Storm & power outage


Old 06-12-01, 05:47 AM
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Last night a small storm passed thru. Thunder & Lightning.
The TV went out twice. (only the TV, I believe is on the line)All other appliances like microwave, lights, and alarm clocks were not affected and remained on. Once before this happened and all appliances plus TV went off, then on.
My entire house is electric.

My question is : What would cause only the TV to go out and everything else remain okay.? The TV is situated near a window and is close to where the powerline connects to the house. I have an outside antenna on the roof. If lightning stuck the antenna, wouldn't the house suffer more than a blacked out TV? I'm not sure if I should be alarmed. Electricity scares me.
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Old 06-12-01, 09:36 AM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fayetteville, NY, USA
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TV went out, but did it come back on?

The antenna, if connected to the TV, could conduct a lightning strike straight to your TV and kill it dead, or it could trip the breaker the TV is on. But it would not necessarily affect the rest of the house electrical system. That's not to say it couldn't, just not necessarily.

You could always play it safe when thunderstorms are forecast and unplug the TV and other expensive home electronics, and disconnect the antenna wire from the TV and/or stereo.

Good Luck,

Old 06-12-01, 11:29 AM
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Lightbulb Lightning & power outage

Hi Juice,

Yes, the TV did come back on after a few seconds. The antenna is not connected to the TV or anything else that I know of (I recent bought the house & haven't figured out all the quirks yet) I have cable and you can bet I will no longer use the Living Room TV in a storm.

Is it normal for only one appliance or breaker to be affected rather than the whole house?

I thought if lightning struck the antenna then I wouldn't be here asking questions. Should I check into a lightning rod? or is the antenna doing the job.?

- jay
Old 06-12-01, 11:49 AM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fayetteville, NY, USA
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Yes it's possible for just one circuit to take a hit. Remember that your cable wire is a piece of metal connected to something outside. I guess you could say that anything's possible, and lightning often defies logic in its mysterious manifestations.

If your antenna is truly grounded it is undoubtedly providing some assistance, but not much really. It will certainly be more attractive to a lightning strike than the golf clubs sitting in your basement! But it isn't accepted as a form of lightning protection.

A dwelling is not required to have lightning protection, but if you put it in it must comply with UL 96 & 96A. A lot of expense for something that's not required. If my home were high on a hill and was the tallest structure around I might consider it worth investing in, but ordinarily the house itself is not going to get hit, since even trees are more attractive electrically to a lightning strike than a wooden building.

Just like getting hit by a bus, the odds are stacked strongly in your favor. And just the risk of getting hit by a bus, there are ordinary precautions you can take to avoid it (like looking both ways before you cross!) Somewhere out there on the web is a list of ordinary precautions for being safe in a lightning storm. There are so many myths I don't even know whether or not some of them are true, like not taking a shower or talking on the phone during a thunderstorm. I couldn't tell you if these are true. Maybe someone with more knowlege on the subject will stop in here and clarify some more, who knows? I will say that the chance of that happening far exceeds the chance of getting zapped in your home!

Old 06-12-01, 11:51 AM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Every appliance reacts differently to voltage variations. It's a function of the design of the appliance.

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