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Lightning and surge protection

Community Veteran
Posts: 1,229
Thanks: 1
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

There's been a few threads elsewhere about this and I wondered about any advice people could offer about what protection is best.
Should I simply wander into Comet and grab the first Belkin unit I can see for £15? Or are there "better" products? (e.g. something like this )
18 REPLIES
shellsong
Grafter
Posts: 2,191
Registered: 03-08-2007

Lightning and surge protection

The Clarity device looks to be excellent protection against lightening damage via the phone line-- bearing in mind the rider at the end of course:-
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*Hairy Chris was sent to test this device recently - we despatched him to the top of the highest hilltop in the area during a recent lightning storm with his ADSL router and one of these protectors. He then stood in a copper bath filled with salt water and shouted insults at the Lightning Gods for a bit. Admittedly all we found were his smouldering shoes.


Otherwise the Belkin or similar protected mains plug strips that warranty the equipment connected via them are a sensible idea <<note to self, must replace the one our son has just taken to Germany for a year!>>

If you can afford it a UPS is a good idea too as it provides extra isolation from the ooh-nasties at the same time as reducing the effect of mains dropouts Wink
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

As you'll have seen from the other threads Paul, if the lightning actually hits your installation, there's nothing to be done anyway. Whether you think it's worthwhile bothering with surge protection is up to you,

I just unplug the computer from the electricity and the phone line when I start to worry that the lightning is getting a bit close. Never had a problem with variations in electricity supply so I've never seen the need for a surge protector.

I think it's all down to the individual's level of worry about these things.
Objectively, there's not really a lot of need for concern, but if it does bother you, then get a surge protector. And unplug the equipment if the lightning is getting very close.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,229
Thanks: 1
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

thing is i live on top of a 700 foot hill in quite a rural location and the weather and power can be a bit unpredictable ... i use Metcheck and unplug all when it looks a bit iffy, but it's the "peace of mind factor" as you rightly point out.
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

Can't see the relevance of the hill and surge protection though - if you get hit by lightning, there's no defence, so it's just unplugging power and phone when you feel it's getting too close.

But if you feel happier with a surge protector, then you'll keep asking till you get the answer you want ( :lol: no offence intended, but that's what people do), so why not just save time and get one. And if you feel happier with a dearer one, then get a dearer one.
shellsong
Grafter
Posts: 2,191
Registered: 03-08-2007

Lightning and surge protection

Mains and telephone systems in houses, no matter how elevated the property, seldom bear the full brunt of a lightning strike but properly designed surge arrestors can definitely protect equipment against the effects of nearby strikes and in the event of actual damage the guarantee that comes with the better arrestors will pay for replacements

Since we often have a computer on 24/7 to help family communications I feel it's a good idea to have proper protection against surges and high energy spikes!
holdtight
Grafter
Posts: 1,634
Registered: 15-06-2007

Lightning and surge protection

I have to agree shellsong i wouldnt feel at all happy using my very expensive equiptment without any surge protection at all

and although Geoff does have a valid point about getting whacked with a bolt of lightening and it is good advice to unplug everything in a storm i feel that something in place is far better and might just stand more chance of saving my electrics than nothing at all

Thanks by the way Paul for the metcheck link very handy that one Smiley
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

As I said, if you feel it's what you need, then that's fine :lol:
I may think differently after my computer gets fried by a current spike!!!!!
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,229
Thanks: 1
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

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Can't see the relevance of the hill

exposed locations tend to have a higher incidence of lightning strike -- it isn't remotely relevant to power surges
Quote
you'll keep asking till you get the answer you want ( no offence intended, but that's what people do)

But not what this person was doing; I had made the decision to get protection, and I was looking for advice on what might be best.
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

Shockedops:

Sorry, I must have been in the knife box this morning. :lol:
shellsong
Grafter
Posts: 2,191
Registered: 03-08-2007

Lightning and surge protection

One point that cannot be overstated is that effective arrestors will normally have very high speed gas discharge tubes in conjunction with high energy solid state suppressors, also, if your house is in a region that gets more than its fair share of lightning strikes, it could well be advisable to have a properly designed lightning conductor fitted by someone who knows what they are doing-- if a lightning conductor is made to bend sharply, a strike will take the shortest route even if stone is in the way!

If memory serves me correctly, lightning conductors provide strike protection for a solid cone with base radius equal to the height of the conductor

I also seem to recall that lightning conductor and mains earthing rods benefit from regular watering where they go into the ground-- makes some sort of sense I guess Wink -- I can't remember whether anything should be added to the water to improve conductivity.
shellsong
Grafter
Posts: 2,191
Registered: 03-08-2007

Lightning and surge protection

A nice thunderstorm going on where I am at the moment! Cheesy
holdtight
Grafter
Posts: 1,634
Registered: 15-06-2007

Lightning and surge protection

We had a whopper here last night too great streaks of lightening right overhead and the loudest thunder i think ive ever heard

surffice to say i unplugged everything Wink
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

Lightning and surge protection

Well, I know everyone's hoping that the lightning will head straight for my computer, but so far we've been spared . Cool
Just the heat. And more heat. And more heat............
Cats not at all pleased. :lol:
holdtight
Grafter
Posts: 1,634
Registered: 15-06-2007

Lightning and surge protection

no no Geoff we wouldnt wish that on you or your pc Wink

my dogs are`nt happy either Cry