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Old 05-29-2008, 01:04 AM   #1
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This is wierd! please help :(


Ok, gonna try to make this short and sweet.

About a week ago, ive been noticing certain lights flickering. mainly just the bathroom. i racked it up to the bulbs getting old.

Well, this morning I woke up, and noticed that Half of my power was out. I figured the wife prolly was over doing it in the bathroom, ie, curling iron + blow dryer + hot shower. SO i went down stairs to investigate the fusebox.

Upon arrival, i noticed that no breakers had been tripped. I slowly went through them one by one, OFF - PAUSE - ON. and nothing. So finally, i switched off the MAIN, and turned it back on. and magical lights appeared.

Well, about an hour later, the same half of the power went out. Back down to the fuse box, no breakers had been tripped. So, i decided once again to flip the main. Nothing. Odd.

I went back up stairs to find out what was workin and what wasnt. Basically, half of the bedroom was on, half of the living room was on, and the bathroom was completely dead.

I noticed the fridge was off, but the stove was on. it was early, and i wasnt exactly fully awake yet, so i decided to make some food, and then do some more investiagting.

WHEN I TURNED THE STOVE ON... the lights magically came back on. I thought it was just an odd timing. And figured maybe the power was beeing wierd cuz its hot and maybe alot of people had there AC on.

about an hour later, the power went back off. same half.

I went to the stove, and turned it on, just for a laugh, and
THE POWER CAME BACK ON AGAIN.

now , this was more than just a fluke.

the power has gone off sever times, the lights seem to be flickering in the bathroom and bedroom more,

and everytime it goes off, if i TURN THE STOVE ON THE POWER COMES RIGHT BACK ON!.

any ideas?

i dont have alot of money (does anyone with this econemy) to spend on an electrician,

but if anyone can point me in the right direction, id surely be happy.

thanks.

Johnny

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Old 05-29-2008, 03:49 AM   #2
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This is wierd! please help :(


Hello Johnny

Call your power company you have a failing service entrance hot conductor which is opening one leg of your service. By turning on the stove (which is connected to both legs) you are backfeeding the one dead leg and thereby powering your 120 volt circuits of the bad leg via the 240 circuit of your stove.

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Old 05-29-2008, 08:07 AM   #3
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This is wierd! please help :(


Take stubbies advice, call your power company. I had a next door neighbor who had the same issue (I don't know if he figured out the trick with the stove) but I went over, pulled the cover off the panel and tested the voltages, one entire leg was dead. I told him to call the power company, they came out with in a day I believe and took care of it.
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Old 05-29-2008, 10:06 AM   #4
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This is wierd! please help :(


here's the problem, power company came out and checked while the power was working, and they said they couldnt find a problem. figures.

well, my wife had also called an electrician in our area. he told her that he wouldnt even come out and told her exactly how to fix the problem for free... "Call the power company miss, ..." and the he basically said exactly what you said stubbie.


well, i just heard the power in the other room go out, imma try to call them again.

*sigh* do they have to be here while the power is out?

johnny.

and p.s thanks for your replies
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Old 05-29-2008, 10:36 AM   #5
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This is wierd! please help :(


If the power company says everything on their end is OK, I would suspect a main breaker problem. Call that electrician back and tell him what the POCO said.
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Old 05-29-2008, 10:48 AM   #6
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This is wierd! please help :(


oh more fun, power guy came back out and showed me the voltage readings on there end was fine, and that it was the wires going into the house that had the problem.

fun.


thanks for the replies
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Old 05-29-2008, 11:37 AM   #7
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This is wierd! please help :(


How old is your current equipment?
It might be time for a new service.
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Old 05-29-2008, 12:11 PM   #8
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This is wierd! please help :(


OK Johnny then you will need an electrician to determine which leg of the service you are losing on the load side of your meter. My bet was it was on the line side and the power company would be responsible. Looks like we weren't that lucky.

As Househelper said next place to look is the main breaker failing or a problem with a very poor connection on one of the hot conductor terminations.
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Old 05-29-2008, 01:56 PM   #9
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This is wierd! please help :(


It is not really a strange problem. It happens all the time. You are losing a phase and when you urn on a 240 load it back feeds the lost leg.

Start with the main breaker.

Is your main breaker red?.

Does it look like this?






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Old 05-30-2008, 12:57 AM   #10
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Thanks guys, you all have been a big help. i dont know a whole heck of alot about electric, but i know how to talk off my electric panel and see the hook ups. so i turned it off and unhooked it. The Main breaker was VERY very corroded (did i spell that right? lol) someone had broken our basement window, and we had a moisture problem. the window was right next to the breaker panel. i had already fixed the window, but probably took to long to fix it hehe.

Anyways, all the other breakers looked just peachy.

Honestly, i debated doing this myself. as i know the procedure is "simple" . but.... well, i love to tinker.
but when dealing with this much voltage, it really didnt make me wanna tinker with it. hehe.

I ALMOST pulled the meter myself to cut the power to my house, but, meh, after i did some research on pulling the meter, the whole practice seemed unsafe.

Luckily, im a half way smart guy. so decided to listen to all the warnings, and get me an electricion.

1st electrician i called. i told him "I just need you to switch out the breaker, i have already bought the correct breaker needed, just need someone to switch it" ... he wanted 300 bux. I promptly hung up on him.

So , this is kinda bizarre here, and well, i know im probably talking way to much, but this might help some of you out.

I called our LOCAL power company. i got ahold of the local # through the national number they provided. I asked if they did any kind of work like this, and of course they said no.... but, they "kinda" recommened me to someone who could help and they trusted. kind of a "were not going to tell you to call this # and ask for Joe" .. lol but they did.

Guy came out, licensened and insured, quoted me 40 bux since i already had the breaker. Did the work, i gave him 75 instead. he was very kind and showed me exactly what i was doing cuz i was being the typical "So, what are u doing there?" customer. but he could tell i wasnt trying to "inspect" his work, just wanting to learn.

Anyways, id like to thank everyone for there tips and suggestions. I really appreciate it.

THANKS AGAIN!

johnny!
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Old 05-30-2008, 12:22 PM   #11
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This is wierd! please help :(


Good move on getting a pro to do this. And you got a good price too. Just out of curiosity, what brand is the panel and breaker?
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Old 05-30-2008, 01:13 PM   #12
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This is wierd! please help :(


everything was Square D
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Old 05-31-2008, 10:08 AM   #13
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This is wierd! please help :(


Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny138 View Post
everything was Square D
Thanks.

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