Surge and Lightning Protection Devices

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South Africa is a country that frequently experiences lightning strikes. You can protect sensitive systems against surges and the dangers of a direct strike with surge and lightning protection devices from Virtual Sense.

What is Lightning and Surge Protection?

What is Lightning and Surge Protection

Do surge protectors protect against lightning? A surge lightning protection system protects a structure from direct lightning strikes. Lightning can destroy a structure and cause body injury. It can also play havoc on electrical apparatus.

In South Africa, we are experiencing more bouts of load shedding. Lightning strikes are also responsible for damage to your electrical appliances. Surge protection is "electrical protection" that ensures a zap from the heavens doesn't fry your devices.

Lighting protection can be achieved through the installation of surge protection system. This system diverts the path of lightning into the ground instead of the lightning striking a home or building.

Implementing a powerful line of defense against power surges can save your devices. Installing a protective device like surge arresters is a must. Protect your electronic equipment from surge currents. This is your first line of defense against lightning currents and surges.

What Do They Do?

Lightning protection systems and surge protectors prevents damage to electrical equipment. These include over-voltage transient events.

The idea is to block or redirect surge current to the ground. This is instead of the current passing through your electrical equipment. We connected your surge protection device to a conductor on the line side of equipment.

How Does a SPD Work?

When there's an increase in voltage such as lightning strikes to a power line, your surge protector device detects excess current. It then diverts this sudden hike through the structure's grounding path.

Your lightning protection system’s components comprise:

  1. An air terminal. This obstructs the strike.
  2. Conductors. These divert the electrical current into the ground.
  3. Grounding system. This creates a path for the current into the ground, protecting your structure or system.
  4. Bonding minimises voltage differences. These also create a safety risk.

    Do Surge Protection Devices Protect Against Lightning Strikes?

Surge arresters are not a fool-proof protection against lightning strikes. Any electrical equipment plugged into the wall socket may be at risk of damage from destructive lightning currents.

The best protection against strikes is prevention. It is advisable to unplug all electronic devices from the wall socket during an electrical storm. A charge transfer system can make a big difference, but it is better to be safe than sorry.

Do surge protectors protect against lightning?

These devices are designed to divert excess voltage to the ground, safeguarding connected electronics and appliances.

However, surge protectors are not typically designed to protect against direct lightning strikes. Lightning carries an enormous amount of energy, and the surge caused by a direct lightning strike is usually too massive for standard surge protectors to handle. Lightning can easily overwhelm these devices, leading to potential damage to the connected equipment.

For protection against lightning, especially in areas prone to frequent lightning strikes, it is advisable to invest in a whole-house surge protection system. These systems are installed at the main electrical service panel of your home or building and are specifically designed to handle the high-energy surges associated with lightning strikes. They can significantly reduce the risk of lightning-related damage to your electrical and electronic equipment.

Even with whole-house surge protection, it's important to remember that no system can provide 100% protection against the most powerful lightning strikes. For added security, it's also a good practice to unplug sensitive electronic equipment during severe electrical storms to further reduce the risk of damage from lightning-related surges.

What do they protect against?

Home surge protection is essential to safeguard your connected devices and appliances from the damaging effects of excess electric surges, particularly those caused by lightning strikes. While power strips and point of use surge protectors are commonly found in households, they offer only limited protection against minor electrical surges. These devices work by diverting excess voltage to the ground via a built-in ground wire, thus shielding connected devices from voltage spikes originating within your home's electrical system. However, they cannot provide 100% protection against more substantial surges, such as those resulting from lightning strikes.

To achieve a higher level of protection against lightning-induced surges, homeowners often invest in whole-house surge protection systems. These systems are installed at the main electrical service panel and are more capable of managing the colossal energy surges associated with direct lightning strikes. They act as a primary defense by intercepting surges before they can enter your home's electrical system. In addition to lightning, whole-house surge protection also safeguards your home against surges originating from utility lines, further enhancing the security of your valuable electronic equipment. For complete peace of mind during severe electrical storms, it's a good practice to combine whole-house protection with point of use surge protectors and unplug sensitive devices from wall outlets.

How To Prevent a Lightning Surge?


We cannot stop lightning altogether. Proper surge arresters or CTS could go a long way to preventing lightning damage. Lightning causes damaging electrical power surges, so any devices you can install to redirect or transfer the charge can make a difference.

Installing a cost-effective whole-house surge protector can protect your home in its entirety.

Choose power protection devices like surge suppressors and battery back-up devices. These are good current arresters. They usually create your first line of defence against power surges and lightning strikes.

Outdoor lighting systems offer effective protection against lightning from striking building structures. Outside lighting systems create a path for electricity into the ground.

Is Surge Protection and Lightning Protection the Same Thing?

Is Surge Protection and Lightning Protection the Same Thing

A surge protection system is an internal lightning protection system, whereas lightning protection is an external lightning protection system.

Your surge arrester protects your electrical equipment from an unstable power supply. It protects your electrics from lightning, switching, and other voltage instabilities.

We use a lightning arrester for lightning strikes. It is also useful for protection against associated surges.

Surge arrester protects the system from lightning, switching, and electrical faults. It also protects it from other transient voltage and surges. We mainly use a lightning arrester system for lightning strikes and associated surges.

Do you need Surge and Lightning Protection Devices? South Africa is in the top 3 countries in the world for the highest death rates from lightning. Thankfully, VSP offers a wide range of voltage surge protection devices for maximum safety. 



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    Virtual Sense Power supplies inverters, batteries and solar panels in the following areas - Helderberg, Somerset West, Stand and Gordons Bay

    about us

    VSP specializes in Lightning/Surge Protection and alternative power systems. The company offers state of the art technologies and services and is generally considered as a leader in its field. VSP is uniquely positioned in a country where 80% of electronic malfunctions arise from power surges.

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