Safe to watch cable during lightening storm?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Frank Frandsen, Aug 29, 2001.

  1. Frank Frandsen

    Frank Frandsen Stunt Coordinator

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    I have all my equipment connected to a Monster Power HTS2500 power center. Last night my wife was worried because lightening was around and recommended turning off TV. I told her to calm down but later had doubts myself. I know they offer a guarantee for equipment damage but what if it was some subtle damage that only I could notice? Anyone have any first hand knowledge?
     
  2. Mike LS

    Mike LS Supporting Actor

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    You can certainly have subtle damage to your equipment during a lightning storm. I didn't get my system turned off in time once and the power flickered. When it came back up, it seemed like everything was fine, but I soon found that my CD player wasn't functioning correctly as a result.
    It's always a good idea to turn your electronics off when there's a storm. You'll probably never have a problem if you don't, but you can't predict how that stuff'll work.
     
  3. Burke Strickland

    Burke Strickland Second Unit

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    During an electrical (aka lightning) storm, if it is PLUGGED IN it can be damaged. Whether it is turned on or not. Surge protectors and lightning arrestors (and such devices as the Mondial Antenna Ground Isolation Circuit (MAGIC box) for the cable connection) can prevent damage from surges, but nothing short of total physical disconnection can save equipment from a direct hit by lightning.
    Having said that, since I have everything in my HT connected to surge protection devices, if I am at home and the power is still on, (which means the storm isn't directly over head) :>) I usually keep my equipment running. If the power goes off, I unplug the surge devices, which has the effect of disconnecting all the components connected to them from the power grid. (The cable stays connected to the MAGIC box, however.) The last time we had a major power surge, all my HT equipment survived fine, but my central air took a dive. (The AC has never been connected to any kind of surge protection device.)
    Burke
     
  4. Brian OK

    Brian OK Supporting Actor

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    Frank,
    Burke summed it up. Even if your equipment is off you can get zapped through you plug(s).
    I always unplug my two power conditioners (one being a Monster HTS 2000) whenever lightning is in the area. I also unscrew my CATV connection from the HTS 2000.
    Don't think "it can't happen to my house".
    Even if I am away on business, my wife does the chore of unplugging for me. And if you leave for vacation, unplug your gear.
    BOK
     
  5. Tim Hoover

    Tim Hoover Screenwriter

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    What about turning off the switch on the surge protector?
    I was curious if a lightning strike was sufficient to arc over the switch and still take out equipment.
     
  6. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

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    I had a lightning strike back in the spring, and lightning will do whatever it wants when it hits your place. In my computer room the circuit was tripped, the UPS shut down completely, and I lost several network cards, the network switch, set of speakers on one computer, a motherboard (but not the CPU, RAM or drives), video card, cable modem, a printer, and my stereo amplifier. Then in my home theater I lost my faithful Yamaha DSP-A3090, and the TiVo's modem shorted it out. Everything was on a surge protector but the Tivo's modem, the cable and the cable modem. The Yammy's surge protector wasn't even tripped, nor the circuit in that room. I believe the lightning may have come in through the phone and the cable, which would explain on all the network damage.
    Anyways, I can go on, but learn from my experience. The storm didn't seem that bad, the lights didn't flicker or anything. But it hit and did some downright wacky stuff. Oddly so far as I know no one else in my apartment complex had any damage.
     

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