Building my last home
Surge protectors only work when properly applied. The IEEE discusses 3 zones of protection. For the surge devices to work you must protect 2 of the 3 zones. One at the service and one at the point of use. Even if sized appropriately they are still just better than nothing. Sorry no guarantees here. Yes I have them on my service and on my point of use devices that I want to protect. Do not forget the garage door opener. The mother board on mine was more than the cost of a new one.Thanks. 11,400! What! That's outrageous. I believe you but it's hard to believe but you can just hear the ac when it goes on pulling electricity, and that's why it has a separate canister capacitor.
I have the space to install the interlock and a surge protector. I've done a lot of electrical, very comfortable. I've never installed an interlock but I've read and understand. I have a pushamatic with a Siemens in a box in my garage, waiting. I want to install a surge protector. I know nothing other than it's necessary for power surges adding to the longevity of the house electronics. I'll have to read up on those before I install the box this spring, after the heating season, and before the air conditioning season.
Something to consider about your generator. What was it designed to do? Was it intended for house backup or was it intended as a portable unit. Units less than 15 hp USUALLY use rpm's to manage production of the cycles, current and voltage. Meaning if it is idling the production of power may not be the best for electronics. Motors will not care.
Running a generator under a load does two things, one they get noisy, second they consume a lot of fuel. More than you might realize. I have a 6500 old dog Onan that can and does power my stuff. Under a load I can go through 10 gallons of gas a day. One of the reasons the Onan's are usually attached to the motor coaches gas tank. If your power goes out as much as I interpretation then you need a bigger machine and you need propane or diesel for fuel. The other thing is with air cooled machines the engine noise is more than the exhaust noise. Little can be done about that. If you build a box for the genny then you may be starving it of air which it needs to keep cool.
Please check with local experts before you go out and spend money on electrical equipment that can kill. Generators when impropertly installed can and have killed linemen working to repair the lines. Electricity does not care which direction it travels.