HomeTechnology ReportsHere


Featured on Howard Direct

Featured on Howard Direct


Up-Time To Down-Time In A Millisecond

By: Nick Howard  |  June 2012  |  Contact the Author
Warning! Take the time to read this important report. The factory’s main electrical bus is not on many people’s radar. Nothing moves - so, what could go wrong? Plenty as it turns out. Explosions and fire for starters and that says nothing of the immediate and total down-time when your plant is left without power.

The high voltage main electricity arrives in your plant at the electrical distribution panel. From the main disconnect (breakers or fuses), the power moves to the bus system and then through breakers to your equipment. It sits in the corner generally never looked at, but it’s a time bomb waiting to cause complete chaos.

This warning is not something to ignore or take lightly. Many insurance companies now demand inspections yearly. Why? If the main bus is not inspected, connections loosen through temperature and amperage changes. When lugs or connections loosen, they create thermal expansion and contraction. In turn, this creates higher resistance which then creates heat. Dust and accumulated dirt inside the panel can act as a catalyst and combined with extreme high heat will cause potential explosions and even fires. There are also many tragic deaths each year. These can be prevented.

The immediate effects are indeed. . . . immediate - no power! All your equipment, phones, and computers – everything will shut down or will eventually once your UPS systems expire. But, this is only the beginning of the nightmare. Many mains systems have proprietary or made to order parts and will not be readily available. This on its own could cause outages that could last days even weeks to correct.

The photos show clearly how an ignored bus panel blew and the damage it caused. Main connections from the breaker had to be made and subsequently the bus bars too. Finally the panel had to wait for an inspection before it could be turned back on. Although this incident caused the plant to be down 30 hours, think of the cost in production, wages and potential lost business.

Electrical preventative maintenance is the smart thing to do and should be carried out once per year. This involves having your electrician or specialist company remove the case panels, vacuum the enclosure and re-torque all connections. An infra red inspection is also widely available and this will spot any hot spots quickly, too.

Today, we are inundated with suggestions and warnings many of which we never take seriously. Don’t make the mistake of not taking action on your main electrical panel. As the Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company says: Keep it clean, dry and tight. If you’re not sure how to go about getting started feel free to contact our Service Department at: service@howardgraphic.com.


Head Office:

Quick LInks:

Products and Services:
800 Westgate Road
Oakville, ON L6L 5N2
Tel. (905) 821-0000
Email: info@howardgraphic.com
Skype: howardgraphic

      Bookmark This Page

  Archived Articles

  Archived News

  Archived Commentaries

  Archived Technology Reports

  Archived Featured Media

  Supply and Service of Printing and
Allied Equipment Since 1967

  Pre-owned and Reconditioned
Printing, Packaging and Bindery

  USPAP-Compliant Certified Appraisals
and Valuations for the Printing and
Allied Industries

  Asset Revitalization and
Refurbishment In Our 98,000 sq ft
State-Of-The-Art Facility

Copyright © 1967-2017 News & Views - Howard Graphic Group of Companies. All Rights Reserved.