For anyone who owns valuable electronics, surge protectors are essential. Because if an electrical incident occurs, you don’t want to have to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars replacing your stuff. In some circumstances, a surge protector is your only line of defense against that kind of outcome.
Wall mounted surge protectors are essentially the same as surge protectors with cords. Their main difference is easy to spot, wall mounted surge protectors are plugged straight a wall socket. It’s great for saving space, and great for reducing clutter.
Some people might not think of the cord attached to a surge protector as being clutter, and that’s understandable. But if you don’t actually need to use a surge protector’s cord to extend your sockets to a new area, getting rid of that cable make things look much cleaner.
Finding the Right Wall Mounted Surge Protector
How do you pick a good wall mounted surge protector? It’s actually pretty simple, if you follow some basic steps. You’ll want to think about how many ports you need, the level of protection you want, and the safety standards involved with the device you select.
Number of Ports
Do you need six ports? Eight ports? Twelve ports? There are a number of different options out there for people who have to go beyond the limits of an ordinary two-socket wall outlet. But it’s important you select the right number of ports because for safety reasons, you don’t want to daisy-chain your surge protector with other surge protectors. Whatever number of ports you end up with, that will be the total number available to you for the entire lifespan of the device.
Different surge protectors are built to different standards. Are you trying to protect a lamp? Then you probably don’t need anything more than a basic protector capable of handling smaller incidents. Going with a massive surge protector, like something intended for a desktop PC, would be a waste. Conversely, you’d want to use a powerful surge protector when it’s running your TV, stereo system, or PC.
An absorption rating indicates the amount of voltage a wall mounted surge protector can absorb before the device finally fails. When that happens, you’ll typically get some kind of visual indication that the surge protector is no longer functional. Usually that occurs in the form of a colored LED.
You want at least 600 joules of coverage, and more is better. For voltage, look around 400V or less. Lower is better for voltage because it determines how much current is necessary to trigger the surge protector’s intervention.
Each of the outlets listed below follow these standards, so you don’t have to memorize them. But you generally want to keep an eye out for UL 1449 standard, which indicates the surge protector will actually do the things it claims it can do.
Belkin 6-Outlet Pivot-Plug Wall Mount Power Strip Surge Protector
The Belkin 6-Outlet Pivot-Plug Wall Mount Surge Protector can protect your electronics from a total of 1080 Joules, and it offers noise filtration between the 150kHz and 100MHz range. Basically, that means you’re protected from almost every kind of electrical disaster scenario you might be able to imagine.
Installing this mounted surge protector is terribly easy, too. You basically just plug it into a wall outlet, and then screw it into position. Though if you plug it into a wall outlet with two spaces, you will almost unavoidably block both spaces. So you’re really trading two spaces for six.
Build & Design
The Belkin Pivot Plug measures 3.1 x 6.8 x 5.3 inches, and weighs about a pound. Its gray chassis is characteristic of the Belkin brand, and its reasonably smart design is as well. For instance, the weight of this device is well centered so you don’t have to worry about it slipping out of the wall. But you have to worry even less after you’ve done a screwed installation.
The casing is primarily made from ABS plastic, which makes it pretty durable and impact resistant. It’s also well-protected from the kind of damage that might accrue over time, like rust. Likewise, the design was made specifically to help prevent electrical disasters. It’s also made to prevent electrical fires, which can happen when a surge strikes certain components of a PC.
Along the chassis, you’ll find six electrical plugs. Those plugs can be swiveled outward about 45-degrees, such that it’s much easier to connect your devices from different angles. The space-saving design of this surge protector also ensures you don’t need to leave a bunch of stuff laying on your floor. Because this adapter an accommodate larger power bricks without blocking other outlets.
Towards the top center of the protector, there are two large colored LEDs. The green LED indicates that everything is grounded. Most of the time, you’ll see that green LED glowing. If you ever see the red LED, that indicates the protector has worked. It saved your stuff from a horrible disaster, but it’s no longer functional and needs to be replaced.
Like most surge protectors that are worth their salt, the Belkin 6-Outlet Plug comes with a lifetime warranty. But many people get confused about Belkin’s warranty. After all, a lifetime warranty sounds like a pretty sweet deal, right?
You see, surge protectors are basically disposable devices. If all goes well, they can easily last for decades. In fact, they might never have to actually protect you from anything. But if a huge electrical surge comes through, the surge protector is likely going to die trying to save your stuff. That’s what it’s designed to do. That’s what happens when it’s hit by an enormous amount of current.
To the confusion of many people, if a surge happens and your protector is destroyed, lifetime warranties do not cover the destroyed protector. That’s a bit like wiping your face with a napkin, and then returning it to the store because you can’t use it again. What the warranty does cover is defects in the product.
APC 6-Outlet Wall Surge Protector with USB Charging Ports
APC doesn’t have the same name recognition as Belkin. But the brand has actually been around for about 30 years, and they’re capable of making quite a few decent electronics. In this case, their electrical protection could be called best in class.
It even stands head-to-head with Belkin’s wall mounted surge protectors, and offers the same surge energy defense from 1080 joules. If you’re trying to protect a home computer, television, or stereo equipment, that’s about the level of protection that you’ll need.
Build & Design
The APC 6-Outlet Wall Surge Protector is actually a mixture of AC ports and USB ports. On the front side you’ll find a pair of 2.4A USB ports, ready to help recharge your devices in a pretty quick fashion. On the left and right side of the device, there are AC ports. Three AC ports on each side, with those ports widely spaced, so it’s easy to connect large power adapters.
Unlike Belkin’s gray chassis, here you’ll find a light beige color. This surge protector measures 5.51 x 1.5 x 4.02 inches, and weighs only half a pound. Like you’d hope, it can be plugged directly into the wall for a very simple installation. If you’re looking for something a little more permanent, it’s also possible to screw the box into position. Just locate the screw hole at the center of the device, remove a screw from your wall outlet’s faceplate, and make the connection.
The front side features a red and green LED. You may be able to guess correctly that it provides you with status information about the device. When the green light is up, every device on the network is protected. When the red light is up, it means the protector has been burned, and it needs to be replaced. In other words, it did its job.
Though the installation is simple, be careful anytime you’re working around anything like electricity. Even with something as trivial as installing a surge protector, it doesn’t hurt to throw your breaker before touching anything. But just as a precaution. All APC surge products are submitted for IEEE testing to comply with international standards for protecting electronics.
Interestingly, the APC 6-Outlet Wall Surge Protector is also available in a variety that has a telephone port, or a digital AC timer. And as with the other surge protectors on this list, this one includes a lifetime warranty.
CyberPower CSP600WSU Surge Protector
The CyberPower CSP600WSU Surge Protector is capable of handling 1200J and 125V, making it the toughest mounted surge protected on this list. Similar to the APC protector, the CSP600WSU offers six AC outlets and two USB ports. Along with a friendly wall-tap design that lets you connect the protector directly to an outlet, it’s pretty easy to gain 8 new outlets in about 8 seconds of install time.
Build & Design
The all black chassis measures 5.6 x 3.9 x 2.2 inches, and is primarily made from ABS plastic. On both the right and left side, you’ll find a rotating column of AC ports, with a total of three ports per column. Those ports can swivel freely in a 45-degree radius. When plugging in things, that makes it pretty easy to connect your electronics at different angles. You might find it especially useful for devices with lengthy cords that tend to be moved a lot, like vacuum cords.
The front side is decorated with two LEDs. The top light indicates your devices are protected from surges, the second indicates everything is grounded. When these lights stay green, you’re in good shape. If they swap over to red, or aren’t on at all, then you’ve got a problem on your hands.
Speaking of problems, the USB charging ports only provide 2.1A. Worse still, that 2.1A is actually shared between both ports. Meaning if you connect a device onto both USB ports, those devices will be getting about 1A each. Though it doesn’t include a bunch of extras, it does include a mounting screw, and a lifetime warranty from CyberPower.
Choosing the Best Wall Mounted Surge Protector
The Belkin 6-Outlet Pivot-Plug Wall Mount Power Strip Surge Protector covers 1080 Joules. That’s enough for most home theaters, entertainment PCs, and similar setups. The AC sockets on this protector are ridiculously adjustable, allowing you to connect devices at a number of different angles. Depending on where your cords are running, that can be terribly convenient for cable management. Which makes the Belkin adapter the right choice for someone who couldn’t care less about having built in USB ports, but does care about adaptable plugs.
Similarly, the APC 6-Outlet Wall Surge Protector with USB Charging Ports provides protection for 1080 joules. The one thing this surge protector lacks is adjustability. The AC sockets are all in fixed positions on the chassis, and they can’t be extended or adjusted. But it has a pair of USB ports, which the Belkin protector does not have. And those USB sockets provide 2.4A for rapid recharging, regardless of how many devices get plugged in.
The CyberPower CSP600WSU Surge Protector has two USB ports as well. But USB charging speeds drop-off after you plug in two devices. If that isn’t a barrier for you, then you’ll find the CSP600WSU is just as adjustable as the Belkin 6-Pin Outlet. Except it’s capable of taking on nearly 20% more current before breaking. For people who have high-powered systems, the CyberPower CSP600WSU is probably your best bet.