A high voltage insulator is responsible for insulating an electrically charged component of any machine or equipment from another uncharged or charged metal component. It is an integral part of huge electrical transmission systems that are responsible for running public utilities, industries, and power plants. It is essential to carry out regular maintenance of the high voltage insulators to ensure that the power supply remains uninterrupted with no flashovers or contamination from foreign deposits.
High voltage insulators are often installed on high-voltage electrical transmission towers and transmission lines to protect them and the live conductors. Compared to the low-voltage insulators, the high-voltage insulators have a large load that prevents power supply breakdowns and supports high voltage at the same time. With the increasing transmission line project to secure power supply in different areas, maintenance is vital. In such cases, large professional insulator cleaning crews are hired to take care of the regular insulator maintenance.
Although high-voltage insulators are built to be durable and withstand plenty of stress, they still can breakdown due to too much heat or excessive stress or poor maintenance.
Additionally, corrosion due to the environment can also reduce the longevity and functioning of high-voltage insulators. Bill Johnson from Utility Service & Maintenance, Inc. says that most people don’t even realize the amount of work done by utility maintenance teams to ensure that they have access to uninterrupted power. Contamination can be easily taken care of by cleaning. However, a puncture will require the insulation to be replaced sooner rather than later.
Regular maintenance is useful in identifying and fixing minor issues. This helps prevent the insulator from developing major issues. The insulator market will be booming in the coming years, so regular maintenance of high-voltage insulators includes cleaning it to remove contaminants which otherwise will cause power failure and disrupt commercial, public and industrial activities. The high-voltage insulator is designed to be tough and thereby requires only an annual and bi-annual cleaning to stay in excellent shape and extend its life further. Professional cleaning companies use different cleaning substances to remove the contaminants on the insulator. These cleaning supplies include:
- Dry materials: These are useful in removing hard deposits that have formed on the insulator.
- Cleaning pastes: These are useful in cleaning different types of insulators like ceramic, plastic, gas and glass.
- Industrial Cleaners: These are useful in removing a variety of deposits and contaminants.
Depending on the condition of the high-voltage insulator, it might require more than one type of cleaning product to get rid of all the contaminants and deposits.
It is essential to hire professional cleaning services to avoid accidents and mistakes. Professionals cleaning service providers are trained to follow the right process. In fact, qualified insulator cleaning technicians are trained to inspect the insulator for damage and recommend further protective coating if the insulator needs further protection from oxidation and contamination. Experts in the industry recommend hiring a cleaning service that has an OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) certification and trained professionals on their team.