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What is a drip wire and could the lack of one cause water to get into the circuit breaker box?

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2011-09-13 13:18:21
2011-09-13 13:18:21

This is an excellent question and yes it could.There is a "drip wire", there is a "drip loop".The drip wire is in the triplex that runs from the utility pole providing power to your house and the service mast on your house. The lineman will leave a sag in the wire so that water that accumulates on the wire will run along it to the lowest point and fall off harmlessly.The drip loop is the loop on the wire that runs into your house from your service mast. When these wires are connected to the triplex from the utility they should be tipped down so that no water will run down them. Now, this is the interesting part, at least to me...Even if you do all that, you can still get water in your breaker box. If those connections are tipped up, water can run down inside the insulation of service wire between the copper or aluminum and the inner jacket of the insulation. You wouldn't think it could, but it sure can. The only way I know to fix that is to have the utility company come out and if there isn't a loop, have them make one. They make think you're nuts, but that's ok, insist.

So, what if you live in a cold climate or have an underground service. You can still get moisture in the panel. At the back of the metre base the electrician should have put in some "duct seal" . This prevents condensation from occurring from either the cold outside and the warmer inside, or warm outside and the airconditioned inside.

Good luck,

Andy

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