In November 2011, I bought a whole-house surge protection device. I made a habit of reviewing that the green light was on while mowing the lawn (since I mow the lawn through most of thunderstorm season). Last week the light was on. Today, after a few days of thunderstorms in the area, I saw that the light had gone out. Looks like it took one for the team.

Next week, I’ll install the replacement I just ordered. After all, it’s thunderstorm season.

Michael K Johnson June 13, 2014 19:00

$10 cheaper this time, too!

Also, that was when I started seriously installing LED lights, since thinking about the economics of LED lights was what got me to investigate whole-house surge protection. ☺

Michael K Johnson June 13, 2014 21:36

Intermatic IG1240RC3. $120 then, $110 now. I need one in an enclosure that can live outside, since my main panel is in an exterior box connected to my meter. Lots more variety some at lower cost if you have an internal main panel, and I have no reason to think that one is particularly better than another. For that matter, I don’t actualy know that this unit took a surge; it could have been an early death…

James Minadeo October 16, 2014 12:00

Whole building surge protection does not protect sensitive electronics - too much energy is allowed to pass through.  They really only protect the wires from melting.  80% of surges originate from inside of the building anyway per IEEE report. 

Michael K Johnson October 16, 2014 12:06

That’s why I still use point-of-use surge protection for sensitive electronics. And the 20% can still be damaging to less sensitive electronics…

James Minadeo October 16, 2014 12:43

But the whole building surge protectors let through 700 to 1000 Volts.  And they do not act on in-rush current.  They can not see any current rise.  When the power comes back on from an outage, the current rise happens before the voltage rise.  The MOV can’t see it.  So the 20% you think you are protecting does not happen.  Letting through 700 volts will damage most electronics.  Anything with a display or LED lighting or CFL lighting is susceptible.  

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