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  1. #1
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    Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    hi,

    My home electricity consumption has suddenly increased two time for the past 2 months. not sure what is the cause. whether it is due to my new refrigerator, new invertr, battery or due to any other electrical leakage or theft. Is there any tool to detect such things for home electricity ?


    thanks,
    ravi

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    Re: Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    Sure. A clamp-on ammeter and your circuit breaker panel.
    You can see current in each branch by turning off all but
    one at a time, and follow the thread.

    Depending on your environment you might also look at the
    feed between your electric meter and your panel, sometimes
    there's "electric piracy". Wires where wires didn't used to be,
    like.



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  3. #3
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    Re: Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    Quote Originally Posted by dick_freebird View Post
    Sure. A clamp-on ammeter and your circuit breaker panel.
    You can see current in each branch by turning off all but
    one at a time, and follow the thread.

    Depending on your environment you might also look at the
    feed between your electric meter and your panel, sometimes
    there's "electric piracy". Wires where wires didn't used to be,
    like.
    say if i have a problem in my invertor battery. which keeps charging even fully changed due to some technical error.
    then how this can be detect using clamp-on meter?



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    Re: Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    You can measure current draw of some appliances, but other appliances have an On-Off cycle. Those could use some kind of time-logging device.

    I tracked my refrigerator cycles with my VIC-20 computer. I constructed a homebrew circuit for detecting AC current which then sent a voltage to the computer's game port. I wrote a program to record On-Off events. After running a few hours it told me the appliance drew large current for a few minutes, then was off for several minutes.

    I thought of attaching a voltage detector on the motor but I had no easy access. If you are careful around high voltage you might make a voltage detector which indicates status of water heater elements, or a furnace, etc.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Another indicator is your electric utility meter. Maybe it has a rotating dial, or maybe a digital display. Watch how fast it advances to get an idea of your power usage.

    To read AC current with your multimeter, insert a resistor in series, and measure AC voltage across it. I have several 1 ohm 10W resistors (rectangular sandstone type) which I connect in series or parallel, in order to create a low ohm value which permits a sensible reading. Usually I need to work fast because the resistors heat up quickly.



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    Re: Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    Quote Originally Posted by ravi.2k17 View Post
    say if i have a problem in my invertor battery. which keeps charging even fully changed due to some technical error.
    then how this can be detect using clamp-on meter?
    For lead acid batteries I have used a tester like this one. Click image for larger version. 

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    - - - Updated - - -

    Some more detailed information would be helpful. When you say battery inverter I assumed your home is solar powered.



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    Re: Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    If you are concerned about battery excess charging then
    you need to know the proper charging voltage and see
    if it's exceeded. Lead-acid charge controllers that are
    "general purpose" (not dedicated to some specific battery
    model) might well overcharge a small battery, depending
    on it to "deal with the excess" rather than terminating
    charge (like cars do - 14V, "just eat it").

    But the problem might just be one of expectations.

    You can get automotive aftermarket 12V ammeters that
    could go on the battery "+" feed, and show you charge /
    discharge currents. Maybe (or not) at the current range
    you would see. Worth a look just for system monitoring
    and maintenance.



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    Re: Tools to detect AC electric leakage/loss in home electricity

    There are sensitive meters which detect live wires behind walls. Sold as '3-in-1' wall scanners. Inexpensive ones cost $13-20.



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