Browsing articles tagged with "corroded service conductors - Licensed Electrician Robert Monk"
- Damage Control. Avoid using expensive equipment (like computers or flat-screens) on any circuit where you see flicker (that turns off with the same breaker as a light that flickers). Flicker is often due to a failing neutral connection, and eventual total loss of a neutral can put 2x voltage across the outlets in some wiring configurations. This can destroy electronics.
- Try to identify at least one circuit (lights and/or receptacles with lights plugged into them, all controlled by a single circuit breaker) that does NOT flicker, ever. Most likely, a newer kitchen or bathroom circuit, or something maybe near the breaker panel in the basement. If you cannot find any circuits unaffected by flicker, call PECO for free service that will rule out a fire-damaged or otherwise loose connection on their lines. Look outside and try to tell whether your service drop from PECO lines comes in a) from overhead lines on the street, via a tap from the PECO lines that is independent of other houses (or shared with only one neighbor), b) via a common cable running along the back of all houses on your side of the block, or c) entering your basement from underground, via a big rectangular steel box.
- If your service drop is from overhead and shared down the block, the fire very likely DID affect you, and you can chat up neighbors to see if they’re having the same trouble, while you wait for PECO to confirm/deny this. If it is overhead but independent of neighbors or only shared by one neighbor, then the fire is probably irrelevant. Still, you may have a loose connection to PECO lines or there could be trouble on PECO lines that they can rule out for you, for free. Look up and down the block for signs of obvious damage to the PECO lines that you share with your neighbors.
- Connect a microwave, vacuum cleaner, or space heater and see if turning it on/off contributes to flicker. Does it affect more than one circuit, or just the circuit where you plug it in?
- If more than one circuit breaker is affected, but NOT all circuit breakers, try to determine whether the flickering is affecting breakers on alternating rows of breakers. Because the twin (and opposite) phase conductors (aka ‘hots’) feed alternating rows down the two columns of breakers in your panel, only even rows or only odd rows affected would indicate that one, but not both, of the phase conductors somewhere between PECO and your main breaker has a loose connection at one of its terminals. It is rare for both phase conductors to go loose at the same time, so a ‘loose hot’ condition appears with this characteristic symptom of alternating rows totally out, or flickering.
Off-site Links ->
- Annapolis Home Inspection, LLC Aluminum branch circuits, homes 1965-1972
- ComplianceAndSafety.com OSHA Electrical Safety Training
- Electric Monk TV (YouTube) Video channel for PhillyLicensedElectrician.com Robert Monk
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- PennFuture Energy Center Energy and energy efficiency news for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
- Phila area rife with building efficiency upgrade opportunities Philadelphia Inquirer article discusses recent study showing Philadelphia’s inner-ring suburbs stand to save from energy conservation retrofits.
- Philadelphia Row-house Manual A design, maintenance, and modifications manual for our most widely-used form of housing.
- Robert Monk Robert Monk’s personal blog
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- The Energy Co-op Blog from a leading alternative energy provider in PECO territory, includes fun conservation tips.
- Weatherization: the anti-Solyndra Salon.com article praising the continued success of the federal Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP), low-income energy-savings and job-creation.
- West Philly Tool Library Official site of WPTL, Philly’s own community tool lending library: like a book library, but tools!
- WestPhillyLocal .com Site name say sit all.
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