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Introduction to Standard Number 1930
Inspection, Reconditioning and Testing of
Low Voltage Surge Arresters

I. Introduction
The distribution class surge arrester is the most common type of protective device used on power systems today. Its application typically is limited to systems rated 34.5-kV and lower. The primary function of the distribution surge arrester is to protect the insulation of distribution class oil-filled transformers. Other typical applications include the protection of rotating machines and dry-type transformers. Most common in recent generations of arrestors is the MOV type or Metal Oxide Varistor type. Essentially, this device is installed just ahead of the load and it intercepts major voltage surges that might damage the transformer or motor.

The low voltage surge arrester is a sealed device. Reconditioning is limited to cleaning, refinishing metal surfaces as necessary, and testing. It is a relatively simple device but with major protective influence.

II. Components
Part and assemblies to be reconditioned under the 1930 Low Voltage Surge Arresters standard include but are not limited to:

  • Arrestor Body
  • Mounting Bracket
  • Terminal nut
  • Cable Clamp
  • Ground Wire
  • Nameplate

III. Testing and Inspection
The PEARL 1930 Low Voltage Surge Arresters standard begins with a description of the mission of the standard followed by the definition of the term "Reconditioning" as "the process of returning electrical equipment to safe and reliable operating condition based upon the design of the original manufacturer at the time of manufacturing." This is followed by reference tables used to calculate test results and tolerances and the necessary test equipment required by the low voltage surge arresters standard. The low voltage surge arresters standard continues with a "Recondition Evaluation," which is a detailed inspection of all parts of the disconnect switch, including but not limited to the components listed above. This is followed by identification and identification of the test equipment necessary to complete the standard.

The following test equipment is required to perform the testing requirements of this reconditioning standard:

1. Insulation Resistance Test Set (Megohmeter) 2500 Vdc minimum

Section II Recondition Evaluation-Inspection and Testing identifies each component and assembly part that must be inspected to determine the components viability and scope of reconditioning required to bring the component back to original operating condition. Results and notes from the pre-reconditioning inspection and test are recorded in the PEARL Reconditioning Evaluation and Test forms that accompany each low voltage surge arresters standard.

IV. Reconditioning
Section III Reconditioning Procedures describes how to recondition each component and assembly, beginning with the disassembly of the motor control unit down to its major subassemblies. Reconditioning for low voltage surge arresters includes:

  • Cleaning
  • Degreasing
  • Painting
  • Adjusting

Assembly of the reconditioned components and subassemblies is followed by final inspection and testing. As with all testing, inspection, and reconditioning operations, final inspection and test results are recorded onto the Evaluation and Test forms included with the standard. If a PEARL certified technician follows the reconditioning standard, the low voltage surge arresters assembly is eligible for a Blue PEARL Reconditioned Quality Seal.

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