Locating an underground wire break
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    Official "Groovie" Dude
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    Locating an underground wire break

    Do any of you have a method that you use to find a break in a buried electric line? Power at the source but not at the other end.

    It is a private line, it runs from my shop, down the driveway to my lights at the end. The breaker isn't tripped and my outside shop lights still work, which are on the same switch.

    Hoping one of you might have a diy idea to locate a line break.
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    coaltrain's Avatar
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    There was a similar thread a year or so ago - I’ll see if I can find it......
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    Found it! Maybe will give you a start....

    http://www.greentractortalk.com/foru...cal-issue.html

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  5. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to coaltrain For This Useful Post:

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    In the telecommunications world we used to use a device called a Time Domain Reflectometer (TDM) to find such things. They'll work on any (unpowered) cable. Most electricians won't have one of their own but often someone within a larger operation will have one. Or if you know anyone that messes with telco cables, they'll have one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by coaltrain View Post
    Found it! Maybe will give you a start....

    http://www.greentractortalk.com/foru...cal-issue.html

    Note to the mods - thank you for keeping up with the house keeping on our site! If not for you guys putting threads into the proper categories I would never have found this with a search.

    Note to everyone else - pay attention to what category you are posting a new thread in! I see the most threads posted in the wrong category in the Sub-Compact section. There is a whole other world out there beyond the 1 series tractors.
    I'll second that one Stan. Mods do a great job. Thanks for bringing that up.

    Sent from my LGL52VL using Tapatalk

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    I would use my underground wire locator to find the break. Not sure of any DIY way to do this. Will watch to see what others post.
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    I'm thinking of using a small DC voltage on each wire to see if it's one or both wires broken. Then I may try hooking up my invisible fence to the wire to locate the break.

    Thoughts??
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    Old Pa-pa Old Cajun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pcabe5 View Post
    I'm thinking of using a small DC voltage on each wire to see if it's one or both wires broken. Then I may try hooking up my invisible fence to the wire to locate the break.

    Thoughts??
    A digital DVM would be a help to determine what's going on, in a one or both open type of way.

    Wish we lived closer, pretty sure a signal generator and oscilloscope would find the break in short order,
    have used that method with success.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pcabe5 View Post
    I'm thinking of using a small DC voltage on each wire to see if it's one or both wires broken. Then I may try hooking up my invisible fence to the wire to locate the break.

    Thoughts??
    I can only add moral support......be careful other wise we may start calling you sparky.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimR View Post
    In the telecommunications world we used to use a device called a Time Domain Reflectometer (TDM) to find such things. They'll work on any (unpowered) cable. Most electricians won't have one of their own but often someone within a larger operation will have one. Or if you know anyone that messes with telco cables, they'll have one.
    When I was in I&R, we used a "Sidekick" or "Brown Meter" to calculate distance by measuring resistance. Could usually get within a foot or five.


    pcabe5, not sure you'll be able to locate it unless it's a solid open. You could always try Dig Alert(811) and see if they will come locate for you.
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