Damaged Equipment Due to Neighbor-induced Transients

Depending on the type of business and the neighborhood, it is more likely that external transient activity is from a neighbor rather than the utility.

Neighbor-induced transients are generated from the switching of loads. ESD and arcing problems in another facility don't have the energy to travel outside the facility, down the power lines, and into another building.

However, in situations where multiple, separate businesses share wiring or other parts of the power system, arcing-based transients are possible.

Reactive loads turning on and off generate spikes whether these loads are heavy motors or copy machines. The term "reactive load" is somewhat generic. Basically, any piece of equipment can cause impulses. The compressor motor in a soda vending machine is one example. Computers and their peripherals is another. HVAC and refrigeration equipment can also be culprits.

In general, two approaches are available to resolve these issues. First, depending on whether the offending device can be identified, and the type of relationship the customer has with the neighbor, repair, relocation, or even mitigation of the culprit is possible. It is often advantageous to bring the utility in on these discussions to have that "neutral" third party opinion.

Second, and the more common approach, is to provide on-site transient mitigation equipment. Whether this is on a per device level, or protection provided for an entire panel or system, depends on the nature of the transients and the sensitivity of the victims.