A lightning protection system consist of many components. The key components, which work together to protect structures from lightning damage are air terminals, conductors, bonds, ground terminations, and surge protection devices. National lightning protection codes consist of UL 96/96A (Underwriters Laboratories), LPI 175 (Lightning Protection Institute), NFPA 780 (National Fire Protection Association).
It is important to note that a Lightning Protection System must be installed to Code. If the system is not strictly installed to code, the system may actually cause more harm than good. United Lightning Protection & Surge, does not deviate from the codes and does not look for the cheapest and quickest alternative. We strive for perfection and our one-of-a-kind installations are known for reliability, curb appeal, and most importantly functionality.
While some try to take shortcuts with code Interpretation, we strive on going above and beyond code.
"You’ve seen lightning before, and maybe you’re even afraid of it. You should be. The air is ripped apart and a sudden electrical discharge burning six times brighter than the sun connects with Earth." Here's how it works:
Lightning is generally formed when the air in the middle of the storm moves rapidly upward called updraft. The current temperature of the freezing air that is inside the storm, is approximately -13 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit. At these temperatures, along with the updraft of water crystals/hail, can create collisions that will become positively charged. As a result, a channel of negative charge, called a "stepped leader" will descend from the bottom of the storm toward the ground. This causes the ground and any objects (or people) on the ground directly underneath the storm to become positively charged. This positive charge "reaches" out to the approaching negative charge with its own channel, called a "upward streamer" . When these channels connect, the resulting electrical transfer is what we see as lightning. After the initial lightning strike, if enough charge is leftover, additional lightning strikes will use the same channel and will give the bolt its flickering appearance.
"Residential Lightning Protection Systems:"
A lightning protection system has two objections:
1) To provide a safe path to ground for electrical current 2) Prevent destruction, injury or death as it travels that path
The path at which negative charge flows downward looking for the best path to ground is called a downward leader. When the downward leader drops to approximately 150ft above your home the earth becomes positively charged and rises up anything better than air. Instead of lightning using your house as a conductor, it will use the best path to ground which is the lightning protection system. The upward leader called an upward streamer rises up the conductor until it streams out of the lightning rod to meet the negatively charged ionic particles. When the positive ions meets the negative ions, a lightning strike is formed transferring negatives and positives to and from the cloud to the ground and back up 4-10 times per strike.
NOTE: A lightning protection system DOES NOT attract lightning and CANNOT PREVENT a lightning strike. A lightning protection system simply allows a safe place to ground for the electrical current. If lightning was going to strike your home, it would strike whether the rods are there or not. To further dispel this myth all codes require a series of multiple air terminals (lightning rods). If lightning protection attracted lightning, all that would be necessary would be one lightning rod and nothing more. However, being lightning protection DOES NOT attract lightning, we must install rods in multiple locations. This includes locations such as ridge ends (location, no more then 2ft) and intervals (not exceeding 20ft)
BEWARE OF FRAUDUALENT SYSTEMS 1) Installer pulls up to your residence uninvited and says he can do your house "cheap". 2) Installer has a huge abundance of Aluminum only material. 3) Installer wants to wrap the cable around the gutter. 4) Installer has no documentation or proof of any certification or insurance.
If you already have a system installed, here are some key signs:
1) Aluminum running into the ground. 2) No bonds (grounds) on utilities, no bond on gas. 3) Missing lightning rods on gas stacks. 4) System is ran unprofessional, painted cable. 5) Phone number no longer works. 6) Installer ran cable around gutter.
United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge offers free inspections if you believe you may have a system not installed to code. Below are some installations NOTinstalled to code and are considered HIGH RISK. Please click the "i" in the top left corner for information pertaining to the code violation.
CSST Class Action Lawsuit of 2007 (Corrugated Stainless Steel Tubing)
Call United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge to Properly Bond Your CSST Piping. There is Much More Than the Standard "Bonding and Grounding" of CSST Pipe. Please Call 352-274-5718 for More Info.
If you have CSST (Corrugated Stainless Steel Tubing) in your house, please call us immediately! Bonding and Grounding is not enough!
The problem with CSST is that it is not able to withstand the electrical charge dissipated by lightning strikes due to its corrugated design and thin walls, according to reports. As a result, in the event that CSST becomes energized due to a direct or indirect lightning strike, the current will “arc” or jump across a gap to a less resistant pathway, such as nearby metal piping, in an attempt to reach the ground. Although the arc will only last a fraction of a second, it has been alleged that the temperature of the event is hot enough to melt and penetrate the thin walls of the CSST. If the gas line melts or is punctured, the gas inside can escape and cause a fire.
The thin walls of CSST put properties at risk for fire-related damage. It is estimated that the walls of CSST measure at a mere .011 inches (4 sheets of paper), 10 times thinner than the walls of traditional black iron pipes (40 sheets of paper). It has been alleged that unlike CSST, the walls of traditional black iron pipes are generally thick enough to withstand the energy produced during a lightning strike.
KLBK News in Lubbock CSST Causes Death Settlement Reached
"Why Choose United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge"
We have been installing lightning protection systems for over 15 years
We are an approved contractor for the Department of Defense (DOD) and have installed on many military complexes alike (NAS JAX, Eglin AFB, Duke AF, Homestead ARB, Tyndall AF). Included are tactical companies like Northrop Gruman and Lockheed Martin
We have been responsible for well over hundreds of UL Master Label Certifications and LPI Certifications with a perfect track record of 100% pass rate
We encourage our customers to check any Better Business Bureau or government agency. We have never had any claim of any kind.
The system will ONLY be installed/designed by the UL/LPI Master Installer/Designer. Never by a "Journeyman" or "Crew".
All lightning protection products that are installed on your structure are PROUDLY made in the USA.
Most of our lightning protection components are of Class II material. Remember, codes are the minimum requirement; we try not to install only to code, but to exceed it.
All components are copper (where applicable), Copper is a better conductor and a lifetime material. Would you wire your house in all Aluminum???
The system will be documented throughout the entire installation. We will take multiple pictures and measurements during the installation, and have a report issued to you after completion. Grounding will meet LPI's less than 50 OHMs to ground desired low resistance.
We NEVER ask for payment upfront, we only wish to receive payment after the system is completed and you are 110% happy with the installation
We have no problem with getting our system inspected. Not only do we not have a problem with it but we encourage it.
We are fully educated in the dangers of CSST and are approved by the courts to remedy the class action suit involving the manufactures of the CSST gas pipe
The lightning protection system will not only meet but exceed all code requirements: UL 96/96A, NFPA 780, LPI 175.
We have advanced knowledge in protecting equipment with surge protection devices as small as a tv to as large as a computer data center.
Many years of rewards, recognition, knowledge, continuing education, and high end projects.
A lightning protection system solely does not protect your structure against lightning/electrical surges that enter on the electric, cable, phone and data lines. UL requires a 3 step process to fully protect your home.
1) Install a UL Listed Master Label Lightning Protection system to all national codes. 2) Install a UL Listed 3rd edition 1449 rated Surge Protection Device @ your service panel 3) Install UL listed 1449 plug-in surge protectors on TV's, phones and other electronic devices to limit the voltage to 1 1/2 times the normal (maximum for solid state devices)
Step 2: By installing a Surge Suppressor at the point-of-entry service panel, you'll not only protect against lightning strikes, transformer overloads and problems from downed utility poles, you'll also expand the longevity of your electronics. This will protect all your large appliances, however this will not protect against strikes into your cable, phone, or data lines.
Step 3: Plug in devices are required to protect cable, phone and data lines. All these communication lines go outside and directly into your home. It is possible to protect these lines through the service entry however we always recommend protecting the device at the plug-in point. This helps protect against internal surges and let-through voltage from your protector at the service panel.
United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge is your number 1 source for protecting sensitive electronics from the elements of lightning.
Beware of Cheap Surge Suppression Devices
Vulnerable devices include but not limited to Garage Door Openers, Irrigation System Controllers, Microwave Ovens, Washers & Dryers (110V gas), Sound Systems, Game Systems, Golf Cart chargers, Refrigerators, Freezers, TV's, Computer, Phones, and any other piece of valuable electronic.
If installed correctly, these devices above can be easily protected with components like below.
United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge has the knowledge and know-how when protecting structures from lightning surges. We are experienced in installations as small as residential or as large as hospital data centers/ smart rooms.
Locally installing lightning protection in, "The Villages", Ocala, Gainesville, Crystal River, Spring Hill, Lady Lake, Tavares, Eustis, Leesburg, Inverness and surrounding cities. Servicing Marion, Lake, Sumter, Citrus, Levy, Alachua, Putnam Volusia and Surrounding Counties.
"United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge installs and services the entire state of Florida and provides consultation national and world wide"
Justin Lewis and United Lightning Protection Systems & Surge is certified as a Master Installer/Designer through the Lightning Protection Institute (Lic # 1097)
United Lightning Protection is a Proud Supplier of Surge Protection by Cyber Power. Cyber Power is UL listed under