Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Does the power company have to fix noise problem  (Read 4585 times)
KC5AOS
Member

Posts: 54




Ignore
« on: April 22, 2013, 02:07:05 AM »

I had two power outages yesterday, one brief, and one lasted a couple of minutes.  Now that the power has come back on I have  really bad S9+ noise on all HF bands.  Some are worse than others, but all bands are pretty much unusable. Sad

I shorted the antenna output and the noise went completely away.  I then tuned down to some fairly strong AM broadcast stations and the noise was so bad I could not see the carrier spike on the bandscope/panadapter, and could hear nothing.  The third thing I did to confirm was go out to the car and turned on the 11 meter radio, and the problem showed up there too.  The last thing I did to confirm, was turn on my Grundig portable SW radio and cut the main power to my property.  The noise problem was still there after cutting the power.

I am now dead in the water HF wise, and I can't even listen to AM broadcast.

My question is, does the local co-op have to fix this?  Are they required to solve this problem by law?  I often hear of the term "harmful interference", but can't quite remember what that is.  I would assume this would apply here, but if not I am completely hosed.

Someone please give me some good advice here, or the sad truth if that is the case.  Man, i can't afford to move right now.
Logged
K1CJS
Member

Posts: 5981




Ignore
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2013, 04:50:20 AM »

Yes, they're required to fix it--but only if their equipment is causing the problem.  If you're going to file a complaint with them or with anyone else, YOU have got to pinpoint the location of the problem.  Otherwise, nobody will listen to you.  You've got the tools to do it from what you describe as the problem--a simple portable AM radio can do it.  Get them a pole number on a specific street and they should take care of it.

Some power companies do have noise locating gear, but that problem is way down on their list of things to do.  If you need immediate (or as close to immediate as you can get) service, the ball is in YOUR court, not theirs.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 04:52:37 AM by K1CJS » Logged
KG4RUL
Member

Posts: 2703


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2013, 05:43:18 AM »

It depends on your Coop.  I am a customer of Berkeley Electric Cooperative in South Carolina.  I made a call reporting an arcing insulator and was astonished to hear their truck pull up less than 15 minutes later.  Their linemen quickly confirmed the problem and worked the lines, hot, to complete repairs, in less than an hour, AT NIGHT!  The pole was not accessible to a bucket truck so they had to climb to do the job. 

To contrast that, I have a friend who had a VEPCO pole in his back yard actually catch fire before they would send anyone to fix it!!!!!
Logged
KC5AOS
Member

Posts: 54




Ignore
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2013, 09:07:37 AM »

Well, had to leave a message at the coop as the Guy I was forwarded to was not answering.

I did a little sluth work with the wife this morning.  On the way to work, and dropping the wife off at school, we followed the noise on the main line feeding our community using the AM radio in the car.  This noise did not go away until we got a mile from our house.  All the feader lines crossing over the road in that mile also had really heavy noise.  This does not just seem to be incidental noise, or if it is, it is not just emmitting from the arc, but seems to be being carried on the lines themselves.  I don't know if I have the equipment to pinpoint this.  About the best piece of equipment i have for doing this is the car AM radio or the Grundig portable.  Since the noise is emmitting from the lines themselves, the main line and all the feeders going to different neighborhoods, how the heck am I going to do this?  If they do not help, I am going to have a dauntting task in front of me. 
Logged
K1CJS
Member

Posts: 5981




Ignore
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2013, 10:04:01 AM »

Yeah, that is problematical.  What you need--the least, that is--is a small (hand held) beam antenna, an AM receiver with a co-ax connected antenna (maybe your 11 mtr?) and an adjustable signal attenuator.  Then it's just like a fox hunt--find and pinpoint the source.

Since it's a bit long to describe, find an article on fox hunting.  You'll get an idea on how to go about it.  Good luck and 73!

Added--Since you have the noise now and didn't have it (an assumption) before the power failure, could be that an automatic re-closer in the electrical distribution system is at fault.  If you know where your local substation is, maybe that will shorten your hunt--IF the re-closer is at the substation.

Could also be that the power company could pinpoint the fault more quickly if given the information you provided us here.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 10:08:51 AM by K1CJS » Logged
KC5AOS
Member

Posts: 54




Ignore
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2013, 10:20:50 AM »

Thanks K1CJS, I'll see what I can do.  I think what you are proposing makes perfectly good snese, just have to come up with the coax connected antenna.  maybe the 11meter, just disconnect the trunk antenna and insert the attenuator.  God, this is going to suck. 
I guess the guy at the coop is really busy since he hasn't returned my call.
Logged
KC5AOS
Member

Posts: 54




Ignore
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2013, 01:30:16 PM »

The coop guy called.  Didn't quite understand what I was talking about.  Got down near my house with AM radio on, now he knows what the problem is, lets see if he finds the source.  At least they are trying, that makes me feel a little better.
Logged
K5LXP
Member

Posts: 4466


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2013, 03:10:40 PM »

One characteristic of broadband noise like this is the closer you get to the source, the higher in frequency you will pick it up.

Power lines make good antennas and at low frequencies you can follow this noise with an AM/SW receiver for quite a ways, so it's difficult to zero in on it.  So as you travel around, make a note as to how high in frequency you can go and still pick up the noise.  When close to the source you can pick up some of these things clear up into VHF. 


Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM

Logged
KC5AOS
Member

Posts: 54




Ignore
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2013, 09:11:42 AM »

Ahh, thanks for the advice Mark.  I do have the car stereo (AM MF)  and an 11 meter (AM HF), not sure the FM stereo or 2 meter FM will pick up anything.  Given what you have said, and the fact that the noise seemed to be less the higher in frequency I tuned, I should be able to listen for increases in the 11meter noise to help narrow it down.

No follow up call from the coop guy yet.
Logged
W2MV
Member

Posts: 207




Ignore
« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2013, 10:58:53 AM »

It sounds like you're on the right track. Don't give up!...and especially don't let them get away with hurting your hobby and fun. Good luck.
Logged
WD8DK
Member

Posts: 30




Ignore
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2013, 04:41:17 AM »

Yes, they must fix it.
I recently had an issue with a bad insulator on the pole that serviced the club's repeater.
FYI, issues were strong electrical arc noise on the machine, it would even bring the machine up.
Cold weather and frost contributed to the noise.
Ohio Edison sent an engineer to the scene with a noise receiver. He shook the pole and his receiver went nuts. Case proved.
It took, 3 weeks to repair it, and all is well.
Logged
KB2WIG
Member

Posts: 115




Ignore
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2013, 09:18:04 AM »

" One characteristic of broadband noise like this is the closer you get to the source, the higher in frequency you will pick it up. "

I've a hand held scanner that I've used for close in work. The aircraft band, 108–117.95 MHz, uses AM. Drive around untill you get the interference on the scanner. This should get you in the ball park. Pull the rubber duckie off, stick a paper clip an and you'll get closer.. Maybee.

klc
Logged
K1CJS
Member

Posts: 5981




Ignore
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2013, 04:40:40 AM »

Yes, they must fix it.

They're required to, that doesn't mean they must. 

Quote
It took, 3 weeks to repair it, and all is well.

And that is the proof.  If they wanted to, they could have had it fixed the same day--or the next.

From their standpoint, the electrical service is working, so next time someone is by the area with the proper equipment, the issue will be taken care of.  If it weren't for the possibility of damage caused by failure of that defective equipment (and because of FCC regs too) most of those companies wouldn't bother getting there for months.
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!