Protect Your Home From Lightning
Reduce the risk of property damage with a home lightning-protection system.
Lightning strikes can cause serious property damage, resulting in hundreds of thousands of insurance claims annually and millions of dollars in damages. A lightning-protection system can’t prevent your home from being struck, but it can reduce the damage and injuries lightning causes.
What Is a Home Lightning-protection System?
A lightning-protection system is a set of components that work together to conduct the force of a lightning strike to the ground by creating a path of least resistance. Without this path, lightning can use any conductor inside your home—including phone lines, electrical lines and water or gas pipes—to get to the ground, causing significant damage.
Typically, home lightning-protection systems include these components:
- Lightning rods: Copper or aluminum rods designed to intercept the lightning strike — mounted to your roof at regular intervals
- Main conductors: Metal cables that connect the lightning rods to other parts of the system
- Grounds: More than two rods driven at least 10 feet into the ground to direct the current away from the structure
- Bonds: Bonds connect lightning rods and grounds to the main conductor to prevent lightning from jumping between multiple objects
- Surge suppressors: These are installed at the main electrical panel to prevent an increase in electrical current from starting a fire
Why Should I Invest in a Home Lightning-protection System?
Lightning-protection systems can cost as little as $150 or as much as $3,300, depending on how many rods and cables are installed. They’re worth the investment. Consider purchasing a protection system if:
- Your home has been struck by lightning. Lightning does strike the same place twice. According to the National Weather Service, the Empire State Building is struck by lightning an average of 100 times per year.
- Electrical storms are common in your area. If a bolt strikes a nearby power line, it can travel into your home through plumbing or electrical wiring.
- Your neighbors have installed protection systems. Lightning can sometimes side-flash from one structure to another. If your neighbors are protected, you should be too.
- You have trees taller than your home fewer than 10 feet away. The Lightning Protection Institute recommends installing protection systems on tall trees, as they do not offer protection from lightning strikes.