Surge protectors. Everyone needs them, but picking one can be a hassle. Instead of grabbing the first one you see at your local supermarket, why not spend a little time and pick the best one? These are your treasured electronics and office equipment that you’re protecting! We’re here to make it easy with the top protectors for every purpose.
With many years of experience working with outlets and plug-in solutions, it’s no surprise that Belkin got to the top of our list (as well as winning the most unpronounceable surge protector name). This 12-outlet surge protector is a great professional piece with multiple options for cord length, sliding safety covers, and a 3,940 Joule energy rating that’s high enough to protect even the largest office equipment. There’s detachable cord clips to route all your cords through for better organization.
The cherry on top is the price – while the MSRP is $50, you can easily find this protector for around $20 these days, so it’s not going to be a major expense.
Tripp Lite 10-Outlet ($34)
Tripp’s contribution is a “home and office” surge protector suitable for all sorts of different electronic setups. It has handy LED diagnostic lights to warn of outlet status and a built-in splitter that can turn one RJ11 jack into two for a modem, fax (hey, some people still use them), or telephone/DSL line. Four of the outlets are spaced widely apart to fit more awkward adapter plugs, a feature we particularly liked.
There’s no choices for cord length here – you are stuck with the average 8-foot cord – but you can choose a version that comes with gold coaxial connectors, which can be used to help protect and coax TV connections you may be using in your home.
This Belkin model offers a wall mount option for those set-ups where you neither need nor want a surge protector that lies on the floor and gets in the way. Plug this model into a wall outlet and it provides 6 separate, protected outlets for you to use, each with a 1045 Joule rating – enough for most average electronic devices. While you really don’t want to use this with big appliances, it’s a great solution for garage worktables, kitchens, home offices, and so on.
Bestek’s entry-level model is an 8-outlet device that includes a very, very handy extra feature. The surge protector features four USB ports, also protected against electrical surges, for you to charge your smartphones, tablet computers, and other mobile devices without you having to worry about them. As long as you can find a place near enough to your desk to hook up your phone’s charging cable, this is a welcome and probably overdue feature. The protector also offers EMI noise reduction, which is a fancy way of saying that the electrical current should remain steady for all connected devices.
Belkin Conserve Socket ($10)
If you are partly motivated by a desire to protect electronics, but very motivated by the idea of saving energy for your appliances, we highly recommend the Belkin Conserve Socket. True, there’s only one outlet, but it has a couple great energy-saving features. You can set three different timers for outdoor lights, office equipment, and other appliances that save your electrical bill if they get a little downtime. The outlet will also automatically shut off power if a device stays on too long – which is a good method for preventing electric fires and cutting back on unnecessary energy consumption.
Chances are good you haven’t seen a surge protector like this before. With a choice between 6 and 8 outlets (we liked the 6-outlet model because of how much space it saved), this model has a vertical swivel feature that allows you to turn the two separate outlet columns in different directions. It’s a very effective solution if you have a weird electrical setup that requires a lot of cord/adapter space and could really use outlets pointed in all directions. The device is also rated for larger office equipment, so don’t worry about giving it big-boy appliances to take care of.
AmazonBasics 6-Outlet ($10)
Here it is — your ultra-simple, no frills, dependable surge protector. It’s small enough to fit into most spaces, has a 6-foot long cord, and that’s about it. The low price makes this an ideal buy if you need an array of protectors for a classroom or office. The rating is for 790 Joules, so you will want to keep it away from larger appliances, but otherwise, Amazon has a solid low-end model that gets the job done without any fuss.