whole house surge protector

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by theuser005, Sep 23, 2012.

  1. theuser005

    theuser005 New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    VA
    I am looking to install whole house surge protectors, I have few questions, I would greatly appreciate any comments/suggestions:

    I have two 200Amp service panels, Cutler Hammer CH series 42 circuits. Here are few questions:

    (1) which surge protector would you recommend? Leviton 51120-1 or Cutler Hammer CHSPT2ULTRA single pole?

    (2) Since I have two panels, do I need to install one in each panel?

    (3) I understand that surge protector should be mounted as close to the service leads as possible.

    Panel 1: I have 30amp breaker in position 1 and 3.
    I have two 20amp breakers in position 2 and 4.

    I guess I can connect surge protector to breakers 2/4, correct?


    Panel 2: I have 60amp breaker in position 1 and 3. (wired for future, not used)
    I have 15amp breakers in position 2 and 4.

    I have 20amp breakers in position 5 and 7.

    Should I move breakers 5 and 7 to position 1 and 3 and hook up surge protector to that or 5 and 7 would be fine?

    Thanks
  2. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,559
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Put the two pole breaker that supplies the device as close to the unit as possible. If you ever find the breaker tripped replace the unit, don't reset the breaker thinking that the protector still works.

    In order to know if it has tripped I install wire nuts and splice it on circuits already in use so if it does trip the user will know that it has tripped and the protector has did its job and needs replacing.

    You may also want to look at the breaker type device that one just replaces two breakers with. They all have close to the same protection values.
  3. theuser005

    theuser005 New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    VA
    jwelectric - thanks for the info. So, will I have to install one in each panel? So you don't recommend sharing any existing breakers, correct? can you please explain little more "In order to know if it has tripped I install wire nuts and splice it on circuits already in use so if it does trip the user will know that it has tripped and the protector has did its job and needs replacing."

    Thanks
  4. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,268
    Location:
    New England
    I went through this earlier this year...search and read that thread.

    If you can get a compatible unit in a breaker form factor...it might be a good way to go. For what I was doing, that was not an option. Having an external one wired into the panel has some advantages...most have status lights. Mine is right by the driver's door on the wall, so I see it every time I get into or out of the car.

    I put one in by Mersen (sp?) at my mother's after power zapped her frig controller and her microwave. That company has been in the power business for ages, but is better know for fuses.
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