We have a roof top air conditioner condenser 230 volts, 1ph, 28.9 RLA. When the unit starts a buzzing sound is heard in the conduit. There is no short circuit and the unit seems to run fine. What would cause the buzzing noise.
I have witnessed the same thing in two different situations. One was in a hotel electric room. The conduit feeding the elevator would literally make a "clink- clink" sound every time it operated. I amprobed the conductors and the amperage was going from 0 to almost 100 amps.
The other time was for a large pneumatic control system air compressor. The conduit was making more of a buzzing sound every time the compressor started.
My question is: Is this bad for the conductor insulation as the conductor moves around in the conduit?
Good question...my guess would be that IF there are no burrs, rough spots or separated sections at couplings, it probably would not make a huge difference in insulation wear. Couductors will expand/contract slightly during normal use so.....
But then again, has anyone encountered any failures caused by the conductors shorting out or to the conduit, where it's possible that this rattling was the primary cause?
hear it all the time, maybe more with 1ph loads than 3 ph, but since conductors do vibrate with a load on them anyway, I don't concern myself with it unless the rattling is excessive I do know that some of them have been in service for more the ten years with no problems.and I would suggest that any vibration problems show up at the terminations and not inside a pipe, unless somebody forgot to ream the ends , as you wrote
I have also seen raceways that had disintegrated long ago with the exposed wires still looped through a coupling, outside, in the weather just humming along