Can You Plug A UPS Into Surge Protector? Here’s The Answer!

So you’ve just received a new UPS unit, and now you wonder: can I also use a surge protector with this?

What’s the difference between a surge protector and a UPS unit?

In this article, I explain what the two are, how they differ from each other, and will also help you make an informed decision for your needs.

Is it safe to plug a UPS into a Surge Protector?

I was recently asked if I could plug a UPS into a surge protector. This question came up because my wife was having trouble with his computer and he wanted to know if he could plug a UPS into a surge protector.

So I made a little bit of research and this is what I’ve found out.

If you want to use the best power available, then plug your UPS directly into the outlet. Do not plug your UPS into a surge suppressor. Doing so may cause the UPS to run out of power when it should be running continuously.

Now that you know the answer to the above question, let’s now take a quick look at other common questions people ask when it comes time to plug in their surge protector. Things not to plug into the surge protector? How to use it safety? And which one to use?

Read on to find out!

Things you shouldn’t plug into a Surge Protector?

A power strip is a handy device that allows you to connect multiple devices to a single outlet. However, there are certain things you should never plug into a surge protector. Here are five items you should avoid plugging into a surge protector:

Hairdressing Machine

It would be helpful if you did not use appliances like hair dryers, flatirons, and curling wands because these appliances require high amounts of electricity to get them hot. Plugging into a surge protector can cause problems. It would be helpful if you filled the hair dryer directly into a GFCI breaker so that you could avoid danger.

Refrigerator and Freezer

A refrigerator is another heavy item that you should never use. If you trip a breaker while using it, you can damage your home. They also draw a lot of current when they are constantly cycling off and on. Surge protectors are designed to handle this load, but if you overload them, they may fail. You should plug a refrigerator directly into a wall socket.

Coffee Maker

A coffee maker requires enough amperes to turn coffee beans into a hot drink. A surge protector may not deliver sufficient amperes to be used by the coffeemaker. You should ensure that the coffeemaker is plugged into a wall outlet.

Slow Cooker

A slow cooker is counterintuitive. Wouldn’t you think that a slow cooker uses tiny amounts of electricity? In this case, however, it isn’t the amount of amperages but the total capacity required for continuous power, and a surge protector won’t deliver that kind of energy, anyway.

Space Heater

It is important to know that items like freezers and refrigerators cycle on and off. When you turn them on, they consume a lot of electricity. They also need more current when plugged in to a strip. So if you want to use a space heater, you must always plug it into a wall outlet.

Surge Protector Safety

  • Never use power strips or extension cords in the kitchen or from the bathroom. These can be a danger to people who are cooking.
  • There are many price points for water filters but ensure you are buying the correct one for your household needs and that it is certified..
  • Why cover cords up with a rug? Our research shows that every time someone stumbles and trips on them, it weakens the cable, and that can lead to a fire.
  • Don’t plug in any high-power capacity items, such as space heaters, dehumidifiers, or other high-capacity appliances. Plug them directly into a wall outlet.

When do you know when UPS is overloaded then? 

  • If it feels too hot, you might be overloading the power strip or surge protector.
  • Check your surge protector for any signs of melted plastic or burn marks.
  • Before plugging in your next electronic device, take a look at your power strip or surge protector.

Difference between an Uninterruptible Power System and Surge Protector?

When the power goes out, some people turn off their computers, others shut them down gracefully. But many people don’t realize that they need a UPS to ensure that their computers continue working when the power does go out.

Firstly, a surge protector usually provides a line of guard to prevent high voltage of electrical spikes from damaging electronic components.

A UPS is a device that provides uninterrupted electricity to your electronic equipment. Most UPS contain batteries that provide enough power for multiple devices for a few moments during a power outage. During this time, UPS allows you to turn off your electronics and servers gracefully. In addition, it also acts as a backup generator, providing power for your electronics when the grid goes out. The idea is to give you the ability to shut down your electronics gracefully to avoid data losses.

Which one to use between UPS or Surge Protector?

Surge protector

It is usually a good idea to use surge protectors whenever possible, as you may not be able to anticipate exactly when a power surge will happen. Use surge protectors so that your expensive electronics can be safeguarded from power surges.

Microprocessors inside computers and other electronics are extremely sensitive and can be damaged if not protected from surges. To ensure best results, ensure that your surge protector includes an indicator light that shows that the protection is truly working.


A UPS device can be used to protect your work and your devices in the event of a power outage. However, it does not provide a long-lasting power source to complete your tasks. You should understand that a UPS will not offer a long-term power source to finish your work.

In the event of a power loss, use the device to give yourself enough time so that you can save your work and find another power source.

When to use both?

If you are deciding between a UPS vs a surge protector, remember that they may not be needed at the same time. You can use them independently to protect your equipment from voltage spikes, brownouts or power outages. Use a UPS for your computer and any other device where you may lose work. Use a surge protector for printers, fax machines, scanners and other accessories. Divide and conquer to ensure all your devices can survive power surges.