Month: November 2016

Do I Really Need Lightning Protection?

You hear the horror stories of houses being burned in lightning fires all the time, but what are the odds? Do you really need lightning protection?

How to Determine Whether You Need Lightning Protection

Strike Density

Here is a strike density map to give you an idea of how many times lightning strikes in your area. As with most things, green = good, red = bad. You’ll be able to fill in the rest. The legend will also help you.┬áBasically, if you live in the Southeast, it’s a no-brainer – yes, you need lightning protection! Home insurance companies dish out millions per year in this region for lightning damage. BASE Lightning Protection will travel anywhere in the country, but we do most of our work in this area. Areas north of the Southeast like New England also need lightning protection. ┬áThe only area of the US where lightning doesn’t strike much is west of the Rocky Mountains.

Valuable Assets

Beyond the strike density map, you also have to look at the valuables you have in your home. Will insurance cover your great grandmother’s wedding ring? Sentimental items don’t retain their value well once they’re destroyed. Commercial buildings should be protected regardless of the region. There are too many people coming in and out of the buildings to play a risk/reward game. Museums should also be protected in order to be 100% sure the collections they show are safe from harm. Not having a lightning protection system is like not having a security system. Most of the people won’t try to steal the collections, right? But some will. So if you have a ton of sentimental items, collectibles, or technology in your house, you’re better off to have lightning protection than not to.

Some HOA’s try to prevent houses from installing lightning protection systems. Check with yours before installing a system, but also remember that this is a safety issue. Depending on your area, an HOA has no authority to stand between you and the safety of your home and your loved ones.

Lightning Protection Doesn’t Have to Ruin the Aesthetics of Your Home

Many people don’t want to put lightning protection on their homes or office buildings because it may compromise the aesthetics. The blame gets shifted to the wrong person though.

If lightning protection compromises the aesthetics of a structure then the architect is to blame.

The King and Queen buildings in Buckhead, Georgia, is a perfect example of concealed lightning protection. You can’t see a single standard air terminal on either building – because there isn’t one. The architect worked closely with the lightning protection installer and they worked together to maintain the beauty of the buildings. You can do this by having the rails made with thick copper, aluminum, or steel. For residential homes, it is significantly easier to stick with air terminals. There are ways to get around it, but take a look at this picture and see why it may not be worth it.

 

concealed lightning protection atlanta georgia base lightning protection

 

That looks gorgeous. The cable is ran through the house and actually improves the look of the house. In fact, many people put these on their homes just for the look and don’t even have a lightning protection system installed on their home.

If you’re looking to build a home, consult with your architect to discuss how you can design your home in a way that will allow for lightning protection that is aesthetically pleasing. Then call us at (404) 895-6543 and let us go over your plans before you begin construction. The best way for us to make a house look nice is to start planning before you even break ground. Then we can go over your plans with you and decide the best steps to conceal your lightning protection system.

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