I’m having a couple of 20 amp receptacles professionally installed in the theater room, tied to 20 amp breakers. I like running surge suppressors but see that most of them have internal breakers of 12 or 15 amps (which logically would seem to defeat the purpose of 20 amp lines and create a weak link in the chain ... but what the hell do I know). Do I need to upgrade to one of the 20 amp surge suppressors like these to take advantage of 20 amp power?
If you intended to pull 20a of current, then legally I believe you have to use 20a-rated equipment on 20a lines. I wouldn't advise using smaller rated devices on big circuits, that's just asking for a house fire.
That said, neither of those are good surge protectors and may actually just end up damaging the gear rather than protect it.
Anyone who understands the nature of the operation of MOV's and line-inductance of a LONG run of parallel small-diameter romex when exposed to surge waveforms should know better...
It's really quite a scam and they should be taken off the market (IMO), they do more harm than good, especially to audio equipment in particular.
use a strip "surge" bar. You are better off using nothing, or a Y-splitter extension cord with no MOV's, or ideally... dedicated sockets and an appropriate length power cord from the get-go.
You are much better off installing a whole-house surge protector. (Ask your electrician.) Those are designed to redirect surge energies FAR in-excess of what those stripbars can do (and are about the same price: $100 protects the whole flipping house!)
It is VERY important that the conductors (bleed/ground) be as short
as possible with the least number of sharp bends possible with a solid grounding rod and impedance-tested. Otherwise the surge energy will still enter the house!
Chances are the surge is gonna enter the house no matter what, as even whole-house units still pass 600-1000v. LOL! (Read the specs on them...)
It is VERY important where the protector is placed. The closer to the mains ground, the better!
If it has 80ft of romex on it, it will be rendered useless because of how surge energy operates (and how mov-only devices operate).
I've used this brand for a few years now (ESP SurgeX):
They have very close to zero volts of let-through. They also have overvoltage disconnects on both the hot and neutral and don't contaminate the ground pin; and they don't care how long the romex wire is because of how they operate. They use gas-tubes, diodes, relays, mov's, capacitors and bleed resistors in an intelligent design that actually might save the equipment rather than damaging it further.
They are quite a bit better than most of the junk you'll find from other vendors. I opened one up in one of my other threads, they are very serious business inside!
They have a lifetime warranty, but you must adhere to all their conditions.(As per usual...)
The combination of using both should stop "most" non-direct strikes and other utility nastiest.
Personally I wouldn't trust any other brand, unless I saw the inside guts of their "protector" at the very least.
Ideally, the whole-house unit would be rated 200kaic and installed on breaker no smaller than half the size of the mains breaker. So for a 200a service, a 100a breaker. That way the trip-current will hopefully trip the mains breaker, killing the nasty power at the source! As you probably have guessed, it won't be cheap vs the non-200kaic rated units...
Something like this one: https://transientprotectiondesign.com/assets/Sales-Sheets/TK-TTLP-Surge-Protectoin-Sales-Sheet.pdf
That APC H15 UPS looked like it had a bad hair day there.
What would you rather have: working equipment or smoked equipment?
and it's made in America by Americans. (i.e. not robots in China....)
They mentioned that they have been to CES for a number of years now and NOBODY ELSE has even bothered to bring their protectors to their booth for a side-by-side demo (because they know they would fail to pass.) Gansta!
After seeing their videos and looking at the insides of their products, I believe them to be actually legit protection.
We have 4 SurgeX's at work, and they've all been working 24/7/365 for several years now being fed nasty industrial-zone power, and all protected loads are still working zero anomalies, even though each one has received several-dozens of surges without replacement
It was at that point I was sold on the brand, and I bought 7 of them for my home and HT. (and those too have been working 24/7/365 without issues.)
It helps me sleep better at night knowing that at least the expensive electronics like my rack will likely survive even a big solar storm. I won't be able to eat or have clean clothes the next day, but I'll have music.
I'd be curious to know if anyone in Florida has a SurgeX and how they've faired with the product because it almost never storms here on the east side of the NW cascades (like 2 lightning storms a year at-most.)
I'd like to know if any have EVER failed to protect their load, as that is the ultimate endurance test?
-My 2 cents