What to Do if Your Electricity Is Off
If your power goes off, check the lights and appliances in other rooms. If you still have power in some areas, most likely a fuse has blown, or a circuit breaker has opened. This is a warning of overloaded wiring or a defective appliance.
SCI REMC does not repair appliances or maintain the wiring inside the residence.
If All Power Is Off
Check to see if your neighbors have power. This will help SCI REMC determine how widespread the outage may be.
It could be a large outage, it could just be your transformer causing the problem, or a main breaker serving just you and several of your neighbors has tripped.
If you have an outdoor light that we’ve furnished, check to see if that light is out. If so, chances are the power has been interrupted at a point away from your home.
Our interactive voice response system (IVR) will answer your call when our operations center is busy
You can also get your outage recorded quicker by using our mobile app, “SCI REMC Connect.”
Please provide your name, address, telephone number, and account number when reporting the power outage
Have a backup plan for life-support equipment.
If you or someone you know uses life-support equipment that requires electricity to operate:
Identify a location with emergency power capabilities
Make plans to go there or to a hospital during a prolonged outage
How to Charge a Fuse or Reset a Breaker
Changing a Fuse
Disconnect lamps and appliances in use when the circuit went out.
Make sure your hands are dry and stand on a dry board or rubber pad, if possible. Open the main switch or pull out the section of the panel labeled “main” in the service entrance, to cut off current while working at the branch circuit box.
Identify the blown fuse. When a fuse blows, the transparent section becomes cloudy or blackened.
Replace the blown fuse with a new one of proper size. The smaller sizes screw in and out just like light bulbs. If the blown fuse is a cartridge type, located in the pull-out section, it can be removed with hand pressure.
Close the main switch, or replace the pull-out section, to restore service. Throw away the blown fuse.
Resetting a Circuit Breaker
Move the handle to off position
Push handle past off position
Return handle to on position
What Are “Power Blinks”
Power supply occurrences were unnoticed years ago. Today, these occurrences are reported by the many electronic devices all around us.
Before digital clocks, we never noticed these “blinks”. Now, these events seem to happen all the time.
They are not more frequent, but we are more aware of them.
How Blinks Are Caused
It might surprise you to know that most power quality problems begin right in the home or business.
A spike (a.k.a. transient surge) may occur in the building’s wiring when electric motors, like those on the refrigerator or air conditioner, startup.
Other problems may come from:
These conditions can cause voltage drops, momentary outages (blinks), or electrical noise
Having the power blink is better than the alternative—having it go out completely.
Blinks are sometimes caused by devices called “reclosers” that are designed to protect the electrical system. Reclosers essentially act as the circuit breakers in your home, with one major difference – they reset themselves after “breaking” the circuit.
The intent is that a tree touching the line, or other problem, will cause the recloser to open. The device will reset itself, and power will once again flow down the line. If the problem has cleared the line, power will stay on. If the problem still exists, the recloser will operate again. After trying 3 times, most reclosers are designed to stay open until the problem is fixed and the device is manually reset. The opening and closing of the recloser is almost instantaneous and is often not even noticed.
The alternative to using reclosers is to use fuses on each line. While the use of fuses would result in fewer blinks, it would also create more outages.
If You Experience Frequent Blinks
SCI REMC is constantly evaluating our power lines to identify potential blink-causing problems so that we can take preventative measures. While we may not be able to prevent all blinks, please let us know if your home or business experiences an excessive number of them.
Causes of Power Outages & Blinks Video
Safeguard With Surge Protectors
Surge protectors help save your electronics from power surges or increases in voltage significantly above the intended level in the flow of electricity. Nearby lightning strikes are most often associated with power surges in your home’s wiring. These surges can damage electronics and appliances.
Smaller power surges are far more common and can happen at any time of day, regardless of the weather. Point-of-use surge protection devices protect the items directly plugged into them. This surge protector can’t stop the surge, but it instead diverts the surge to the ground, away from your electronic devices.
Replacing Surge Protectors
After absorbing powerful surges and spikes, your surge protector eventually will turn into a typical power strip, unable to protect your electronics.
When a voltage increases beyond the amount the appliance or device can handle, the surge protector diverts the extra voltage to the metal oxide varistor component in the surge protector.
This extra voltage stays in the surge protector and gradually destroys that component.
Eventually, the surge protector will no longer be able to absorb more surges.
Lifespans vary depending on how many surges your surge protector is forced to try to absorb.
The longer it’s been since you last replaced your surge protector, the more voltage your surge protector has absorbed and the more likely you should replace it.