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Author Topic: Power surge killed some appliances  (Read 544 times)

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Offline gspren

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Power surge killed some appliances
« on: April 07, 2017, 08:50:49 pm »
  On Saturday while we were at the DE house there was a wreck near our PA house that took out multiple transformers and quite a few neighbors have electronics damaged. At first we thought that our fridge was our only casualty and thought since everything else was off they wouldn't be damaged, wrong, the dishwasher, clothes washer and dryer are also dead. >:( >:( Has anyone had an appliance taken out while it was off? Is this something the Power Co should pay for or does it fall under Home Owners?
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Offline Kcwoodbutcher

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2017, 09:30:57 pm »
I would think that the person who hit the pole or his insurance would be responsible.
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Offline Ianab

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2017, 01:59:57 am »
Locally at least household insurance will pay for that sort of thing, especially if you can document where / how the fault occurred. Having several appliance go out is actually a good thing on the claim, as it suggests there was actually a power surge. One appliance failing can be just a random breakdown, but if three go at the same time, it suggests an outside cause.

We've had to claim for damaged appliances before, from thunderstorms and downed lines. Power company very seldom admit liability as they can't control storms and drunk drivers.  A friend did get a payout once when they dropped a 110kv line down onto a 3.3 kv local line. That must have made some sparks before the breakers blew  :D

And yes most modern appliances are still powered on to some extent, even when you switch them "off". Standby power for the clock etc.  A basic fridge wont have any fancy electronics, just a motor and thermostat usually, It takes a big jolt to kill those.
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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2017, 06:59:57 am »
I had a lightning strike wipe out a computer.  It fell under homeowner insurance.  I would think your homeowner insurance would cover that.  I doubt that the electric company will cover it. 
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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2017, 07:37:30 am »
The first place I'd check with would be my Home-Owners Ins. office!

It should be covered, then if necessary, they could fight it out with the utility co. and the one who had the accident!
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Offline chevytaHOE5674

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2017, 07:52:26 am »
Had it happen to me maybe 10 years back and my homeowners insurance covered everything.

Offline gspren

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2017, 08:01:49 am »

And yes most modern appliances are still powered on to some extent, even when you switch them "off". Standby power for the clock etc.  A basic fridge wont have any fancy electronics, just a motor and thermostat usually, It takes a big jolt to kill those.

 I guess our fridge isn't "basic" it's a bottom freezer and the freezer part is OK, there is a control board that sucks cold air from the freezer up in to the fridge, the control and fan motor both died.
Stihl 041, 044 & 261, JD 2355 4X4 w/fel, JD 620, Yamaha Kodiak 400 & trailer, Kubota 400 RTV,  P&M OWB, 75 acres to play.

Offline Den Socling

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2017, 10:08:17 am »
I agree with everyone else. Call your homeowner insurance agent. We have been hit by lightening a couple times and they paid for everything. One time it blew up everything on our local network. Since the shop, offices and house are all on the same network, there was quite a pile of smoked electronics - even cables. Another time, it knocked all the connections to wall outlets lose. That one is hard to understand. We got an electrician to take all of the outlets in the house out and tighten the connections. Homeowner's paid for that, too.

Online sandhills

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2017, 10:31:02 am »
Dad's house got hit by lightning years ago, it took things out all over the farm, didn't seem to matter much if it was on or not just that they were plugged in.  Worst part is it can be months before you will find some of the things  :-\, I'd also start with your insurance company.

Offline Kbeitz

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2017, 09:19:01 am »
I agree with everyone else. Call your homeowner insurance agent. We have been hit by lightening a couple times and they paid for everything. One time it blew up everything on our local network. Since the shop, offices and house are all on the same network, there was quite a pile of smoked electronics - even cables. Another time, it knocked all the connections to wall outlets lose. That one is hard to understand. We got an electrician to take all of the outlets in the house out and tighten the connections. Homeowner's paid for that, too.

I would love to have someone explain to me how a lightening strike can
turn a screw.
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Offline Jemclimber

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2017, 08:57:37 am »
It doesn't necessarily have to turn the screw. If the wire gets very hot and expands, but is contained, then it cools and shrinks it will now be a little loose.  In the same way using a weld then cool on something seized can loosen a stuck part.  With all junkyard treasure you have I would imagine you've used that trick a time or two. 

The same thing happens to tenons in chairs sometimes. The tenon expands, but is contained, so the fibers are crushed, then when it looses moisture it shrinks and suddenly a loose fit joint.

That's just my guess anyway as to how it could happen.
lt15

Offline gww

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2017, 09:34:32 am »
The worst part about it being covered by house insurance is most of them have a $1000 deductible.  I have had lightning take out phones and vcrs and such all at once and it ended up never being worth making a claim on it.
Cheers
gww

Offline gspren

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2017, 07:08:17 pm »
   Word today from insurance adjuster is yes on dishwasher because it's built-in, yes on refrigerator because aside from a control panel it also lost a fan, no to clothes washer & dryer because the problems are all electronic, $250 deductible. Earlier at the agents office they thought all would be covered, adjuster from actual insurance company said policy would need to have been written differently. By the way my current policy is that means no coverage for TV, computers, etc. I will be asking agent WHY I wasn't covered and what needs to change, maybe everything.
Stihl 041, 044 & 261, JD 2355 4X4 w/fel, JD 620, Yamaha Kodiak 400 & trailer, Kubota 400 RTV,  P&M OWB, 75 acres to play.

Offline Ianab

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Re: Power surge killed some appliances
« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2017, 07:14:22 pm »
Maybe your insurance company is the thing that needs changing?

I can understand them declining to cover one mystery electronic failure, but 4 appliances, 2 of which they cover, from a documented event really stinks. What they are really saying is that if the power pole outside your house gets struck by lightning and zaps every piece of electronics in the house, you basically aren't covered?

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