I’ve got two current sensors exposed to the elements because the roof outside my house is the only place I have access to the individual hot wires on both sides of a 240V North American setup.
Does anyone have some weatherproofing suggestions so they don’t get beat up by the sun and rain? I’m in southern california so the sun in the primary concern. I was thinking about wrapping them in some heavy duty tinfoil but maybe there are better more aesthetic options that intrepid forum members have devised.
Welcome, @sysfu to the OEM forum.
I’m afraid I can’t think of an easy way to do what you need, but I can foresee a couple of problems you need to avoid.
I don’t think aluminium foil is a good idea - it will be a “shorted turn” in the magnetic field around the conductor, so it will carry a current and might well get warm, unless you make sure the ends don’t overlap and touch. It would be OK if the neutral is present at this place and you enclose all three conductors (both legs and neutral), because the currents and the magnetic fields then balance.
If what you have are split-core current transformers, by far your biggest enemy will be corrosion on the mating surfaces of the core. Any corrosion - and any protective coating you might be tempted to put on the surfaces - will introduce an air gap that will harm the accuracy of the c.t.
An encapsulated ring-core c.t. should be able to withstand the weather, but of course you can’t use one because the wires need to be disconnected to install it.
Is the proposed location under cover and shaded, or totally exposed to sun and rain?
thanks for the detailed run-down. The location is totally exposed to sun and rain. I’ll snap a picture and post so people can get a clear picture of the location and wiring.
Hello and welcome aboard!
Would something similar to this work for you?
Thanks for the suggestion but I don’t see how to integrate that enclosure. Right now the roof is my only available access point. Long term the best solution would be to have an electrician install a break-out box inside where I can can attach the current sensors around each hot wire before they reach the analog electrical meter.
In the meantime, I need to rig something up to buy me some more time. You can see the original sensor on the left of the photo that I installed a year aog is quite weather beaten. The one on the right is fresh out of the box. I’m afraid the plastic on the older one will become brittle and the snap latch catch will break off.
OUCH! This looks hairy. I take it the wires are inaccessible inside the roof where they exit the pole?
The c.t’s can be anywhere along those service entrance wires up to where they hit the busbars in your load centre, and the whole length is inaccessible?
If pole-mounted is the only place available, then something like Bill’s suggestion is the only way, but you still need a waterproof split gland for the cable entry & exit for the SEW, and for the c.t. downlead.
Your CT attachment point doesn’t have to be “before” your analog Wh meter.
(mine are a considerable distance “after” my meter) I’m in Oklahoma, so I’ve some idea of what
you’re up against. (the forum is based in the UK)
You could also have an electrician “break out” the wires that feed your circuit breaker panel,
i.e. after your meter. The only thing that might preclude doing it that way is if you have a combination
meter base / circuit breaker panel.