Thunder

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When I hear thunder, or I'm temporarily away from my XP Home computer and thunder is predicted, I turn the system and UPS off and unplug the modem telephone line. Overkill? Before I did this I lost the built-in modem to a nearby lightning strike (I assume).
However most businesses and many other systems are left on durng storms evidently with no problems.
What do you do?
TIA
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On Friday, January 8, 2016 at 11:01:33 AM UTC-6, KenK wrote:

When I had dial-up or DSL, I did the same as you. With cable...I rarely do anything. ¬_¬
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bob_villain wrote:

I don't do anything when I hear thunder even my dog.
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On 1/8/16 12:08 PM, bob_villain wrote:

Guess your cable provider uses those new lightning-proof lines rather than the conventional lightning-magnet wires the phone company favors;-)
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Per Wade Garrett:

I don't know for sure, but I *think* my cable provider (Verizon FIOS) uses fiber optic lines.... which, AFIK, do not conduct electricity and are therefore immune to lightning strikes.
So I don't do anything - unless it's one of those really-violent thunderstorms and then I'll pull a few plugs until it passes.
Rightly or wrongly, my main concern is a strike to one of my TV antennas propagating through the connected tuners into my LAN and/or taking out my TV.
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On 1/8/16 12:43 PM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

Yeah but thunder and lightning are usually accompanied by rain which makes for wet cables...which conduct electricity.
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Wade Garrett posted for all of us...

But aren't dry cables supposed to conduct electricity?
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On 1/9/16 4:57 PM, Tekkie® wrote:

I was responding to Mr Cresswell who said he believed he had fiber optic cables and didn't think they conducted electricity. My point was that during a rainstorm when the rubber or plastic covered cable was covered with water, it was a conductor.
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wrote:

There still should not be a path to your equipment but most surges are really induced transients anyway so that is not an issue.
If you start with a good grounding system and ground all of your surge protection (on every wire that comes into the house) to a single point in that grounding system, you eliminate virtually all of the surges. Some point of use protection that combines protection of all conductors at the equipment will do the rest. It gets more complicated if you are dealing with a big campus and a number of interconnected buildings but the concepts are the same.
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lightning damage. Up on the top of a hill I had a ham radio repeater with a 120 foot tower in a building that was about 6 foot square. In about 30 years one power supply burnt out a diode for the repeater during a storm. However the part that went to a telephone line would go out every 2 or 3 years before I pust a lot of differnet types of protection on it. Then I had to replace the protection every 2 or 3 years. As there was a 300 foot tower about 300 feet away from my tower, I think it helped protect from lightning.
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If I had telephone lines I would unplug them. Having cable modem I don't do anything. I do stay away from anything connected to the power lines or telephone lines. Switch to a wireless laptop and telephone if I want to use them. Equipment can be replaced,but people are difficult to replace or repair.
If you are going to turn off the computer, unplug it. Off or on will seldom make much difference.
Sofar I have been lucky. Seldom if ever have I unplugged anything except the telephone line to the modem when I had dialup. Never lost anyting much in the houses I have lived in from 1970. During a storm a transformer blew out that fed a house I lived in. It did take out 2 surge strips and a built in oven electronic control. The oven only burnt out a circuit board trace and a MOV protector.
At the last house I lived in had a ham radio tower that was about 50 feet to the top antenna and this house has one that is about 70 feet to the top. Been lucky so far on that as I have not lost any radio equipment either.
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On Friday, January 8, 2016 at 12:32:06 PM UTC-5, Ralph Mowery wrote:
..snip...

When I was in the Coast Guard in Alaska, lighting hit the 1/4 mile high LORAN tower. Since I was transmitter tech at the time, and spent most of my days working in the transmitter building which was at the base of the tower, I had the pleasure of repairing the damage to the transmitter that was on-air at the time as well as the dummy load that the standby transmitter was connected to.
The dummy load and final transformer assembly were housed in the same cabinet for ease of switching between the 2 transmitters. When the lightening blew up - and I mean BLEW UP - the final transformer assembly, the shrapnel took out the dummy load resistor bank. What didn't get pulverized melted in the resulting fire.
The worst thing that a LORAN transmitter technician can experience is silence in the transmitter building. All stations have 2 transmitters, which are swapped every 2 weeks - on-air/standby, back and forth. When performing preventive maintenance on the standby transmitter, it is always supposed to be available within one hour. (One *minute* of off-air time ruins a "perfect month". "Perfect months", especially consecutive perfect months, were the goal of any LORAN station. We received a ribbon for 7 consecutive perfect months when I was stationed in Germany.)
Anyway, silence in the transmitter building means that your on-air transmitter is down and that the standby isn't ready. It's a eerie, uncomfortable feeling. We were silent for 4 days while we repaired the equipment. Our radio transmissions didn't have the comforting tick-tick-tick of the LORAN signal in the background, the scopes in the monitor room weren't glowing with the signal's familiar envelope, etc. The only good part (OK, it's weird) is that I had the opportunity to walk up to the tower and touch it. That is not something that you can do when it's pumping out a mega-watt of signal. We used to stand near the tower with 4' florescent tubes and have them light up in our hands. You could hold one end of the tube with one hand and slide the light up and down the tube with the other.
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On 01/08/2016 12:50 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

We made RF preheaters and one of the quick and dirty tests for the shielding was waving a fluorescent tube taped to a broomstick around the cavity.
The cavity where the material was heated had holes drilled in a hexagonal pattern both for ventilation and so you could look inside when it was on. For illumination, there were standard 6" fluorescent tubes in battery holders screwed to the aluminum walls. The fun part was watching plant maintenance electricians who didn't know much about RF scratch they heads while figuring out why the tubes lit without being connected to anything.
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On Friday, January 8, 2016 at 9:38:35 PM UTC-5, rbowman wrote:

Another fun thing to do was to hold a safety meeting for the newbies on the station and "explain" why they should never go into the transmitter building without a transmitter tech.
We would bring one of the large oil filled capacitors and a hi-pot machine into the mess hall and charge the cap up to 2 to 3K VDC. Then we'd turn off the lights and use a dead man stick to short out the cap. The resulting Crack! and spark was enough to scare the crap out of most of the newbies. After they calmed down we let them know that the transmitters ran on voltages that were about 8 times what we had just used. "Stay out of the T-building unless one of us is with you."
One time we got a little carried away. We charged the cap up just a little too much and when I shorted it out it blew the threaded metal rod out of the wooden handle and broke the braided grounding strap. The rod and strap went clanging across the tile floor and I almost crapped my pants like a newbie! It was pretty impressive.
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On 01/08/2016 11:01 AM, KenK wrote:

When I was using POTS modems, I noticed the modem was damaged by electrical transients much more often that anything else. That's one reason for preferring an external modem. It's more separated from the rest of the PC.

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On 1/8/2016 12:01 PM, KenK wrote:

If it is close, I shut it down. Couple of years ago there was a lightning strike near me. It entered by a light fixture on the detached garage and took out a receptacle, circuit breaker, TV, receiver, doorbell.
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On 01/08/2016 09:01 AM, KenK wrote:

If it's close and I'm home I shut down and unplug everything.
Jon
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for 6 months of the year. I have good surge protection just like those businesses you speak of. My group used to design it for folks in Florida
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On 01/08/2016 10:01 AM, KenK wrote:

UPS. Not only do they protect the equipment during brief interruptions but they filter most transients. Even the transient protector strips are better than nothing although the MOVs may be undersized.
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stay on. My home computers, 24/7/365.
All 3 (home and both major customers) are on underground services and 2 are on cable.
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