During the hot summer months when electricity is in high demand brownouts can occur. This can cause damage to equipment like coolers and freezers. Unfortunately this can be a common occurrence in Chicago. A brownout means that the power supply has dropped by more than 10%. An example is a 115 volt power source dropping below 103.5 volts. When a brownout occurs you may notice flickering or dim lights, and or slow moving equipment.
During a brownout motors overheat and can go bad. Electrical contactor controls have a coil inside that is extremely sensitive to voltage drops. When a bad brownout occurs the contactor coil will overheat and melt. This causes the part to go bad. The result is the equipment it is controlling usually gets stuck in the off position or runs continuously.
Take the following steps to safeguard valuable equipment during a brownout:
- Turn off the main power source to the building if possible, that will avoid damaging anything.
- Monitor and protect equipment – Line-R is a product that provides automatic voltage regulation for protection against brownouts & over-voltages.
If you have any additional questions about protecting your commercial refrigeration equipment during Chicago’s hot summer months, please don’t hesitate to call me at 847-409-3332, or contact me via twitter or thru our website.
If you are interested in saving electricity and reducing your energy bill, Northeast Cooling LLC is always ready and happy to discuss ways to protect equipment & conserve on energy!