Poor quality or fluctuating power supply can often cause power surges, spikes and voltage fluctuations.
Examples of this can include flickering lights, lights glowing brighter or dimmer, incandescent bulbs blowing prematurely, failure of electronic equipment (especially computers), interference of radio or TV reception.
There can be different causes for this. Loose or corroded connections either at the house or on the powerlines can cause voltage fluctuations. This is often seen as flickering lights.
Low voltage due to overloading on the network, loose connections, or too small a conductor wire carrying power to your house may cause dimming of your lights. In extreme cases, a loose connection can cause electric shocks from metal appliances and surfaces in your home.
Power surges and spikes can be caused by lightning, power switching on the lines, household appliances drawing too much power in either your or your neighbour’s homes, strong winds causing lines to clash, trees touching the line, vehicle accidents involving powerlines, or birds or other animals on the lines.
Most of the time fluctuations are a one-off case and won’t need further investigation. However if the problem continues, you might like to investigate to find out the cause. You could have an electrician install a surge protector in your distribution board. A cheaper option however is to ensure you have power surge protectors on all electronic appliances such as computers and televisions.
If the problem is caused by an issue on the Northpower network, we'll fix it at no charge.
If the problem is with your property wiring or equipment, you'll need to pay for it to be repaired.
Our qualified electricians can come and inspect your wiring and advise on the causes of fluctuating power supply.
In many cases, a loose or poor connection can be the issue and can be fixed while we're on site.
Please contact us to arrange a faults person to inspect the problem.
Before they arrive at your place, it can be useful to fill out our Voltage Fluctuation Observation Form (PDF 672KB) with as much detail as possible to help narrow down the cause.Contact us