Home: Electricity
Bad weather auto disconnect   (+1)  [vote for, against]
Don't wait until lightning strikes

Everybody tells you to disconnect electronic devices during a thunderstorm, but what to do if you are not at home? When I saw the disconnect system in the link the mental lightning flashed. Put a combined water and optical sensor on your roof. When the sensor gets wet and detects flashes all plugs on electronic equipment pop out of the wall.
-- kbecker, Jan 05 2004

Pop out plug http://www.kussmaul.com/ejector.htm
[kbecker, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

UK Lightning Detector http://www.meteorol...k/asp/lightning.asp
Output from a PC based lightning detector [oneoffdave, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Well, I'm sure our fellow bakers will find something to comment on, but there's sometimes I'd want this.

The only strike-storm I've ever suffered from took out the electric fence box and my phone answering machine - everything else was OK. There was a burn mark on the side of the house....The horses were completely bored by the whole thing, go figure....
-- normzone, Jan 05 2004

+ for the idea. But would there be a way to somehow wire this sensoring device to the main circuit breaker for the house? Would this make a difference? If the circuit breaker is off and appliences still pluged in, could lightning short them out?
-- v0rtexx, Jan 06 2004

[vOrtexx] You could wire in a main breaker with a huge contact gap but a lot of lightning damage these days does not come through the mains. Those are nicely protected. If you live in the US in a rural area you probably have a transformer can at your house. It offers near 100% isolation against lightning strike on the incoming high voltage line.

It is the ornamental plastic lamp on your driveway that catches just a fraction of the lightning and routs it straight into your house.

Those are the rational arguments. The emotional argument is that I would just love to see those plugs fly.
-- kbecker, Jan 06 2004

The best sensor to use would be a lightning detector and set it ot disconnect when the storm comes within a cretain radius of your home. Most pc based ones tell the differenc between cloud-cloud and cloud-ground strikes. An example can be found at the link.
-- oneoffdave, Jan 06 2004

can you not get it to check weather.com for bad weather where you are ?
-- neilp, Jan 06 2004

What about using a relay or something to cut the power?
-- Dickcheney6, Apr 15 2013

So, it doesn't turn the car off in bad weather...
-- whlanteigne, Apr 17 2013

random, halfbakery