Hi, was wondering what if any precautions I need to take while painting
outside of house near main electric feed to house. I'm within 1.5 feet of
line right now afraid to get too close. I'm on an aluminum ladder. Do I
need to put some sort of rubber under ladder so as to not be grounded? Do I
need to worry at all? Do I need to worry about an arc jumping to me or
The last time I painted the house near the electric power I taped a brush to a
stick, and used that to paint, carefully, around the attachment point. That way
I could keep well back from the power line. The job may have been a little
sloppy right around there, but I didn't have to worry about touching the line.
I don't know what the power company would charge to come out and disconnect, but
it would be worth contacting them. Our tree trimmer got knocked off his ladder
when he touched wet foliage that was in contact with a ?50,000 v. line. He
lived to tell about it.
A pin hole would have to be awfully large for paint to actually enter it
(surface tension and all that), and then the resistance of the tiny paint
pathway would be so high that current would be trivial. And then of course
it has to get through the bush handle, which is probably a complete
If your ladder contacted the cable, and some current somehow managed to get
out (are you suggesting the ladder will scrap the insulation off, or what?),
it would flow preferentially down the ladder; I expect aluminum has somewhat
better conductivity than a person (presumably with shoes on).
Okay, it is prudent not to rest the ladder on the cable, but other than
Just one example, stupid? How about we use volts500 last reply to you.
You're a dumb f*&ker Lippman. Nobody needs or wants your harmful advice
when it involves electrical issues. Do everyone a favor and shut the
This is Turtle.
Wade i know if your careful a metal ladder and power cable will be ok, but i
have to see Volts thinking here for pure conditions of the thoughts. Metal
ladder + Water base paint + Service entrence power lines = Trouble to any
unknowing person. Taking no sides but just logic only.
On the service drop?! I don't think so. That raises an interesting
question though. If the insulation is so heavily pinholed, why doesn't the
rain short it out? Certainly water is more likely to enter a pin hole than
paint, and hot to hot is many times more potent than hot to ladder to dirt.
Yet I haven't heard of it happening.
You hear about balloonists and sky divers getting electrocuted on power
lines, so maybe transmission lines are not insulated (anyone know about
this?) but the service drop is.
You're making the assumption that the service drop is the only thing
he could possibly contact with his ladder. Plus, often the weather
head has exposed crimp connections that pose potential shorts.
Transmission lines are naturally insulated, it's called an air gap.
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