Disconnect /Reconnect Utility

Peter Furrow

We’re not born humble, we’re born to be humbled
Location
Cape canaveral Fl
Occupation
Electrical contractor
Just spoke to an electrician that used to work in Colorado. He said that an electrical contractor is permitted to disconnect and reconnect utility on service. Really?
I know each utility has its own standards and regulations. Florida power and light FP&L Will allow the license holder to disconnect in emergency situations only. The electrical contractor is prohibited from reconnecting utility. The only way to get a reconnect is to have an inspection. Only the AHJ can authorize a reconnect.
I’m just wondering if there are other utility companies out there that allow an electrical contractor to disconnect and reconnect.
Any thoughts.


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Hv&Lv

Senior Member
Location
-
Occupation
Engineer/Technician
He is telling you that because you don’t know and he is hoping you will believe it.
ask your self, would a utility allow an electrician that doesn’t work for them to disconnect and reconnect at will with all the liabilities that go along with operating a power company?

If it’s an emergency and an electrician disconnects the service, generally speaking we have no problem with that. However, to reconnect we require an inspection. When we find one that has been reconnected by an electrician we generally make a call to the inspections Dept. Once these guys hear of this they are like a bloodhound. We don’t have that problem twice...
 

goldstar

Senior Member
Location
New Jersey
Occupation
Electrical Contractor
I have 3 at least different major POCO's in my area of work and anytime I upgrade an overhead service I disconnect and re-connect myself. The only difference would be with an underground service where the POCO has to disconnect at the pad xfmr. The problem with a POCO disconnect-reconnect is that once you order that service from them the only way a POCO will re-energize is with a cut-in card from your local EI. What happens if you get done later in the day and the EI went home? What happens if the EI is not in on that day? What happens if this is an emergency and is required on the weekend.

That said, if the POCO disconnects you at the pole then you are forced to live with their rules
 

infinity

Moderator
Staff member
Location
New Jersey
Occupation
Journeyman Electrician
I have 3 at least different major POCO's in my area of work and anytime I upgrade an overhead service I disconnect and re-connect myself. The only difference would be with an underground service where the POCO has to disconnect at the pad xfmr. The problem with a POCO disconnect-reconnect is that once you order that service from them the only way a POCO will re-energize is with a cut-in card from your local EI. What happens if you get done later in the day and the EI went home? What happens if the EI is not in on that day? What happens if this is an emergency and is required on the weekend.

That said, if the POCO disconnects you at the pole then you are forced to live with their rules
I haven't done a service upgrade around here in a while but on every one that I have ever done we always did the disconnect and reconnect. SOP was pull the meter, cut the drop, splice on a temporary drop for power and reconnect the new SEC's when done. After the POCO received the cut-in card they would come out and change the splices at the drop and maybe upgrade the meter.
 

Knuckle Dragger

Master Electrician Electrical Contractor 01752
Location
Marlborough, Massachusetts USA
Occupation
Electrical Contractor
In Massachusetts It is common practice with to big utility companies that the electrician is expected to disconnect and reconnect connect at the house or building. It's not typically done at the transformer or up on the pole unless it's private.
A lot of Town owned utility companies won't allow you disconnect and reconnect unless it's an inconvenient time for them.
 

Peter Furrow

We’re not born humble, we’re born to be humbled
Location
Cape canaveral Fl
Occupation
Electrical contractor
It sounds like it’s small suburban and rural areas that allow for the disconnect& reconnect to be done by an electrician.
Florida power and light allows for the disconnect to be done by licensed electrical contractor or Masters license. But definitely not a reconnect. I’m surprised to hear that some utility companies are allowing you guys to reconnect.
I wish they would Allow us to do a reconnect at the weatherhead. Obviously, transformer pad and/or Stud Pole would be next to impossible.

Scheduling utility is just getting more and more difficult especially with Covid. I just tried to schedule an overhead to underground conversion and they put me out a month and a half.

Because of Covid all the building departments and utility company have adopted new scheduling procedures online. It’s been a juggling act trying to get anything scheduled lately. I’m starting to miss the days where I can just walk into the building department and submit my hand written permit application and have a one on one working relationship with their office. that little extra time chitchatting and saying hello to the building department or utility office makes for a great working relationship.
I think people need a disconnect reconnect LOL


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jaggedben

Senior Member
A few years ago PG&E in San Francisco made it clear to me in a rather heavy handed way that they did not want to be called for disconnect-reconnect: they refused to show up for the latter part, said they were scheduled out two weeks. Customer eventually called their outage line and a crew came by. On another job the guy gave my partner electrician a kind of wink-wink nod-nod 'call me when it's temporarily reconnected and we'll come do permanent connections.' I'm sure they never came back.

Oakland, on the other hand, has not been a problem.
 
It is fine with National Grid in N.Y..

I signed up once, just because they provide you with connectors. I never heard anything back or got my connectors. I basically do whatever I want. NG is like pothead, they don't really care about anything
 

goldstar

Senior Member
Location
New Jersey
Occupation
Electrical Contractor
Scheduling utility is just getting more and more difficult especially with Covid. I just tried to schedule an overhead to underground conversion and they put me out a month and a half.
AND therein lies the problem !!!

Because of Covid all the building departments and utility company have adopted new scheduling procedures online. It’s been a juggling act trying to get anything scheduled lately. I’m starting to miss the days where I can just walk into the building department and submit my hand written permit application and have a one on one working relationship with their office. that little extra time chitchatting and saying hello to the building department or utility office makes for a great working relationship.
I think people need a disconnect reconnect LOL
Well said. I'm with you 100%
 

jaylectricity

Senior Member
Location
Massachusetts
In Massachusetts It is common practice with to big utility companies that the electrician is expected to disconnect and reconnect connect at the house or building. It's not typically done at the transformer or up on the pole unless it's private.
A lot of Town owned utility companies won't allow you disconnect and reconnect unless it's an inconvenient time for them.
The only two times I did not reconnect myself where because the service drop was damaged. Every other time, I've reconnected. When the inspector calls it in, then they'll come and swap out the drop if it's undersized, or just leave it because that costs money.
 

Peter Furrow

We’re not born humble, we’re born to be humbled
Location
Cape canaveral Fl
Occupation
Electrical contractor
He is telling you that because you don’t know and he is hoping you will believe it.
ask your self, would a utility allow an electrician that doesn’t work for them to disconnect and reconnect at will with all the liabilities that go along with operating a power company?

If it’s an emergency and an electrician disconnects the service, generally speaking we have no problem with that. However, to reconnect we require an inspection. When we find one that has been reconnected by an electrician we generally make a call to the inspections Dept. Once these guys hear of this they are like a bloodhound. We don’t have that problem twice...
HV & LV,
Sounds like you work for the utility.
I had a schedule disconnect reconnect and I disconnected power before utility arrived. The utility technician reamed me out up asking me ‘who authorized me to disconnect power’.
I told him it was emergency and I have to do it before he got there. It went all the way up to the FPL superiors. They sent me their standards and practices and said that on certain circumstances that constitute an emergency I’m allowed to disconnect power if I am a master electrical license holder or the electrical contractor. The utility technician made a lot of noise that day. He was implying that I was taking his job away from him.
Utility technician I wasn’t allowed to cut the neutral and that I wasn’t allowed to tie off the service drop but it had to remain attached to the riser. None of this made any sense.
It was a real show that day.
After reading all these posts it eases my conscience to see how many electricians actually perform not only disconnects but reconnects on properties. If utility can’t keep up with the D&R schedules then they should allow a licensed electricians to perform reconnects.
Just a thought


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I pretty much do what I have to do, even if its with a non self disconnect/reconnect friendly utility. Whatever, Ill just say i'm sorry, I didnt know, I wont do it again, etc. Usually you only deal with the linemen who are super cool and arnt going to care 99% of the time. Once and a while you will get one of these power trip guys.
 

Hv&Lv

Senior Member
Location
-
Occupation
Engineer/Technician
I pretty much do what I have to do, even if its with a non self disconnect/reconnect friendly utility. Whatever, Ill just say i'm sorry, I didnt know, I wont do it again, etc. Usually you only deal with the linemen who are super cool and arnt going to care 99% of the time. Once and a while you will get one of these power trip guys.
The biggest problem we have is electricians disconnecting/reconnecting without any inspections or permits. That’s really all we want, just an EI number...
I have them occasionally that are finished. Permits, tapped up with H taps, called in properly. I have no problem with those. OTR, I have given electricians the H taps or insulinks for these...

The bad ones usually use the wrong connectors... It really is aggravating to go to an outage call at 2 in the AM and see a service head put together with Romex clamps on an uninspected and permitted installation..

power tripping on an electrician doesn’t get them anywhere... usually it’s “little man” syndrome. Same as some cops. There’s bad in every group. Most are cool about it.
 

Knuckle Dragger

Master Electrician Electrical Contractor 01752
Location
Marlborough, Massachusetts USA
Occupation
Electrical Contractor
The only time I ever heard of Electrians using Romex connecters for terminating a service was after a hurricane when they said the utilities were right behind them making them them up the next day and that was about 40 years ago.
 

ptonsparky

Senior Member
Location
NE (9.06 miles @5.9 Degrees from Winged Horses)
Occupation
Electrical Contractor
We aren’t supposed to pull meters anymore and Generally don’t, but that doesn’t mean we don’t cut a load side overhead if needed.
Meter removal generates a loss of power and linemen are supposed to call in prior to removal. That call can be arranged on occasion.
 
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