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Pepco Recommends Surge Protection for Home Electronic Equipment

WASHINGTON - Pepco reminds customers to take the necessary steps to protect home electronic equipment from power surges.

A power surge is an increase in voltage significantly above the designated level in a flow of electricity. In normal household and office wiring, the standard voltage is 120 volts . If the voltage rises above 120 volts, the resulting surge could result in the loss of electronic equipment.

"A voltage surge is the most serious form of power interference, which can occur inside or outside a home, and can damage sensitive electronic equipment such as computers, printers, treadmills and other electronic devices," said Vincent Orange, Regional Vice President, Pepco Region.

Pepco encourages customers to invest in one or both of the following types of surge protection:

· Surge Suppressor - This surge protection device is a power strip that can handle up to 6,000 volts.

· Surge Arrester - This is installed in or near a home's main electric service panel and offers protection against voltage surges up to 20,000 volts (such as a lightning strike).

Pepco also warns against confusing a standard power strip with one that offers surge protection. "Both power strips and poorly made surge protectors can overheat during a surge and set electrical devices on fire," Orange said. "The surge suppressor and arrester will divert the short-lived electricity into the outlet's grounding wire," he added.

"For maximum protection, consumers should invest in suppressors and arresters, ensuring the voltage surge gets reduced enough to prevent the possible loss of home electronic equipment," Orange said. Electrical surge suppressors can be purchased at most hardware or home improvement stores; the complete house-surge arrester should be installed by a licensed electrician. Please note: neither a surge suppressor nor surge arrester guarantees protection from power surges in all instances.

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Pepco, a subsidiary of Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), delivers safe, reliable and affordable electric service to more than 750,000 customers in Maryland and the District of Columbia

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