When the power is out your responsibility is to make sure it is restored as quickly and safely as possible. That has always required quite a bit of time consuming guesswork when an internal fault in a transformer is involved. Unfortunately many internal faults in transformers develop over time and can blow fuses and cause outages only when the load is unusually high. Here is a typical scenario as described to us by a veteran foreman for a utility company.
Day 1: On a hot summer day around 5:30 a utility company receives calls about an outage which occurred as people get home from work and turn up their air conditioning. By the time a crew has been dispatched and they are able to survey the situation and re-fuse the service, often the load has leveled off and it will hold because the internal transformer fault isn’t yet bad enough to blow the fuse in anything but high load circumstances.
Day 2: Once again around 5:30 people get home from work and turn up their air conditioning and the fuse blows again. Once again a crew is dispatched, the situation surveyed and the service re-fused.
Day 3: It’s 5:30 again, everybody gets home from work, crank up the AC and the fuse blows again. The crew comes out again, surveys the situation and re-fuses the service but this time the transformer fault has gotten bad enough that it doesn’t hold. With luck all that will happen is that the fuse will blow immediately and the crew will finally discover that they need to replace the transformer. However transformer faults are capable of causing violent reactions when power is re-applied which can result in property damage, personnel injury or worse. We spoke with several linemen who said that re-fusing a service is the scariest thing they do and one utility’s written procedures for doing so had as its last step “crawl inside your hardhat”. Even if there is no explosion and nothing catastrophic happens, this utility has already taken three outages, paid a crew for several hours possibly on overtime and blown a handful of expensive fuses and definitely not endeared themselves to their customers. If there is an accident even without injuries the cost of cleanup and environmental remediation can be huge.
Now let’s look at the same situation with an IFD transformer fault indicator installed. www.ifcorporation.com
Day 1: On a hot summer day around 5:30 a utility company receives calls about an outage which occurred as people get home from work and turn up their air conditioning. A crew is dispatched and as soon as they arrive on the scene they can immediately see the highly visible orange indicator sticking out of the pressure relief valve. They send for a new transformer install it and customers’ service is resumed quickly and safely.
IFD Transformer Fault Indicators are available from all major transformer manufacturers for a very small percentage increase in price. Contact us today and we can help you with specifications and demonstrations. See a video of the benefits for you at www.ifdcorporation.com