Here's the situation. First thing this morning, 3 of us happened to be in the same room, getting ready for the day. All-of-the-sudden, there was a loud POP. Loud enough to startle 3 people. My wife described it as a single, loud hand clap. I immediately thought electrical. I was talking and had an earbud in one ear, so I wasn't exactly sure from whence it came, but my wife said it came from near me (why she thought it was a human clap) and my daughter heard it from behind her, where I was.
Near me is one electrical outlet which has my Belkin 8-outlet, electronics surge protector. (I wanna say it was $50-$80 - not a super-cheapie like a crummy power strip). In it were plugged 2 laptops, a small lamp w/75-watt equivalent CFL (maybe 18 watts?), and an iPhone power cord (no phone).
One of the laptops is currently failing in different ways. It was kinda one of my suspects, but if that noise came out of the laptop, I doubt I could be uploading this post from it now.
I've had CFL's pop, but that usually results in the light burning out or failing in some way. The light is fine.
I immediately went into detective mode. Here's the mystery.
Nothing tripped, flickered or did anything abnormal.
There was zero smell from any of the items plugged in, nor from any of the outlets, which is often reported with a 'pop'.
I checked all of the outlets with a 3-prong, plug-in circuit tester (2 on the wall outlet and all 8 on the surge protector) and all came back fine. I don't know if the circuit tester would show an error or not, but I figured if something burned up, it might show a bad circuit.
Maybe this happens more often when we're not around but we all caught it because we happened to be in the room. Who knows? But it freaked us all out and I've spent 2 hours researching.
I'm handy enough to install and upgrade simple circuits but don't mess around with breaker panels or anything that gets much beyond lights, outlets and 'regular' circuits. For the heck of it, I'm going to replace the wall outlet and buy a different surge protector.
Any thoughts are appreciated.