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Old 05-26-2013, 10:42 AM   #1
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Any way to trace an electrical cable?


I want to move the post lamp in my front yard. Hopefully it runs directly between the switch and the lamp as I simply want to put it closer to the house on that line, but it would be nice to find the cable without digging 20 holes.

I presume it could be done with an expensive tool; can they be rented? Hopefully though there is a clever free method.

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Old 05-26-2013, 01:27 PM   #2
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find a neighborhood kid with a metal detector and have him find it for you

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Old 05-26-2013, 01:55 PM   #3
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Can you tell where it leaves the house? In conduit or uf cable? I would dig to find wire where it goes into post, and dig where the new location is. Then try pulling cable.
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Old 05-26-2013, 02:05 PM   #4
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All you have to do is call a sprinkler contractor and tell him not to hit the wire for the yard light. Those SOB's will find wire evertime!
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Old 05-26-2013, 02:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by deverson View Post
All you have to do is call a sprinkler contractor and tell him not to hit the wire for the yard light. Those SOB's will find wire evertime!
Especially when the wire is only 4" in the ground.
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Old 05-26-2013, 04:48 PM   #6
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old guy showed be this you ever use cooper wire as divinng rods .... it detects plastic, metal, it is unbelievable ...LOL
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:18 AM   #7
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Utility Locator Service. hmm, around here it's 811?
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toller View Post
I want to move the post lamp in my front yard. Hopefully it runs directly between the switch and the lamp as I simply want to put it closer to the house on that line, but it would be nice to find the cable without digging 20 holes.

I presume it could be done with an expensive tool; can they be rented? Hopefully though there is a clever free method.
The way I found out how my line ran from my house to my garage, was start digging at the garage to about four feet, then start from the house until I could find the line in the dirt, and as I went along, dug down enough, to where I could pull up on the line to lift it.

It got even more fun, as I went along, due to we have two Soft Maples in our backyard, that I found had luckily grown the roots over and under the old electric line, so I was able to not have to deal with an embedded electrical wire.

It does get fun when you get to do this stuff during the Summer. Even better if you have really hard soil.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:27 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by sirsparksalot View Post
Utility Locator Service. hmm, around here it's 811?
Around here, if you called J.U.L.I.E. then told them you want to locate a branch circuit on your panel, you will hear a click, after the operator tells you to call an electrician, because it is not a part of their service.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirsparksalot View Post
Utility Locator Service. hmm, around here it's 811?

Not for privte owned runs so anything after the main meter location or demark location ( phone ou TV cable ) is your so call in a electrician they will have a device to find them.

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Old 05-27-2013, 01:43 AM   #11
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Here, the locator service will come on private property and locate before or after the meter.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:52 AM   #12
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Here, the locator service will come on private property and locate before or after the meter.
What do they charge for this service of tracing branch circuits?
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Old 05-27-2013, 02:02 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post
What do they charge for this service of tracing branch circuits?
I know our underground locaters in France some will do on privite or customer owned cables like branch circuit useally minuim of 100 Euros for it.

I done this pretty often and my sop is 100 Euros or more depending on the layout and what type of circuits they ran. But if related to the repairs then I will adjust the price.

Merci,
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Old 05-27-2013, 02:04 AM   #14
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IF you're having a service change (POCO side), there's no charge. I've never had to pay, and have done several.
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Old 05-27-2013, 09:08 AM   #15
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Around here, one company does all the underground locate...electrical, cable, gas, telephone. I believe they are just a subcontractor to the utilities.

As such, the field men are most times very helpful and ameneable while on location to help you out.

I do doubt that that is their contracted service though.

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