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Can A Power Surge Damage My Phone? (Explained)

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Last updated on August 14th, 2022 at 01:27 pm

A power surge occurs when a significant amount of extra-than-usual voltage passes through wires to devices. 

The effects of power surges can be either high or low and can destroy a device or reduce its performance.

A power surge is very capable of damaging your phone. During charging, power surges can harm your phone. This is most common when you don’t use the charger recommended by the manufacturers. Nevertheless, using the wrong chargers is not the only cause of power surges. Another widespread cause is thunder lightning.

Can A Power Surge Damage iPhone?

It is safe to say that a power surge will “fry” an iPhone’s capacitor. This occurs primarily because of the device’s vulnerability.

Although there are built-in-fuses in iPhones, these are not so effective when high voltages come into the picture.

When there is a power surge, the power management IC of your iPhone can be damaged and some components ruined.

iPhone manufacturers and specialists have often said that you can fix damages caused by a power surge.

But how good will the device remain afterward? Unfortunately, iPhones are the most vulnerable to power surges again because of the number of counterfeit chargers.

A good number of terribly designed iPhone chargers are now sold all over the electronics market.

This is why it is advised you only use the charger that came directly with your iPhone.

Is It Bad If Your Phone Is Plugged In When The Power Goes out?

Even though it is not very advisable to leave your phone plugged in after the electricity goes out, it has little or no effect.

Gone are when people had to worry about their phones going bad from a power outage. But, unfortunately, power outages have become very common in some parts of the world today.

Sometimes, the phones are not even fully charged before the power goes out. A power outage to a charging device is a short circuit that breaks the electricity inflow.

This can be safely equated to when you unplug your charger from your phone. There is no effect on the device when the power goes out completely.

Note: a power outage is different from a power surge.

Can You Fix Electronics After Power Surge?

Yes. You can fix electronic devices after a power surge. Whether or not you can fix a device after a power surge is dependent mainly on certain factors.

These factors include:

#1. The device’s made:

The made of a device affects how repairable it will be after a power surge. Some devices have fragile parts, and one power surge can ruin them, especially if the voltage comes in higher. For example, the device’s motherboard can fry up.

#2. Vulnerability:

Vulnerable devices are prone to damages from power surges. Some of these devices are fragile, and one power surge can ruin a lot, e.g., an iPhone.

When a vulnerable device gets damaged by a power surge, sometimes it goes beyond repair. Other times, it is repairable, as the case may be.

#3. How often the power surges happen:

Another factor affecting how repairable a device is after a power surge is how often it happens. If the device’s power surges are very regular, they will be damaged.

The repair might become a problem when it occurs thrice or four times before the device shuts down. But this doesn’t mean you cannot fix the device at all.

#4. Availability of spare parts that were damaged:

This is a crucial issue when fixing devices damaged by power surges. Even if you can fix the device by replacing some parts, it becomes a problem when there are no spare parts.

This happens when the phone or device is a new or really old product. When it is a new product, likely, the spare parts are not yet in the market.

This is to avoid property piracy. And when it is an old product, the components might be hard to get in the market due to scarcity.

#5. A good Technician:

A good technician is the most important for fixing a device damaged by a power surge. Expertise is a thing of high importance.

You are most likely to spend less when you get a repairman who knows what to do. However, spending less doesn’t mean you cannot do the job well.

What Are The Signs Of A Power Surge?

Signs of a power surge about to occur or already occurring includes :

  • The clock of the device or the lights start flashing.
  • The device that is plugged in goes off or stops working completely.
  • The burnt or acrid smell is perceived from the power source or the device.
  • The surge protector and its power strip will require resetting.

When you notice any of these mentioned above, you’re certain there is a power surge.

However, contrary to general knowledge, thunder and lightning cause power surges. The truth is, these days, lightning is rarely the cause of power surges as most houses have protections.

These different forms of protection against lighting are placed on rooftops. This means that many other things cause these power surges.

They include:

  • Faulty wiring: faulty wiring can result in power surges. Power surges become common when there is a wrong flow of electricity through the wrong wires.

Besides ruining devices, power surges caused by faulty wiring can also cause a fire.

  • Electrical overload: an electrical overload happens when you draw too much power from a circuit.
  • Power outage/blackouts: frequent blackouts can also lead to power surges. These power surges are rare, especially if the building is wired correctly.

However, a cause is a cause.


Power surges damage phones and other small or large electrical appliances all the time. It is not unheard of.

However, these damages are entirely fixable most of the time, depending on gravity. Therefore, even though these damages are curable, it is better to avoid them.

To do this, you can take simple precaution measures. Measures like charging with suitable chargers and ensuring the buildings are wired correctly by a professional.


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