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Excuse my ignorance. in this matter.
Our subdivision board has decided that we would like to install 110V post lights throughout subdivision .
We are wondering how we can get them powered ?
We have decided we don't want solar and don't want to get power from individual homewners.panels.
We are going to contact our city but before we do that wanted to get some initial idea to understand what is doable and what is not..
Is it generally feasible to tap into distribution points in the subdivision ( are they transformers - green boxes about 6x3x3 spread in the subdivision ?)
Are there any other options ?
Thank you
Paul
 

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Solar is a great choice for this.

Your are going to have to dig in the utility easements. You will need an new electric meter for the lights unless you have one that is serving the community now. Electrically the distance and load makes the wire bigger, sometimes way bigger. This will be a commercial account, higher cost Whom ever digs and sets the poles will have to have public utility insurance. (really expensive)


This all doable, how much money do you have? The HOA will have to pay to fix the issue if someone knocks a pole down and all of the damage that is done to peoples yards. This is because the HOA will have to provide the payment for the electricity and be responsible for the installation.

Solar sounds really good to me.


You do not want to run the wire over head. First it is ugly second every storm that comes by will mess with overhead wire.

Question, why was there no street lighting in the beginning? Do you have a dark sky ordnance?
 

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Our subdivision board has decided that we would like to install 110V post lights throughout subdivision .
If you have to distribute power around the subdivision, you'll want to kick it up to 240V, 480V or 600V. 110V won't go very far.

We are going to contact our city but before we do that wanted to get some initial idea to understand what is doable and what is not..
Is it generally feasible to tap into distribution points in the subdivision ( are they transformers - green boxes about 6x3x3 spread in the subdivision ?)
Yes, actually. The purpose of a meter is to measure how much electricity you use, but they know how much power the light takes, and they know it's on half the time because that is how astrophysics works. So if you have a 200W light that's on half the time, that is the same as 100W continuously. Since you know the answer, who needs a meter?

That is exactly how power companies charge municipalities for street lighting. So that's what you do. Declare yourself the responsible party for the street lighting, the power company slaps it on their poles, and bills you for the expected load.

If your notion is that you'd like to slap 120V receptacles on every pole so you can run Christmas lights or whatnot, different deal. Then you need local meters, your own wiring (hint: have the power company put your wires on their poles), or municipal power (you own the power company and that's that).
 

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Something to consider...

I've worked on a lot of street and parking lot lighting.

Never seen anyone use 110 volts.

Voltage drop will be a big concern.

All the light poles I've been involved with had a set of fuses with breakaway fuse holders in the bottom.

If someone crashed into the pole the breakaway fuse holders will de-energize the light pole but leave the other poles on.

Same applies if something goes wrong in the fixture itself.

Bussmann makes breakaway fuse holders.
 

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One way is to have a meter and bury wires to the lights. The other way is to see if the power company rents lights. In our rural area linersections are lighted by lights rented from the power company. The power company buys, powers and maintains the lights and the town pays a monthly fee per light.
 
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Hire a contractor with experience in this type of work. They can install a meter pedestal and have POCO run feeders to it and supply meter. From pedestal , trench to all light pole locations. 120v is actually very common in HOA applications, but multiple circuits are needed.
 

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Never seen anything above 240v in a residential area.
This is not for a home as we know. Yes, 240v is for a home (residential area). This is for streetlights etc. It's a bit different. The overhead wires are carrying ample voltage. It is a matter of stepping it down to what is needed just like the transformers you see up on the poles step down the voltage running to your home. Those overhead wires running from pole to pole are not just carrying 240v and then go to your home.
 

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On my walk I looked up. We have street lights in our neighborhood that are 20' tall or so. Each one is wired straight off the 120/240 power line that serves houses. Just mid-span, they tap it just like they do a house.

The service drop wire is 6-6 Shepherd. Bare on the neutral. The light is 120V. No apparent service panel.

But that only works because it's coming straight off a fat distribution wire that serves all the houses. The mid-span drop to the light is only 10-40', and #6AL, so you won't get much voltage drop. That's why 120V works there.

But if some nitwit goes "...therefore, I can run a half mile of 10/2 and voltage drop will magically ??? resolve itself and s'all good"... yeah, that's NOT all good.

You just have to do the math and punch it into a voltage drop calculator. That will sober anybody up.

Parking lots unlike street lights do not have a handy distribution line to tap, so they are typically "on their own". As such they punch the voltage up as high as they can, typically 277V because it's the highest readily available voltage that is treated gently by NEC.

Best of luck avoiding paying for nitwit mistakes.
 

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A lot of parking lots I see are 480v. 120v also works residentially where there are multiple power sources (reducing length of runs), the correct wire size is used, and is circuited properly according to loads. 208 or 240v is probably a better choice though to reduce wire and breaker size. Any good inspector will assure it's done right and code compliant.
 
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