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Old 01-23-2009, 03:19 PM   #1
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Electrical Failures in House


Hi everyone this is my first time posting here. I have a situation that I would like some advice on. I just bought a house about 3 months ago and I have been experiencing frequent failures with electronic devices around my house. So far it has been 3 laptop chargers, 1 xbox 360, 1 Playstation 2, my dishwasher just quit working today (had garbled display ever since i moved in) and my dryer displays PF (power failure) on occasion. Could this just be one big coincidence or could there be something more going on? Is there any kind of DIY way of monitoring the power in my house and maybe some way to regulate it if there is a problem. Thanks alot

- Dave


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Old 01-23-2009, 03:26 PM   #2
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Electrical Failures in House


I'd have someone come out and check for a loose service neutral.

Do you notice any other strange things going on (lights dimming/brighten)?

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Old 01-23-2009, 03:37 PM   #3
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I have not noticed any light dimming around the house, I have noticed that my power bill is gigantic, about 290 this month even though I hardly ever use the heater.
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Old 01-23-2009, 03:44 PM   #4
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Honestly, I'd just have the power company come out and check their stuff, eliminate that and it's free.

Someone else may have other ideas.
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Old 01-23-2009, 03:59 PM   #5
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Electrical Failures in House


Quote:
Originally Posted by wirenut1110 View Post
Honestly, I'd just have the power company come out and check their stuff, eliminate that and it's free.

Someone else may have other ideas.
Agreed- do what doesn't cost you first and eliminate the POCO problems if there are any.
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Old 01-23-2009, 05:40 PM   #6
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Electrical Failures in House


In addition to the above, it is a good idea to get a "whole house surge protector" installed at your main electric panel and use good quality surge protectors at each outlet where you have something electronic plugged in.

This is expensive, but much less than the cost of replacing these things because there was a "voltage surge".
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Old 01-23-2009, 06:10 PM   #7
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Electrical Failures in House


Have you made any voltage measurements? For starters you don't need a continuous graphed readout. Measurements every few hours on different circuits will suffice.

As far as a gigantic power bill goes, have you tested circuits by turning them off except for one at a time turned on and observed the electric meter (easier with older meters that have a spinning disk)? This will help to narrow down on where power is being consumed and lead you to the appliance or device consuming excessive amounts. Maybe you have electric equipment such as roof ice melting cables you never knew you owned.

Do you have an electric water heater and leaks in the hot water pipes and/or faucets?

Last edited by AllanJ; 01-23-2009 at 06:13 PM.
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Old 01-23-2009, 06:28 PM   #8
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Well the power people just came out and said that their reading was 246v, they said that was good so I dunno what to do now lol. Guess ill buy some good surge protectors.
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Old 01-23-2009, 07:00 PM   #9
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Electrical Failures in House


I'm not sure your stuff is ruined; they may just have their brains scrambled by frequent dropouts. Pursue the remedy with the manufacturers. We had a dishwasher like that.

Lobby the power company to put a recording voltmeter on your line. They won't like to do that one bit and they may report that everything is fine, and then you have no more dropouts (this happened to customers of mine).
They don't want to replace degraded power line insulation any more than public officials want to use money to fix bridges instead of spending the money on their mistresses.

You could also buy a tiny UPS and try it with some of your computer stuff.

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