Surge Protection

The first line of defence against transient voltages caused by nearby lightning strikes or municipal switching, is voltage surge arrestors mounted into the main distribution board of the home. The standard voltage surge protectors for the home or business, directs the high voltage away from your electronic appliances. The voltage surge arrestor has a built in LED which glows when the unit is still serviceable. If you have a surge arrestor array mounted in your distribution board and the indicator light is no longer lit, then you need to replace them. Typically one surge arrestor is mounted between each phase wire and earth and also between the neutral wire and earth.

Lightning can strike anywhere, anytime without any warning. Lightning voltage can range from 10 to 120 million volts. By the time this voltage enters your home is has been reduced but still is in the thousands of volts. The most common lightning strikes occur on telephone lines and municipal power lines.

If lightning strikes the telephone lines in your area then a high voltage travels down the line and into your home. Anything connected to the telephone line is destroyed; telephones, fax machines, modems, computers etc.

When lightning strikes the municipal power lines in your area, then the voltage entering your home is raised by thousands of volts and this voltage is transferred into any appliances that are plugged into the supply. Electronic devices are more at risk as the components they contain do not have high thresholds.

If lightning strikes the ground, or a tree close to your home then the ground voltage is raised by thousands of volts for a short period. This is enough time for the high voltage to enter the home via the earth connection and do irreparable damage .

2 examples of voltage surge protectors used commonly in first line protection

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