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Lightning Arrester: Types, Uses, Benefits & Prices

Have you ever wondered what protects our electrical systems from the destructive power of lightning strikes? The answer lies in a crucial component called a lightning arrester. These unsung heroes play a vital role in safeguarding our homes, businesses, and infrastructure from the damaging effects of lightning-induced surges and overvoltages.

In this comprehensive blog post, we’ll dive deep into the world of lightning arresters, exploring their different types, practical uses, valuable benefits, and pricing considerations. Whether you’re an electrical engineer, a homeowner, or simply someone curious about this essential technology, this guide will provide you with a wealth of information.

What is Lightning Arrester?

A lightning arrester, also known as a surge arrester or lightning diverter, is a crucial protective device designed to safeguard electrical systems and equipment from the damaging effects of lightning strikes and transient overvoltages.

These devices act as a safety valve, providing a low-resistance path to the ground for the intense currents and voltages generated by lightning strikes or switching surges. Lightning arresters are typically installed in parallel with the electrical equipment they protect, such as transformers, switchgear, power lines, and communication systems.

When a lightning strike or overvoltage occurs, the arrester limits the voltage to a safe level, effectively shunting the excess current to the ground, and thereby preventing damage to the connected equipment. By acting as a sacrificial component, lightning arresters absorb the brunt of the lightning strike or surge, protecting the more expensive and critical components of the electrical system.

Types of Lightning Arresters

Lightning arresters come in various types, each designed to cater to specific applications and voltage requirements. Here are the main categories:

  1. Gapped Arrester: Also known as a rod-gap arrester, this type features a gap between two electrodes. When a lightning strike occurs, the high voltage ionizes the air in the gap, allowing the current to flow through the grounding system.
  2. Valve Arrester: Valve arresters, commonly referred to as metal-oxide arresters, are the most widely used type today. They consist of metal-oxide discs that exhibit nonlinear resistance, allowing them to conduct current during overvoltage events while remaining highly resistive during normal operation.
  3. Expulsion Arrester: These arresters are designed to interrupt the flow of current after a lightning strike or overvoltage event. They contain an explosive charge that creates an arc, effectively disconnecting the arrester from the system.
  4. Polymer Arrester: As the name suggests, these arresters are made from polymer materials and offer several advantages, including lightweight construction, hydrophobic properties, and resistance to ageing and environmental factors.

Uses of Lightning Arresters

Lightning arresters play a crucial role in various applications, protecting valuable equipment and ensuring the safe and reliable operation of electrical systems. Here are some key uses:

  1. Power Transmission and Distribution: Lightning arresters are essential components in overhead power lines, substations, and distribution systems. They safeguard transformers, circuit breakers, and other critical equipment from lightning-induced overvoltages.
  2. Residential and Commercial Buildings: Protecting homes and businesses from lightning strikes is crucial. Lightning arresters are often installed in electrical panels, safeguarding appliances, electronics, and wiring from damage caused by surges.
  3. Telecommunication Networks: Lightning strikes can severely disrupt telecommunication systems, leading to service outages and equipment damage. Lightning arresters are employed to protect telephone lines, cell towers, and other communication infrastructure.
  4. Industrial Facilities: In industrial settings, lightning arresters are indispensable for safeguarding sensitive equipment, control systems, and machinery from the destructive effects of lightning strikes and overvoltages.
Benefits of Lightning Arresters

Investing in lightning arresters offers numerous benefits that extend beyond mere protection against lightning strikes. Here are some of the most significant advantages:

  1. Equipment Protection: Lightning arresters act as a first line of defence, shielding valuable equipment from costly damage or complete failure due to overvoltages and surges.
  2. Increased Safety: By mitigating the risk of electrical fires, equipment explosions, and other hazards caused by lightning strikes, lightning arresters enhance safety for both personnel and property.
  3. Reduced Downtime and Business Continuity: Protecting critical systems from lightning-induced outages minimizes costly downtime, ensuring business continuity and uninterrupted operations.
  4. Compliance with Regulations: Many industries and applications have specific regulations and standards that mandate the use of lightning arresters for safety and reliability purposes.
  5. Extended Equipment Lifespan: By preventing damage from overvoltages, lightning arresters contribute to the longevity of electrical equipment, reducing the need for frequent replacements and associated costs.
Pricing Considerations

The cost of lightning arresters can vary depending on several factors, including the type, voltage rating, application, and quantity required. Here’s a general overview of pricing considerations:

  1. Gapped Arresters: Gapped arresters are typically the most affordable option, with prices ranging from a few dollars for residential units to several hundred dollars for industrial-grade models.
  2. Valve Arresters: Valve arresters, or metal-oxide arresters, tend to be more expensive than gapped arresters due to their advanced technology and superior performance. Prices can range from tens of dollars for residential units to thousands of dollars for high-voltage industrial applications.
  3. Expulsion Arresters: Expulsion arresters are generally more costly than gapped and valve arresters, owing to their complex design and explosive components. Prices can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on the voltage rating and application.
  4. Polymer Arresters: Polymer arresters are often more expensive than gapped and valve arresters due to their advanced materials and construction. Prices can vary widely based on voltage ratings and application requirements.

It’s important to note that while the upfront cost of lightning arresters may seem significant, the long-term benefits of protecting valuable equipment and ensuring safety and business continuity often outweigh the initial investment.


Lightning arresters are essential components that play a critical role in safeguarding our electrical systems from the destructive power of lightning strikes. With various types available, each suited for specific applications and voltage requirements, choosing the right lightning arrester is crucial for ensuring effective protection.

If you’re looking for reliable lightning arresters in Guwahati, Prabha Power is a trusted provider offering a wide range of high-quality solutions. With their expertise and commitment to excellence, they can assist you in selecting the appropriate lightning arrester for your specific needs. You can reach out to them at +91 9394879486 for professional guidance and installation services.

Whether you’re a homeowner, business owner, or facility manager, understanding the uses, benefits, and pricing considerations of lightning arresters can help you make informed decisions and implement the necessary safeguards to protect your investments and maintain reliable operations.