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Old 06-30-2010, 10:30 AM   #1
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is 126 too high? standard?


i checked the voltage in several outlets with 3 different meters, one of them is professional grade fluke.....i get reading between 123 and 126.

searching the net, i find several answers: 110+/- 10%, 120+/- 10%. 110-130....

is there a power company or industry standard (nominal and tolerance or range)??

is 126 too high?

thanks

Last edited by drgkjd; 06-30-2010 at 10:31 AM. Reason: missing bracket
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:16 PM   #2
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You are getting about 10% more power for a given load at 126V line than for a 120V Line because the power you get is related to E.
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:22 PM   #3
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yes, i understand that: P=VxI=VxV/R=IxIxR right?

but my question is-- is 126 V out of range?

thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaliBob View Post
You are getting about 10% more power for a given load at 126V line than for a 120V Line because the power you get is related to E.
.
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Old 06-30-2010, 02:05 PM   #4
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In MD it's 120 +/- 5% but I've heard of places where it's +/- 10%. With this wider range, incand. lamp life can range from 1/4th rated lifetime to 4x rated value.

But even the secretary at the PoCo knew, and told me, that our PoCo is under no obligations regarding power quality.

The pole trsfrmr is right outside my house and I get 122, 123. I assume the people at the end of this run are getting 114v or so.

If other voltages in your house are on the low side of 120v you may have a bad neutral.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 06-30-2010 at 02:13 PM.
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Old 06-30-2010, 02:44 PM   #5
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Just curious, what does your power read leg to leg - 252VAC?
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Old 06-30-2010, 03:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post

But even the secretary at the PoCo knew, and told me, that our PoCo is under no obligations regarding power quality.
.
She lied. There are federal regs and in most states, state regs that the POCO must abide by. If they do not, they are subject to liability for damages caused by the variations as well as administrative actions from the state or fed PSC.



from the New Jersey Administration Code:

Quote:
(a) EDCs supplying electrical energy on a constant potential system shall adopt and maintain a standard average value of voltage as measured at the point of attachment to the customer‘s wiring; and the normal variations, as measured by a standardized voltmeter, shall not vary for periods exceeding five minutes for service supplied at 150 volts or less to ground more than four percent above, nor more than four percent below said standard average voltage for said location, which is in force at the time; provided, however, the variations in voltage caused by the operation of apparatus in the customer‘s premises in violation of the utility‘s rules, the action of the elements, or other causes beyond the EDC‘s control shall not be considered a violation of this provision.
That means your voltage should not exceed 124.8 volts for any more than 5 minutes.

Last edited by nap; 06-30-2010 at 04:06 PM.
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Old 06-30-2010, 04:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
But even the secretary at the PoCo knew, and told me, that our PoCo is under no obligations regarding power quality.
Sounds like they might want to read their own manual, if BGE.

From the BGE website. BGE serves a large portion of the Maryland area.

http://www.bge.com/portal/site/bge/m...2000004317670a____

Here is the section from the Maryland Public Service Commission rules which regulates the utilities.

http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/com...0.50.07.02.htm

Here is the whole.

http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/Sub...earch=20.50.07.*
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:09 AM   #8
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125 volts on each leg to neutral is abnormally high but still happens because,
1. The pole transformer or (if any) voltage regulator is out of adjustment, or,
2. The wires are too thin or the transformer is undersized, and the first house gets 125 volts during off peak times in order that the last house will get at least 105 volts during on-peak times.
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Old 07-01-2010, 11:43 AM   #9
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Yeah that seems out of whack. I get 119 / 121 or so. It may move around if I power on big things.

While some equipment may be able to compensate such as newer computer power supplies, it may be bad for other equipment that does not have much voltage regulation.
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanJ View Post
125 volts on each leg to neutral is abnormally high but still happens because,
1. The pole transformer or (if any) voltage regulator is out of adjustment, or,
2. The wires are too thin or the transformer is undersized, and the first house gets 125 volts during off peak times in order that the last house will get at least 105 volts during on-peak times.
actually, 125 is acceptable in most any area I have dealt with. OP is in a very restrictive area that only allows 4%+-; 5% is more common.

Even at 4%, that would allow 124.8 volts and since the op is not measuring at the supply connection (which is the only place it matters) and they are getting readings as low as 123 by using a different meter, I would suggest they do not have much of a problem. They need to find and use a good meter and they need to take a measurement at the POCO connection (main service feed). Only then will the measurements mean anything when it comes to supply power.

As it is, it may be an internal (house) problem for all we know.

just so everybody knows: NEMA (national electrical manufacturers association) sets a standard of tolerance of equipment at +- 10% of nameplate voltage.
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Old 07-02-2010, 11:48 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nap View Post
She lied.
federal regs
state regs
must abide by.
liability for damages
I think she was giving me real-world advice.

PoCo has a financial incentive to send me, and sell me, 5% more volts (10% more kwh).
Imagine me trying to prove in court that the life of my appliances was unduly shortened because of PoCo's greed. Their attack-dog lawyers would make mincemeat out of me regardless of the merits of my case.
It also helps if, beforehand, they have taken the trouble to buy a few judges.
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Old 07-02-2010, 04:27 PM   #12
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if you have a recording meter laying around (I actually know some guys that do), you hook it up and let it record.

they are mandated by state (in most cases) and federal law to provide a certain level of voltage and frequency and even how clean the power is in many places. They have a huge liability if they do not take efforts to maintain the required standards plus the public service commission or public utilities commission often has the power to fine them for lack of maintaining their systems.



Quote:
I think she was giving me real-world advice.
you said she said they were not required to maintain any specific tolerance. If that is what she said, she lied. It has nothing to do with real world advice.

Most PSC or PUCs also require the POCO to document their systems voltages and freq as well. Unless they want to lie to a government agency (that happens to control their rate hikes), they are not going to phony the documentation. In fact, most of them have automatic recorders running 24/7 just to keep record of their system.
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Old 07-02-2010, 08:15 PM   #13
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Re: PoCo and who watches them, 'Regulatory Capture' is the first thing that comes to mind, for which Stigler won a Nobel Prize in economics in the 80s.

I hope I come across as a skeptic and not a cynic, but laws are made for the little people to obey.

If you want to experience this first-hand, speak the truth to power.
You will probably be publicly discredited.
Then, depending on the nature of 'your offense' you will be investigated.
The least likely outcomes here in the US is that you will be rewarded or you will be 'made to disappear'.

The TelCo, GaCo and the WaCo can probably do whatever they want as long as their misdeeds don't become too public and too outrageous. And I know of a subway system that kills and maims people, over decades, and they are still in business and seemingly unrepentant.

C. Fred Alford wrote a good book on this subject. The truth really is awful.
Also, The Balek Scales, by Heinrich Boll, really captures this idea.

Anyway,
high voltage - bad,
lower voltage - usually not bad [but motors don't like it].

Last edited by Yoyizit; 07-02-2010 at 08:21 PM.
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Old 07-02-2010, 08:21 PM   #14
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Quote:
=Yoyizit;464573]

If you want to experience this first-hand, speak the truth to power.
You will probably be publicly discredited.
Then, depending on the nature of 'your offense' you will be investigated.
The least likely outcomes here in the US is that you will be rewarded or you will be 'made to disappear'.
I understand what you are saying, and what you meant. I am just the noisemaker that does what one can to hold them to the rules. It is hard to fight big money though.


Quote:
Anyway,
high voltage - bad,
lower voltage - usually not bad [but motors don't like it].
actually, in most cases, unless we are talking about way high voltage, high voltage is better. Electronics generally can limit voltage but they cannot increase a low voltage supply. Motors are better with a bit over rather than under voltage.

resistance heaters just don't really care unless it is extreme.

that leaves lighting and it being the cheapest, I would rather have to replace lamps more often than my television.
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Old 07-03-2010, 01:06 PM   #15
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Quote:
resistance heaters just don't really care unless it is extreme.
While this is true, resistance heaters also draw more with a higher voltage and although it might not add up to much on your bill it's still more.

Quote:
that leaves lighting and it being the cheapest, I would rather have to replace lamps more often than my television.
Incandescent light bulbs are typically rated at 120 volt and are again resistance elements so they cost more to operate at a higher voltage and last half as long.

I always recommend buying and using 130-volt rated incandescent bulbs which at 125 volts are still well beneath their rated capacity and will last much longer.

Home Depot and Lowes may stock these 130-volt bulbs but I have serious doubts in the quality of these and other items from these places. If you have a store that specializes in light bulbs you will find better quality there. In South Florida we have a store called "Light Bulbs Unlimited" and they sell quality bulbs at comparable prices.

I have 122.8 and 123.1 volts coming into my house and I replaced all the incandescent lamps in my house with 130-volt rated lamps in 2001 and I have only replaced 2 lamps since, in all this time! The 2 I replaced were the hallway recessed fixtures which are on almost 24 hours a day and I have now replaced them with fluorescent. The lamps are rated for 30,000 hours @130-volts (I am operating them on 123-volts max) and they cost me $7.99 to $9.99 depending on the type.
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Last edited by sparks1up; 07-03-2010 at 01:09 PM.
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