Power or voltage surges are very short periods of high voltage that happen in the blink of an eye. An extremely high voltage surge can damage major appliance motors and totally destroy sensitive electronic equipment.
While you can buy an inexpensive surge protector, I recommend getting one of the more expensive models which usually carry a warranty, in case they fail due to lightning. Also, make sure to get a protector that has phone jacks to protect equipment such as fax machines, and computers.
You can also have a professional install a surge protection device at your home’s breaker box to stop the surge BEFORE it enters the house. But even the most effective surge protectors give you no guarantee in the event of a direct lightning strike.The best way to prevent damage during a storm is to simply unplug devices that could be damaged beyond repair.