Keep all your favorite devices powered with the selection of power strips, surge protectors and extension cords from Ace Hardware. Find indoor and outdoor extension cords and power strips to charge and protect your electronics. Learn the difference between surge protectors, extension cords and power strips to make the best decision for you.
Surge Protectors vs. Extension Cords vs. Power Strips
Before choosing a new extension cord, surge protector or power strip, make sure you opt for the right solution to safely power on your devices and to accommodate the location where you plan on using them. To help you narrow down your decision, understand the basic differences between surge protectors, power strips and extension cords:
What are Surge Protectors?
While surge protectors and power strips look similar, not all power strips offer surge protection. A surge protector is designed to keep important devices, like televisions, cell phones, laptops and other equipment, protected against voltage spikes that could cause significant damage.
Like power strips, surge protectors plug into wall outlets and provide outlets for multiple devices. Unlike power strips, surge protector outlets also have special features that offer more protection than basic power strips or wall outlet connections.
What are Power Strips?
Power strips are designed to distribute power to various electrical devices. They're basically extension cords with multiple outlets that allow you to quickly plug in several devices simultaneously. Many models feature an on/off switch that makes it easy to power on all connected devices.
Power strip extension cords come with indoor or outdoor ratings. Indoor power strips may be an ideal choice for devices such as appliances, audio and video equipment, lighting and power tools. Outdoor power strips are typically designed for outdoor use in covered or partially covered spaces like decks, patios, garages and gazebos. Since outdoor power strips aren't completely waterproof, they should never be used in open spaces outdoors where water or moisture could be a factor.
What are Extension Cords
While power strips and extension cords are similar in design and function, the main differences between the two lies in their purpose. Power strips are usually composed of several electrical sockets with a cable and an electrical plug at the end. Indoor and outdoor power strips are designed to power up multiple devices within close proximity to each other.
On the other hand, indoor and outdoor extension cords have longer cables with at least one socket on one end and an electrical plug on the other. The primary purpose of extension cords is to extend access to power to a distant electrical device. If you opt for a longer extension cord, a good retractable extension cord reel will provide the fastest and simplest way to organize and store your extension cord.
Indoor extension cords are generally used for electrical devices like lamps or small household appliances while heavy-duty extension cords may be more useful for greater lengths and higher voltage and amperage requirements. Heavy-duty extension cords may provide increased protection from environmental conditions, too.
Shop for Surge Protectors, Extension Cords and Power Strips
Find an impressive variety of surge protectors, extension cords and power strips for indoor and outdoor applications at Ace Hardware. We carry the best assortment of electrical power cords and accessories to keep your devices charged and ready to go.