"Michael Terrell" wrote in message
I recently lost the neutral between the pole pig and my meter. I had 67VAC
on one side and over 160VAC on the other. I heard loud frying sounds as
multiple surge supressors died, along with circuit breakers tripping. The
break has. Been repaired, but I only have a couple working circuits. I lost
my A/C and I only have a few working lights. I need to replace the service.
I plan to move it underground. No Internet, phone or TV for almost a month
now. The open neutral damage the CATV line when the neutral current was
shunted through it. I have very poor cell service here. I hope that this
gets posted. It was 98 degrees in my bedroom the other night. No sleeping in
that. I had to take a nap in my truck with the engine running so that I
could use its A/C.
=======================You have my sympathy. That's both damaging and difficult to recognize in
In my case the resistance to the meter grounding stake and buried water pipe
was low enough to keep the 'phases' balanced most of the time. I first
noticed a fluorescent light buzzing when the refrigerator started. Voltage
measurements showed a solid 240V across the phases and only small
fluctuations in the 120V.
I don't have two outlets on opposite phases close enough together to compare
their voltages with multimeters so I built a box with two analog AC
voltmeters (from Variacs) and power cords long enough to reach between rooms
whose outlets were on opposite phases (which I had mapped). It plainly
showed the simultaneous dip in one phase and rise in the other, to as much
as 180V momentarily when the fridge compressor drew starting current from
the other phase. Digital voltmeters may not respond fast enough to catch
The evidence that convinced the power company to replace the outside drop
and meter box was a clamp-on ammeter reading of 30A flowing through a water
pipe. They cleaned the neutral lug coming into the meter box, and when that
didn't cure it they replaced the weatherhead and meter box.
My long term monitoring solution is this meter that I boxed and wired to a
GFI-equipped outlet strip to display the load on my solar system inverter.
When not on solar power it shows the voltage and current of the appliances I
operate on the stove, like the coffee pot or slow cooker. It can check for
degraded wiring connections by plugging it into one side of a duplex outlet
and the 1000 Watt coffee pot into the other.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)