Wednesday, December 15, 2010

When your Power goes out

We at the Power Panda thought we would do a series of blog posts about what to do when your Power goes out.

The first thing you should do is to ensure that nothing in your house is working.  The reason for this is that if half the appliances in your house are working and half are not, it means that your fault has occurred somewhere inside your house and is your own problem.
To repeat - internal faults (or faults inside your house) are your responsibility, and you will either need to call your landlord, or call an electrician.

The exception to this is hot water.  If you have no hot water but the rest of your house is working - you should start by calling your power company.
WARNING - in some areas for no hot water you are expected to call your lines company.  This varies from area to area.  We recommend calling your electricity company first, they can transfer directly if need be.
So you can see it already starts to be confusing.  If you having no hot water is caused by a faulty hot water cylinder this is your responsibility . However if your hot water is on a ripple relay (controlled power) and the ripple has failed [a very common error] this is the Power Companies/lines companies fault.

What you want the operator to do when you actually speak with somebody is to talk you through telling for yourself if the ripple relay is broken.
We'll mention it briefly here - The ripple relay is the box on your meterboard that does not have a meter display, but the box is completely enclosed in plastic and is screwed shut with metal cords around it.  When you go out tot he ripple box take wire cutters and a screwdriver.
If the switch inside the box is set to 'off' whilst talking with the operator cut the metal cords, open the box and flip the fuse.  Tell them this is what you have done.  Your hot water should start heating.
They will tell you off.  Take no heed of their fuss.  Refuse to pay fees, and just do it.

Tomorrow we'll talk further about this.

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