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power failure but lights dim #220922 08/14/20 01:15 PM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 790
wa2ise Offline OP
And not a bad neutral.
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Some excitement today, a thunderstorm. we had a power failure today where the lights didn't completely go out. Line voltage ended up varying from 20V to 50V and at a peak of 70V. Seems lightning hit the distribution lines, and took out only two of the three phases. And I was on one of the impacted phases. Seems I was seeing power leakage thru power customers that get fed all 3 phases, and have loads connecting from one phase to another (208V). That would make a leakage path that would work its way back thru pole pig transformers back to the distribution lines and then to my pole pig.

I shut down my air conditioners and fridge, as compressors really don't like under voltages. Computer power supplies don't much like it either.

Later, once Pubic Service fixed it, saw a picture on FB of line crews in bucket trucks attending to the lines. And saw that 2 of the 3 phases were broken. One of the broken phases was the one I'm on.

To add to the fun, some LED bulbs could operate up to half their usual brightness during this event. Others didn't light at all. Incandescents showed most directly the voltage variations.

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Re: power failure but lights dim [Re: wa2ise] #220923 08/14/20 04:16 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,618
gfretwell Offline
Back circuits can do strange things. Hopefully everything survived. I have seen 3 phase motors limp along on 2 fairly often but they are hot and not really doing well in the power department.

Greg Fretwell
Re: power failure but lights dim [Re: wa2ise] #220925 08/18/20 02:45 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,258
HotLine1 Offline
Just be thankful you don't have JCP&L.

FWIW, the Municipal Complex here was dark from Tuesday afternoon until early Friday morning from a tree down and four poles. 26KV, 13/2KV, a few pole mounted transformers and capacitors.

Crew from Oklahoma did the replacements.



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