“Time is Money.” It’s a well-worn cliché that sticks around because it’s a cliché that’s true. We’ve heard it so many times that we don’t even think about what it means. So, let’s say it in terms of your submersible water systems business: “A MEGGER IS MONEY.”
Here’s why… The homeowner calls and is “out of water”. Of course, they probably have plenty of water. Something is just keeping them from getting it out of the ground, and it’s your job to find out why, fix it, and most importantly, get compensated for it.
When you arrive, you’re going to take your usual obvious first steps such as verifying they actually have power and so forth. But, beyond that, there’s no better tool, no faster way to figure out what’s going on that with a megohmeter as the next step. Often just called a “megger” or insulation tester, a megohmeter measures insulation resistance. It’s essentially a high-powered ohmmeter. A megger answers the question of, “is the electrical part of our submersible installation isolated (or insulated) from the non-electrical part?” Said another way, “Do I have a ground fault in our system?”
Yes, right now you’re asking, “Why can’t I just use my trusty Simpson 372 ohmmeter for this?” The answer is the amount of electrical pressure, otherwise known as voltage, that each instrument applies to the system. Sure enough, if your system is completely grounded, the ohmmeter will tell you exactly that. Where the megger is invaluable is finding that splice that leaks just little bit, that little nick in the drop cable, and all the other things that aren’t obvious that can lead to a ground fault.
Where a megger is similar to an ohmmeter is that both must be used when the power is off, so as always, verify that power is off before using.
In literally 5 minutes, you gain a terrific amount of insight on what direction to head. Is it the cable, is it the motor, a splice, or is it something else? There’s no better way to treat your time like your money than with this instrument. If you don’t have one, invest a few hundred dollars and get one. It will give new meaning to the phrase “time is money”.