Opinions on surge protection?

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Old 05-28-13, 05:30 AM
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Opinions on surge protection?

Got an offer from FP&L last week for installation of a whole house surge protector (mounts at the meter) and curious what the pros think. The offer is free installation and $9.95/mo guaranteed price for 2 years. Already have protection for computer equipment and entertainment center, of course, but nothing for everything else. Had seen offers before, but never went ahead; frankly in my mind the surge protection should be part and parcel of the delivery to my grid (especially since they've recently installed "smart" meters; they couldn't have designed in the additional surge protection into the meter???).

Opinions? Good idea? Reasonable price?
 
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Old 05-28-13, 06:58 AM
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Why would you rent something for $240 for 2 years that you could buy and install yourself for $100 and will last forever unless you get a severe spike?
 
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Old 05-28-13, 09:44 AM
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I agree with Vic. It's nice that they will install it for you and replace it if it gets hit by a surge, but you can get similar protectors that will mount in or on your main panel and protect you just as well.

Something like this IMO would work perfectly:
Intermatic IG1240RC3 Whole House Surge Protector - Smarthome
 
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Old 05-28-13, 10:24 AM
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Ha....that's kinda funny...look at the 3rd review at the bottom of the link.
 

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Old 05-28-13, 01:28 PM
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I prefer to install ones that are made by the company that made the panel and that mount in a double breaker space, not somewhere nearby.

Ours cost about $75. It came with a warranty that covers replacing it and anything damaged by a surge that gets past it, for a couple of years IIRC.

Beyond that, we have plug-in surge protectors for sensitive equipment and a UPS for DW's "mainframe."
 
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Old 05-28-13, 04:10 PM
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I have installed the ones Zorfdt posted as well as the plug-on ones and I'd recommend either over a poco unit.
 
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Old 05-28-13, 04:42 PM
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Thanks guys. I just wasn't sure if the poco unit installed at the meter provided a higher level of protection; I figured in the long run it would get a bit pricey.
 
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Old 05-28-13, 05:29 PM
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The biggest problem is that you will never know if your surge protection is adequate until it is too late.

To my knowledge I have never lost a piece of electrical/electronic equipment as a result of a surge. About a half-dozen years ago (maybe longer) my electric utility offered the meter-set surge protection for somewhere around $8 a month. I kind of doubt that very many people took them up on the offer because I can't recall ever again seeing any advertising about them. It DID cause me to think about the possible necessity of installing some kind of "whole house" surge suppression system.

I eventually bought the Cutler Hammer CHSPT2ULTRA module and installed it adjacent to my service panel. I bought it from Harbor Freight Tools for about $100 and it turned out that was not only a very good buy but also a one-time deal. I bought two more of these modules (one for my sister, one for a friend) and the best price I could get was something around $150 each as I recall. The CHSPT2 module does come in three different "levels of protection" with the ULTRA being the highest level. These modules also accept "push-on" additional modules to protect telephone and cable TV connections.

Since installing my CHSP I have not had any problems as a result of surges, BUT I have no way of telling if I might have had any problems without the protection. I use a "Brick Wall" surge suppressor on my computer and a UPS on my TV, video recorders and DVD player. I may be minimally protected or I may be over protected. I won't know unless something happens that fries my equipment.
 

Last edited by Furd; 05-28-13 at 06:20 PM. Reason: Added installation phrase.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:14 PM
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The CHSPT2ULTRA is an excellent device and gives very good protection. I have the BRSURGE device also from Cutler Hammer; it plugs into my panel like a 2 pole breaker.

Amazon.com: Cutler Hammer BRSURGE Plug On Surge Arrestor: Everything Else
 
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