Our house is on a 2 phase power supply. One phase has a surge
protector, the other hasn't. The one that doesn't have a surge
protector does not have anything of value connected to it. However, it
seems to blow an extraordinary amount of light bulbs compared to the
other. Is it worth getting a surge protector or is there some other
thing we should be looking at?
Could be open or intermittent neutral. Check for wild voltage swings on
either hot leg as loads are connected/dropped. If you even suspect
probs with neutral, call utility ASAP, and ask that they check it out.
Sorry, but it's single-phase. With center-tap as neutral. What I'm
talking about is probs with
connection from your house neutral line to the center-tap on the xfrmr.
It is strang that your house only has a surge protector on one phase.
What type of surge protector is it?
As for bulbs, most bulbs are rated for 120v, and give an average life
expectancy. If you have a higher voltage, it really wears out the
life of the bulb. So you might have to start using heavier bulbs, or
switch over to florencent bulbs.
tom @ www.NoCostAds.com
You can install another one if you wish.
They will not interfere with each other.
For all practical purposes they just sit across the line doing nothing
before a surge hits. Then the one closes to the incomming line will try to
short the surge. It probably will not be fast enough to get the surge
before the second one activates. You basically get twice the protection
where the second one is located at.
There is not really any limit on the number of surge supressors you can put
Due to the way I want to cut things off and on ,much of my computer and
other electronic equipment may have 2 or 3 of the power strips with surge
supressors in series.
For example at my computer desk I have a cable modem and router that I want
on all the time. That is plugged in to a power strip that is almost never
cut off. Comming out of that power strip is also another that powers up a
computer and printer that I cut off every day. I just hapened to get a
good deal on the supressor type power strips so I used them.
The other issue is adequate grounding. The beloved ground rod
isn't all that effective for lightning protection.
The code has required a concrete encased electrode for the last ten
years or so to address that issue. There are other things one can do
such as adding ground rods, attaching two together one on top of the
other etc. The real electricians can add to this very short list.
I agree that ground rods are close to a joke and a "concrete encased
electrode" is a good earthing electrode.
But imagine if you have a 2,000A surge that is earthed through a very
good 10 ohms-to-earth electrode. The building ground will be 20,000V
above 'absolute' earth potential. If the only earthing electrode is a
rod, in general 70% of the voltage drop away from the rod is in the
first 3 feet. Earth over 3 feet from the rod will be at least 14,000V
from the building ground. (Same sort of thing happens with other
electrodes, but not as extreme.)
This can show up at a pad mounted A/C compressor/condenser. The
compressor 'ground' may be at the potential of the pad and the earth
below it. The power wiring may be at the potential of the 'ground' at
the service panel. During an 'event' there can be thousands of volts
difference between them. (This is in the IEEE surge guide, page 34.) It
is probably why Oren's A/C disconnect has a surge protector. I agree
that a surge protector can be installed at the service and will increase
protection for the building.
Much of the protection in the building is actually that all wiring,
power, cable, phone, ... rises together. That requires that entry
protectors for phone, cable, ... connect to the power earthing system
with short ground wires
...and there be only one place everything is grounded. What you
*don't* want is the bolt passing through the house from one ground rod
to another (or cold water pipe). "Rises together" is the operative
phrase, above. Think of the house as a cork on the ocean.
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