Electricity has always been an invention that is renowned for making tasks of daily living easier, as well as being an invention that also possesses life-threatening risks, which is why every electrical system is composed of various components to both regulate and safeguard the electrical flows.
Surge Protection Devices are a device that safeguards the electrical system from man-made or natural errors.
Now, if anyone is new to the topic of Surge Protection devices, here is a detailed topic on them and other necessary facts that one should know.
Surge protection devices, or in short form, SPDs, are special and important electronic devices that are used to protect the electrical installation, which consists of the consumer unit, wiring from electrical power surges which is referred to as transient overvoltages.
Electric flow is not constant. There are times when minor hindrances might occur and cause a splurge of electric power surges which might cause temporary, permanent, or even worse damage to the electrical system. To avoid such instances, Surge protection devices are mounted in every household and industry electrical system.
Additionally, sensitive electronic devices such as laptops, televisions, washing machines, and safety circuits like fire detection systems and emergency lighting are protected by SPDs when they are connected to the installation. Transient overvoltages have the potential to harm equipment with delicate electronic circuitry.
Transient overvoltages are short-lived electrical surges caused by the unexpected release of previously stored or artificially produced energy. There are two types of transient overvoltages: natural and man-made.
Man-made transients are caused by the switching of motors and transformers, as well as certain types of lighting. Previously, this has not been an issue in household installations. Still, with the introduction of new technologies such as electric vehicle charging, air/ground source heat pumps, and speed-controlled washing machines, installations are changing, making transients far more likely to occur.
Most frequently, natural transient overvoltages result from direct lightning strikes on nearby overhead power or phone lines, which causes the transient overvoltage to move along the lines and inflict serious damage to the electrical installation and related equipment.
The damages caused by transient overvoltages are classified into disruptions, degradation, damage and downtime.
According to the most recent version of the IET Wiring Regulations, BS 7671:2018, protection against transient overvoltage must be provided in situations where overvoltage could result in:
In a nutshell, an SPD limits the transient voltage and directs the current back to its source or ground when a transient voltage arises on the protected circuit.
To fully understand the precise mechanism underlying surge protector devices. Here is a detailed explanation of how surge protector devices work:
There are several types of surge protection devices, and since each is designed for a distinct purpose, it is important to grasp the varieties. Surge protection equipment mostly comes in three different varieties. These are what they are:
At the location of the power energy supply, an SPD Type 1 is fixed on the line side of the main service entrance. This kind is utilized for outdoor applications and has a current wave that lasts 10/350 seconds.
It guards against external power surges brought on by lightning or the switching of utility capacitor banks. It is regarded as the house or office’s first line of protection.
In order to eliminate all overvoltage from supply circuits that are unlikely to be directly struck by lightning, SPD Type 2 is positioned on the load side of the main service entry. An 8/20 s current wave serves as this type’s defining feature.
Its primary job is to protect Mp/Mc-based boards and delicate devices by limiting transient voltage. Applications in business and industry use it.
To safeguard the end user from overvoltage, SPD type 3 devices are employed. They could be added to supply networks that already have SDP types one and 2. Voltage waves (1.2/50 s) and current waves (8/20 s) make up Type-3 SPD.
Its primary purpose is to restrict low-level surges that could harm delicate electronic circuits in TVs, computers, and other electrical appliances. Power strip surge protectors are regarded as the last line of defense in a network that protects against surges.
Aside from the main three types, there are two more types of SPDs one ought to know, Type 4 and Type 5.
Devices of the SPD type 4 are regarded as component SPDs. Typically, one or more Type 5 components are assembled to form component SPDs. Type 4 SPDs must be incorporated into other systems because they are not designed for standalone use.
These safeguard servo motors, PLCs, and other equipment used in industrial applications. They are also known as surge protection modules.
Discrete component surge suppressors, or SPD type 5 devices, can be installed on a printed circuit board, connected by leads, or offered inside an enclosure with mounting hardware and wiring terminations. These devices include MOVs.
Almost every household and industry’s electrical system structure must include surge protection devices. Here are a few real-world examples of surge protection device applications to help everyone understand how they might be used in various settings.
Industrial surge protection devices protect machines. These devices can safeguard machinery and systems in factories and other industrial settings, including safety interlock circuits, control systems, and telecommunications. Devices for industrial surge prevention are commonly mounted on a DIN rail in a panel.
Industrial and commercial surge prevention are similar in many ways. The protective devices, however, are frequently put in building management systems for offices and commercial purposes. Systems and tools including elevators, data centers, emergency lighting, computing, and other electronics and control systems may fall under this category.
Compared to their industrial and commercial equivalents, domestic surge prevention devices are often better suitable for lighter-duty applications. To connect home appliances and electronic equipment, residential gadgets can be installed in consumer units, electric control panels, or surge-protected socket strips. Surge prevention for appliances can reduce safety risks from transient voltage and electrical surges and offer peace of mind.
Every household and enterprise needs surge protection devices to safeguard electrical equipment security. These gadgets are crucial for safety reasons in addition to helping to avoid loss or damage to delicate electrical equipment.
Below are some of the major reasons for power surges:
Electrical protection is also advised and recommended in industrial areas by several regulations, such as the IET 18th edition standards. Power surges and transient voltage can pose a serious risk to people and equipment.
Knowing the risks connected with voltage spikes or surges will enable anyone to appreciate the value of surge prevention. Even while these occurrences only last a few nanoseconds or microseconds, the strain they exert on electrical equipment can be extremely strong.
Here are some benefits of surge protection devices that should further explain the importance of the devices:
Knowing the value of a surge protection device, the next move is probably to get the right surge protector for any electrical equipment. However, many different types of surge protection devices are available on the market, and they all have unique models and sizes designed for certain uses.
Consider the following advice to choose the proper surge protection device less difficult rather than pondering which one suits the needs.
Once people have the answers to these inquiries, they should be able to correctly identify the demands and choose a surge protection device that fulfills them.
Next, after choosing the ideal surge protection device, check out whether it has the following aspects to ensure that the device is authentic or not.
The above-mentioned points will prepare anyone to purchase after confirming that the SPD truly possesses the attributes mentioned above.
When picking a surge protector, it is crucial to be aware of the available options as there are many types of surge protection devices. Types of common surge prevention equipment include:
These are surge protection devices built into sockets or multi-socket strips. They are frequently applied in home settings.
These are often plug-in adaptors or power connectors that connect to mains outlets and have surge protection incorporated into the gadget.
These serve as adapters for the linked RJ11 or RJ12 connection and provide built-in surge protection.
Knowing the significance of surge protection devices, one might quickly assume they can be quite expensive. But contrary to the expectations, surge protection devices are less expensive than anyone might expect.
Surge protection equipment typically costs between $70 and $300. This means that a high-end system may cost $300 or more, while a cheap system might only cost around $70.
However, the price estimate provided is for the surge protection device alone. Along with the installation charges, the price can be a little more expensive depending on the electric system and the electrician, and the other essential components required for installing the SPDs.
Surge protection equipment is designed to provide the highest level of security for any electrical equipment. The best option is to follow the step-by-step installation guide provided below to guarantee that the surge protection device is fitted correctly and performs its function flawlessly.
At the source of the supply to the property, surge protection (type 1 or type 2) ought to be installed. This can be fitted inside the current consumer unit, fed from it and fitted in its enclosure, or supplied from the supply tails and fitted in its enclosure.
After the main switch but before any RCDs, surge protection devices should be installed, and an appropriate fuse or circuit breaker should protect them.
Numerous institutions require multiple protective measures. In doing so, a higher discharge capacity is achieved while a reduced residual voltage is guaranteed.
A minimum distance of 10 m must be kept between protection devices to achieve coordinated actuation of protection stages based on various technologies. As a result, most of the energy is released by activating P1, the initial phase of protection. The second step (P2) will then reduce the residual voltage at the first protection device’s output.
A combination protection device must be employed, or decoupling coils must be installed to replicate the cable clearance in panels where the two protection stages are centrally located, and there is no 10 m clearance.
The length and kind of cabling are essential for the device to receive as little electricity as possible. The efficiency of overvoltage protection is decreased as feed wires to the protection device get longer. These conductors should be as brief as feasible for the best protection. The efficiency of a V-cable can diminish this effect on the input and output device.
Regarding the current path, the total length of the conductors should be between 0.5 and 1 meters.
LIVE + CPC = <0.5M (Max 1M)
NEUTRAL + CPC = <0.5M (Max 1M)
To further eliminate smaller transients, type 3 protection should be positioned close to the equipment it protects if it is necessary for sensitive electronics.
The surge protection device needs special consideration regarding its end of life. Every time there is a lightning strike, its parts get older.
A surge protection device’s internal device disconnects it from the supply when it reaches the end of its useful life. The status that necessitates the replacement of the pertinent module is shown by an indicator fixed in the protector and alert feedback.
The surge protection device may short circuit and be destroyed if its limit capacities are exceeded. The surge protection device must consequently have a device fitted in series upstream of it.
Surge protection devices are connected in parallel with the installation to be protected downstream of a circuit breaker or fuse. Installing a second disconnection element, F2, may be necessary, depending on the size of the fuse. In particular, where the caliber of F1 exceeds a specific value, the installation of the F2 element is required. The technical literature for each protector specifies this value, which varies for each protection.
Surge protectors protect electrical devices from accidental voltage spikes that may harm the electrical devices and the person using them. So naturally, when it comes to installing it, everyone should follow some safety tips. They are:
Surge protection devices are a must in every household and industry. These devices ensure that the electric system and the people nearby are safe from any unprecedented electric power surge. With the appropriate Surge protection device, one can feel at ease at the home, office, and anywhere. If you are on a hunt for SPDs for your business or wholesale, you could visit beny.com which provides you with a range of durable SPDs that ensure seamless performance for a long time.