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General => General => Topic started by: bucko on January 20, 2014, 08:05:49 am

Title: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: bucko on January 20, 2014, 08:05:49 am
This is a shutter controller taken out by a voltage surge of 338 VAC in my house. It took out 3 Fibaros, new $3000 projector, and my access control system. Hey, could be worse. My Elk and cameras survived.
I woke up at 5am to lots of sparks and smoke.

Electrician's comment...."Duh, I dunno what happened. But your house power checks ok now, so you should be fine."

TIC!

Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: intveltr on January 20, 2014, 08:22:26 am
Yikes. Looks like the sort of electrical trouble that starts fires. I hope your insurance or power company will cover your damages.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Z-Waver on January 20, 2014, 08:40:52 am
Sorry for your trouble. As someone who lives in a lightning prone area, this is not an uncommon sight for me.

How did you determine the level of the surge? Especially the remarkably specific value of 338Volts?
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: TC1 on January 20, 2014, 11:01:15 am
Sorry that you had to go through this. Are you in a lightning prone area?

Do you have a whole house surge protector on your main panel? Do you plan on getting one? I'm debating this and whether I have the physical room in my utility closet/panel to add it.

-TC
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 20, 2014, 12:04:11 pm
338VAC you say ? that would only happen if the're 2 phases in a box which one of them is connected to the common wire or ground of a appliance. i'd advice you to get a more experienced electrician, as this one clearly doesn't know what he is doing. you did push charges to this person ? he should pay your damage. damn lucky there wasn't a house fire.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: bucko on January 21, 2014, 06:01:16 am
Yes, I do have whole house lightning protect. In fact it is a custom made German unit made for the phone company only.

The exact volts reading was easy. With my house mains OFF, I could still plug in my meter in a socket and STILL read 338 VAC!!! Their electrician also saw it with his own eyes.  Also it read that the hot and neutral was reversed.

I just returned from an all day meeting with the builder. First they said it was the power company's fault. After LMAF, I asked them to explain why no other house in the area had any trouble. Then they said, well, your circuit breakers are cheap quality and allowed the reversed voltage through. Let me see...imported Siemans EFI breakers, all of which THEY tested and could not find any damage. I called BS on their lame excuses and said our next meeting will be with my lawyers. See ya.
Oh My, then builder agreed to pay every cent for all my damages, and pay all costs for the total repairs to all my house wiring. I will also choose an independant electrical contractor to oversee their work.
I got them by the short hairs and they know it.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Z-Waver on January 21, 2014, 09:06:18 am
Wow! That's a lot more than a surge. You had a constant 338Volt supply! I wonder where that voltage came from?

Quote
Also it read that the hot and neutral was reversed.
Ah! There's the problem.

I'm glad you pushed it back on them rather than allowing them to con you and escape responsibility for a stupid and dangerous mistake.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 21, 2014, 11:57:29 am
Wow! That's a lot more than a surge. You had a constant 338Volt supply! I wonder where that voltage came from?
Quote
Also it read that the hot and neutral was reversed.
Ah! There's the problem.
I'm glad you pushed it back on them rather than allowing them to con you and escape responsibility for a stupid and dangerous mistake.
yes that is what i said :)
im glad too for him that he didn't have a housefire and they cover all expenses. they have to. it's a damn shame they try to put it on him like it is his own fault . i seriously never had any circuitbraker that allowed reverse voltage through, what moron came up with this ridicule, they should fire him immediatly and press charges against that dude.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 21, 2014, 12:01:56 pm
Sorry that you had to go through this. Are you in a lightning prone area?
Do you have a whole house surge protector on your main panel? Do you plan on getting one? I'm debating this and whether I have the physical room in my utility closet/panel to add it.
-TC
save yourselfs the cost and trouble. when lightning strikes there is no protector in the world that is going to help you out. better get a decent lightning rod on the roof which is connected with a pole in the earth.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: BulldogLowell on January 21, 2014, 12:24:59 pm
Sorry that you had to go through this. Are you in a lightning prone area?
Do you have a whole house surge protector on your main panel? Do you plan on getting one? I'm debating this and whether I have the physical room in my utility closet/panel to add it.
-TC
save yourselfs the cost and trouble. when lightning strikes there is no protector in the world that is going to help you out. better get a decent lightning rod on the roof which is connected with a pole in the earth.

Not trying to be argumentative, but living is South Florida, we get a lot of lightning.  Adding a Surge Suppressor at the panel really works.  Unless the lightning hits the actual lines coming not the house, you stand a good chance of surviving a strike.  Lightning has hit my house twice and adjacent palms a few times and no damage so far.

Also, a lot of the surge suppressor manufacturers will warrantee their device with coverage for damaged equipment.  That may not help you immediately after the lightning, but it may shortly thereafter.

I realize I am off topic so I'll stop.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: TC1 on January 21, 2014, 12:41:48 pm
@Da_JoJo, my education is electrical engineering and I agree with you regarding lightning strikes, but as Bulldoglowell points out, it depends on the nature of the strike. There's a direct strike and then there's power surges caused by strikes somewhere else nearby.

For a direct strike best defense is a ground line for your panel and main feed that has several ground rods in the ground. The idea is to make a path of least resistance for the electricity strike since electricity always seeks ground or zero potential. Most people have one ground rod, which is inadequate. You actually need a ground wire several feet in left with ground rods spaced over it, with them tying into several different areas of earth/soil.

A whole house surge protector on the main panel will help with the occasional power surges not due to a direct lighting strike.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: bucko on January 22, 2014, 04:09:52 am
Since I started this thread, I thought I would end it with the final report on my situation for those interested.

Today this remodel company owner, 3 electrical "experts", the govt leader for Kunming developement, and our contractor came to inspect my new house. During their inspection to find a reason why they are not at fault, the electricians admitted the wiring is a total mess that requires a complete rework. They had no choice but to fully admit this is a botched wiring job. The company owner then whipped out 10,000 to pay me as a gift to say sorry for the BS. (or maybe please don't sue us)

 They of course also agreed to make the entire wiring perfect and to my exact specs at 100% their expense. Also any damage to my personal things will also be 100% paid.

They start work tomorrow.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: oTi@ on January 22, 2014, 06:35:59 am
Interesting. So what in-house (?) event happened at 5am that triggered this cascade of equipment blowing up?
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 22, 2014, 06:54:34 am
@Da_JoJo, my education is electrical engineering and I agree with you regarding lightning strikes, but as Bulldoglowell points out, it depends on the nature of the strike. There's a direct strike and then there's power surges caused by strikes somewhere else nearby.

For a direct strike best defense is a ground line for your panel and main feed that has several ground rods in the ground. The idea is to make a path of least resistance for the electricity strike since electricity always seeks ground or zero potential. Most people have one ground rod, which is inadequate. You actually need a ground wire several feet in left with ground rods spaced over it, with them tying into several different areas of earth/soil.

A whole house surge protector on the main panel will help with the occasional power surges not due to a direct lighting strike.

true. and like he says it would help as they cover the damage, so maybe it isn't all in all a bad idea to get a surge suppressor nevertheless. i forgot that over there the powerlines are hanging on a pole and not like here in holland in the ground.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 22, 2014, 06:57:00 am
Since I started this thread, I thought I would end it with the final report on my situation for those interested.
Today this remodel company owner, 3 electrical "experts", the govt leader for Kunming developement, and our contractor came to inspect my new house. During their inspection to find a reason why they are not at fault, the electricians admitted the wiring is a total mess that requires a complete rework. They had no choice but to fully admit this is a botched wiring job. The company owner then whipped out 10,000 to pay me as a gift to say sorry for the BS. (or maybe please don't sue us)
 They of course also agreed to make the entire wiring perfect and to my exact specs at 100% their expense. Also any damage to my personal things will also be 100% paid.
They start work tomorrow.
i'd be happy to take the money. but considering u are in america ? i would sue them and get the extra money for being emotionally screwed up and firehazard they have caused and such. it could end up in the 10 fold of what u get now for compensation.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: oTi@ on January 22, 2014, 07:06:31 am
[...] but considering u are in america ?
[...] the govt leader for Kunming development,[...]
I figured China, the Kunming Hi-Tech zone (plus timing of the messages and an earlier post).
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 22, 2014, 07:12:32 am
[...] but considering u are in america ?
[...] the govt leader for Kunming development,[...]
I figured China, the Kunming Hi-Tech zone (plus timing of the messages and an earlier post).
didn't look that far but ur seem to be right. nevertheless same problem there.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: TC1 on January 22, 2014, 04:46:10 pm

 i would sue them and get the extra money for being emotionally screwed up

Then we could all sue MCV  ;D
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 22, 2014, 08:48:05 pm
Then we could all sue MCV  ;D
ROFL !  good idea but the're in hongkong :P
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: bucko on January 23, 2014, 03:45:30 am
I'm in mainland China. Totally different animal with the laws here. I could sue, 3 years minimum time frame, and in the meantime I have no house repair, no replacement of equipment. Basically shooting myself in the foot.

My priority is getting everything back to normal, completely paid for. It's not worth the aggravation spending my life pushing through the court system here. Maintaining a good relationship with companies here is paramount . You make enemies here gets you killed very quickly. This is still the wild west here.

This company has stepped up and will do everything I want, no questions. That's enough for me. The money is less important to me.
Title: Re: EXCLUSIVE inside view of Fibaro
Post by: Da_JoJo on January 25, 2014, 04:08:45 pm
I'm in mainland China. Totally different animal with the laws here. I could sue, 3 years minimum time frame, and in the meantime I have no house repair, no replacement of equipment. Basically shooting myself in the foot.
My priority is getting everything back to normal, completely paid for. It's not worth the aggravation spending my life pushing through the court system here. Maintaining a good relationship with companies here is paramount . You make enemies here gets you killed very quickly. This is still the wild west here.
This company has stepped up and will do everything I want, no questions. That's enough for me. The money is less important to me.
mm yeah i guess you did the right thing there. glad they fix it for you.