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Old 09-23-2007, 08:37 AM   #1
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Residential Power Drainage?


After troubleshooting a problem with my HVAC, I found that a phase leg of my whole residential service was dead. I informed the power company, and they installed a new underground service line. I've just noticed that this seems to have also resolved another problem I had been having for quite some time now:

We have had a slight dimming of certain lights when using, say, the HVAC, microwave, or a coffee pot etc. At this point, this seems to have disappeared as a by-product of having the new service lines installed. This leads me to the following question:

Is it possible with two-phase AC power, that our seemingly very high electric bill has been caused by a 'drainage' of power.

Is it possible that we were draining power by a 'nick', in one line of the underground service, without it actually shorting out until last week ???

thanks


Last edited by travlr; 09-23-2007 at 08:47 AM.
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Old 09-23-2007, 09:08 AM   #2
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Residential Power Drainage?


This "nick" was before the meter, correct? If so, I don't see how this would affect the amount you are charged.

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Old 09-23-2007, 09:27 AM   #3
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Residential Power Drainage?


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This "nick" was before the meter, correct? If so, I don't see how this would affect the amount you are charged.
Yeah. Kind of 'doh!' moment for me just now. I'd better go get another cup of coffee.

thanks John

Last edited by travlr; 09-23-2007 at 09:39 AM.
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Old 09-23-2007, 09:39 AM   #4
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Residential Power Drainage?


Has the amount of kilowatt-hours you are using change recently?

If you are questioning your bill, check to see if your usage changed.

Also check if your rates changed. (Ours just jumped 50% )
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Old 09-23-2007, 09:43 AM   #5
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Residential Power Drainage?


Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnJ0906 View Post
Has the amount of kilowatt-hours you are using change recently?

If you are questioning your bill, check to see if your usage changed.

Also check if your rates changed. (Ours just jumped 50% )
Well I'm going to have to pay attention and compare the past from here ..forward.
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Old 10-03-2007, 09:15 AM   #6
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Residential Power Drainage?


It turns out that the aging underground service to my house, did in fact have an open ground for quite some time ( a year or two).

It's my understanding that in these situations, on a two phase system, a load put on one leg will cause a the voltage coming through the meter to weaken. A load put on the other leg will cause the the voltage to strengthen (a steady surge).

This was demonstrated to me by the power company's service-man though a load test at the meter. I forgot to ask the service-man the following question:

If, possibly, most of the load from my house comes from the phase that increases in voltage, isn't it possible that I have been paying more for power than I should should have been?

thanks,

Last edited by travlr; 10-03-2007 at 09:19 AM.
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Old 10-03-2007, 11:41 AM   #7
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Residential Power Drainage?


Assuming the USA is using electromechanical or electronic kiloWatt hour meters, your electric bill will not be incorrect. These meters calculate power usage against voltage & current.

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