Electric plugs on an adapter

DB Board Surge Protection

It is vital to choose the right surge arrester and surge protection devices and circuit breaker configuration for your DB Board, and carry out in-depth risk assessment. 

Here are three things to do when looking for DB Surge Protection: 

  • Get familiar with the various types of DB Board Surge Protectors. Education is key and being armed with enough knowledge will set you on the right track 
  • It is vital to assess the risk of lightning strikes 
  • Use devices that will protect the Surge Protector itself 

The most debilitating surges are those that are caused by lightning strikes to buildings which can be calculated using methods supplied by the SABS. Risks are elevated if buildings are exposed – for example, buildings that are situated in high positions such as those on mountains or hills. Other surges such as those that are caused by the switching on and off by the utility power are also harmful. These are surges that occur more often. 

To protect a distribution board a Type 2 arrester is mostly required. 

Risk Assessment 

Assessing risk is usually a complicated process – start by pinpointing the areas that are at greatest risk and those that are not at much risk at all. Once risk assessment has been carried out you can then shop around for the right DB Board Surge Protection. 

It is a known scientific fact that lightning strikes 90% of the earth with some parts far more prone to being struck than others. Lightning density is measured per kilometer per year (ng). A good example is that in South Africa lightning density is 150 ng, and Belgium a mere 1 ng! 

Always install a Type 2 Surge Arrester and if the distance between the arrester and the equipment is ten metres and more add a Type 2 or a Type 3 Arrester. 

In certain territories Surge Protectors are compulsory when protecting large facilities and sensitive environments such as medical facilities, data centres and hospitals, among other. 

DB Board Surge Protection plays a vital part in the profitability of any business which depends on high-tech, sensitive electronic systems and devices. 

Hand holding touch lighting power switches

The Load Shedding Survival Guide

Load shedding is here to stay and has become a fact of life for all South Africans – the smart thing to do is to ensure you are prepared for this eventuality as and when it happens. It need not be all doom and gloom when it happens; instead, get creative and come up with some fun things to handle the problem. 

Here are ten things to do when the lights go out: 

  • Invest in gas in the kitchen – cooking on gas is fun and inexpensive and a novel way to whip up excellent dishes. Gas braais are also fun when the weather is warm and balmy – what better way to spend a night with your loved ones than in the garden or on the patio braaiing meat over excellent conversation? 
  • Candles are still a great option for lighting up rooms. They are romantic and can add an element of relaxation while soaking in a hot bath. 
  • LED is the way to go – LED lights come equipped with USB outlets, too, so that you can always keep your phone charged  
  • Always keep those LED lights charged – when the lights go out, they switch on automatically 
  • LED lights that miners use strapped around your forehead is a brilliant way to read or sew during blackouts 
  • UPS systems will keep your computer or other important stuff going long enough for you to save your work or to switch down any tools you are busy using 
  • Generators are also useful for running electrical appliances and keeping some of the power going in the home, office or small business until the power comes back on 
  • Pack your deepfreeze with ice to ensure your food stays fresh and nothing is spoiled. This is especially important during very hot summer spells 
  • A good book is a great alternative to watching TV – but if the silence kills there is always data one can use to watch YouTube movies and listen to some good sounds 

There are many ways to keep frustration at bay during load shedding – all it takes is a little imagination and plenty of patience. 

Electric plugs on an adaptor

When to Use a Surge Protector

Power surges are a regular occurrence and are here to stay. We need to think smart and out of the box – if power surges are going to be a major part of our daily lives. It is imperative that we protect all sensitive electronics against these instabilities, whether they are due to power surges from the utility, or whether they are a direct result of lightning strikes that seem to be part of the lives of South Africans across all our provinces. Lightning strikes in SA are high, according to statistics – more so than many countries (Belgium for one). We need to arm ourselves appropriately and with the right tools to ensure we don’t suffer expensive and unnecessary costs and damages to our sensitive items both in the office and home environments. 

Today we have a multitude of electronic devices which include sensitive PCs, laptops, microwaves and other machines that are made from delicate components. Microprocessors form part of the make-up of many of these delicate electronics – not only are they the bones of many expensive computers – they are also found in other equipment and electronics in the home. 

 The main function of having a surge protector might seem unnecessary, but if you would like to protect your machinery from being damaged during dips and hikes, blackouts and brownouts you should start changing the way you think. Many sensitive electronics are only able to function at their peak when they have a constant current to keep them running – a thought to ponder. 

Surge protectors are used for sophisticated electronics as these are prone to being damage. If devices are not damaged, they would more than likely have a shorter life span.  

Although PCs are your obvious electronic equipment that need protecting, numerous other electronics need protection in the work environment as well as the home environment.  

There is no point in getting a surge protector without an indicator light – these are essential as you need to assess whether your surge protector is in good working condition or not. Your equipment can still be exposed and could be damaged even if you connect all your devices to surge protectors. 

Computers that are connected to a modem need surge protection too as do phone lines and cables leading into buildings.