AHITV – Electrical Part 7

What can go wrong as we bring electricity into a home?

There are three common problems that may be encountered with bringing electricity into the home.

  1. Mechanical damage
  2. Improper location
  3. Moisture problems

I’ll focus on explaining these defects as it relates to the overhead service, as underground service is impossible to inspect without excavation and proper equipment. Remember, problems with the service drop are usually the responsibility of the utility company.

Mechanical Damage

Wires can be damaged by tree branches; deteriorate due to weathering/sun damage, or human error. When damage is noted on the service, the utility company should be notified immediately.


Wires that are too low can be hit by vehicles; overhead wires should be about 12 feet above ground level. We also do not want people to be able to reach the wires from windows, doors, or balconies; wires should be kept at least 3 feet away.

Moisture problems

Water on the overhead wires are not a problem; but if the water manages to get into the conduit that goes into the home, this is a problem.