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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009

    Default intermittent low lvoltage lproblem

    We have a 1960's mobile home used only in the summer and installed a new refrigerator last fall with no problems. Recently opened the trailer up for the spring to find that the lights in the kitchen would go very dim (about 25v) and the tv in another room,different circuit would not stay on when the frig was running. Light in frig also dimmed. Ater a short time,maybe a minute or two, the lights would get bright again.

    The cycle repeated itself constantly and checking outlets of other circuits showed about 25 volts when this was occurring.

    I unplugged the frig and plugged in an electric space heater to the same outlet with the same results, I would assume eliminating the frig as the culprit. Also used an extension cord
    to lug the frig into a different circuit with the same results.

    When hooking up the copper water pipes, I had a low voltage shock. Should I contact the power supplier before hiring an electrician. Help!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009

    Default Re: intermittent low lvoltage lproblem

    How and where are you measuring voltage?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Truckee, Calif.

    Default Re: intermittent low lvoltage lproblem

    Shocks from a water pipe means you have a bad bond between your neutral (white wire) and ground. The neutral should be bonded to ground and to the service panel sheetmetal at the main disconnect (usually located at the meter panel). This connection is called the main bonding jumper. It should NEVER be grounded anywhere else. This allows proper tripping of the overcurrent device during a ground fault. This can be deadly. Get it fixed. So....that said, if your neutral wire from the power company is loose or disconnected, you will see part of your house go dim and another go brighter when you change loads. The power company will check to make sure their connections are good up to the meter panel. If the voltage goes low on one circuit, but is normal on all others, then you have a poor connection on one of the "hot" legs or the neutral for that circuit only. Check all of the connections in your breaker panel for tightness or overheating. Turn the breakers off first to be safe. If you don't have a main breaker, the power company will probly pull your meter for free if it's normal working hours.
    Just because you can, it doesn't mean you should!

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