DBS Satellite Dish Grounding and Transient Protection

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My house was constructed ca. 1965 and has two-wire 110V circuits (no Ground) within the house. In an attempt to surge-protect to first order, computers and appliances within the residence, I have installed an eight-foot Ground Rod and connected a whole-house surge suppressor at the service entrance. The Ground Rod at present serves only the surge suppressor, and ties the neutral to earth at service entrance.

I have mounted a DBS DirecTV satellite antenna about 80 feet from the grounding rod; this distance was mandated by need for line-of-sight to the satellites. Two RG6 co-ax cables with ground trailers run ~10 feet from the antenna to a Grounding Block on which I've also installed two gaseous transient suppressors; and then to two receivers inside the house. I propose to run an ~70 foot length of stranded #10 wire between the Grounding Block and the service-entrance ground rod. Is a 70 foot run acceptable from code standpoint (I've seen references to <20 feet) ? I have chosen stranded wire to obtain possibly a higher surface area than available with solid wire, to reduce impedance to fast-rise currents arising from nearby lightning strokes. DC resistance of 70 foot run is < 0.1 Ohm, so is very conservative for a static bleed-off.

Comments, please ?

Thanks, Ross


Senior Member
Northern illinois
Re: DBS Satellite Dish Grounding and Transient Protection

what was the neutral previously connected to? i am not so sure you can disconnect whatever it was previously connected to and connect it to a rod instead.

I am not sure changing to a ground rod or adding a ground rod will do anything for you.

the whole house tvss MIGHT protect stuff inside the house to some extent but if lightning hits your dish it is toast.

what you basically try to do is coax the lightning to go in the direction you prefer it go, in this case to earth. there is no reason to believe you will be successful, as lightning pretty much goes where it wants unless you get pretty elaborate.

the idea is to improve your odds. long runs of wire can have a fair amount of impedance in them at lightning frequencies. the rise time is so fast, even a little bit of inductance may look like a near open circuit.

i think you are doing about all you can that is practical. a new dish will cost you a few hundred bucks. you can't protect it against lightning with any certainty for that.

BUT, make sure you have not created a hazard with your ground rod installation by having a qualified electrician inspect it.
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