|By Cassie Burton, Herald & Review, Decatur, Ill.|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
However, many don't consider what effects the heat could have on the inanimate aspects of a household, specifically, air conditioning and television.
In an April survey conducted by Harris Poll, 44 percent of homeowners said they had experienced a brownout in the past year, and only 17 percent of homeowners protected their air conditioning, heating and furnace units.
The poll was conducted for
Higher incidence of repair or replacement for air conditioning units subsequently occur during the summer months.
"Even if the effects are not immediate (referring to effects of brownouts), the excessive heat can deteriorate the chemical makeup of the refrigerant in your air conditioner and reduce the
An indicator of a brownout is when lights flicker or dim momentarily during a storm. Brownouts can be more dangerous than blackouts, which are total losses of electrical power.
As temperatures heat up, consumers have options to protect their homes. If a consumer is home during a brownout, King Lar's
"If it gets hit with lightning, whether it's running or not running, there's nothing you can do about that," White said. "We deal with a lot of home insurance companies, and depending on your deductible, most customers have pretty good luck (on an affordable replacement)."
While air conditioning units are often the electronic appliances most at risk, other major appliances, such as televisions, should not be overlooked.
Different plugs and protectors can prevent a television from sustaining long-term damage similar to that of air conditioning unit, and costs can vary.
"Typically, what hurts televisions the most is when the power comes back on after a brownout," Warner said. "The backup power supply bar is a little more expensive than a plug bar or surge protector, but they have power backing so if power goes out, the stuff connected to it stays on long enough to turn off."
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