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Manual for

Maintenance of Distribution Transformers

Source: TQM activities of MeSEB, 2007-08

Manual for Maintenance of Distribution Transformers Source: TQM activities of MeSEB, 2007-08 January 21, 2010

January 21, 2010

Meghalaya State Electricity Board

Meghalaya State Electricity Board MANUAL FOR MAINTENANCE OF DISTRIBUTION TRANSFORMER Source: TQM activities of MeSEB, 2007-08

MANUAL FOR MAINTENANCE OF DISTRIBUTION TRANSFORMER

Source: TQM activities of MeSEB, 2007-08

A Distribution Transformer (DT) is utilized to step down the voltage from 11 KV to 0.433 KV/0.250KV so that the electrical power is usable for providing supply to the customers such as domestic, commercial, industrial, LT, etc. A registered consumer expects uninterrupted power supply because during the failure of power supply, all works be it domestic, official, commercial or industrial comes to a standstill. Hence, transformer failure leads to consumer complaints and unnecessary emergency for the Utility to restore the power supply. In urban areas, the reason for failure of power supply due to failure of transformer is not too frequent, whereas in rural areas most of the power failures are attributable to the failure of distribution transformers.

Failure of distribution transformers results in considerable revenue loss and entails heavy expenditure for replacement.

This manual on DT maintenance and reduction of failure does not describe the engineering know-how of prevention but ensures the use of these skills from the huge collective knowledge of our vast human resources.

Reasons for failure of Distribution Transformers and the remedial measures thereof:

The reasons for failure of Distribution Transformers in both urban and rural areas are the following:

Sl

Probable Causes

Factors

Remedial Measures

No

1.

Overloading

  • A) Absence

of

record

on the

  • A) Maintaining proper record of

loading of the transformer.

 

the total number of consumers

  • B) Granting of load sanction

along with the connected load.

without taking into account loading on the transformer.

  • B) Maintaining proper record on loading of the transformer.

  • C) Unauthorized usage/theft of

  • C) DT metering (static).

power

  • D) Augmentation of transformer or construction of new sub-station.

  • E) Disconnection of illegal connections

2.

Imbalance loading

  • A) of

Absence

record

on

the

  • A) Maintaining the record of the phase-

phase

wise loading and regular load balance

  • B) loading of the transformer.

accordingly

  • C) B) Improper service

  • B) Service connection to be given from

connection

to

consumers

the appropriate phase(s) only after

without

taking

into

account

taking proper shutdown

the phase load

 
  • C) Phase conversion

2

   
  • D) Long single/two phase line.

 

3.

Low

transformer

  • A) Leakage of oil

  • A) Proper tightening of terminals and

oil level

 
  • B) Theft of oil

joints and replacement of loose/burnt out gaskets

 
  • B) Proper sealing of valves

  • C) Use of REC valves

4.

Low break Down

  • A) Overheating of transformer.

  • A) Augmentation of transformer or

Value (BDV) of

  • B) Entry of moisture and

construction of a new substation.

 

the transformer oil

contaminants.

  • B) Proper tightening of terminals and

and poor insulation

  • C) Burnt out insulation in the

joints.

resistance(IR)

winding & core.

  • C) Replacement of deteriorated gaskets.

Value

  • D) Acidity formation due to the

  • D) Replacement of cracked bushings.

 

combined effect of heat, dissolution of varnishes &

  • E) Prompt replacement of deteriorated silica gel & dirty oil in the breather.

cellulose.

  • F) Periodical testing of oil.

  • E) Sludge formation due to continuous heating and thereby decomposition of the insulation material which then gets dissolved in the oil.

  • G) Filtration/overhauling of transformer oil as & when required after testing

5.

Poor earthing

 
  • A) High soil resistivity of the

  • A) Periodical checking

of

the

soil

or absence

of

earth pit

resistivity. Renovation of earth pit or

earthing

  • B) Disconnected earth wire or

making a new earth pit.

 

rusted earth wire.

  • B) Periodical checking of earth connections. Tightening of the terminal connections.

6.

Lightning

 
  • A) High soil resistivity of the earth pit

  • A) Periodical checking of the soil resistivity. Renovation of earth pit or

 
  • B) Undersized loop, especially

making a new earth pit.

from the conductor to the L.A.

  • B) Usage of the appropriate size of earthing loop

  • C) Disconnection earth wire and

  • C) checking

Periodical

of

earth

wire

rusted earth wire.

and earth connection.

  • D) Common earthing.

  • D) Tightening of the terminal connections.

  • E) Absence of lightning

  • E) loop

Earthing

of

LA’s

is

to

be

arrestors / damaged lightning

separate.

arrestors.

  • F) Installation/ replacement of LA’s

 

7.

Improper

or

poor

  • A) Loose connection

  • A) of

Proper

tightening

terminal

cable terminal

  • B) Poor lugging

connections.

 
  • B) and

Proper

lugging

usage

of

appropriate size of lugs.

8.

Burning

of

  • A) Leakage of oil at terminals.

  • A) Proper tightening of terminals and

transformer

  • B) Short circuit between cables due to failure of insulation.

joints, and replacement of loose burnt out gaskets

 
  • C) Fire due to weeds/ jungles etc

  • B) Regular check of the insulation of cables.

  • C) Periodical cleaning of substation.

 

9.

External

short

  • A) Long LT line span

  • A) Erection of intermediary poles where

circuit

  • B) Poor safety clearance.

necessary.

  • C) Sagging of conductors.

  • B) Place spacers where necessary and

3

   
  • D) Accumulation of dust on bushings.

maintain safety clearance between conductors.

  • E) Contact of the conductor with trees / branches.

  • C) Maintain sag of conductors as per standard.

  • D) Cleaning of bushings

  • E) Regular jungle clearing

 
  • 10. Overrated fuses

  • A) Non availability of rated fuse.

  • A) Prompt requisition and procurement of fuse.

  • B) Ignorance of the field staff on the appropriate ratings.

  • B) Training of staff on the purpose of fuse, correct size and implications of

  • C) Use of conductor as fuse

overrating.

  • C) Discourage the use of conductor as fuse wire

 
  • 11. Flash over

  • A) Absence of arcing horn or

  • B) Dirty bushings

  • A) Proper fitting of arcing horns.

arcing horns are not fitted

  • B) Periodical cleaning of bushings.

properly.

 
  • 12. Lack of testing of transformer and sub-station

  • A) Non availability of megger earth tester, filter machine, oil testing kit.

  • A) Each sub-division should have megger, tong tester, and earth tester and each division should have an oil filter

equipments

  • B) Absence of a routine for

machine and oil testing kit.

 

testing.

  • B) Testing schedule to be compiled and

  • C) Shortage of staff

implemented.

  • C) Outsourcing of the testing.

 
  • 13. Vandalism

  • A) Unsecured sub-station

  • A) Proper fencing and the gate(with lock

  • B) Lack of awareness among the

if needed).

public

  • B) Danger plate in the substation.

  • C) Public awareness through media and meetings.

From the table above it can be seen that the main factors which contribute to Distribution Transformer failure are:

  • 1. Non implementation of the construction standards.

  • 2. Absence of records on number of consumers, loading and history of the sub-station.

  • 3. Absence of a well prepared action plan for distribution transformer failure reduction.

  • 4. Absence of inspection, testing and maintenance schedule and non-implementation thereof.

  • 5. Absence of inspection, testing and maintenance record on every sub-station.

  • 6. Irresponsibility and carelessness on the part of some personnel.

  • 7. Absence of proper reporting and clear guidelines at different levels.

  • 8. Shortage of staff.

4

Steps to be taken for Distribution Transformer Maintenance

  • 1. Data collection & upkeep of database

    • a. Total number of DTs in the Division/Sub-division.

    • b. Monthly DT failure report in each sub-division. A separate report in a uniformly prescribed format for each DT failure.

    • c. Weekly/Monthly interruption report in a sub-division.

    • d. HT feeder with sub-stations including the single line diagram showing line length and sub-station capacity.

    • e. LT feeder single line diagram indication the line length.

    • f. Monthly record of consumer complaints and records of failure against each DT.

    • g. Computerization of database in uniformly prescribed formats throughout the board.

  • 2. Inspection & Maintenance Schedule for Distribution Transformers:

  • Sl

    Inspection

    Items to be inspected

    Inspection notes

     

    Action

    required

    if

    inspection

    frequency

     

    shows

    un-sactisfactory

    conditions

     
    • 1. Fortnightly

    (i)

    Dehydrating

    Check that air passages

    Clean air passages. If silica gel is

    Breather

    are clear

    pink, change with spare.

    (ii) Oil Level in Transformer

    Check colour of active agent (silica Gel)

    Charge. The old charge may be reactivated for use again. If oil level is low, top up with dry

    (iii) Physical

    Check transformer oil level

    oil. Examine transformer for leaks. If loose. Tighten: replace if

     

    Condition

    cracked

     
    • 2. Monthly

    (i)

    Connections (HT & LT terminals)

    Check tightness

     

    Tighten the terminal connections Replace lugs if required

    (ii) Explosion vent

    Check

    for

    cracks/

    Replace the gasket

    damages

    (iii) Diaphragm (Pressure

    Check

    for

    any

    oil

    relief device)

    spillage

     
    • 3. Quarterly

    Bushings

    Examine for

    cracks

    Clean or replace

    and dirt deposits Check for external connection

    Tighten, if required

     
    • 4. Half yearly

    (i)

    Non oil

    Check

    for

    moisture

    Improve ventilation

    conservator tank

    under cover

    Maintenance of breathers to be

    transformer (ii) Cable boxes, gasket joints, gauges and general

    Inspect

    ensured Take remedial measures

    5

       

    paint work

       

    5.

    Yearly

    (i) Oil in transformer

    Check for dielectric strength Check for acidity and sludge

    Oil filtration to restore quality of oil.

    (ii)Earth resistance

    <I ohm

    Take suitable action resistance is high

    if

    earth

    3.

    Communication

    • a. Monthly meetings on DT maintenance among AEE/AE/JE and line staff.

    • b. Monthly/biomonthly meetings of CEOs with EEs and AEEs.

    • c. Quarterly meetings convened by the CE (Distribution) with the Zonal ACEs, ACE (MM), CEOs & EEs.

    • d. Coordination with local dorbars on DT problems and pilferage.

    • e. Capacity building programs for different levels.

    NOTE :

    It has also been observed that one of the reasons for failure of distribution transformers is the supply of sub-standard transformers, which is a result of improper vendor rating and lack of routine test prior to dispatch by the manufacturer & issue for use. It is therefore proposed as follows:

    • a. Vendors should be approved only after confirming the adequacy of the manufacturing & testing facilities at the works.

    • b. Procurement should be on the guaranteed technical particulars and not necessarily L-I rate.

    • c. Routine tests should be observed at the works and the transformer should be tested prior to issue for utilization.

    6

    • 4. Inspection & Maintenance of transformer and accessories within the sub-station and its proximity.

      • A. Overall Sub-station Inspection cum Maintenance Report.

    (to be filled up by the concerned inspector viz. Lineman/ES/JE/AE/AEE)

    • a. Name of Sub-station

    • b. Code of Sub-station

    • c. Capacity of Transformer

    • d. Number of LT feeders

    • e. Date of inspection

    Sl

    Items to be inspected

    Condition/Observations/Remarks

    1

    Physical condition of the transformer

       

    2

    DOs/Main switch/Cut-Out

       

    3

    LT feeders

     

    4

    Cable Lugs

     

    5

    Earthing, Earthing Leads, etc

       

    6

    Lightening Arrestor

     

    7

    Arching Horn

     

    8

    Transformer Bushing

     

    9

    Breather

     

    10

    Condition of silica gel

     

    11

    Radiator

     

    12

    Oil level

     

    13

    Oil leakage in any

     

    14

    HT Terminal

     

    15

    LT Terminal

     

    16

    Current (Amps)

    Peak Hours

    a.

    R-phase

     

    b.

    Y-phase

    c.

    B-phase

    Off-Peak Hours

    a. R-phase

     

    b.

    Y-phase

    c.

    B-phase

       
    • a. HT-LT

       

    17

    I R Value

    • b. HT-E

    • c. LT-E

    18

    Number of illegal consumers receiving supply from DT

     

    19

    Number of illegal consumers disconnected from the DT

     

    20

    General upkeep and overall cleanliness of substation (weeds, litter, etc)

     

    7

    21

    Fencing & gate of the substation

     

    22

    Danger plate

     

    23

    Others

     
    • B. Sub station premises:

    Sl

    Items to be inspected during sub-station

    Inspection notes

    Action

    required

    if

    No.

    maintenance work

    inspection

    shows

    un-

    sactisfactory conditions

     
    • 1. HT & LT Fuses

         
     
    • 2. LA’s

       

    3

    Earthing

       

    4.

    DO’s Main switch, Cut out

         

    5.

    Cleanliness of sub-station

         

    6.

    Checking of sub-station station loading by tong tester or DT metering

       
    • C. HT /LT Lines in the proximity of the substation:

     

    Sl

    Items to be inspected during sub-station

    Inspection notes

    Action

    required

    if

    maintenance work

    inspection

    shows

    un-

    sactisfactory conditions

    1.

    Condition

    of

    HT/LT

    Poles

    including

       

    stay wire

    2.

    Span of LT lines/need for LT spacers

       

    3.

    Whether poles are covered with creepers

       

    4.

    Whether HT/LT Lines are having minimum clearance from trees/branches

       

    5.

    Whether illegal connection like hooking, illegal service connection are present or not

       

    6.

    Likely cause of failure due to nearby HT Lines

       

    NOTES:

    Signature/seal of person(s) inspecting

    Compiled by HRD Centre MeSEB,Umiam