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Discuss Good volts but low power output in the DIY Electrical Forum area at ElectriciansForums.net

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I'm having a problem with the electric running to my shop. I have electric, but when my compressor or chop saw is running, the lights go extremely dim, and the saw is not running at full speed. The compressor is struggling when it is trying to build up. I've checked the voltage at the circuit breakers, and they all read 120V. If I run these components from an extension cord from the house, everything works normal. The wires running from the meter to the shop look fine, and nothing appears to be loose. Any advice would be much appreciated.

breaker box.jpg

electric at shop.jpg
 
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Pete999

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You may be suffering from Voltage drop when loads are applied, get the Utility people to check, don't know how the US deal with this sort of thing. you can only report the problem, could be the cables feeding your shop are to small.
 
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Pete999 - Base on your reply I checked the voltage at the circuit breaker (123V) and then had one of my kids turn the fan on to my portacooler. The volts dropped down to 75V. Everything was working a few weeks ago with no issues. What could cause a drop in voltage like this?
 

Paignton pete

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Just a thought if it is the voltage. Which it probably is from the description of the opening post. Would a voltage optimiser combat this problem.

Not sure how they work.

I know they increase the voltage to a property that has low incoming voltage, but would it be any good as a reactive measure of when the voltage suddenly drops?
 

Pete999

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Pete999 - Base on your reply I checked the voltage at the circuit breaker (123V) and then had one of my kids turn the fan on to my portacooler. The volts dropped down to 75V. Everything was working a few weeks ago with no issues. What could cause a drop in voltage like this?
Supply cable not sized correctly, any extra loading recently, new machines etc, could have been OK when the supply was fitted but people are well known for adding loads without consideration for the cables supplying the building.
 
Pete999 - Base on your reply I checked the voltage at the circuit breaker (123V) and then had one of my kids turn the fan on to my portacooler. The volts dropped down to 75V. Everything was working a few weeks ago with no issues. What could cause a drop in voltage like this?
That's a 39% drop in voltage. Is this a new setup or has it worked previously and this has just occurred.
 
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That's a 39% drop in voltage. Is this a new setup or has it worked previously and this has just occurred.
It's an old setup. Literally nothing plugged into any of the outlets. Only thing running is some florescent lights. Took them out of the equation, and the voltage still drops when a load is applied. This just started happening a few weeks ago. I've not added anything electric to the shop. I checked the voltage drop with just the florescent lights turned on, and it dropped from 123V to 119V.
 

telectrix

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sounds like a connection breaking down.
 

Pete999

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It's an old setup. Literally nothing plugged into any of the outlets. Only thing running is some florescent lights. Took them out of the equation, and the voltage still drops when a load is applied. This just started happening a few weeks ago. I've not added anything electric to the shop. I checked the voltage drop with just the florescent lights turned on, and it dropped from 123V to 119V.
Definitely need the supply checked out by Utility Company, are you a shared line, if yes have any of the neighbours experiencing any problems? if not the Utility Co them an Electrician may trace the problem, as Tel mentioned. it could be a loose connection somewhere, causing the VD.
 
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Definitely need the supply checked out by Utility Company, are you a shared line, if yes have any of the neighbours experiencing any problems?
Not on a shared line. The wires running to the shop come out of the same supply source (meter box) as my house electric. I have zero problems in the house.
 

telectrix

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so the problem lies between house and workshop?
 
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