Distribution

Electrical distribution transports electricity from the transmission system to homes, businesses and the consumers.  Electrical substations connect to the transmission system and lower the voltage to a medium range between 2 kV and 35 kV utilizing transformers.

Primary distribution lines carry this power to distribution transformers in residential neighborhoods. Distribution transformers adjust the voltage for appropriate usage by household appliances and typically service many households through secondary distribution lines.  Customers requiring a higher amount of power may are connected at the primary distribution level.

electrical distribution labels, tags and signs

Transformers are either pole-mounted to utility poles or pad-mounted on concrete pads for underground lines.  Weather-proof harsh environment reflective numbers and letters are applied to the transformers to display the KVA voltage ratings.  Additionally, some transformers contain insulating liquid chemicals.  In the past it was typically polychlorinated biphenyl, or PCB’s which have be banned.  Transformers currently display Non-PCB labels to alert technicians that there are no PCB chemicals in the transformer.

Pad-mounted transformers are enclosed in locked metal cabinets and are in close proximity to the public.  In addition to displaying KVA labels, these transformers require transformer high voltage labels on the outside to warn the public of the danger of the  high voltage components within the transformer.  Technicians also need a clear space around the transformer to perform maintenance and repairs.  Transformer labels that dictate that shrubbery be set back a certain distance from the box are typically displayed in large formats on the outside doors of the unit.

The inside of these cabinets require similar labeling for the protection of field personnel. Arc flash labels warn of the danger of arc flashes which are extremely dangerous electrical explosions. Phase tags denote the electrical phases of the cables.  Custom lockout tags identify that equipment has been de-energized for repairs or maintenance.

811 labels or Call Before you Dig labels alert the public and work crews to notify local utilities which can identify the underground locations of electrical and telecommunication cables. This is critical during excavations of for finding cables to detect problems and make repairs without causing damage and harm buy blindly digging and potentially hitting and/or severing a power cable.