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

To: Tim <>
Subject: Re: [Shop-talk] Whole-house surge protection
From: Ian McFetridge <>
Date: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:32:10 -0400
Cc: Shop Talk <>
References: <>
Maybe it depends how it is installed.  Ours was on the main line coming
from the street (essentially like the main on/off breaker).  My thought was
that if lightning hits my attic fan, goes down those wires to the panel, it
will electrify every circuit on that bank.  I think you would need to have
it somehow filtering every circuit to truly protect from lightning going
from one circuit to the other--ours did not do this.  By design, I think
the SS only protected against lighting spikes coming in from the street
(e.g., transformer or neighbor, etc.) or entering through the meter on the
side of the house.
Caveat: I'm not an electrician either.

On Thu, May 23, 2013 at 10:19 AM, Tim <> wrote:

> " As I recall, it only protects from spikes coming off of the street and
> not if your house is hit. "
> I was under the impression (from what I've seen on TV and also read) that
> the whole-house protectors that are wired into your breaker box are meant
> to protect your electical wiring from lightning strikes.
> Is this not true?
> electrically challenged
> tim
> On Thu, May 23, 2013 at 9:01 AM, Ian McFetridge wrote:
>  I had one on a house (builder installed) and I don't believe it ever did
>> anything in the five years we lived there.  I don't think I would get one
>> in your situation.  As I recall, it only protects from spikes coming off
>> of
>> the street and not if your house is hit.  The house we live in now has
>> above ground lines on the street and to the house.  I probably would get
>> one if we weren't planning to move soon.
>> On Thu, May 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM, Jeff Scarbrough <
>> >wrote:
>>  A cow-orker with a new house asked me about whole-house surge
>>> protection.  Where I live, the local member-owned electric utility
>>> sells protection for large appliances and motors as a device in the
>>> meter base.  They charge $6.50 a month for this service.  As I
>>> understand it, you're basically buying insurance, as they repair any
>>> damage due to surges with this service.
>>> I see you can purchase a similar device at the local big box for
>>> around $200.  The claim is that it offers surge protection similar to
>>> a plug-in device, but also covers connected equipment.
>>> Electric-SurgeBreaker-Plus-**Whole-House-Secondary-Surge-**
>>> Protective-Device-SDSB1175C/**100127248#.UZ4bKsqOBhc<>
>>> 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?
>>> Jeff Scarbrough
>>> Corrosion Acres, Ga.
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