# what is the differences between whole house surge protectors?

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• posted on March 11, 2009, 6:53 pm

Tom W.
What is it that actually does the damage when a consumer electronic device is damaged during a voltage spike? Is it voltage? No it is current that flows in a large enough amperage to be destructive. How much that is varies with the nature of the device. What controls how much current will flow through the device in question? Answer: The total impedance of the pathway and the voltage imposed across the pathway. How much current will flow if the voltage on one side of the device to be protected is zero relative to ground and the voltage on the other side is 1000 relative to ground at an impedance of say 1 k ohm. Will the current be different if the voltage on the first point were 10,000 volts and the voltage at the second point were 11,000 volts across the same device? Please answer that question. If your answer is anything other then the current flow would be exactly the same you have discredited yourself. What happens to the current flow if the voltage at the first point is 500,000 volts and the voltage at the second point is 501,000? Now lets install a surge protective device that will limit the difference across those same two points to 440 volts and at any point above 440 volts makes the effective difference much lower then 440 by bypassing the current around the device. How much current will flow now? The answer is the total current flow through the device will be less then a destructive current flow. Fully effective protection does not have to limit the voltage to ground. It only has to limit the current through the device to be protected. As long as the surge protective device provides a low enough impedance pathway around the device to be protected that the voltage across the protected device is held to a low enough value not enough current will be forced through the protected device to damage it. Success! And to achieve that success all we have to do is limit the voltage across the thing we are trying to protect to a voltage that will not force enough coulombs of electrons through the protected circuit fast enough to cause damage. Aircraft are struck by lightning quite frequently. Their on board electronics usually survive those events. The last time I flew I didn't see some endless super conductor trailing behind the aircraft until it eventually touched the ground. How then is it possible to provide protection to the extremely delicate and sophisticated electronics on the aircraft. Hint: It does not have a thing to do with grounding. It has everything to do with bonding and installing effective bypass circuits to shunt any unwanted current flow around the electronics that require protection.
-- Tom Horne
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• posted on March 12, 2009, 3:51 pm

Your question is confusing because effective protection is about current. For example, the minimally acceptable ‘whole house’ protector is rated 50,000 amps. Voltage is a function of protector ratings, quality of connections (ie impedance), etc. Voltage is a dependent variable. Current is the independent variable.
Surges are current sources. That means voltage will rise as high as necessary to maintain current flow. Even wood is a conductor. To maintain lightning current, then a church steeple voltage is higher - destruction. So that the same current flows without damage, Franklin earthed lightning rods. Now that current makes near zero volts; energy is dissipated harmlessly elsewhere. Protection is about current. Flowing current so that voltage is not created. What is your question? Why do you confuse the issue with voltages when constant current (a surge) will flow no matter what those voltages are.
How much current flows if one voltage is 1000 and the other side is 1100? Not relevant because the same current flows whether the voltage is 100 volts or 1000 volts different.
Are you trying to discuss equipotential? If voltage on the black wire is 8100 volts and the voltage on the white wire is only 8000 volts, then the power line only sees a 100 volt surge. Meanwhile, 8000 volts pushes current across the TV to the coax wire or through the furniture to the floor, or through the kid who was touching it then. No equipotential existed because current from the room to earth was still 8000 volts. That reality is demonstrated in an IEEE guide page 42 Figure 8. To have equipotential in a room not carefully engineered, then surge currents must be diverted BEFORE entering the room.
Why make the topic even more difficult? We are discussing cloud to ground lightning. Why waste everyone’s time with cloud to cloud lightning and a ground issue that makes this discussion equivalent to a Dr Souse tale?
Airplanes are designed to make cloud to cloud surges irrelevant and also install protection connecting lightning to earth:

So what is your point? Once hundreds or thousands of amps are permitting inside a building, then that current will raise voltages as necessary to flow to earth. All high reliability facilities eliminate the problem where current enters the building. Those thousands of amps earthed at the entrance creates near zero volts inside. Those same thousand of amps inside a building - see page 42 Figure 8 - a TV 8000 volts damaged because current through a power strip protector still had to find earth ground.
Your super conductor wire suggests you still did not grasp the most important point even though you said:

What do you think I have been posting all this time? Don’t you get it? Bonding, clamping, conducting, shunting, diverting, connecting – its all the same thing. And it does something only when bonded ./ diverted to what? Earthing a ‘whole house’ protector is so that current flows around the electronics – not through it. So that energy is dissipated in earth – not inside the house. Why did Franklin earth a lightning rod? Exact same thing is performed by earthing a ‘whole house’ protector. . So that current flows around the wood / electronics – not through it. Something that a plug-in protector cannot do. High current without high voltage inside means no massive and destructive energy. Exactly why a protector is only as effective as its earth ground – so that current has that low impedance path around electronics.
Ok. Your quoted sentence is exactly what I have been discussing all along. Why are you confused? Was it the usual insults from Bud, saltydoy, etc that masked the underlying science? That is Bud's objective. To keep things nasty so that the science is not apparent.
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<%-name%>
• posted on March 12, 2009, 4:01 pm
wrote:

Holy Crap!
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• posted on March 12, 2009, 6:33 pm
westom wrote:

If poor w was not hampered by religious blinders he could discover what the IEEE guide says in this example:
- A plug-in suppressor protects the TV connected to it. - "To protect TV2, a second multiport protector located at TV2 is required." - In the example a surge comes in on a cable service with the ground wire from cable entry ground block to the ground at the power service that is far too long (a problem in many houses). In that case the IEEE guide says "the only effective way of protecting the equipment is to use a multiport [plug-in] protector." (A suppressor like the OP finally bought can also be used.) - w's favored power service suppressor would provide absolutely *NO* protection.

There you have it. Airplanes do actually "install protection connecting lightning to earth." An invisible earthing chain???

Poor sensitive w. No one *ever* agrees with him. Current list: bud, trader, salty, TomH, Mark.
If you want science read the IEEE and NIST guides. Both say plug-in suppressors are effective.
Still missing - another lunatic that agrees with w that plug-in suppressors do NOT work.
Still missing - answers simple questions: - What "industry standards" require "all appliances" to "contain surge protection"? - Why do the only 2 examples of protection in the IEEE guide use plug-in suppressors? - Why does the NIST guide says plug-in suppressors are "the easiest solution"? - Why does the NIST guide say "One effective solution is to have the consumer install" a multiport plug-in suppressor? - How would a service panel suppressor provide any protection in the IEEE example, pdf page 42? - Why does the IEEE guide say for distant service points "the only effective way of protecting the equipment is to use a multiport [plug-in] protector"? - Why did Martzloff say in his paper "One solution. illustrated in this paper, is the insertion of a properly designed [multiport plug-in surge suppressor]"? - Why does the IEEE Emerald book include plug-in suppressors as an effective surge protection device? - Why does "responsible" manufacturer SquareD says "electronic equipment may need additional protection by installing plug-in [suppressors] at the point of use"? - Why aren’t airplanes crashing regularly - "no earth ground means no effective protection".
Why can't you answer simple questions w????
--
bud--

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• posted on March 12, 2009, 7:44 pm

To the above critique of w's post, I can't resist adding:
"Why make the topic even more difficult? We are discussing cloud to ground lightning. Why waste everyone’s time with cloud to cloud lightning and a ground issue that makes this discussion equivalent to a Dr Souse tale? "
I thought all along we were discussing surge protection.
"What do you think I have been posting all this time? Don’t you get it? Bonding, clamping, conducting, shunting, diverting, connecting – its all the same thing. And it does something only when bonded ./ diverted to what? "
I think it's news to the rest of us that all those are the same thing.
Seems that airplane example has w's head about to explode. Because for the guy that's been saying there can be no surge protection without a direct 10ft connection to earth ground, it's an insurmountable paradox. For the rest of us, we know that the way they achieve aircraft surge protection is through a combination of those different techniques. And the clamping they would do on the inputs to say electronic sensors or communications gear is similar in principle to that done by a plug-in surge protector.
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• posted on March 13, 2009, 7:02 am
On Mar 12, 3:44 pm, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

We are discussing the simplest of surge protection - for buildings. So simple that these 'best protection' principles were well understood and routinely installed even 100 years ago. So why do you not understand what even 1920 Ham radio operators knew?
Surge protection for aerospace equipment is more complex. Same principles apply. But the number of possible surges and numerous directions for those surge currents make aerospace protection more complex. See that URL for a 747 earthing a surge in Osaka.
So tell me. How much design work do you have with aerospace equipment? Zero? Much of what I did and learn comes from aerospace design. Those more complex problems are not relevant to routine surge protection of terrestrial facilities. For that matter, why not also confuse people with surge protection from nuclear EMP? Why not just through in more grenades to confuse others and to justify your personal vendetta?
To keep this simple, discussion is terrestrial protection. Disagree? Then were is your professional citation or numbers to support your claim? You never demonstrate that professional knowledge. Basic electronics knowledge means you knew household surge protection and airplane surge protection are significantly different and not relevant to the OP's questions.
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• posted on March 13, 2009, 1:29 pm

Now there's a frightening thought.

No personal vendetta here, just the facts. And that is that airplanes are obviously protected from lightning strikes and surges, yet have no direct 10ft connection to ground, which you continue to say without which you cannot protect from surges. They use some of the same design techniques that are used for protection on the ground, eg clamping.
That's not the only obvious contradiction you can't deal with. The other one I like is your claim appliances and electronics come with built-in surge protection and that it is effective. Now, how can that be? Those appliances don't have a direct 10ft connection to ground either. In fact, they sit even further away from earth ground than a plug-in protector. Yet, somehow they achieve protection, typically using some of the very same components found in plug-in surge protectors. So, with no direct 10ft earth ground, how can that be?

Of course the IEEE and NIST have been given to you countless times, where they discuss using plug-in surge protectors as part of a surge protection plan. We've also given you major manufacturer's of whole house surge protectors. Companies who YOU have frequently called knowledgeable on surge protection. These same companies also make, sell and talk about using plug-ins as part of surge protection.
Since you're now on the lightning kick, here's one more to add to the list. The National Lightning Safety Institute. Take a look at the diagram they show of one protection scenario. Right in the picture are both a PC and a TV, both connected to plug-in surge protectors.
http://www.lightningsafety.com/nlsi_lhm/overv.html
BTW, we're still waiting for any reference from you that just comes out and says plug-in surge protectors don't work.
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<%-name%>
• posted on March 9, 2009, 8:00 am
So if the cow only had one leg it would be ok?
Some interesting stuff here. http://www.redflagdeals.com/forums/showthread.php?s 18cd1cdda95dbfa21ef35ab4f4e171&ti6721
I bought the chspchsr4p from HomeDepot. Thanks to the poster who referred me. It is a 3 pack with the CHSPULTRA and a supressor for telephone and cable. http://images.google.ca/imgres?imgurl=http://www.homedepot.ca/wcsstore/HomeDepotCanada/images/catalog/56ee57d8-196a-498b-b492-43d080dfa50b_4.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.homedepot.ca/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CatalogSearchResultView%3FD%3D943213%26recN%3D112048%26Ntt%3D943213%26Ntk%3DP_PartNumber%26Dx%3Dmode%2Bmatchallpartial%26langId%3D-15%26storeId%3D10051%26Ntx%3Dmode%2Bmatchall%26N%3D0%26catalogId%3D10051&usg=__ZRKExS9Tz3A_We0QZmn2Lw8fg_I=&h@0&w@0&sz &hl=en&start=2&um=1&tbnid=uODbEAEK1x205M:&tbnh4&tbnw4&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dchspchsr4p%26hl%3Den%26safe%3Doff%26sa%3DG%26um%3D1

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• posted on March 10, 2009, 9:30 am

Or the cow did what humans are also told to do. Stand with all legs in one spot. Unfortunately, cow just don't listen to good advise.
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• posted on March 10, 2009, 5:56 pm

Now that's pretty funny. The solution to not getting killed by lightning is to stand with both legs in one spot? How far apart are your feet when you're standing to begin with? Geeez
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• posted on March 10, 2009, 8:45 pm
On Mar 10, 1:56 pm, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Again, he posts without first learning facts. One author who writes papers about surviving lightning is Dr Mary Ann Cooper from U of IL. But again, one posts myths and mockery while another cites professionals and generations of experience. Ignore an electrician who replies while forgetting to first learn. Professionals recommend keeping feet together as useful protection from lightning. Same principles also demonstrates why single point earthing must be implemented.
Some will only post to attack the messenger rather than contribute knowledge. An informed poster would have known why feet together means increased safety during lightning storms.
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• posted on March 3, 2009, 2:10 pm
<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>I want to put a whole house surge protector in my breaker box.&nbsp; It is a Siemens and I can use either a QSA2020 or a QSA2020TVSS.&nbsp; One is whole house secondary surge arrestor and one is a transient voltage surge suppressor.&nbsp; What is the difference and which is the better one to get?</FONT></DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Thx</FONT></DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Gary</FONT></DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>*Here is more info on the Siemens products.&nbsp; The TVSS has a lower clamping voltage. <A href="http://www.mrelectrician.tv/surgeprotectionbasics.html ">http://www.mrelectrician.tv/surgeprotectionbasics.html </A></FONT></DIV> <DIV>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>In order for these products to be most effective you need a good grounding system for your house.&nbsp; Of course if you had a good grounding system then you may not need the surge suppressors.</FONT></DIV></BLOCKQUOTE></BODY></HTML>
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• posted on March 3, 2009, 2:35 pm

How is a good grounding system supposed to eliminate the need for surge suppression? Let's say I have a system with excellent grounding. A lightning strike somewhere on the utility line results in a 2000V surge between hot and neutral/ground. How is a a ground going to take care of that?
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• posted on March 3, 2009, 3:38 pm

How is a good grounding system supposed to eliminate the need for surge suppression? Let's say I have a system with excellent grounding. A lightning strike somewhere on the utility line results in a 2000V surge between hot and neutral/ground. How is a a ground going to take care of that?
*By providing a low resistance path to earth which is where lightning wants to go. When you hear stories of people's appliances getting zapped by lightning it is because it could not find a good low resistance path to earth.
Many years ago some friends of mine bought a house several states away from me. The first year that I visited them they told me that their VCR got fried by lightning. The following year they told that lightning killed their computer modem. Two years after that their hot tub took a hit. Since I really loved the hot tub I started looking around in the basement to see what kind of grounding system they had. The house was over 100 years old and the ground rod was an old rusted pipe with a wire strapped to it with a hose clamp. They had a well which came into the house with plastic pipe. There was virtually no grounding system even though the house had been upgraded to circuit breakers and grounded circuits prior to my friend's purchase.
We made a trip to the electrical supply and picked up a ground rod and clamps and some #4 wire which we installed and we bonded everything. That was several years ago and they continue to mention that they have never had a problem with lightning since. The funny thing is they are at the bottom of a hill with high ground all around. It was unlikely that they were getting a direct hit. I told them to call the power company because I surmised that the lines were getting hit somewhere else, but the power company's ground was faulty.
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• posted on March 3, 2009, 8:01 pm
Thanks!
<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>I want to put a whole house surge protector in my breaker box.&nbsp; It is a Siemens and I can use either a QSA2020 or a QSA2020TVSS.&nbsp; One is whole house secondary surge arrestor and one is a transient voltage surge suppressor.&nbsp; What is the difference and which is the better one to get?</FONT></DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Thx</FONT></DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Gary</FONT></DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>*Here is more info on the Siemens products.&nbsp; The TVSS has a lower clamping voltage. <A href="http://www.mrelectrician.tv/surgeprotectionbasics.html ">http://www.mrelectrician.tv/surgeprotectionbasics.html </A></FONT></DIV> <DIV>&nbsp;</DIV> <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>In order for these products to be most effective you need a good grounding system for your house.&nbsp; Of course if you had a good grounding system then you may not need the surge suppressors.</FONT></DIV></BLOCKQUOTE></BLOCKQUOTE></BODY></HTML>
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• posted on March 4, 2009, 2:44 pm
On Mar 4, 6:26 am, snipped-for-privacy@invalid.com wrote:

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• posted on March 5, 2009, 3:14 am

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• posted on March 7, 2009, 6:26 am
That is odd. I have Outlook not Outlook Express, but either way I can not find a setting for word wrap. I have been posting with Outlook for probably 10 years and have never had anyone complain about my wordwrap.
wrote in message

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• posted on March 7, 2009, 9:28 am
Gary wrote:

Gary, I would suggest reading this web page. It has a good explanation of problems you may cause when posting to Usenet.
http://www.caliburn.nl/topposting.html
TDD
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