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EricWoods


Nov 10, 2012, 2:15 PM

Post #1 of 18 (21574 views)

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Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Hey.
i have been told that the electric wall sockets are only 2 pin type with no wide pin, if i have a 2 pin adaptor to plug in will phone chargers & computers work off this ? i am assuming that the volt output is same or close to USA,, Just wanna come prepared, have you got any electrical stores in the area like 'Radio Shack' or 'Best Buy ? Is there a big shopping mall closer than Guadalajara ?
Peace & Happiness to Everyone
Eric



Axixic


Nov 10, 2012, 2:55 PM

Post #2 of 18 (21559 views)

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Re: [EricWoods] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Some places have 3 prong plugs but the third is for show and not usually grounded. Most of the store have a 3 pin to 2 pin converters for less than $1 USD.


johninajijic

Nov 10, 2012, 2:55 PM

Post #3 of 18 (21559 views)

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Re: [EricWoods] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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The newer houses (less than 12 years old) have 3 prong plugs with one wide blade because newer houses are grounded. Radio Shack and Best Buy are in GDL at the Galerias Mall.

The closest mall from here, still in GDL is the Gran Plaza a bit closer than Galerias Plaza but in the same direction.


(This post was edited by johninajijic on Nov 10, 2012, 2:57 PM)


EricWoods


Nov 10, 2012, 3:01 PM

Post #4 of 18 (21555 views)

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Re: [johninajijic] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Hey,
thank you both for the fast reply, sometimes it is better to have what you need with you especially when one doesnt know where to go and its often the silly little things like these that are hard to find
Thanks Again
Eric


Axixic


Nov 10, 2012, 3:29 PM

Post #5 of 18 (21549 views)

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Re: [EricWoods] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Those plugs are cheap so why not pick one up before you leave? They are like 25 cents a piece. Here Walmart, Soriana and any electric store has them.


johanson


Nov 10, 2012, 4:11 PM

Post #6 of 18 (21545 views)

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Re: [Axixic] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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As a former owner of a 60 corvette Etc I would like to warn you about the voltage here in Mexico. Per federal specifications the voltage here is not 110 to 120 nor 220 to 240 but rather 127 +/- 10% yes, +/- 10%. And that's OK if your equipment is built to Mexican specifications. But if not you could need a voltage regulator.

So be careful and add voltage regulators where necessary. I have burnt out a few satellite receivers etc before getting regulators.


EricWoods


Nov 10, 2012, 4:23 PM

Post #7 of 18 (21543 views)

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Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Hey,
good to know information some electronics are very sensitive to voltage i think laptop computers are ok i think they will work 110-240 volt always better to play it on the safe side,
Many Thanks
Eric


johanson


Nov 10, 2012, 6:02 PM

Post #8 of 18 (21536 views)

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Re: [EricWoods] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Exactly Eric. many items these days are good between 100 and 240 volts. Much more so today than when I first came to Mexico in 1997. I learned fast though, (after burning out one too many power supplies) to check both the specifications of the equipment and my line voltage before plugging anything in.

Today, my line voltage is usually between 125 and 129 which is much better than before, now that I have a new electric utility step down transformer only 70 meters from my home. Yes I have a voltage meter plugged into the outlets (on the phase) I use for my computer, TV, Stereo Etc. So far, so good.

In the past when there were fewer transformers, sometimes at night I would see, 142 and in the day during high usage, closer to 115 volts. Today, as I posted above, I'm usually about 127 +/- 2 volts.


robt65

Nov 11, 2012, 5:47 AM

Post #9 of 18 (21511 views)

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Re: [EricWoods] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Hello Eric Woods,
Not only is the electric supply different but those "newer houses" that have three pronged electric wall receptacles for grounded electrical plugs are not always “grounded” as one would normally expect. Remember in Mexico . . . . . . the only thing for sure, is that nothing is for sure”!!! When we bought our home, I was assured the electrical had been recently “upgraded” and of course all receptacles had “three prongs” showing. Since I wanted to upgrade and make sure of good electric capacity, I installed all new wiring and a 220 system (including a large capacity 42 breaker box) with three ground rods driven into the ground as per the North American standard electrical codes, which of course includes correct grounding. Upon taking apart the old electric lines from the existing 100 Amp system in the home, I discovered that grounding simply meant attaching the ground screw on the receptacle with a small bit of “lamp cord” to the electrical receptacle box, NO OTHER ground wires leading from the boxes to an exterior grounding, and the electrical boxes were simply installed in concrete, with the wiring using no conduit of any fashion in most instances. Oh am I now surprised! (NOT)

Over the years now we have had some pretty hellacious lightning in the rain storms and not one time have I ever experienced any problems but neighbors have. If you are renting ant not buying, I would suggest bringing enough good quality surge protectors for such electric / electronic elements you plan to have in your home, such as refrigerator, televisions, land line phones, stereos, computers, printers, Air conditioners, dehumidifiers, etc. Really a good insurance investment. Having to replace such high dollar items (especially all at once) really isn’t a great thought. The costs of a few good quality surge protectors are worth their weight in AC’s and refrigerators!

Regards,
Robt65


YucaLandia


Nov 11, 2012, 7:47 AM

Post #10 of 18 (21501 views)

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Re: [Axixic] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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In Reply To
Some places have 3 prong plugs but the third is for show and not usually grounded. Most of the store have a 3 pin to 2 pin converters for less than $1 USD.


We have the same issues in our area of Mexico, most homes with only 2 prong outlets, or outlets with no consistent connections of the 3'rd (round pin) plug/socket to ground, and line voltages ranging from 115V - 140V.

In case you are worried, the 3'rd pin is just a replicate of the tall/wide slot in the outlet. The outlet is still connected to "ground" (actually neutral), even of it has no 3'rd pin (or even if the third plug is not connected). In US codes, the third pin has its own wire, but that wire goes back to the main circuit box and is connected the same ground as the white/neutral wire: both connect to the power company's neutral line. This means that a 3 prong outlet actually has 2 ground wires, that are electrically identical - where the 3'rd prong is just a spare for safety's sake, in case the white (normal ground wire) is accidentally cut.

How often is an internal wire inside a wall cut accidentally?
How often is a wire gnawed completely through by mice?
In 40 part-time years of servicing appliances, I have seen dryer and refrigerator wires chewed through by mice 3 times, but they have not actually cut the wire - meaning the appliance is still grounded. This means that the millions of Mexican homes and businesses that have no duplicate grounds, work fine for decades, as long as amateurs are not playing with the wires in the breaker box or in the walls or in our electronics.

Special Note on "Grounding" for Mexico:
Big problems often occur here if the homeowner decides to "correct" the "missing ground" problem themselves, by driving in a ground rod outside (or connecting to a metal water pipe) and connecting the 3'rd pins on outlets to their new "ground".

CFE does NOT routinely do a good job of connecting their white (neutral aka "ground") to an actual earth ground. In testing over 100 different homes on different transfomers here, I have found that almost none of the "ground" lines are actually grounded: The "ground" / neutral line on Mexican power lines generally floats between 1V - 5V above earth ground.

This means that you can cause some electrical devices big problems if you install an actual separate earth ground, and then connect the 3'rd prongs of your outlets (green wire) to the new earth ground. If your neutral/"ground" line from CFE is floating at 5V, then connecting the 3'rd prong to a good earth ground causes an unanticipated voltage difference internally in your 3 prong electrical devices.

Sanolec power strips (and some other brands) are notorious for putting some small filtering capacitors and resistors in between the earth ground (green wire) and the line neutral "ground", to help filter out noise. The problem with this is that when CFE has their neutral/"ground" at 5V, then the internal filters in some devices start to pass unintended currents, and they over heat. The Sanolec power strips then get hot enough to melt the plastic cases, and burn out their filtering components.

If you feel compelled to connect the 3'rd prongs to an earth ground, then be sure to connect all your neutral lines (white wires) from CFE to your earth ground, to create a common ground through your entire system - to not damage your appliances/devices that have internal filters between the neutral and safety grounds.

Sounds good, right? Unfortunately, your home's new earth ground then becomes the earth ground for the entire neighborhood (for all circuits on your transformer that may serve 2-3 blocks) feeding some current from all the homes through your home's new earth ground wire. In addition to Sanolec surge suppressors burning up, I've seen printers cooked and microwave ovens transformers fried by the grounding and voltage issues here.

The issues of protecting electrical devices can be solved with a combination of about 3 different protection devices: Line Conditioners or voltage regulators vs. UPS's vs. surge suppressors. Each type of electrical device in our home needs a different type of protection from common issues here in Mexico, which requires way too much space to write in a post.

Read more about protecting our electronics at: http://www.yucatanliving.com/...s-in-the-tropics.htm Protecting Electrical Appliances / Electronics in the Tropics.

Hint: Some laptop charging units handle the higher Mexican voltages just fine, while others do not. I have seen several Apple laptop computers that overheat with Mexican voltage and ground issues. We advise protecting things that are important to the user, and that protection usually costs at least $75.
steve
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com

(This post was edited by YucaLandia on Nov 11, 2012, 9:39 AM)


johanson


Nov 11, 2012, 7:51 AM

Post #11 of 18 (21498 views)

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Re: [robt65] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Very good point Robert. I had one grounding wire tha was connected directly to the water pipe. Guess what? They hooked a clamp to the plastic YES PLASTIC ( I shout) water pipe. So of course I had no true ground. When my house was rewired, we put in three (2 meter) interconnected grounding rods in the grassy area where I always water the lawn.

Oh and I just read the above very good post. My electricians, took the above into account and apparently in my case, at least the ground did not have a slight voltage. Of course now CFE just added a new transformer right next to my house I guess for future neighborhood expansion so I don't know what that means. (Other than my line voltage these days is only about 127 +/- 2 volts, which is nice for a change)


(This post was edited by johanson on Nov 11, 2012, 8:02 AM)


YucaLandia


Nov 11, 2012, 8:21 AM

Post #12 of 18 (21485 views)

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Re: [johanson] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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You can easily check if your CFE line is actually grounded.

Disconnect your earth ground. Re-Connect your earth ground instead to one wire of a good heavy extension cord. Feed the cord over to an electrical outlet. Connect your volt meter between the neutral line on the outlet and your grounded extension cord wire to measure the actual CFE ground voltage.

In homes with no earth ground rod, you can measure whether your home's neutral line is actually grounded by connecting one wire of your extension cord to a metal sewer/drain pipe (under a sink) to get a good earth ground and then measure the voltage between CFE's neutral and a real earth ground from the drain pipe.

Since so-called "220 Volt" electrical service is actually two separate 127V lines, you may have to check the neutral lines on each of the 2 lines in your house. If your breaker box is properly balanced, then your home actually has 2 different sets of outlets with different voltages, with roughly the same numbers of outlets on one of the 127V lines and the other set of outlets on the other 127 volt line. Since the internal wiring in the home then has 2 different ground lines, you may want to check both "grounds" and both hot circuits.

Why write such detailed things about this stuff?
Most Mexican electricians get this stuff wrong.
Most gringos also get it wrong, due to having only very limited understandings of how to properly protect all our electronics different needs from the common voltage problems. and.... Some lessons have been learned the hard way: We lost a $400 laser printer to the issue of poor inadequate protection from a first rate UPS. We had 2 different Sanolec surge suppressors burn up. A friend had his clothes dryer burn out due to an improperly functioning new voltage regulator. Another friend's microwave oven's High Voltage transformer literally exploded due to mixing a newly installed earth ground with CFE's ungrounded "ground" wire. I have 5 dead microwave ovens sitting in my workshop (ovens for parts due to dead magnetrons) due to insufficient protection.
steve
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com


johanson


Nov 11, 2012, 11:10 AM

Post #13 of 18 (21472 views)

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Re: [YucaLandia] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Hey "Yuca" what you write may not be understood by all, but I appreciate it. Talking about electricity, in my case, I get all three phases, each 120 degrees different than the other. And yes I used to have two electric meters with two addresses on my house. You guessed it. Knowing that the more electricity you use the lower the rates are in the states, I was too dumb to confirm whether that was the case here or not. After I got rid of that second meter, I learned real fast about the DAC rates :)

There is a lot we can learn from each other. That's why I like these Forums so much.


robt65

Nov 11, 2012, 12:58 PM

Post #14 of 18 (21461 views)

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Re: [YucaLandia] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Hello Steve,

In our case no third wire at all in the house wiring. only a positive and a negitive. Hell we used to get shocks from one or two of the wall switches. The Fracc where we bought in Queretaro evidently was required years ago (about 25 years ago) to install deep grounding rods near the transformers in the Fracc. All electric wiring in the Fracc. From the transformers is underground and 220 actually comes up to the curb in front of each lot from the transformers. Since I have bought an additional adjoining lot and plan to buy another, each lot actually has a 220 service to the curb in front of each lot. Here is not one other house in the Fracc., using 220. What a waste, and what a savings for me.

All Electric materials used in our home I bought in the USA. Including a large 220 breaker box lots of extra various size breakers and all wire. The only thing I failed to buy in the US was wall receptacles and light switches. I bought the best quality I could buy here. The Mexican wall switches lasted about a month to six months and then started dropping like flies.

I have since replaced all the switches and wall receptacles with NOB products since that time and now no problems. All new conduit channels were carved into the concrete walls, floors and ceilings (except for the Boveda ceilings which I added outside electrical channel conduit on the tops and then covered that with the roofing material, all mostly all new NOB hard Elec PVC for wire used as well as all bathrooms, laundry room and kitchen fitted with GFI. To top all that off I am now part of the "Third "inapam o insen" part of life and I receive a 50% discount on top of that I couldn't be happier.

When I do get the new addition built early next year I will be using the same set up with an additional 220 panel for that addition. The extra 220 to the addition will afford me extra for two outside water fountains, possibly a Jacuzzi and extras for a small wood shop, electric driveway gates, etc. Doing this will keep my single meter usage down and therefore the usage costs.

Regards,

Robt65





YucaLandia


Nov 11, 2012, 6:07 PM

Post #15 of 18 (21439 views)

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Re: [robt65] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Your insights on how to remodel and update are spot on !

We used to have a shower-head heater that would bite-the-user due to the trickle current between the supposedly "grounded" shower head and touching the metal spigot handles with the water on. One internet commentator suggested installing plastic handles. You mention underground utilities and deep ground rods at the transformers, while our hard karst limestone forces all the wiring to be overhead, with minimal ground rods. Our 2" to 4" of topsoil covering hard rock is just not conducive to easy pounding of ground rods.

Great advice,
steve
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com


robt65

Nov 11, 2012, 6:44 PM

Post #16 of 18 (21435 views)

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Re: [YucaLandia] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Steve,

Hi Again,

I used to live in a lot of hard variety limestone area in Kentucky. We found that in our particular kind of limestone the rods went in at an angle much easier and provided the same good ground conductivity. A lot of times one can look around at a small limestone formation and get a general direction of the angle of the limestone. Then have at it using a good size hammer drill that you should be able to rent locally.

If I remember correctly, Limestone usually infers water veins running through many varieties of limestone to underground streams. If you are lucky enough to hit one of these trickles of water, I think you should be in like a dirty old sock.

Most times you shouldn’t have much difficulty with a full length rod installing it in this manner. Just have to be careful to give the correct distance from the estimated position of the tip of the rod to the head of the next in line rod.

Regards,

Robt65




(This post was edited by robt65 on Nov 11, 2012, 6:55 PM)


salto_jorge

Dec 16, 2012, 7:28 PM

Post #17 of 18 (21076 views)

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Re: [robt65] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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In GDL, all of our outlets are of the three prong type. That being said many of them were wired incorrectly and had to be corrected. I suggest your purchase a "Receptacle Tester, 3-Wire Light Improper Wiring Indicator" to check things out. While working on the outlets we discovered that wire nuts were not used and the large multistrand wires were twisted together and taped. HomeDepot and RadioShack have stores in GDL.


(This post was edited by salto_jorge on Dec 16, 2012, 7:30 PM)


robt65

Dec 16, 2012, 7:59 PM

Post #18 of 18 (21070 views)

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Re: [salto_jorge] Electrical Supply & Wall Socket Info

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Absolutely a good idea. An inexpensive tool that does a very credible job.

Thanks for reminding me of that. Sometimes we take the smallest good tools for granted. i have several. I sure am happy they are usually of a bright color and are easy to find in a crowded tool box! (smiling)

Robt65

 
 
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