Surge arresters and lightning arresters are often confused interchangeably. This is mostly because both of them are used to keep your electrical applications safe and secure. With the advancement and adoption of new technologies, and mostly electrical systems, it’s important to understand what is a surge arrester and what is a lightning arrester in detail. In this article, we will go deeper and understand the surge arresters and lightning arresters in detail and highlight the key differences that make them unique to their name.
In this article, we will explore the difference between a lightning arrester and a surge arrester, explaining what each one is and how they function and answering the frequently asked question about what is a surge arrester and what is a lightning arrester.
These electrical devices help protect your electrical equipment by limiting the voltage surges and the current flow. In the main current line, voltage surges often occur due to various factors like lightning, power outages, temporary overvoltage, etc. This fluctuating voltage can be harmful to your appliance. That’s where surge arresters come into place.
Surge arresters help deviate the excess current and limit the voltage to prevent overpressuring your electrical appliances, protecting them from electrical outbursts or short circuits. Surge arresters can be used for various appliances, homeware, or utility substation equipment.
The most common and destructive voltage surges occur during lightning. Lightning can lead to high transient voltage, sparks, surge currents, etc. Thus, a lightning arrester is used to protect electrical equipment against lightning.
A lightning arrester is generally placed higher, like on top of transmission poles, buildings, or towers. The system is well connected through ground wires and securely discharges the current using earthing. When the lightning surges, the lightning arrester absorbs the high voltage current and slowly discharges it through the ground wires, reverting back to normal.
Lightning Arresters are generally used for heavy appliances that need protection, while surge arresters are installed to handle common voltage fluctuations.
There are a few other terms you must be aware of when learning about surge and lightning arresters. Some of the major ones are:
There are various varieties of arresters when we talk about lightning arresters. Some of them are:
This is a contradicting question. Surge arresters or lightning arresters? After you’ve learned what is a surge arrester and what is a lightning arrester and analyzed their key differences, you pose the most important question- which one of them do you need?
To answer this, it depends on your needs and reasons. Both of the arresters are well-suited and perfect devices to protect your homes, eliminating your electrical risks. And if you’re looking around for arresters for your home security, you can get either of them installed.
Proper and dedicated maintenance of arresters is required to ensure complete security and safety. Be it a surge arrester or a lightning arrester, both require timely care to lead to proper functioning. Some of the general tips you can follow are:
Did you know that surge arresters can replace a lightning arrester, but you cannot use a lightning arrester as a surge arrester? As both surge arresters and lightning arresters are designed to provide security against voltage surges and transient voltages, a surge arrester can be used as a lightning arrester in general cases.
While surge arresters are more flexible and can handle broader outages, lightning arresters are structured to handle massive surge currents through lightning strikes. Hence, surge arresters can be used in place of lightning arresters as a temporary security measure. However, lightning arresters are more suitable to be installed in the long run to ensure the effective protection and functioning of your applications.
Both lightning arresters and surge arresters are important electrical systems designed to protect our electrical appliances from potential electrical surges and lightning damage. You can get any of them installed, as they are almost identical except for some of the key differences we identified.
However, after understanding what a surge arrester and a lightning arrester are, you must have understood how different their purpose and performance are. While you may select anyone, you must consider your needs and preferences in the first place to ensure a safe and secure environment.
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