When Transformer Testing Must be Done

Nearly all modern American homes are connected to the electric grid, and they receive electricity from a nearby power plant. An increasing number of American homes make use of roof-mounted solar panels instead, but for the rest, current transformers, or CTs, are used to make sure that the home’s electricity is safe to use. Current transformer testing may be done if the homeowner suspects something wrong with their home’s transformers, such as strange power surges or a lack of proper electricity. Not only may this current transformer testing be done, but energy meter testing may be done if the home’s energy bill seems much different than it should be. Professionals can be contacted and hired to do such current transformer testing and meter testing, and current transformer testing with the right hands can lead to swift repairs. For context, one may first consider how a house uses and receives electricity.

The Home and Electric Supplies

Modern American homes may need transformer testing equipment used on it if the current transformer is not working correctly. Why is this such a hazard? It should be noted that a great deal of power is carried in modern power lines, so much that it would overwhelm utilities and fixtures in the average house or commercial building today. Watts are the basic building block of measuring electricity, and watts can be scaled up like bytes in computers. For example, 1,000 watts constitute a kilowatt, and 1,000 of those make up one megawatt, or one million watts. When a house uses electricity from a public source, the power usage is measured in watt-hours, based on how long that electricity is used. For example, a one-kilowatt vacuum cleaner being used for one hour will use up 1,000 watt-hours, or 1,000 Wh, of electricity. This is what the meters test, and that’s how the electric bill determines how much to charge a homeowner for their power usage.

Where to transformers fit into all this? Most household features and appliances use volts instead, a much smaller unit of power than watts, so power straight from the power line would overwhelm them. Items in the house may use as few as 110 to 250 volts, but a power line may have as much as 400,000 to 750,000 volts running through it. This is what a transformer is for: restrict the amount of electricity flowing into the house into manageable amounts for the home’s appliances to use without getting burnt out. Most homes use what is called single-phase power, such as 120-volt AC service.

A power plant will produce three different phases of AC power at the same time, and they are offset 120 degrees from one another. This means that four total wires come from every power plant, one for each phase of power and a fourth that acts as a neutral ground for the three. In the case of three-phase power, meanwhile, at any given moment one of the three phases is nearing a peak. Higher-power, three-phase motors, for example, are used in industry and may use all of that power. Homes probably will not, however, and a malfunctioning transformer may spell trouble. A homeowner must hire someone to handle this problem.

Current Transformer Testing and More

A homeowner cannot easily repair a faulty transformer or energy meter on their home, but they may certainly notice if something is wrong with their electricity. A malfunctioning transformer may result in too much power surging into the home and burning out its appliances, or else the transformer may restrict power too much and the home may face outages at times. Should this happen, a concerned homeowner may reach out to local public services and hire professionals who can conduct current transformer testing. They may diagnose the problem and either repair it themselves, or refer to experts who can make those repairs. The same may be done for an energy meter if it’s producing unreliable results. A too-high reading results in padded electric bills, for example, and no homeowner wants that. In that case, they can hire professionals who can test the meter and diagnose a problem, and make sure that repairs are done. This can put an end to undesirable, over-inflated and inaccurate electric bills for the homeowner.

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