|Posted by Charles on April 8, 2013 at 2:00 AM|
During remodeling and building projects, it can become necessary to remove an electric meter and box and relocate it to a new position on the structure. Most of the time, this process is done in the opposite direction. The new meter box is mounted and readied for the meter to be inserted into it. At that time, the old meter is removed and plugged into the new box. However, if both the box and the meter are being relocated, then it is necessary to remove the meter and box before moving it.
Turn off the electricity to the structure before opening the meter box. In most cases, this will require a call to the electric company for them to come out and disconnect the service. Use a pair of wire cutters and snip the metal seal on the meter box so that the box can be opened.
Open the meter box. Grip the electric meter with both hands and pull it toward you. The meter will unplug from the meter box. Carefully, set the meter some place safe where it can be stored until you are ready to plug it into the box at the new location.
Place a ladder next to the location of the meter box and climb up and use a wrench to disconnect the three large connectors that hold the utility cables to the cables coming from your weather head connected to your meter box. Loosen and remove any clamps that hold the weather head to the structure. A wrench or screwdriver will be needed to remove these clamps.
Locate the wire coming out of the bottom of the meter box that runs to the ground rod nearby. The ground rod will be sticking out of the ground near the foundation of the house. Use a wrench to loosen the clamp and pull the wire loose from the rod. Try to pull the rod out of the ground. If you cannot work it loose, you may need to replace it at the new location.
Loosen the three lugs in the lower half of the meter box with a wrench. Pull all three wires out from under the lugs and out of the meter box. Remove the screws inside the meter box that hold the box to the building. Use a cordless electric drill with the correct type of bit for this task. The meter box and weather head should now be free from the building.
Carry the entire assembly to the new location where it is to be mounted. Measure up from the ground a distance of 5 feet and mark the spot on the wall. Hold a level just above the spot and draw a level straight line across the area where the meter box will be installed.
Place the bottom of the meter box along the line and drive the screws through the back of the box and into the wall. Pull the three wires coming from inside the building into the meter box. The two power cables will either both be black or one will be black and the other will be red. It does not matter which one is attached on what side. Slide the ends of the cables under the two lugs in the center of the lower half of the meter box and tighten the lugs with a wrench.
Slide the end of the white ground cable into the lug in the vertical middle of the box and off to one side. Tighten the lug with the wrench. Use a hammer and drive the ground rod into the ground near the foundation of the building and under the meter box. Use a wrench to reinstall the clamp and fasten the ground wire to the rod.
Use the ladder and a wrench to reattach the clamps to hold the weather head in place on the side of the building. Plug the meter back into the meter box and shut the lid. Call the utility company to come and turn the power on and complete the hook ups. Normally, the power company prefers to make the overhead connections at the top of the weather head. They will also put a new wire seal on the meter box.
Tips & Warnings
Never open a meter box until after the electricity has been turned off.
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