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Thread: Surge events causing damage at church

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by robeward View Post
    I don't think the LPS electrodes are bonded to the electrical grounding system. They are on opposite sides of the building. Not sure in this scenario it would matter. As of now it is just a single conductor running up the outside of the building so not sure there is really a way for it to interact with the building wiring. But then again this is lightning so its anybody's best guess. The electrode is buried very close to the slab of the building and I haven't had a chance to see if they are using a CEE or if a ground rod was buried.
    With the high energy in a lightning strike, nearby building wiring will likely get some induced or capacitively coupled voltage on it at some level, they need to be bonded to one another to minimize voltage potential between them.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by robeward View Post
    My question is how would you know? Thats why I think both the existing LPS needs to be surveyed and a SPD installed to address both issues.

    Another question. If there are several sub panels spread throughout the church should they consider installing SPDs at those as well? I guess it can't hurt but just a matter of how far you want to take it.

    Are receptacles like this worth the time to install for the big items like sound boards and projectors?
    https://www.amazon.com/Leviton-5280-.../dp/B0006I33Y6
    Well, siding ripped off the building, melted conductors, arc blast marks; you know, the usual. Lightning protection does not guarantee no damage, and considering that you've got one lightning rod and a single down conductor "protection" is a term that might only be loosely applied. The acoustical energy from the collapse of the plasma tunnel is enough to cause significant damage.

  3. #13
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    As to the value of those little surge protected outlets, I consider them to be slightly above useless. The protection level values on anything small like that means it will basically protect from a surge caused by something INSIDE your facility, but not from the typical stuff that comes in from the utility side. They are basically relying on the impedance of the circuit to their install point to help out, a LOT. But probably the biggest detractor to all of those small cheap devices it that even if they work, they work ONCE, sacrificing themselves in the effort. Without an indicator showing you that they are dead, you go on merrily thinking you are protected, and you are not.

    I prefer SPDs mounted at the service or the panel mains (or both) that have indicators that tell you when it's time to change them. Even then, the ones that are just little LEDs only work if someone looks for it and sees that it's indicating failure. I've used some that have a contact that closes so you can tie in into a BMS system to notify the maintenance people that it needs to be replaced.
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  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jraef View Post
    As to the value of those little surge protected outlets, I consider them to be slightly above useless. The protection level values on anything small like that means it will basically protect from a surge caused by something INSIDE your facility, but not from the typical stuff that comes in from the utility side. They are basically relying on the impedance of the circuit to their install point to help out, a LOT. But probably the biggest detractor to all of those small cheap devices it that even if they work, they work ONCE, sacrificing themselves in the effort. Without an indicator showing you that they are dead, you go on merrily thinking you are protected, and you are not.

    I prefer SPDs mounted at the service or the panel mains (or both) that have indicators that tell you when it's time to change them. Even then, the ones that are just little LEDs only work if someone looks for it and sees that it's indicating failure. I've used some that have a contact that closes so you can tie in into a BMS system to notify the maintenance people that it needs to be replaced.
    It has been a while since I read documentation on any "whole house" surge arrestors, but I seem to recall that for you to take any equipment warranty claims you still must have a local protection device at that equipment.

    They know that some surge may still make it past their device, but their device will have knocked it down significantly, so to speak.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwired View Post
    ....but I seem to recall that for you to take any equipment warranty claims you still must have a local protection device at that equipment.....
    Yes



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  6. #16
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    Check with SURGE SUPPRESSION INC. (SSI), 888-987-TVSS. [SURGESUPPRESSION.COM]. They have good literature. I have been to their seminars and watched the tests and results. Impressive.

    I have them on my property and they do work. Spec them in all my projects.

    RC
    It's my name going on that drawing, not yours. If what you want ain't right, it ain't going on the drawings!

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by robeward View Post
    My home church was rebuild about 15 years ago due to the original church burning down. The new church has suffered several major events ...
    Time to look for a different church.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by drcampbell View Post
    Time to look for a different church.
    God is definitely trying to tell this church something. Brimstone is next.
    Bob

  9. #19
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    I know of at least a couple old churches where they will tell you the current building is the third one they have had and that the previous buildings burned down. But those all were in the days of wood or coal burning heating and I'm sure was a factor in causing the fire.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwired View Post
    I know of at least a couple old churches where they will tell you the current building is the third one they have had and that the previous buildings burned down. But those all were in the days of wood or coal burning heating and I'm sure was a factor in causing the fire.
    Really old churches had very little in the way of space heating. Pretty much none in the nave where the congregation sat. Those were huge spaces (relatively speaking) and very expensive no matter what fuel you had. And they were only used once a week. I'd put my money on lightning strikes. In most towns before the turn of the last century the church was the tallest structure. Might still be true for many places today.

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