Presenting ROI Helps Sell Surge Protection

ROI helps sell surge protectionThese days it can seem as if budget is the primary planning consideration for customers purchasing or upgrading electrical and HVAC systems. Organizations of all kinds are watching costs more carefully than ever, and cutting back where they feel expenditures are not absolutely necessary.

However, customers who are reluctant to add costs to a Bill of Materials (BOM) will think differently about additional products when they are shown how they deliver a positive Return on Investment (ROI).
Surge protective devices are an excellent example of this. Making a case for the need to add surge protection is not difficult – and when the ROI is shown, it becomes an easy way to satisfy your customer while increasing your own revenues. The discussion quickly moves from the cost of surge protection to realizing a return on investment by protecting electrical and HVAC systems from damage caused by power surges.

Power disruptions are an expensive risk

You can make a compelling case beginning with the fact that the cost of power disruptions has risen sharply over the last several years. A 2018 study reported the total U.S. cost of sustained power interruptions at $44 billion per year (2015), a 25% increase since 2002. The majority of costs (70%) were suffered by commercial sector customers; the industrial sector accounted for 27% of the total cost.

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Understanding the Importance of Surge Protection to Boost Sales

Increase Sales with DITEK Surge ProtectionIn distributor and retail settings, sales are made one of two ways: passively or actively. In a passive sale, a customer comes in knowing exactly what item they want and purchases the product with no questions asked. Active selling requires counter sales, inside and outside salespeople, and even branch managers to actively assist their customers in finding the solution they need. The goal in active selling is to explain the benefits and importance of a product while appearing knowledgeable, so the customer is confident that they are making a good purchase decision. But before active selling can happen, the people doing the selling must first understand why a product is important or necessary so they can properly convey these benefits to their customer.

Case in point, surge protection has long been treated as an add-on or a “nice to have” for electrical systems and is therefore often overlooked. If the importance of surge protection was properly understood by low voltage, HVAC, and electrical supply professionals, active selling could take place. Surge protective devices (SPDs) should be seen as a must have for electronic system installs, leading to more sales and happier customers.


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How to Protect Electronics from an Aging Power Grid

Aging Power InfrastructureA recent federal initiative to improve America's aging infrastructure offers a glimmer of hope for a national electrical grid that a University of Pennsylvania lecturer once described as "a third-world electricity system."1 More than 3,100 electrical energy providers serve nearly 150 million customers in the contiguous 48 states.2 The grid switching required to meet shifts in demand makes the entire system vulnerable to electrical power disruptions, surges, and spikes.

Because much of the electrical distribution system is outdoors, environmental disruptions also play a role. These include direct and indirect lightning activity, wind-induced contacts with trees and vegetation, and downed poles from car accidents or rockslides. For example, in 2003, an unexpected contact between a distribution line and a tree resulted in a total blackout of Southeastern Canada and eight Northeastern states.3 Fortunately most disruptions aren't nearly as severe.



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National Electrical Code now Requires Surge Protection

NEC Code ComplianceThe National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is a non-profit organization that publishes over 300 consensus codes and standards meant to reduce the risk of fire and other hazards in residential, commercial, and industrial facilities around the world. Each code contains the acronym NFPA followed by a number. NFPA 70® is the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) and sets the standard for electrical safety in residential, commercial, and industrial environments.

First published in 1897, the NEC receives an update every three years, most recently in 2020, and can be viewed for free online. According to the NFPA, each update is the result of input from over 500 experts at national, state, and local levels, as well as members of the general public representing thousands of hours of meetings.

New codes for surge protection

One of the significant additions to NEC 2020 are codes that now call for surge protection in residences. Article 230.67 stipulates that all electrical services to dwellings must have surge protection devices (SPDs) installed at or near the service entrance, and that SPDs "shall be an integral part of the service equipment or shall be located immediately adjacent thereto."

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Why You Should get PoE and Surge Protection from a Single Source

Single Source SupplierPower over Ethernet (PoE) is a revolutionary technology powering critical technology that keeps people and buildings safe. Over the last few years, PoE has become the go-to-choice for a host of networked devices, including IP security cameras, IP phones, and wireless access points. What makes it so popular is its ability to provide both data and DC power to devices through a single Ethernet cable.
The "plug-and-play" nature of PoE makes installation of remote equipment easy because it does not require any additional power cabling. This enables installers to place equipment in remote locations, away from any service panel or other power source.

Power surges can harm PoE systems

However, PoE devices are just as vulnerable to the effects of power surges as any other type of electrical equipment. With PoE so commonplace, plenty of vendors can provide equipment necessary to install PoE-based networks. However, how many of them are experts in surge protection? Here's why that's important.

While it's common knowledge that lighting strikes can cause a momentary—but dangerous— surge in voltage, weather is only responsible for a small percentage of actual surge events. Most are the result of technology, including fluctuations in local electrical grids or powerful motors found in HVAC equipment or heavy machinery cycling on or off inside a building.

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DITEK - A Legacy of Family, Philanthropy and Industry-Leading Products

Team DITEKDuring the thirty years I led DITEK as founder and CEO, three guiding principles defined our company. First, treat each employee with respect. Second, only build the highest quality products. And third, never stop giving to your local community.

In addition to building a successful business our employees love, we’ve had the privilege of working with extraordinary charities in the Tampa Bay area. We've helped build schools, fund scholarships, and protect the families of first responders.

And to think, it all started at a Super Bowl party over forty years ago.

Chance meeting

Long before DITEK was founded, I was in my late twenties traveling around the United States in the sporting goods industry. At a Super Bowl party in the late 1970s, I met an entrepreneur who was making surge protectors in his garage. The technology wasn't as sophisticated as what we make today, of course, but I was intrigued. He understood manufacturing and I knew sales, so it was a natural connection. We worked together to turn his garage operation into a nice business.

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DITEK's New "Mix and Match" Versa-Module Surge Protection System

DTK VM2 Series Populated HousingsElectronic devices of all shapes and sizes require surge protection. However, placing multiple devices throughout a complex electrical system—such as a fire alarm or surveillance system—can make a complicated, messy installation.

To keep installations more efficient, DITEK has released the new Versa-Module 2 series surge protection system. Designed like the NETS series, the DTK-VM2 series enclosures offer greater capacity and a myriad of module combinations.

 Customizable surge protection
Representing the ultimate "build-your-own," customizable solution, the DTK-VM2 series makes surge protection easier for critical installations such as 24V Power over Ethernet systems, fueling equipment, point-of-sale devices, 4-20mA current loops, low voltage power circuits and RS485 data circuits.

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How to Calculate ROI for Surge Protection

2021 06 ROI 320The topic of electricity reliability and resiliency has emerged as a top-of-mind concern for many systems integrators and their end-user clients. While utilities, regulators, and policymakers struggle to protect the national grid, the average facility is more concerned about how to achieve optimal levels of electrical reliability and reduce future disruptions in power.

The reality is that the cost of power disruptions for most organizations continues to rise. In 2006, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory developed an end-user based framework that estimates the cost of power interruptions in the U.S. The last study released in 2018 shows that the total U.S. cost of sustained power interruptions is $44 billion per year (2015), which was 25% more than the $26 billion per year in 2002. The majority of the costs (70%) were suffered by commercial sector customers. The industrial sector accounted for 27% of the total cost.

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Protect PoE Devices from Power Surges and Other Disruptions

Outdoor PoE CamerasPower over Ethernet (PoE) has made installing equipment in remote locations convenient and affordable. One single Ethernet cable can deliver both DC power and data to low power PoE-enabled equipment, including IP security cameras, network access points and switches, and building access controls.

PoE was originally developed for IP phone systems and delivered only 7W of power. Over time, the technology has improved and can now accommodate up to 90 watts / 57 volts. PoE eliminates the need for additional (and more dangerous) A/C power wire runs to end-point devices.

Outdoor PoE devices are exposed to weather-related surges

While most Ethernet cable is relegated for indoor use, more and more outdoor systems are utilizing PoE due to its ease of installation and operation. The downside is this exposes PoE devices to the risk of power surges or spikes caused by weather conditions, including lightning strikes and other disruptions.

Like any electronic system, PoE devices and their internal components operate within specific current and voltage ratings. Excess current or voltage can damage delicate internal components.


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Electrical Product Safety Testing: A Mutual Trust

Electrical Product TestingElectrical product safety is one workplace compliance standard any organization, systems integrator or project manager takes seriously. Research statistics we see from IEEE and NFPA demonstrate just how dangerous electricity can be if work safety and health concerns are not enforced. The business impact resulting from careless electrical accident prevention ultimately causes downtime and costs both lives and revenue.

To help organizations understand and have the capacity to implement their own electrical safety protocols, The United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires that 38 different types of products, devices, assemblies, or systems used in the workplace be tested and certified by third-party organizations identified as Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTLs). Since its establishment in 1970, OSHA’s goal has been to create safe workplaces.





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