surges caused when home appliances like HVAC systems turn on and off. These kinds of surges won’t cause damage immediately, but they can cause premature wear on electrical devices, causing them to need replacing sooner than they otherwise would.

Signs an Old Surge Protector Needs Replacing

Whole-house surge protectors aren’t expensive and are easily installed by a professional electrical technician. With this in mind, homeowners should replace their whole home surge protector every two to five years to stay protected. Given the low cost of these protectors, whole home surge protector replacement is a small investment compared to replacing all the appliances.

However, one should sometimes replace an old surge protector earlier than the two-to-five-year window. If there have been recent power surges or outages in the area, replacing the whole house surge protector is a good idea. Likewise, if the house has been struck by lightning or there has been significant construction in the area. Those who aren’t sure whether they need whole home surge protection repair should call a local electrician to discuss their options!

About Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning

Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning has served Sun Prairie, WI, for almost four decades. They provide one-day installation and 24-hour emergency service. Their technicians are clean, courteous, and undergo rigorous background checks. Contact them today for whole house surge protector installation in Sun Prairie, WI!

All Things Refrigerant

A common misconception with air conditioners is that the coolant gets used up and eventually needs to be replaced over time. However, unless there is a leak, the amount of refrigerant circulating through the system stays the same. The refrigerant in an air conditioner is crucial to carry out heat exchange. It shifts between liquid and a gaseous state to absorb heat from inside the home and then release it outdoors. It never dissipates during this process, remaining at the same amount throughout the closed-loop system.

In this article, you’ll learn more about refrigerants within an air conditioner, some common problems people run into, and how to remedy those problems.

What are some signs of an air conditioner leak?

Refrigerant is a key component to making an air conditioner work properly during the hot summer months when you want cold air the most. If you’ve ever found yourself asking any of the following questions, you might want to contact your HVAC professional to take a closer look at your system.

Why isn’t my air conditioner distributing cold air?

why isn't the air coldIf your air conditioner isn’t distributing cold air, check the vents in several different rooms to see if they are blowing cold air. This is often the most obvious and easiest way to detect if you have a possible refrigerant leak. If the air is warm or just mildly cooled, this could be a sign you have a refrigerant leak.

Why is my electric bill so high?

A skyrocketing electric bill could indicate that you have a refrigerant leak. When a cooling system loses refrigerant, it causes the air conditioner to work harder. Therefore the electric bill is going to be considerably higher. Sure, everyone expects the electric bill to go up when the air conditioner is running in the summer. But if your bill is significantly higher than what you were paying last year at the same time, there is probably something not functioning properly. It could be something as simple as changing the filters or something more pressing like a refrigerant leak.

Why is my air conditioner's cooling cycle lasting forever?

If you’re finding the air conditioning unit’s cycle seems to last forever, there is a possibility of your AC unit leaking refrigerant. When there is a leak, the air conditioner needs to run for longer periods to do the same job. This increases the amount of energy your system uses to produce cold air. A harder working air conditioner is not a good thing for the owner.

What is that hissing/gurgling noise?

You might have a leak if you’re standing by your air conditioner unit and hear a hissing or gurgling noise. An air conditioner refrigerant leak is caused by holes or cracks in the coils that circulate the refrigerant. Even though several problems could cause this, a leak is definitely among them. If the system has a larger leak, it can result in a gurgling noise.

Why is there ice on the evaporator coils?

why is there iceIf the refrigerant levels flowing through the evaporator coils are insufficient, it won’t draw heat properly, resulting in condensation forming outside the coils and freezing. This could result in costly repairs.

Should I replace or fix my leaking AC?

This is a question that has plagued homeowners for decades. The first thing to consider is the age of your system. In 2010 the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned the sale of air conditioners using R22 Freon. If you have a system manufactured before 2010, there is a good chance it is filled with the R22 refrigerant. Don’t worry. This doesn’t mean that the unit needs to be replaced. However, it does mean that if it has a refrigerant leak, it might be worth considering replacing the unit instead of repairing it. For starters, R22 Freon can no longer be manufactured in the U.S., so the supply is dwindling and becoming more expensive to acquire. Not only is the price skyrocketing, but the unit is also starting to get up there in age, being manufactured before 2010, and will most likely have more issues soon. Air conditioning units have come a long way since 2010, so replacing your old system with a new high-efficiency unit will most likely save money in the long run. Also, repairing a leak can run up to $2,000 dollars depending on where the leak is and if an entire component needs to be replaced, which is an expense you might want to spend on replacement instead of repair.

How do HVAC professionals find leaks in my system?

how they find leaksA professional will utilize several different ways to detect a refrigerant leak in your HVAC system. The first and most common way to test for a refrigerant leak is to use an electronic leak detector. This is one of the most popular methods due to the high degree of accuracy that well-calibrated devices deliver.

The second way is to introduce a specially formulated dye into your closed-loop system. After giving the dye approximately two weeks to work its way throughout the system, the technician can then see where the leaks are coming from using ultraviolet light.

Lastly, there is nitrogen leak detection. The technician will remove all the refrigerant from the air conditioner and introduce nitrogen gas to the lines in this test. Since nitrogen gas is under higher pressure, it will make an audible hissing noise if any leaks are present.

Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning

Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning is a full-service contractor that provides services from HVAC and air quality to electrical and plumbing. Having been in business for over 38 years, their team of experts offers top-notch solutions, 24-hour emergency response, and absolute professionalism for every one of their customers. If your air conditioner isn’t keeping you cool, let the experts at Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning take a look at it.

Who Should You Call for Sewer Line Repair in Sun Prairie, WI?

Finding the Right Sewer Line Leak Repair Company 

Most sewer line repair problems come with a sense of urgency. When a plumbing emergency happens, there is no time to waste, and unfortunately, too much time gets wasted with inaction. Instead, homeowners should prepare for problems by taking advice from professionals beforehand. Here is a quick guide for finding the right company for sewer line repairs that can save valuable time when the worst happens. 

Is a Professional Sewer Line Repair Service Necessary?


For most people, the simple answer is “yes.” However, stubborn people are always reluctant to hire help for anything. The main question should be: what are the ifs to working on underground piping full of human waste? If that’s not enough to convince you to hire an insured sewer line repair company, what is?

Sewer line repairs can take a variety of forms. In some cases, a quick drain cleaning service may be all that is needed. In extreme cases, repiping will be necessary. In these scenarios and any in between, many things can go wrong. When homeowners don’t hire professional help, they take an incredible risk by assuming liability for any complications. 

Instead, homeowners should hire professionals that are properly trained and insured. This will ensure that the job is completed safely and quickly, and no homeowner will have to risk coming into contact with human waste. 

Take Time to Research


One of the best features of the internet is that there is information to be found about nearly anything. This is extremely helpful for researching a potential sewer line repair service. Reviews are a goldmine of information about a possible sewer line repair contractor. 

Reading reviews from multiple sources gives consumers a peek behind the scenes of a company. Usually, there will be a range of positive and negative reviews, and both carry an equal amount of helpful information. On many platforms, companies can even respond to negative reviews. This information can paint an accurate picture of what a homeowner should expect if they hire that company. 

Ask Lots of Questions!

Many things can go wrong with a sewer, so that means there are many options for sewer line repairs. Since most sewer line repair needs start with a clog in the sewer line, the question can be boiled down to a few things:

  • What is the cause of the clog?
  • What are temporary solutions to restore service?
  • Are there long-term solutions that will be better?

Clogs can be caused by anything from tree roots to corroded sewer lines. In some cases, a drain auger or hydrojetting can solve sewer line problems. If a sewer line leak is present, the solution will revolve around repiping the sewer line or fixing the wrong section. 

Different companies may have slightly different approaches. Be sure to inquire about how each potential company wants to proceed and then hire the company that has the best combination of affordability and a permanent solution to the sewer line problem. 

About Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning

Cardinal Heating & Air Conditioning has nearly 40 years of serving customers in Sun Prairie, WI, and the surrounding areas. Their licensed technicians are always available to provide affordable and cost-effective solutions to any plumbing problems. Call today for the highest-rated plumbing services in Sun Prairie, WI