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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:40 pm 
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Partly cos I like to know everything... Partly because I'm a geek... And partly because we're going to have some electrical work done on the house which has made me curious.... I'd like to know more about the feed to my house...

The power lines come to us through the garden and reach a pole with transformer. From there the supply comes to us underground. Because the ground is lower at the back of the house, you can see the main cable going into the wall of the house. I'm guessing it then travels under the house to the meter box which is on the front of the house. The meter box has two fuses. The house has three consumer units. As we're having the consumer units changed and a partial rewire amongst other things, I'm not too worried about comments on the photos of the consumer boxes (but feel free to make them if you wish)...

... What I am more eager to know is anything you can tell me about the pole, transformer, underground line and meter box. Some of the things of particular interest...:

1. Earth/ground. How can I tell what the set up is for that? A sparkly told me there was a supplied earth, but there's only two overhead cables. But there are three cables running down the side of the pole and going into the ground.

2. Earth/ground - is there any way to test it? (I'll be running a music studio in the house which I've been told needs a low impedance path to ground)

3. I'd love to know what's what on the pole and how it works, so any explanations or links would be fantastic.

4. The diagonal "cable" with the yellow cover coming from the pole. Is that purely just a support or does it have something to do with the earth/ground?

5. Why two fuses in the meter box?

6. Can anyone tell me roughly how old those two fuses are?

7. How often are the power companies maps wrong? I was in touch with them today and they sent me a map which shows the cable running underground from the pole to the front of the house. But I can see a power line going into the back of the house (see photos). Odd...

8. Anything what you want to enlighten me with!

I've got no broadband at home and so it takes an age to upload anything. I'll therefore link to a folder on Google drive that has all the photos. Let me know if that's a problem and I'll upload the photos to the site when next at the library.

Sorry for such a long thread. Any thoughts most welcome. Cheers :)

https://drive.google.com/folderview?id= ... A9UjCL1hU9


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:18 am 
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The earth isn't a issue worse ways there have to put in a earth spike

The wire rope (with the yellow cover) is a brace for the pole it also acts a lighting arrestor path

The transformer on the pole is just that, it converts say 10,000v to 230-250v there usually oil filled as the generate a fair amount of heat

2 fuses - its either economy 7 and supply or its just splitting the feeds to the 3 CU's

The swa looks to new and small tobe a incoming main iirc it would not be exposed, Tbh its likely to be a feed to shed, garage, pool house or pond

I know nothing. :?

https://youtu.be/MTafF2X32Js America transformer but the same sort of thing


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 12:12 pm 
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Well, well, well - that pole/transformer/henley block setup is virtually identical to mine!

Agree with Bob, the back swa is not the mains supply, that is FROM the house & goes TO something else.

I'm hazarding a guess that this is an old solid stone cottage that has been modernised and extended a number of years ago? Out of interest, where in S.Wales?

The stairs CU is the oldest from when electricity was first connected. The other two were installed later at the time of (a) building the kitchen extension then (b) refurbishing the "cow shed" mezzanine.

The mains cable from the pole goes into the bottom of the bottom left black equipment (the sealed "Board's Fuse", probably 100A, should be labelled), through that then into the meter (the thick curly grey cables on the left).

From the meter, the red & black tails (they don't look heavy enough to me, consult your electrician) go into the top right black 60A isolator. It appears that the lower 60A switch is fed from the top one - that's a bit odd, do both of those switches do something (cut the power) when switched off, individually? Like the whole house or just part of it?

Obviously you cannot be asked or expected to remove the covers of the two isolators with the electricity live from the pole. It's the cable layout inside them that I would like to see, in order to expain any further. Over the last three years I have been in exactly your position.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 4:18 pm 
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Pics 1,2 4-9 are as labeled the pmt (pole mounted transformer and cross beam supports)

Pic 3 is the LV distribution fuse (normally 100/200a depending on the kva rating of the transformer)

10th pic is the stay wire with a yellow cable guard (keeps the pole plumb)

Pic 11&12 looks like 35mm concentric service cable running I to the property.

13&14 is the dustribution cut out that feeds the meter, black and red out of meter into the 1st black isolator, with 2 grey tails going into another white isolator.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:59 pm 
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Scotty001 wrote:
Pic 11&12 looks like 35mm concentric service cable running I to the property.


Sorry Scotty, but I have to disagree, though accepted you say "looks like", 11 & 12 are at the rear of the property, running horizontally.

The service cable is visible in Pic 13, bottom left, in the meter box, and concurs with the plan that OP got from SWALEC/Western Power, at the front of the property. As Bob says, the main would be unlikely to be exposed, and certainly not like that. Any exterior routed main would be in vertical conduit* if not buried in the fabric of the building.

* Very common when supply is put into a stone cottage that did not have electricity when built. Looks to me like the exterior meter box, and underground cable, are a much later improvement, may be in the 1980's.

OP? Any info? If you are so interested in your new property, visit your LA Planning Dept and ask to see previous PApplications, if these are not either detailed in your purchase documentation or on their website (search applications by postcode). They may have to recover files from archive, may take a few days. Been there, done that, very interesting.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:39 pm 
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Most planning dating back to the mid 90's is now online for most LA's

I looking at the SWA it looked like a 1.5 or 2.5mm 3 core or maybe a 4mm 2 core


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2019 11:16 pm 
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Amazing, fantastic replies. I really do appreciate it. I've had to go away for the weekend so will revisit this next week at some point. Just wanted to say thanks in the meantime.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:28 pm 
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Hi all

Sorry it's taken me longer than I'd hoped to come back to this... To reflect on some of the points above:

- The total diameter of the swa at the back of the house is around 18mm. The black sheath says 600 - 1000V. It seems to be exactly the same as what comes into the meter box (bottom left). Also, there are currently no external electrics, so if it does feed anything outdoors it's no longer there. There's no sign of the cable inside the property. In fact, where it enters the wall is roughly 30cm below the current floor level. Everything to my very untrained eye and mind would still suggest that this is what goes to the meter box... Although at the same time I'm happy to admit I might be wrong

- You're right acro-iris, it's an old stone cottage. We've found a beam carving in the loft which says 1741 but the jury's out on how legit it is. But the old part of certainly old. It was rejigged in the 70s with a two storey extension added. Cow shed converted in the mid 90s. Two further extensions in early 2000s.

- The two fuses in the meter cupboard... The white one controls the c/unit in the lobby. The black one controls the other two c/units - the understairs and cow shed mezzanine ones. These two consumer units do work independently though. If you turn one off the other still works.

Thanks a million for all the help.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:08 am 
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If you look further down the length of the swa it will tell you what it is eg. 3x1.5mm


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:18 am 
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I couldn't see anything else and there is only a short length exposed... I will take another look though in case I missed something.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2019 7:05 pm 
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I've had another look at the cable... Definitely doesn't give sizes. The only other info is the manufacturer. And there is enough cable there for the info to repeat, so I'm not sure if it would say it anywhere; unless the info repeats AND THEN it gives sizes, but that would seem odd.

As I said above, there's no outbuildings or external power that I know of. And I'm pretty sure it's exactly the same cable as what goes into the cutout. So all things point to it being the main feed.

Any other check I can do?

Cheers


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2019 11:18 am 
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I saw cow shed, and that changed what I thought, I suspect you have a split phase supply it was common with farms so 230 - 0 - 230 volt, they wanted to use a smaller transformer and limit fuse size to 100 amp so you can still use domestic style fuse boxes or consumer units.

Care is normally taken to only have one phase in each area, although nothing to stop one having 460 volt in a room, it is normally avoided, how it is split depends on who wired it. But often one leg to out buildings and one leg to house.

It is NOT two phase as the two legs are in phase with each other, although often referred to as two phase, it is split phase, just like most 110 volt supplies in building sites.

As to earthing it could be either TT or TN often if TN it is TN-S rather than TN-C-S mainly because of the dangers with earthing with cow sheds and the like. The regulations show special earthing arrangements for cow sheds, however never actually seen it done as regulations show.

It could be simply Economy 7 and the like, however fact it was a farm and transformer on a pole I would suspect split phase.


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