Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by ModestPenguin, Aug 5, 2006.

  1. ModestPenguin macrumors 6502


    Mar 5, 2006
    Yeah so my house was struck by lightning the other night, two nights ago to be closer to exact. Annnywho, the lightning put a hole in our roof, knocked me down the stairs, demolished my father's pride and joy, the 63" rear projection pioneer elite HDTV, including Reciever, Tivo, Dvd player, and the 5.1 surround sound system, all of which were protected by the top of the line surge protector of doom that must have weighed 50 thousand pounds. or like 30.

    So yeah.

    it also zapped our wired network in the house, fried our router, destroyed our phone lines, took out a junky clunky pos dell inspiron 8200 and my xbox 360.

    And this is the second time our house has been struck.

    Anyways I spent all day repairing our network, we bought a new wifi router, N is the **** btw, and the wifi works great but none of our computers except the mackbook on which im writing this could connect through ethernet so no blaringly fast internet for us. N is good but direct is sooo much better.

    Well I was rewiring the wires in the walls between my room and the router and successfully got a new ethernet cable run to my iMac, only to see that it could not connect to the internet. wtf mates?

    So from there I assume the wire i used was made ill by the lightning and get another one and just run it across the hall and into my room from the router, to make sure that this practically brand new cable is cool. Yeah no connection.

    Then I realized, it wasnt the cable, it was the imac, and the ethernet cards in all of the computers that were hardwired at the time of the lightning. It fried all of the ehternet cards. God damnit.

    That's cool, no biggie, new ethernet cards for tower pcs arent a big deal at all. But the iMac, thats a toughy. So I called the local apple store and ask to speak to a genius, apparently they were all with real customers in store so the guy asked if he could help me.

    - If you've made it this far into the post you are now awesomer than anyone who didnt -

    I explain the situation and ask if he could chedk to see if they have any ethernet cards for my precious in stock, he says that they do but they will still need to keep it for service for a couple of days, and oh, by the way, i'll have to pay for it, apple care does not cover acts of God. ( Not cool but we have replacement insurance so it could be worse ) OKay whatever, why will it need to stay, apparently the lightning could have damaged the PSU and also potentially the logic board. God Damn.

    So I ask for a quote to give to insurance and he asks a genius, apparently its about $100 to get the ethernet card replace, but if the PSU is also damaged, it could be up to $500 and if the logic board went kaput also it could be up to $800; thats not a biggie at all...holy cow.

    Now my question to you macrumors is, what is the likelyhood of damage to anything other than the ethernet card if when the lightning struck the iMac was still running fine afterwords and is in pristine condition other than the fact that it won't connect to the internet via a hardline.

    Thanks for any response and for bothering to read this obscenely long tale of woe, you have my apologies for any distress to your retina's or corneas, or cerebral functions that are important to living.

    Thanks again,
  2. twoodcc macrumors P6


    Feb 3, 2005
    Right side of wrong
    wow!! i'm really sorry to hear that. i'm sorry that this happened to you.

    man, good luck getting things back to normal.

    if the imac is working normal except connecting to the internet, i'd say that maybe it is just the ethernet card. if not, i'd say buy a new one before you spend $800 on it
  3. MattyMac macrumors 68000


    Oct 6, 2005
    Wow..that is not cool.
    I'm glad to hear no one was hurt...great thing.

    Hope things get back to normal.
  4. ITASOR macrumors 601


    Mar 20, 2005
    Oneida, NY
    Doh! Dude, there's a different between lying, and calling Applecare and saying that your ethernet isn't working anymore! :p
  5. Harryc macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2006
    New York
  6. LBmacman macrumors member

    Jun 15, 2006
    Strong Beach
    There was an episode on Mythbusters that tested this EXACT scenario. Were you using the iMac and the HDTV while the lightning struck? If you were, thats probably why they got fried. Sucks for you.
  7. Unorthodox macrumors 65816


    Mar 3, 2006
    Not at the beach...
    House struck by lighting once. Bad break.
    House struck by lighting twice. Get a lighting rod.
    House struck by lighting thrice. Move.
    House struck by lighting Fourice. Hire a shaman.
  8. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    If it starts up and appears to work fine except for the ethernet, it's PROBABLY fine. And you should count yourself lucky--it's more than possible for a computer to get completely fried just through the ethernet port. When you cram the ungodly voltages and currents produced by lightning into just about any part of a computer, it doesn't much matter what is and isn't physically connected--just about anything can (and will) get fried.

    You have learned one hard lesson of lightning and electronics: If you suffer a direct hit, EVERYTHING fries. EVERYTHING. The fact that your computers didn't just go poof is a small miracle, in fact. Even if the lightning didn't directly hit any of the wiring (which I assume it did), just the strike itself could set up an electromagnetic field and induce enough current in the wiring to cook pretty much anything. A ligtning rod would help, but even then you're talking about positively massive EMP coming from the cable going from your roof to the ground, and even that could be enough to cook more sensitive stuff.
  9. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    Maybe this should be another Apple commercial. "Apple Computers withstand 10000000 volts." Yeah thats an exageration.. I feel sorry for you dude, fried HDTV, DVD player, TivO, other computers. You guys have homeowners?
  10. gman71882 macrumors 6502


    Jan 12, 2005
    Houston, Tx
    Thats crazy, the exact same thing happened to my Parents :eek:
    Lightning struck near our garage and the EMP shockwave knocked a bunch of their stuff out! Including the ethernet port on their new Intel Imac.

    They are getting it fixed under warranty cause we didnt tell Apple that a Lightning strike may have fried it, cause we really dont know for sure what did it :D
  11. Collin973 macrumors 6502

    Mar 29, 2006

    Isn't a lightning bolt like 5.6 gigawatts or something? Just enough juice to jump start the flux capacitor...

    Man, sorry to hear about your place. I hope everything goes quickly with insurance. And, to be honest, I would lie to apple..."Oh my ethernet stopped working and I don't know why!!"

    Good luck!
  12. oober_freak macrumors regular

    Apr 5, 2005
    London, UK
    $100 for an ethernet card! A D-Link card costs max $8 here. Yeah, I understand it is hardwired but still.. $100!

    Next time I better be careful :eek:
  13. psycho bob macrumors 6502a

    psycho bob

    Oct 25, 2003
    Leeds, England
    USB to Ethernet adaptor? Save yourself a fortune and get back on the net. I've used them before and not had a problem, not as convinient as a direct connection but as long as it works right? :)
  14. ModestPenguin thread starter macrumors 6502


    Mar 5, 2006
    Thanks for the info guys. It's all amusing interesting and helpful. Anyways, yes the T.V. was on as was the iMac.

    Hopefully I was fortunate enough to avoid more damage to all the computers.

    Please please please leet there be no problems with the iMac.

    Thanks again
  15. Erasmus macrumors 68030


    Jun 22, 2006
    Hiding from Omnius in Australia
    Hmmm... Billy Connolly in "The Man who Sued God"...
    I swear, if some insurance company avoided paying me because of "acts of God" I'd start screaming, and have a heart attack. I'm atheist by the way, wich is why.

    So I guess ur not insured. House insurance? One of our computers (an LC) got pretty much fried, we got it classed as a write off. I think my dad must have got it working, maybe by spare parts (Well all I know is its working now) but we obviously can't insure it again, but seeing as it would be worth all of 50c...

    So, Check any kind of non-apple insurance, because surelly this could be covered by something, if not, good luck with USB-Ethernet.
  16. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    I grew up in an area with many thunder and lightening storms.

    When the storm was near all electronic appliances were turned off and unplugged.

    BTW, while our house was not struck directly, we had many many near misses. Suggest that you adopt this policy in the future.

    edit: spelling
  17. mopppish macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2005
  18. combatcolin macrumors 68020


    Oct 24, 2004
    Northants, UK
    Get a lightning TOWER installed on your house.
  19. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    Something in the general vicinity of 5 gigawatts for standard negative lightning (I'm sure there's a huge amount of variation), even if it only lasts for 1/10 of a second at most. Positive lightning is several orders of magnitude more powerful. Either won't do your computer any good in close proximity--if the voltages are enough to arc dozens of meters, you can guess that the're not going to have any trouble at all jumping past just about any sort of protection you put on your computer equipment. Unplugging it from everything is about the safest thing you can do, but even then a direct strike could easily produce enough induced current from the EMP to fry anything sensitive.

    As for the flux capacitor, if memory serves that takes 1.21 jigawatts to get running. Being that jigawatts don't exist outside Doc's brain, I have no idea what that translates to in real terms.
  20. ModestPenguin thread starter macrumors 6502


    Mar 5, 2006
    I live in Oklahoma, we get storms that pop out of nowhere all the time, this was one of them. And yes we do unplug everything when we know a bad storm is coming.
  21. ModestPenguin thread starter macrumors 6502


    Mar 5, 2006
    Oh and yes, we do have homeowners insurance, the nice kind that gives you the replacement value so to replace the HDTV we are gonna get a 61" plasma. Hurrah!
  22. kyleaa macrumors regular

    Jun 20, 2006
    The surge protector I bought just for my imac in my dorm room is guaranteed to protect against any surges, with $50,000 of coverage for connected equipment... It was like $25, I would be appalled if your 50 pound surge protector didnt have any similar warranty on it.
  23. mduser63 macrumors 68040


    Nov 9, 2004
    Salt Lake City, UT
    "jigawatts" is just a less common pronunciation for gigawatts. I hear "jigabytes" and "jigahertz" fairly often, mostly from older people. (I'm specializing in microwave engineering in school, and I'm also a ham radio operator, so I'm around older people talking about this stuff all the time.)

  24. Josias macrumors 68000


    Mar 10, 2006
    We have the powercables going to our house buried only 7 feet under he ground (moron Dansih public workers:mad: ), and the cable has been struck by lightening 3 times. First time it did nothing. 2nd time, it fried my dad's PC and ALL acesories, our TV, my brother's iPod (charging through Apple USB Power adapter) and a phone. After that, we pull evrything out we possibly can pull out when there's a thunderstorm (also phone plugs/RJ11). Last time it frie d our dishwasher , a phone (we forget to pull it out, and i fried out phone network, which resulted in a total bill of $200:p ). This story has no point, but too sad for the OP, anyway.:( Try and be happy!:D
  25. SC68Cal macrumors 68000

    Feb 23, 2006
    Your best bet is take the imac in, let them take a look at it and determine what is damaged, and how much it will cost you. From there, take that price to your insurance company and have them reimburse you.

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