Meter Bypass

 
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Old 09-16-2005, 06:59 AM   #1
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Meter Bypass


I dont know if its something relativly new or (more likely) my newness, but recently I have been seeing a "bypass handle" behind the meter socket in a lot of meter panels (residential).
Could someone please tell me the idea behind these?
The journeyman I am working with said its for temporarily supplying power to the house without the meter, but he didnt sound too sure about it.
I have not looked extremely closely, but on cursury examination it looks as if the handel and attatched bar closes between the two line side sockets, and does not interact with the load side. I dont think that makes sense, I probably just looked at it wrong.

Thanks for any replies,
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Old 09-16-2005, 10:27 AM   #2
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Re: Meter Bypass


The power company makes us install meter sockets with a bypass here. It disconnects the lugs that the meter plugs into so that it doesn't arc to the meter prongs when they unplug or plug it into the meter socket. It does not supply temporary power to the house.

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Old 09-16-2005, 03:45 PM   #3
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Re: Meter Bypass


So far, you're both sorta right.

There's serveral kinds of meter bypass methods, but what Toster is referring to is called "lever bypass" or sometimes called "multiposition bypass". When you press the lever one way, it releases the jaws. When you press it the other way, it shunts the line to the load and effectively bypasses the meter.

There is also "horn bypass", in which the meter lugs have little metal horns sticking off them for jumper cables to be attached.

There's also an old style called "mechanical slider". There is also a spring loaded "automatic bypass" that slaps in when you unplug the meter. This type of bypass is considered unsafe by many. Plus, when the automatic bypass fails to engage fully, it can make for a spectacular show.
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Old 09-16-2005, 07:26 PM   #4
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Re: Meter Bypass


Thank you datafan and mdshunk. I appreciate the replies.

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Old 09-16-2005, 07:53 PM   #5
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Re: Meter Bypass


Well I guess I was half right but I still got a lot to learn. Thanks for the info.
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Old 09-16-2005, 09:09 PM   #6
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Re: Meter Bypass


I once had a real bypass. It was to circumvent the meter and reduce the electric bill. I also bought the house from a Sheriff Deputy who also built it.

I was doing some extensive work in the attic, threw the main, and proceeded with flashlights. On one connection, I was greeted with fireworks. I then went outside and discovered the bypass around the meter. That was 25 yrs. ago. Today, I test everything before diving in.
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Old 09-16-2005, 10:15 PM   #7
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Re: Meter Bypass


Quote:
Originally Posted by Teetorbilt
I once had a real bypass. It was to circumvent the meter and reduce the electric bill. I also bought the house from a Sheriff Deputy who also built it.

I was doing some extensive work in the attic, threw the main, and proceeded with flashlights. On one connection, I was greeted with fireworks. I then went outside and discovered the bypass around the meter. That was 25 yrs. ago. Today, I test everything before diving in.

I wonder what kind of "operation" he was running.

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