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Re: [Shop-talk] Whole-house surge protection

Subject: Re: [Shop-talk] Whole-house surge protection
From: "John T. Blair" <>
Date: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:47:14 -0400
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At 09:49 AM 5/23/2013, you wrote:

 >A cow-orker with a new house asked me about whole-house surge 

 >I see you can purchase a similar device at the local big box for 
around $200....


 >In my neighborhood, all the utilities are underground.  In 17 
years, I've not
 >experienced anything that would require use of a whole-house device, despite
 >some really exciting electrical storms.  All of my electronics are 
plugged into
 >normal surge suppressors, but no problems with them or the larger 
things so far.

 >Any of you guys have any experience or advice concerning this sort of thing?


Like you said, "you're basically buying insurance, as they repair any 
damage due to
surges with this service".  So how luck do you feel.

In my neighborhood, our utilities are also run under ground and we 
don't seem to
have the problems with loosing power that the areas with above ground utilities

That being said, during where does the lightening go?  2 places cloud 
to cloud and
cloud to ground.  It's that ground problem that causes problems.  If you take a
strike close enough to an underground wire, it will induce some of 
it's energy into
the wire and you will have a surge.  In the 30 yrs that I've lived in 
this house,
we had only taken 2 lightening strike close enough to cause any 
damage.  The first
one was picked up by the underground power line.  We lost a couple of clock
radios, a cordless telephone base and some other inexpensive items.  However,
some of my neighbors were not that lucky. They lost TV, VCRs, etc.  Some had
over a couple thousand dollars of damage.

During another lightening storm, we took a strike to the back 
yard.  But the energy
was picked up by the wires connecting my dvd player to my TV and blew out that
input channel on the TV.  Luckly that was all the damage we received that time.

Oh, and I don't not have any surge supressors.

My dad lives in an that has above ground lines and looses power all 
the time.  In
the 57 yrs he's lived there, he has only had 1 time (after Hurricane 
Isabelle when
he was without power for over 3 weeks) that he's had problems.  When the power
came back on, the surge blew up a TV, radio, messed up his heat/ac 
unit, cordless
phones, and more.

He also doesn't have any surge protectors on anything.

When we get a bad lightening storm, I will unplug a lot of the 
electronics from the
wall, and disconnect various interconnecting cables, and disconnect 
the cable feed
to my modem for the internet.

Again, it's a gamble.  How much are you willing to loose?  To me, 
it's too easy to
disconnect things like my computer and some of my radio equipment and flat
screen TV for 1/2 hr or so untill the storm passes and not worry 
about the surge

Also a battery back (ups) for your computer is a good surge protector.


John T. Blair  WA4OHZ     email:
Va. Beach, Va                  Phone:  (757) 495-8229

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