Lightning protection systems primarily consist of five components: air terminals, down conductors, grounding, bonding and surge protection.

    Air Terminals:  Air terminals are commonly called "lightning rods".  They provide the strike point for the system.  They take the direct strike of the lightning bolt.

    Down Conductors:  Down Conductors are the cables that connect the air terminals to the grounding.  Each air terminal is required to connect to at least two paths to ground.  This spreads the electric current along several paths as well as providing redundancies.

    Grounding:  Grounding can consist of ground rods, a counterpoise and/or ground plates.  The grounding is the component of the Lightning protection system that dissipates the lightning strike into the surrounding earth.

    Bonding:  Bonding consists of making an electrical connection between the lightning protection system and most near by metallic objects as well as any metallic piping and the ground of the electrical system.  This prevents the lightning current from jumping to other metallic objects or inducing current in those objects.

    Surge Protection:  Surge Protection protects electrical equipment from voltage surges.  Voltage surges are quite common and can be caused by nearby lightning or normal fluctuations in the power grid.  Surge protection should be installed on all incoming electrical services such as power, phone and cable.  Power surge protection generally consists of two parts: a primary surge protector attached to the circuit breaker panel that protects large electrical appliances such as refrigerators, and additional smaller surge protectors that protect electronic equipment such as computers and entertainment systems.