The Sept. 8 article by Mark Persons on overcoming the “tyranny of power” was very good. But he failed to drive home the point that a properly tightened connection, to the foot pounds specified by the manufacturer, is essential in making sure the lugs do not heat up in the first place.
The Square D disconnect switch he mentioned is one of the better products on the market and would not have failed twice had it been wired properly. Electricians are even encouraged to use a torque wrench when tightening these types of lugs to make sure the lugs are tightened to the correct foot poundage.
Time and again, as a broadcast engineer and troubleshooting electrician, I found lugs of all types burned up from high resistance because the wiring was not stripped properly, not inserted properly or not tightened properly — or, if aluminum, not properly coated with an anti-corrosion compound, and/or inserted in lugs where aluminum is not permitted.
Nick Markowitz Jr.
Markowitz Electric Protection
Contract Broadcast Engineer