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  1. #1
    bkkmadness
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    Possible Electrical Problems, Am I getting too much power?

    Well I started this thread over at TV today coz I do have a lot of faith in there sub forums and the advice given, but because I was banned I can't reply there and get further answers I need. Sorry if it's looking like you are second best for getting my 'needing advice' thread but here it goes anyway.



    Moved into a new condo recently, same size as my old place, use the same amount of appliances but the bill comes in at twice the price. My electricity rate is from the govt and I have check the bill and it says I am using twice as much power.

    Now as first I thought that perhaps I have a fast running meter.

    But I have also got two fans that were working fine before that are now starting very slowly and showing signs of problems. And this week my television has burned out.

    So I am wondering could I be getting too much power coming to my appliances? Electrical surges that are causing the high bills and also damaging my electrical appliances?

    Does anyone have any experience of this?

    Is it a possible theory?

    How can I get this checked?

    I will be speaking to the condo management soon and could do with some more information to arm myself with, any help would be very much appreciated.

    PS.

    An update on this is I have the leccy tech guy coming round next week and he's gonna check into it for me.

    Over at TV some people were thinking my electric might be getting stolen but for a few reasons I doubt that's a possibility.

    The fans having problems and the TV burning out really make me think it's a power surge problem. They are all pretty old to be honest, at least a few years but had no problems with them for all this time then in the space of a few weeks they all started knackering out. Worried my computer will go next!

  2. #2
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    Probably got a crap aircon

  3. #3
    bkkmadness
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    Can't be that, it's a brand new condo building, so everything including air con was unused before I got here.

    Also I very rarely use it and for a month now it's not been switched on once.

    Fast meter perhaps and the appliances breaking just my bad luck and a coincidence?

    Since it is a new place and all my neighbours have just moved in within the last few months as well, I think I will have a word and find out if they have noticed an unusually high electric rate themselves.

  4. #4
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    First check you want to do is unplug everything and turn off everything and make sure your meter isn't going round.

  5. #5
    bkkmadness
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    ^ Yep that should be pretty obvious really, silly me for not doing it beforehand.

    Ok, I gonna pop out and try to find the meter now.

  6. #6
    Tonguin for a beer
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    1. You are getting ripped off on your electricity bill. Who reads the meter? If you pay the management they are ripping you off. Happened to a mate of mine.

    2. You may have a serious problem with your electrics. Possibly a bad connection on the mains, you should really get it checked out.

    3.The whole place may be under specced and there is too much current demand for the size of the mains cable. Is it certain times of the day when your fans slow down?

    4. I doubt your meter is running fast, just doesn't happen although I did have a dodgy water meter and (ran slow) and stupid me changed it for a new one but electic kwh meters run differently.

    5. There is NO WAY you should be paying more if you are using the same appliances as your last place!
    Fahn Cahn's

  7. #7
    bkkmadness
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    Ok well found the room but it's locked so a job for tomorrow. Off to get some fried frog instead, sounds like a more fun plan.

  8. #8
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    If the meter is still going round turn off one breaker at a time till you isolate the run that is causing the problem, with all breakers off and the meter is still going round then it will be a problem with the mains run.

  9. #9
    bkkmadness
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    1. You are getting ripped off on your electricity bill. Who reads the meter? If you pay the management they are ripping you off. Happened to a mate of mine.
    I doubt thats a problem because I know this condo is under very good management and part of the reason I moved here and out of my old place where they were crap.

    2. You may have a serious problem with your electrics. Possibly a bad connection on the mains, you should really get it checked out.
    They gonna arrange a guy to come very soon, will be confirmed tomorrow.

    3.The whole place may be under specced and there is too much current demand for the size of the mains cable. Is it certain times of the day when your fans slow down?
    Nope, it's whenever they have been off for a while, it takes a while for them to get started. Surprising because these fans have been no problem before. So that made me wonder if they have been damaged by power surges. It could be they are old fans but then the TV knackered out this week too.

    4. I doubt your meter is running fast, just doesn't happen although I did have a dodgy water meter and (ran slow) and stupid me changed it for a new one but electic kwh meters run differently.
    I'll be checking this myself tomorrow.

    5. There is NO WAY you should be paying more if you are using the same appliances as your last place!
    And it's not a little bit more, it's twice the price. I'm paying the same govt rates as the old place, I think 3.5baht/unit. Just it's showing up more units.

    I honestly thought I was perhaps overusing it a bit but really nothings changed. It's those bloody appliances, got me thinking something is really wrong. Extra volts coming through, or power surges I just don't know, but it's not normal I'm sure. I do hope something is wrong with the condo set up, coz I'll be down there talking new TVs with them.

  10. #10
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    Check with others and compare bills. It could be the meter.

    meters are adjustable + and - get someone to check out yours.

  11. #11
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    A volt/ohm meter is not that expensive to buy, turn it on to the voltage, max 250 AC and plug it in and see what voltage you are getting thru your plugins, mine runs from 180 to 240, that is a faulty transformer if high and to much load on the service if it is low.
    Thai will put in any size wires, smaller is cheaper to buy.
    I rented an apt. from a retired American lawyer when I first came here, he read the meter and I was paying for his juice too, when I moved to a nice house my bill was 1/2 of what it was at the apt. and he beat me out of my deposit.

  12. #12
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    To increase your bill the electric supply would have to be LOW on volts.
    The meter measures amps not volts

    Your appliances would try and draw the same wattage and so would increase their amperage drain. This would burn them out if it is a bad under supply and they are run for many hours.

    So you are looking for low volts, a faulty meter or an earth drain

  13. #13
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    Actually, modern electric meters measure both volts and amps and determine watts by finding the product of the two. This product is integrated against time to yield energy used as either joules or kilowatt hours. So, the voltage supplied should not affect the meter's ability to measure actual energy used.

    However, some appliances are much less efficient at lower voltages and will consume more power per unit of time as a result.

    Perhaps the meter at your old place was faulty and you should be giving thanks for the bargain you had there....

  14. #14
    Member The_Dude's Avatar
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    You may have dirty power. In the states we call it Brown Outs. "Not a steady potential". Which can cause appliances to fail. Do as BG mentioned and check your volts and amps mulitply the two which will give you a kilowatts. If your voltage is off by 5% avg. chances are you have dirty power which should be reported and repaired. good luck.
    All people have photographic memories, the problem is most people don't have film!

  15. #15
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    Also check the frequency as this could cause problems if not correct

  16. #16
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    The HZ is set at the generator speed and it is always constant thru the line.
    Watts is actually current, amps are current, watts remain constant no matter the voltage but amps vary with voltages,
    everytime you double voltage, amps reduce by 1/2 so wire size can be reduced.

    12V 100 watts=10 amps
    120V 100 watts=1 amp

  17. #17
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    maybe your last place was under-reading your useage

    now you are paying the correct price

  18. #18
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    ^^ Eh ?
    12v 100w = 8.33 amps
    120v 100w = 0.833 amps

  19. #19
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by buad hai
    Actually, modern electric meters measure both volts and amps and determine watts by finding the product of the two.
    Do they use modern ones in Thailand ?
    I thought most were still the old type
    A lot of houses around here still have 5amp meters

  20. #20
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    All the meters I've seen are modern. By modern I mean 20th century. The meters that were used at the advent of power distribution measured amps only, assuming constant voltage. Of course, that assumption was faulty which is why watt hour meters were developed. They use motors with two coils, one in series that measures amps and one in parallel which measure volts.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thetyim
    12v 100w = 8.33 amps 120v 100w = 0.833 amps
    Was just a for instance to show the difference, don't need to get to tech with novices.

  22. #22
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    As mentioned above, it seems like you have low voltage. Your voltage should be 220 volts. With low voltage, electric motors will draw more amps and overheat. They will also be slow to start as their starting torque will be lower. This could explain your fans failing. Check your ground. If you have a single phase supply, your two supply lines should measure 220 volts and 0 volts to ground, respectively. If you have a 3 phase supply, each phase to ground and neutral should measure 220 volts and between phases 380 volts. It is not uncommon in Thailand to have an ungrounded and unbalanced supply.

  23. #23
    Thailand Expat gusG's Avatar
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    I agree low voltage would more than likely be the problem rather than the opposite.We had a problem with it before we had high voltage lines and our own transformer installed,high elect. bills, burnt out motors and lights that wouldn't turn on. Now everything runs fine, and the bills are lower'

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackgang View Post
    The HZ is set at the generator speed and it is always constant thru the line.
    Watts is actually current, amps are current, watts remain constant no matter the voltage but amps vary with voltages,
    everytime you double voltage, amps reduce by 1/2 so wire size can be reduced.

    12V 100 watts=10 amps
    120V 100 watts=1 amp
    Blackgang, how does watts remain constant no matter the voltage...
    Formula is P=VI Power = Voltage X Current

    220V X 10A = 2.2KW
    240V X 10A = 2.4KW

  25. #25
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kk boy
    Blackgang, how does watts remain constant no matter the voltage...
    I think he was trying to say that the appliance will always try and draw the same wattage.
    So if the voltage drops it will draw more amps to compensate

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