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Electrical Surge Problem

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  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Our next caller is Rick from Texas.

    Welcome to The Money Pit. How can we help?

    RICK: Yes, I have a surge problem in my house. It’s an electrical surge, I guess.

    TOM: OK.

    RICK: I don’t know if it’s coming from the breaker or the wiring. What happens is I’ll have everything off that draws a lot of electricity: air condition, dryers. The only thing on usually is the TVs and the computer.

    TOM: OK.

    RICK: And my lights will still surge.

    TOM: How old is your house, Rick?

    RICK: Oh, it’s about 20 years old.

    TOM: Alright. Is the light surging – are you seeing that in any particular room or the whole house?

    RICK: Whole house.

    TOM: Hmm. OK. Well, the reason that that happens is because there’s an inconsistent flow of electricity. And if you’ve got all the major appliances turned off, my immediate thought is that has nothing to do with your house but there could be a bad transformer outside your house on the utility line. Because if you had a bad transformer, that’s exactly what would happen.

    So the first thing I would do is call the utility company and tell them what’s going on and let them check the lines going into your house to see if there’s any bad transformer on the utility side because that would cause that.

    RICK: OK. And you know what? I’m going to do that.

    TOM: Alright.

    RICK: That sounds like a great idea. It doesn’t cost me anything to do that.

    TOM: (overlapping voices) That’s right. Pick up the phone.

    RICK: I’m already paying for that, actually. (Leslie chuckles)

    TOM: Alright, Rick.

    RICK: I appreciate it very much, guys.

    TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.

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