Dropping voltage

Once in a while nagging problem of when a sudden load such as the
A/C kicking on, for a (so far) brief period of time ONLY one
half of the 200 amp in-house breaker box drops voltage 3 or 4
times in quick succession, then is ok. Last time (real real
humid), it did this 3 times in a row when the air came on, then
has been ok since with not near the humidity.
It doesn't appear to be the common, as lights on the other side
of the breaker box didn't flicker/get brighter or anything and
voltages are equal on both legs any other time. It acts as if the
voltage is dropping on one leg of the 220.
After close inspection I have ruled out the in-house breaker
panel, which leaves 3 other areas that I haven't got to yet.
One, would be something from the transformer through the meter to
the breaker.
Two, would be the pole breaker itself.
And three, and yes I know it's a no-no, and I didn't do it
originally, but the "0" cables from pole breaker to house box was
spliced at one time (under house).
This is my first suspect, and asap I will cut the old one out and
redo them fresh with good split bolts, compound, rubber tape and
of course vinyl tape to make the connections as air tight as
possible. They are not exposed to the elements outside. (Sorry,
but a whole new entrance cable is out of the question at
present).
Now, something did happen early spring that tends to lead
suspicion away from the old splice though.
The pole breaker also supplies 220v service to the separate
garage. (For other reasons, I've replaced all the outside
connections for the garage tri-plex last year).
But one day a few months ago I flipped the electric welder on,
and part of the garage lights dimmed out for a
second---however---the wife informed me the house lights dimmed
also. Same half of the breaker box lights that recently dimmed. I
couldn't get it to do it again.
So in essence, the same problem appeared to occur, except the
welder load did not go through the house cable and splice. Anyway
folks, I just thought I would throw this out there, and as said,
I will replace the old splicing first anyway, and I guess the
pole breaker is next. However, I'll call the power company out
before I change out the breaker and make sure things are ok from
the meter loop to the transformer.
Thanks for any input. Lee. (I just LOVE these once in a blue
moon problems!!)
Reply to
Lee
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I would suspect a weak circuit breaker first. Best to have the electric company check the lines to the house main outside box, they are responsible for that. Check that all connections inside box are screwed down some get loose. Watch out, live stuff kills.
Reply to
Lisa Trent
Do believe the culprit is going to be the breaker. I redone the splices this morning, and they didn't appear to be causing the problem at hand, then the electric company came out and everything on their side checks a-ok, but upon close scrutiny, one can tell one side of the breaker is swelled out somewhat. A quick pinpoint infrared pyrometer check showed enough difference between the two sides that I'll get it replaced.
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Reply to
Lee

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