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Electrical Wiring in the Home/flickering lights through out the house

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Question
We have had this issue for the past 3 months. It has worsened. Now it dims as if though the lights are about to go out or turn very bright. It's burned out my lights. It goes down to 100 and up to 130 when the light brightens. We have changed the breaker box, changed plugs inside home, checked wires in attic, made sure everything was tightened correctly outside. Called the electric company twice. They said it's not at their end. They also said no one around us has reported any issues with the lights. I've been reading online that the meter socket can cause flickering lights. We had a smart meter installed about two years ago and the meter socket is 30 yrs old. It was there when we bought the house. I suggested to my husband that we should get it changed. The flickering is at random times.

Answer
Erika,

The condition you describe is an "open neutral" where the lights will alternately get dim then get bright depending upon what is on in the house at the time. This condition will burn out light bulbs and more importantly ruin appliances and create a possible shock hazzard.

I question the utilitys claim its not on their end because it most likely is some where along the line. You may need to get a licensed electrician out there to determine exactly who's end the problem is on. Once he does that and he can confirm the problem is on the utilitys end they will have to come out and correct it. If you suffer any damage to your appliances as a result the utility is liable for the damage. Ask them about this. If they deny it call your local State Board of Public Utilitys to make sure. If they balk at coming out to address the problem
call the BPU and file a complaint. Watch how fast they come out and fix the problem.

BTW the meter socket if its that old could be the source of the problem and if it is you would be responsible for the repair. The Utilitys responsibility is up to and including the connections at the weather head on your electric service assuming you have "overhead service".
If you have underground service the utilty is usually responsible for the maintenance of the wires underground should the problem be underground.

Bob
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PASCACK VALLEY ELECTRIC Bob Mossman

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Licensed Master Electrician (32 years) 6165B Contractor in Closter New Jersey with 40 years total experience in Residential - Commercial - Industrial work. Emergency Service - General trouble shooting and repair work - ONAN & GENERAC generator installation - Paddle fans - Kitchen & Bath exhaust fans - AC lines - Smoke detectors - Telephone lines - Cable TV lines - Computer network cabling - Exterior lighting - Recessed lighting - Security lighting - (200 - 150 - 100 amp service up grades) - Electric Heat - New circuits - New appliance hook ups - and more ! FREE ESTIMATES 201-358-1552 Fully Insured

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Licensed contractor in Closter New Jersey.

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"The Frank Williams School of Electrical Construction". My dear old boss is 100 ! and still going God Bless him. I started working for "Tenafly Electric" right out of high school at 19. He was tough but I learned more working for him in 8 and half years than most guys. We did mostly industrial work while doing some commercial and residential so I was fortunate to be exposed to all 3 areas of electrical construction. The guys I worked with were all good guys and I stay in touch with some of them still. Most of us went into our own buisness's which says something about the caliber of the guys I worked with. We had some interesting clients : Wella Corp. of shampoo fame, Farah Fawcett etc, I didn't buy shampoo for 10 years. It was a great place to work. Pan Am the former airline just before they went under, another great place to work, nice clean environment. C&C Metals, the largest button manufacturer in the US at that time, a not so clean environment but a very interesting place to work, lots of machine's cranking out buttons of all kinds but you had to be on your toes, it was a potentially dangerous place to be . All kinds of action going on around you.

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