Lightning Rod Costs

A lightning rod is one component of a lightning protection system that is designed to conduct a lighting strike to earth, thus protecting the building structure.

You will find that the cost to install an average lightning rod depends upon the building dimensions to be protected, grounding circuit length, preparation and special requirements, and the labor rate.

In the following table the Labor Cost figure is what the able and prepared DIY persons should expect to save by performing the corresponding tasks.

Install lightning rods: and other material necessary to provide a lightning-grounding circuit for the 2,500 sq.ft. single story L-shaped home’s roof, dormer, and chimney.

ItemUnit CostQuantityLine Cost
Lightning rods: 6 rods mounted at roof peak and chimney; copper clad, 18"; with fasteners.$40each6$242
Cable: 150 feet of braided copper grounding cable, interconnecting all roof rods and making 3 runs to earth rods; including fasteners and waste.$2.70per foot165$446
Ground rods: with cable clamp.$38each3$114
Upgrade: additional cost to install a whole house surge arrestor to protect electronic devices.$92each1$92
Material Cost$893each1$893
+ Labor Cost (installation)$36per hour16$576
+ Labor Cost (upgrade)$42per hour1$42
Total Cost$0.60per sq.ft.2,500$1,511


Other considerations and costs

  • Using aluminum rods and cable results in 20% less Total Cost.
  • Labor cost will rise with a “hidden” installation in a finished environment.
  • These prices are for service in the immediate service area of the provider.
  • Taxes and permit fees are not included.

DIY considerations

  • This project is somewhat suitable for DIY with good skills and tool set.
  • The installer must work on the roof and may need safety equipment (not included).
  • Electrical circuits and installations must comply with codes to reduce fire risk.
  • Copper material should not be placed in contact with aluminum material.
  • In some code regions it may be further required to interconnect the earth rods.

References

  • Craftsman Estimator Costbook, complete series year 2015.
  • Latest prices found on Home Depot and other vendor Web sites.
  • Literature review of DIY Web sites.    

Cost to install a lightning rod in my city

Cost to install a lightning rod varies greatly by region. To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.