Lightning may have fried our TV & Tivo.

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jymbee

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Feb 20, 2018
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Upstate NY
One of those instantaneous lightning/thunder events where we heard both at the same time. Very loud and very close obviously. Did some quick checking to see if there was any noticeable damage around and noticed that the television went out. Would not come back on. TiVO DVR in the same compartment and no lights on that either. Unplugged everything, checked all the breakers & usual stuff and tried connecting to an outlet where I knew there was power. Nada.

Looking more closely at the TiVO there was an obvious "burn" mark next to the Ethernet connection. We have an underground cable from the "main" road about 1,000 feet down to the house. My theory is that somewhere between the road and house, the cable got hit and the surge passed through to the television.

Question is what are the chances that the TV could be repaired. It's a few years old, Samsung "Smart" 55" set. Don't know if there's any kind of fuse in this thing or... ? Don't want to haul it off to the recycle center until I'm convinced it's not fixable.
 

8Muddypaws

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Chances are the whole thing is fried. If you have to pay someone to fix it it's probably cheaper to replace it.
 

IBTripping

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Sep 19, 2018
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Virginia
Once the circuits on a TV are fried, it's beyond repair. Same with the Tivo. Sorry. But, glad you are safe.
 

Old_Crow

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Tom's Place, California
At least the TV and the TIVO are relatively inexpensive. I had my coach plugged into my shop when the shop was struck by lightning. Cost me a roof top a/c unit and a refrigerator on the coach. That's not to mention the garage door opener, police scanner and the stereo system I bought in Thailand in the '70's that were in the garage.
 

uchu

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Ontario, Canada
I'd say TiVO is a goner but the TV may be salvageable. It's easy to find main circuit boards and power supplies for many brands and models on eBay. But...It's still a crapshoot. Chances are, it may be all for nothing.
 

jymbee

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Upstate NY
Yep, you folks have confirmed my assessment: TV + TiVO = TOAST. Replacement TiVO on order and I'll look at TVs later this week at Walmart ort BJs.

There is some small measure of comfort knowing that it could have been much worse, of course not that I sympathize with Old_Crow's own experience with lightning:

Cost me a roof top a/c unit and a refrigerator on the coach. That's not to mention the garage door opener, police scanner and the stereo system I bought in Thailand in the '70's that were in the garage.

The 3 other TVs and mini TiVOs in the house as well as the modem & two routers were thankfully unaffected.

Here's a shot of the TiVO box after the jolt. Note the burn mark below the Ethernet port:
burnsm2.jpg

Don't know what to make of this and I guess I never can be certain what exactly happened. The power to house comes from a 1,000 ft. underground cable and the Internet comes from a completely different 1,000 ft. line some distance away. My uneducated guess is that the surge came from the Internet cable given this image?

A related question... the TV and TiVO were plugged into the same power strip, a fairly inexpensive model that I thought had some kind of surge protection. But would any kind of surge protector be effective in mitigating the damage from lightning?
 

edjunior

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Apr 12, 2005
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Roman Forest, TX.
It looks like you may be correct that the Internet cable zapped this. If it was not plugged into the surge protector, then no protection. They do make surge protectors that protect all that. you'll pay a bit more, but if you are in an area prone to lightning storms, it may be worth it.
 

Lou Schneider

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Lightning is a major problem at mountaintop radio transmitter sites. We've learned it's best to bring all of the cables entering the building into it at a common point and tie them together there. Not for example, bring power in one side and take the antenna line out the other. If the incoming lines aren't tied together and the antenna or power line takes a hit (in this case the power line and ethernet cable) a lot of the energy will flow through the equipment as it looks for a path to ground. Tying everything together before it gets to the equipment means a lot of the energy will directly exit through the other line instead of flowing through the equipment.
 
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