Can remote electric meter reading cause circuit breakers to trip?

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by njghost, Apr 11, 2011.

  1. njghost

    njghost New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Teaneck, NJ
    The other day, the meter reader came to read our meter, and used some contraption that made a weird noise - I'm always right there when he reads it, and it was definitely something new. He said it sends the reading remotely (or something).

    A few hours later, we're suddenly tripping circuit breakers right and left! We haven't tripped a breaker in YEARS. PSE&G, our provider says there's no way what their employee did could have caused our breakers to suddenly start tripping.

    Are they right? Was this just a coincidence? And if the latter, what do we do?

    Thanks.
  2. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,540
    Location:
    North Carolina
    What they did would have no effect on your breakers. Maybe you should call an electrician
  3. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades Master of one

    Messages:
    4,314
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Hello Group,

    If You don't pay your bill they can shut your power Off. Not sure if a breaker would blow, That don't sound right, Ground Fault Might.

    They can also shut your car off if you don't pay your car payment.

    Technology is nice, But don't be fooled that it is good for You.

    In our area people have been getting BIG electric Bills, They can also be hacked, They are wireless.

    I like OLD school...

    Tell me what You think, about remote meter reading... And Remote Control...

    Just a thought from DonL...

    Have a good one.

    Thank You Terry Love, Your Forums are Great.
  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    The only things that can trip a circuit breaker are a short circuit, or an overload, or heat buildup from a loose connection, none of which have anything to do with the meter.
  5. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades Master of one

    Messages:
    4,314
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Good Morning hj and the group.

    A Ground Fault Circuit Breaker, Senses hot wire-to-ground faults , and shuts off.

    So it depends on what type of breaker it is.

    I agree that the Meter has nothing to do with the breaker getting tripped. (Other than supplying the Power to trip it)

    Have a Great Day.

    DonL.
  6. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,134
    Location:
    New England
    Well, Don, the GFCI actually measures the difference in the current between the hot and the neutral...it doesn't even need a ground to work. If the current returning isn't within a very small amount (often around 5ma), it trips. That lost current could go to the ground circuit, or anywhere, but it's irrelevant if the ground is actually there.
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