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Old 04-07-2012, 02:44 PM   #21
SuperSocket
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

I'm curious, what do you deem as expensive to pull your own lines?


You can split off from your neighbor, but aside from the trenching cost itself, I am not sure how much you are really saving if any.
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Old 04-08-2012, 06:23 AM   #22
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Originally Posted by dittle fart around View Post
There comes a time in life when you must pay for what you want and or need. Steeling power from your neighbor might not seem like a big deal but to the local utility it is. They can and will prosecute you.
Who the hell said anything about stealing, he spoke with the neighbors!
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:36 PM   #23
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

I would not use the neighbor's supply.
1. Anything that goes electrically wrong in their house is going to be your fault.
2. A future owner might unplug you.
3. It might not be legal for your neighbor to be in the electrical supply business.
4. Easements should be filed allowing you to access the neighbor's property to service your electrical supply lines.
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:40 PM   #24
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Power supply does not cross property lines. You need your own service. Get a generator for big jobs and solar for lighting. With a big tank and a small gas engine, you can have an air compressor that doesn't have to run all the time. Heat with fuel.
Perfecto.
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:30 PM   #25
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

From what I read your power company needs to upgrade what they have in the street so you can have power and your neighbour can upgrade.
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Old 04-12-2012, 09:03 PM   #26
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Originally Posted by ockie View Post
I'm curious, what do you deem as expensive to pull your own lines?


You can split off from your neighbor, but aside from the trenching cost itself, I am not sure how much you are really saving if any.
I'm curious as well. 320' is a good distance but I'm guessing the lateral bore could be a few coins as well.
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Old 04-14-2012, 12:53 PM   #27
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

What about an off the grid solar setup? I don't know much about them, but might be worth investigating. Would need a generator as backup for the welder though.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:15 PM   #28
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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What about an off the grid solar setup? I don't know much about them, but might be worth investigating. Would need a generator as backup for the welder though.
Solar has a 20-30 year payoff.

Not sure if that's even a rational investment to be honest.
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Old 04-15-2012, 12:07 AM   #29
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Actually, one of the tech guys at the power company suggested the possibility of tapping into my neighbor's line...he said they could set up a "dual meter" and yes, the line would have to continue to my building. Not sure if the tap occurs prior to entry intomy neighbor's meter, or behind it..
Emphasis on Dual meter. I wouldn't think it would be a big deal.
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Old 04-15-2012, 12:29 AM   #30
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Actually, one of the tech guys at the power company suggested the possibility of tapping into my neighbor's line...he said they could set up a "dual meter" and yes, the line would have to continue to my building. Not sure if the tap occurs prior to entry intomy neighbor's meter, or behind it..
Emphasis on Dual meter. I wouldn't think it would be a big deal.
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:57 AM   #31
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Solar has a 20-30 year payoff.

Not sure if that's even a rational investment to be honest.
You're absolutely right. Its not really rational where electrical service is readilly available.

Solar panels are great, they have no moving parts, no electronics, and usually come with a 25 year warranty.

The problems

1. Converting the solar panel DC power to AC
2. Powering your shop when the sun isn't shining.

Solar panels don't really have the amperage to run a whole lot on their own, generally you run everything off batteries and the solar panels charge the batteries when you're not using power.

So you need a big bank of batteries and a power inverter. You need enough batteries to power whatever you want to run, along with the equivalent size inverter, so you're going to spend a thousand bucks on batteries, a couple thousand more on a huge inverter, a few hundred in battery cables and related wiring accesories, and whatever the cost of the solar panels and controllers.

After the initial investment, Whoohoo, free power! For a maximum of five years when you need to replace the batteries. Inverters crap out fairly often too, they only come with a one year warranty. Don't forget the maintenance, you have to get up on the roof and clean the solar panels regularly, and keep the batteries filled with water.

I work on RV's for a living, I instal a lot of solar systems, so I figured I was going to run my workshop on Solar and battery, but the math says that over twenty years I can buy power cheaper.

It works well in an RV setup, where the lights and furnace already run on 12 volts, your 110 volts AC use is pretty minimal, a little TV, fifteen minutes of coffee maker, a few minutes of the wife using a hair dryer, microwave some soup, cellphone and laptop chargers. You use a bunch of power in the morning, but generally go out during the day and do recreational stuff which gives the solar a chance to recharge the batteries.

A shop setup is a lot more power hungry. Air compressor, drill press, grinders. Don't even think about a welder. Of course I want to use all the power during the day, leaving only a minimal amount of daylight time for the batteries to recover, and thats only if its not raining, which it generally does every day here.

Back to the OP, if the neighbor is already having voltage problems, you'll want to get them an upgrade before adding yourself to their line, although its likely the power company will already know they need to increase the line size if they're talking about a second meter for you.
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:09 AM   #32
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

With a properly executed utility easement this is no big deal. The adequacy of the neighbors service size is another matter. If you have to pay to upgrade his service to accommodate your load the delta between this scenario and running your own service line from the street may be small enough to outweigh the easement hassle. Also, once you start talking easement with your neighbor you will probably find they get cold feet or that the compensation for hooking up suddenly becomes a much bigger number.

If you proceed without the easement you are at the mercy of your neighbor (or future neighbor) for your electricity. In other words if they get pissed off they can turn the power off and you have no legal recourse.
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:48 PM   #33
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

Still sounds to me like the power company needs to upgrade in that street. if the neighbour has problem you adding into his connection will only make it worse. Pressure them to upgrade what is in the street.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:45 PM   #34
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Originally Posted by Genevieve84 View Post
Well, my power company has made it almost financially impractical to acquire service from them.
Make a complaint to your local Politician.
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Old 04-16-2012, 06:17 AM   #35
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

If the price is totally out of the question, then just get a nice generator. You can always put it in a little shed or something further away and run some wiring into the garage so it's not loud.

Size it appropriately to power the welder and a couple lights. You'll have to shut anything else off if the welder is running.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:36 AM   #36
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Originally Posted by HOTFR8 View Post
Make a complaint to your local Politician.
To be realistic, when you have to bore 320', then you have a large property... which is a luxury. Correct me if I am wrong here - The OP has already electrical service at his house, this is for his SHOP (which tells me his house is even further away than the shop is from the utility box).

So it's not like they are denying him his rights, he chose to build the shop in that location. It would be a whole different thing if he was trying to get power to his house in a say 200k house subdivision of 1/4ac lots and the electrical company wants 50k to run power to it from the curb.

Last edited by ockie; 04-16-2012 at 08:39 AM.
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Old 04-16-2012, 05:57 PM   #37
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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To be realistic, when you have to bore 320', then you have a large property... which is a luxury. Correct me if I am wrong here - The OP has already electrical service at his house, this is for his SHOP (which tells me his house is even further away than the shop is from the utility box).

So it's not like they are denying him his rights, he chose to build the shop in that location. It would be a whole different thing if he was trying to get power to his house in a say 200k house subdivision of 1/4ac lots and the electrical company wants 50k to run power to it from the curb.
Even with that information it also sounds like the power company does not have the power available meaning the lines in that location need to be upgraded. I can be corrected if wrong other wise why are they (power company) asking so much for a new connection ?
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Old 04-16-2012, 06:30 PM   #38
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

Ok, boring a hole or trenching 320 feet. Big differance. With Detroit Edison it will be about $20 a foot for them to do all. Expensive yes but doable. Boring only under the street if needed. Something no right here. Edison wanted $1800 for new transformer to get it closer to barn and I said no way. We are now working on the alternate ways to bring power. By the way I own a Vermeer trencher so I can dig my own. 400 feet not much more than an hours digging. And no we are clay/ sand rock mix. I would ask for the engineer to come out and talk options.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:17 PM   #39
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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Originally Posted by HOTFR8 View Post
Even with that information it also sounds like the power company does not have the power available meaning the lines in that location need to be upgraded. I can be corrected if wrong other wise why are they (power company) asking so much for a new connection ?
The electric grids is regulated pretty bizarre at times in America; it's a tangled mess of politics, profits, and regulation/deregulation. Generally the utility is only responsible to provide power to residential homes, in reasonable locations, even if at a great loss with some rural connections. Secondary services to shops are generally lumped into a sort of commercial category. Where the utility can require the end user to pay for the connection or increases required for the service. They'll generally pay for the connection and upgrade if it the usage will cover the expense in the future though, that's frequently not the case though with small shop or farm feeds.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:46 PM   #40
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Default Re: How do I tap into my neighbor's line?

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The electric grids is regulated pretty bizarre at times in America; it's a tangled mess of politics, profits, and regulation/deregulation. Generally the utility is only responsible to provide power to residential homes, in reasonable locations, even if at a great loss with some rural connections. Secondary services to shops are generally lumped into a sort of commercial category. Where the utility can require the end user to pay for the connection or increases required for the service. They'll generally pay for the connection and upgrade if it the usage will cover the expense in the future though, that's frequently not the case though with small shop or farm feeds.
Much the same here

I had a similar issue here years ago when I built as I wanted electric floor heating but to have that we needed 3 phase yet the street only had two phase and from that we had been advised not to fit floor heating. Then a few years later another house went up and the builders put in floor heating and wired it to the two phase power. Needless to say it created problems for every one in the street and the power company came and made a change now we have three phase power in the street.
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