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Are Surge Protectors Necessary Uk

author
Christina Perez
• Thursday, 19 November, 2020
• 14 min read

)Are surge protectors on the main power supply actually needed in the UK ? Here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other countries (including the US).

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However, there seem to be very many surge protector products advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc). > > here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > countries (including the US).

> > However there seem to be very many surge protector products > advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc). A lightning strike that is merely _near_ to an underground utility circuit can induce damaging voltages into them meaning that your power mains, telephone, and cable TV are all possible carriers.

My next door neighbor as one for her PC, but makes SFA difference. My >next door neighbor as one for her PC, but makes SFA difference.

> > here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > countries (including the US). > > However there seem to be very many surge protector products > advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc).

My next door neighbor as one for her PC, but makes SFA >>difference. Harry wrote: > > I do have surge protectors on my PC equipment.

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(Source: wikihow.com)

For an extra > few quid it seemed a good safety measure. But I don't stupidly want to spend money to prevent almost non-existent risks.

My next door neighbor as one for her PC, but makes SFA >>>difference. > > >Harry wrote: >> >> I do have surge protectors on my PC equipment.

For an extra >> few quid it seemed a good safety measure. But I don't stupidly want to >spend money to prevent almost non-existent risks.

The only time I know of a lighting strike potentially affecting equipment round here was where I used to work. But then the lighting hit a cable outside, passed down into the network switch then fanned out from there blowing several PCs and melting the switch unit and the wall mounted box it was located in.

)In article <9520A0A2FB83791F3A2@130.133.1.4>, LEM says... > Are surge protectors on the main power supply actually needed in > the UK ? > > here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > countries (including the US).

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(Source: wikihow.com)

> > However there seem to be very many surge protector products > advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc). Also, there must be a need for one because I've just had to replace my Welkin (free of charge) because it committed hard kari, but it did its job.

Remember a surge can come from a lot of places such as a workman hitting the mains lines with a digger. > > here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > countries (including the US).

> > However there seem to be very many surge protector products > advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc). For the sake of a few quid I've got one downstairs for the TV, amp etc and upstairs on the PC.

)LEM wrote: > > Are surge protectors on the main power supply actually needed in > the UK ? > > here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > countries (including the US).

> > However there seem to be very many surge protector products > advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc). Heavy machinery can induce start currents and outages can result in spikes.

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(Source: www.solidsignal.com)

)LEM wrote: > > Are surge protectors on the main power supply actually needed in > the UK ? > > here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > countries (including the US).

> However there seem to be very many surge protector products > advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc). A surge protector can be very simple, doesn't need to cost a lot.

At a place where I once worked, they had problems with fuse timings on the entire building, the engineers would sometimes test which fuses went first, thereby inducing enormous currents in the power network. You probably have a greater chance of dang struck by lightening.

That is a question that only you (and your long term neighbors) can answer. Surge damage is a function of underlying geology, frequency of CG lightning, and a properly wired building.

Monolithic earth means better equipotential geology and therefore less probability of transients. Effective 'whole house' protectors cost about £1 per protected appliance.

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(Source: www.youtube.com)

In the meantime, plug-in protectors are not effective, cost tens of times more money per protected appliance, and are typically undersized. No sense wasting good money on ineffective protectors that don't even claim to protect from the typically destructive transient.

If you're cheapskate, you can make one up from an old 50nF high voltage capacitor. > You probably have a greater chance of dang struck by > lightening.

My next door neighbor as one for her PC, but makes SFA >>>>difference. >> >> >>Harry wrote: >> >>>I do have surge protectors on my PC equipment.

For an extra >>>few quid it seemed a good safety measure. But I don't stupidly want to >>spend money to prevent almost non-existent risks.

> > > The only time I know of a lighting strike potentially affecting > equipment round here was where I used to work. But then the lighting > hit a cable outside, passed down into the network switch then fanned > out from there blowing several PCs and melting the switch unit and the > wall mounted box it was located in.

surge protector choose wikihow use
(Source: wikihow.com)

> > If you have a quick trip fuse box in the house its probably not worth > it. Circuit breakers and fuses, quick trip or not, will not prevent equipment faults.

> >here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a >relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other >countries (including the US). > >However there seem to be very many surge protector products >advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc).

In my experience mains surges do not tend to cause problems, either your trip switch or the general robustness of most devices rules them out. If the strike hits a telephone pole then the resulting surge down the phone line can easily take out a modem, and if you're unlucky your mob as well.

> > > >here in the UK we have few overhead mains power lines and have a > >relatively steady mains power supply when compared to many other > >countries (including the US). > > > >However there seem to be very many surge protector products > >advertised for sale in the UK (Argos, Marlins, etc).

In my experience mains surges do not tend to cause problems, either your > trip switch or the general robustness of most devices rules them out. If the strike hits a telephone pole then the resulting surge > down the phone line can easily take out a modem, and if you're unlucky your mob as > well.

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(Source: www.maxiaids.com)

A couple of years ago we had a massive storm in our area apparently there were 30,000 odd lightening strikes over the county. Over a two-week period, I replaced several dozen modems for > people who “suddenly couldn't get online”.

They blow after your 'protected' device is fried and pulling too much current as a result of it. > > You probably have a greater chance of dang struck by > lightening.

Over a two-week period, I replaced > several dozen modems for people who “suddenly couldn't get > online”. Even the local World > ran out (someone from there even phoned my business to see if > we had any modems left in stock that they could buy!!).

A plug-in surge protector is on the order of tens of times more money per protected appliance. Furthermore, it does not even claim to protect from the typically destructive transient.

Protectors do not stop, block, filter, or absorb destructive transients. In short, the protection is called single point earth ground.

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(Source: wiringschemas.blogspot.com)

Destructive surges may enter the building seeking earth ground. If not earthed (either by hardware connection or by surge protector), then the destructive surge may find a path to earth ground via computer.

> > If you're cheapskate, you can make one up from an old 50nF high voltage > capacitor. > > > You probably have a greater chance of dang struck by > > lightening.

The problem with this quote is that people might think it's too complicated and simply give up. A 50nF high voltage capacitor across the appliance can kill many spikes and possibly increase the life of a PSU, in many cases such protection is already included.

In any case, a decent surge protector is a once only investment, so why making a fuss about it? )> Storm singer wrote: > > >>modems are different.

Over a two-week period, I replaced >>several dozen modems for people who “suddenly couldn't get >>online”. Even the local World >>ran out (someone from there even phoned my business to see if >>we had any modems left in stock that they could buy!!).

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(Source: www.bestconsumerelectronics.co.uk)

They talk of earthing “all incoming utilities” but fail to recognize that any incoming 'utility' is not simply a single wire, as evidenced by their stating “even the CATV wire drops to earth ground.” It's a coax cable folks, not a 'wire', and the wire in the middle is not 'earthed' or else there's be no signal.

The 'protection' for power and signal lines is an arc gap suppressor to that common earth ground which, hopefully, arcs a lightning strike to earth at that point rather than having it find earth through the devices, or you, in the home so lucky you end up with only a few hundreds, or thousands, of volts transients dancing around on the home wiring and your home equipment with the brunt going through the arc gap suppressors. And it is those transients that an in-house transient/ surge suppressor is meant to deal with, not 'lightning strikes' per see.

It is true that small in-house protectors are essentially useless if the home utilities AREN'T properly protected (earthed) but the implication derived from the small snippet that if the home has 'proper' incoming surge suppression that it's then 'safe' for electronic devices (I.E. they're sufficiently 'protected') is simply hogwash. You have the 'protection' on the utilities themselves, meaning the power company equipment/line outside the home, which absorb the brunt of most faults.

Then there is the protection going into the home, which depends on the incoming line impedance to limit the surge. And then you have protection (or lack thereof) from the 'remnants' left on the interior wiring.

> ====== QUOTE ====== > A plug-in surge protector is on the order of tens of times > more money per protected appliance. Furthermore, it does not > even claim to protect from the typically destructive > transient.

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(Source: www.amazon.com)

Protectors do not stop, block, filter, or absorb > destructive transients. > > In short, the protection is called single point earth > ground.

Destructive surges may enter the building seeking > earth ground. If not earthed (either by hardware connection > or by surge protector), then the destructive surge may find a > path to earth ground via computer.

On 7 Jul 2003 in the > newsgroup alt.certification.a-plus at > http://tinyurl.com/l3m9 and > “Power Surge on 29 Sept 2003 in the newsgroup > alt.comp.hardware at > http://tinyurl.com/p1rk > > One industry professional demonstrates how two structures > are protected. Notice every wire entering each structure > (building and tower) must first connect to single point > ground.

> > Those ineffective protector manufacturers fear you might > learn about the essential earth ground AND discover that > plug-in protectors cost tens of times more money per protected > appliance.

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