Expansion {Buried Electrical Conduit}


Old 06-13-05, 08:37 AM
jn is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 226
Expansion {Buried Electrical Conduit}

The electrical power wire coming to my house is buried and in 4" conduit all the way to my house. All the conduit is PVC except the the sweeps / corners are all metal. The ground has settled and pulled the terminal adapter out of the bottom of the meter panel. There is now about a 3" separation and the 400 amp supply wires are visible at the opening at the top of the conduit / bottom of the panel.
I called the power company and they dispatched a truck. The guy said to unthread the pipe coming out of the ground where it is connected to the 90 degree sweep and simply reattach the vertical piece to the bottom of the panel and leave the wires exposed underground. The wire they used is rated for underground direct bury but is in conduit anyway. The problem I have with this is that the exposed 3" or so of wire will now simply be shifted slightly out of view and only a foot or so under the ground. I voiced my opposition stating that a guy with a shovel could easily get killed while trying to do a little shallow digging.
I think the vertical piece needs to be replaced and an expansion sleeve installed. For some reason they are not required in my area.
Does anyone know how much play these sleeves give you? I'm wondering if I assemble a replacement piece of pipe if I would be able to fit it between the top of the sweep and bottom of the panel and then pull it apart, lengthening it to slip up inside the panel. It is also pulled to the side about 2". Do they make offsets that small?
Any other ideas or comments would be appreciated.
My next fight will be with the power company to try to convice them to pull the wires back so I can do this...
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Old 06-14-05, 05:58 AM
pgtek's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: north Carolina
Posts: 1,391
anything before your electrical meter is not your problem.
It's the power company that is reponsible for it.
Get them to fix it or your going to consult an electrical company to repair it and the sue them.
that should get them to move.
Old 06-14-05, 09:11 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Near Lansing, Michigan
Posts: 10,537
Despite what the linesman said, it may not be legal for you to work on the power company's conduit and feeders. I think the worse situation would be if someone got hurt or killed and they held YOU liable for modifying their installation.

I agree with pgtek, that you should stand on them to fix it. Perhaps call your state public service commision and ask what they can do to help.

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