Checking Voltage at Panel. Need Help Please!

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Old 11-23-04, 05:25 AM
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Checking Voltage at Panel. Need Help Please!

Hello,

RE: Checking the voltage at the panel and at various receptacles.

Lightbulbs are burning out at a fast rate in my kitchen and other places in the house. I'm not using cheap bulbs. I've even contacted GE... about the bulbs (Reveal). Now I've heard and read that it might have something to do with the voltage in the house. I do not know the proper procedure (or tools to use) to check this. Is it something I can do or do I need a professional?

Thanks for the help.
 
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Old 11-23-04, 06:05 AM
tjerry81
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checking voltage is easy, although it's probably not the cause as it's very rare to have high voltage in a home. But you need a Multi-Meter, one that can measure AC Voltage to at least 300V make sure you know how to use the meter otherwise you can get into trouble if you set it to measure current and you try and check the voltage. So make sure it's set on VAC or AC Voltage. Then you can check the outlets in the house. Put one test lead into one side of the outlet and the other in the other. It should read somewhere around 110-120VAC they will all be about the same no matter where you check them.
More likely the bulbs are burning out because of something else, like frequent cycling (on, off, on etc...) or because they are near a source of vibration, vibrations kill more bulbs then anything else.

Good luck and please be careful, make sure you know how to use the meter and a good tip is to only work on live circuits with one hand, that way if you do get shocked the electricity isn't going to travel from one hand to the other across your heart, which is bad.
 
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Old 11-23-04, 09:57 AM
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Another option: Incandescent light bulbs are available in 130 volt rating. I'm not sure if you can find them at your local home center, but if you can find a lighting distributor they will probably have them. I used to use them commercially, and the filament is more rugged and they definitely last longer.

Juice
 
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Old 11-23-04, 10:28 AM
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More questions... Do you notice the lights in the house dimming and getting brighter when a heavy load is turned on and off? Do you live near a set of high voltage power lines? Do you live near an airport or train track?

Doug M.
 
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