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Why does the Electricity go off?


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Why, in rural areas, does the electric supply always go off during rain storms.  

Here in Phayao it is normal for the electric supply to go off soon after the rain or thunder starts and remain off for 3-4 hours.  it happens so consistently that there must be a known fault with the system, so why is it not fixed.

When I lived in Bangkok, it never happened, but here in Phayao it seems to be normal. Why?

No hope of ixing the problem, bu I would like to know why.

 

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I cannot answer your question but here are a couple of thoughts.

Here on Samui, we get many outages in strong winds.

Winds break off branches and the branches break the overhead cables when they fall from the trees.

Then there is flooding. When areas flood, often the power is switched off to stop electrocutions - usually from the business premises when the cables are at ground level.

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18 minutes ago, Robin said:

When I lived in Bangkok, it never happened, but here in Phayao it seems to be normal. Why?

It happens here in Bangkok too... 

 

Usually at least 2-3 times per year in extreme storms - it seems to be water getting into the main distribution / service transformer (the ones at the end of the street etc). 

 

I guess the seals get worn due to the weather (heat etc) and in an extreme storm the water gets in - the power is usually back on within the hour.

 

Then of course we regularly hear of a truck with a large load snagging and dragging down the power lines (happens a few times per year !)

 

 

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9 minutes ago, bbko said:

Overgrown tree branches are a known culprit.

This mess took many hours to clear.

Bamboo falling on the high voltage lines after a storm.

190831094006.jpg

Edited by KhunBENQ
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I live on the western side of the lake in Phayao province. Over here there are not many outages during storms. We did have 4 weeks in a row that we had no power on Wednesdays. They were puting up new lines on the poles.

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It occurs in the north of Thailand, usually in rural and poor areas, the facilities are old, new construction areas mean that they continually improvise new guides and expand transformer power.

 

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We Installed a generator 4.5 Kw. as soon there's a black out we start the generator power comes back in and all goes on like before airco's , water pump fridges TV's all keeps on going till the power comes back and the generator cuts out and back to "normal"

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This village suffers the same but only for about 30 seconds or so, i asked the village head and got a look of what do you want for your money and my look back was a continual uninterrupted supply.

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If/when the lights go off in my house at night for more than a few minutes, I'll bring one or two of the solar powered garden spotlights in the house. No need for a emergency generator as the electricity usually comes back within an hour.

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I'm in a city and there's often a bang and a power cut when a transformer blows during rain.  It gets fixed quickly though.  A retired UK electricity worker told me that a lot of the components used here wouldn't be certified for outdoor use in the west.  He spent a lot of his life up poles and should know what he's talking about.

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The power just come back on less than 5 minutes ago I kid you not. See my Solar readout below from today/now. I'm 2 days of installing a back up power supply with batteries and will have 15kwh up my sleeve o/night and more than I can use with solar charging batteries in the day... Including Air con whole house. Every area different why it drops out... Everything from build up of dust on insulators to wasp nest to tree branch's to lightning and on and on... I think our drop out was lightning just a couple of hours ago.. In 3 days time I will kick back with the lights on and A/C while it is down...

Power out 111021.png

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Beside breakage of overhead cables during a storm, most of the causes of power outage are lightning surges striking onto the middle voltage lines bringing the power to distribution transformers in the community. Although the overhead lines are (or should be) equipped by surge arresters it does not always can protect, the lightning surges can reach very high levels.

 

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Big overhead lightning strikes, trips of the eclectic, caused by E M F at my home. outages normally last a couple of hours before the repair crew fix it, As i have repeatedly said I have a small 500w 600b from Laz, inverter that i run from the car if i need it, 15mt extension lead, can run Wi-Fi, TV 50w, lap top, and floor fan 50w no probs.

 

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11 hours ago, brianthainess said:

Big overhead lightning strikes, trips of the eclectic, caused by E M F at my home. outages normally last a couple of hours before the repair crew fix it, As i have repeatedly said I have a small 500w 600b from Laz, inverter that i run from the car if i need it, 15mt extension lead, can run Wi-Fi, TV 50w, lap top, and floor fan 50w no probs.

 

Interesting that you mention your backup power supply allows you to use wifi.  from which internet service provider?  The reason I ask is because where I am now North of Chiang Mai, power drops out without surprise in heavy rain or wind same as elswehere in Thailand ... but AIS mobile internet still works.  The nearest tower is 200m away from me.  How do AIS / True keep their towers online when the mains supply is so inconsistent.  I don't see any diesel generator or large battery storage enclosures  near the tower.

Edited by captainjackS
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On 10/11/2021 at 10:50 AM, transam said:

Very poor transformer locations and protection...

 

Over half a century back I used to work on electricity mains supply in London, all high voltage cables were buried a yard underground feeding substation buildings. The low voltage cables came out of them at a depth of about 18 inches to feed the area.

 

These buildings housed the huge transformers, not the mickey mouse ones you see here dangling from a post here.

Folk may not of noticed these buildings, they were usually tucked away. Here's an old one. They did become like bomb shelters in construction, a roof of 12 inches of concrete to contain any explosion...

 

1122308533_Electricsub.jpg.dc0b71e34b6208843c058324941c9f5a.jpg

 

This is why it was rare for an outage, even 50+ years back...

Same in Oz but what I see here is they seem to want everyone in this village to have their own baby transformer at some ridiculous price

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12 hours ago, captainjackS said:

Interesting that you mention your backup power supply allows you to use wifi.  from which internet service provider?  The reason I ask is because where I am now North of Chiang Mai, power drops out without surprise in heavy rain or wind same as elswehere in Thailand ... but AIS mobile internet still works.  The nearest tower is 200m away from me.  How do AIS / True keep their towers online when the mains supply is so inconsistent.  I don't see any diesel generator or large battery storage enclosures  near the tower.

My provider is TOT , optic fibre, I plug my router into my (car) power supply, but i used to have constant problems with the wi-fi TOT were coming 4-5 times a week ! they upgraded their 'box' down the road too many users connected, now all is good. Their must be a power supply somewhere that feeds the towers, sometimes the power goes off but not all are affected, like 7/11s and fuel stations they seem to have a separate supply, unless a major upgrade is taking place.

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On 10/12/2021 at 8:59 PM, captainjackS said:

Interesting that you mention your backup power supply allows you to use wifi.  from which internet service provider?  The reason I ask is because where I am now North of Chiang Mai, power drops out without surprise in heavy rain or wind same as elswehere in Thailand ... but AIS mobile internet still works.  The nearest tower is 200m away from me.  How do AIS / True keep their towers online when the mains supply is so inconsistent.  I don't see any diesel generator or large battery storage enclosures  near the tower.

 

Cell towers have battery backup for several hours. A tower uses between 1 and 5kW (much of which is actually the A/C to keep the kit happy). 50kWh of batteries will easily fit in the space of a large fridge and live in the "container" with the electronics.

 

Many towers in rural India have no mains supply at all and use solar arrays, handy when the grid is "somewhat" unreliable. 

 

This is a 48V, 1,800Ah cell tower pack, about 80kWh. Yes, I would love to have this attached to our solar!

Hffa04ec35ab246578fc1d7701b2690b23.jpg.217989d1402cd2b023ae6708437f0edf.jpg

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On 10/11/2021 at 10:24 AM, KhunLA said:

If only happening with inclement weather, I'd suspect old transformers c r a pping out (getting wet / shorting out), or wires down because of wind, either directly or tree branches taking them out.

 

Had that problem living rural outside Udon Thani.  Good news, as it happens more & more, the replacement/repairs eventually are upgrading the system, and will happen less & less as time goes on.

 

Simply report the outages ASAP, and they'll sort the problem and fix asap.  I find the locals don't report outages as much.  My wife use to report outages due to brown outs, and within 15 mins, power was restored.  Sad for the other village that probably got turn off for our benefit.   But if she didn't call, the power would be off for hours.  I can just image the 'receptionist' taking her calls .... " oh cr ap, it's her again" 🤣

Good info and funny

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