Smart Grids: An Effort to Deliver Reliable Power

smart grid power lines running across the country

The smart grid is the future hope of delivering energy to consumers. It holds the potential for two-way communication, monitoring and analysis with features that include automatic adjustments, and the optimization of power delivery with minimal outages, shorter recovery times and the ability to reroute power to where it is needed most. With the help of Critter Guard’s Line Guard and Pole Guard, outages would be few and far between.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

The Low Down on Different Types of Utility Poles

wood utility pole

When it comes to utility poles, there are three different types utility companies choose from: composite, steel, and wood poles. Each material comes with pros and cons of their own. No matter what type of poles are used near your home or business, Critter Guard’s Pole Guard can help protect your pole from damage caused by squirrels or other critters.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Protecting Snakes from Electrical Lines

brown snake slithering on deck

Power lines can be extremely dangerous to snakes and other critters. At Critter Guard, we care about protecting snakes from electrical lines and our Line Guard and Pole Guard systems are simple ways to discourage snakes from crawling onto your utility poles and power lines.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Trees, Squirrels, and the Biggest Blackout in U.S. History

a critter running across a power line between trees

Can one small glitch in the U.S. power grid create a domino effect causing cascading darkness throughout the country? The 2003 Northeast Blackout, the largest power failure in U.S. history, almost did--affecting 50 million people for two days, costing $6 billion and six deaths.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

How Substation Automation Works

pole guard protecting substation powered by IEDs

Power System Automation

Power system automation is the act of using computers and intelligent electronic devices (IEDs) to generate and deliver power. The automated system inside the substation receives various forms of input and uses those to monitor and control the power delivery system. Power system automation controls functioning and supervision responsibilities in the same way that an operator would.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

How Power Outages are Measured

power outage in city caused by animal

One animal's misfortune can affect an entire community's ability to function. Because of this, it is important to implement safeguards against such accidents from ever happening. This is where Critter Guard comes through to not only protect consumers from inconvenient power outages that can affect their livelihood, but the critters as well.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Creating and Maintaining Overhead Lines

maintained overhead power lines

Overhead power lines were created long ago, and we have seen multiple transformations of electrical lines since. Fast forward to 2019, and they've become higher in voltage and remain a low-cost solution for large masses of electrical energy. The conductors are the most commonly used source for overhead power lines, which should be protected from damage to retain a steady power source. The two most used metals for the conductors are aluminum and copper, with copper being the standard for electrical conductivity. A benefit of copper is that it is more conductive than aluminum, as aluminum is only about 61% as conductive as copper.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Protecting Sloths from Power Lines

sloth hanging from tree

Sloths may be beautiful animals, but their instinctive need to climb and hang from branches can lead them to do so on power lines. Sloths and other animals that interact with power lines can easily be electrocuted and cause power outages in the process. Critter Guard's Line Guards and Pole Guards are designed to prevent sloths from accessing power lines.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Curious Animals Can Damage Electric Systems

squirrel against green background

Proper maintenance is one of the most important keys to making sure the power doesn't go out during the next big storm. Regular utility inspections are required to make sure the lines and power poles haven't been damaged by time, weather, and critters such as squirrels, rodents, birds, and other animals.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

The Importance of Substation Design

view of substation

Preserving power for the individuals and communities dependent upon it is critical to life, health, and safety. An integral part of accomplishing this objective comes in the form of proper substation design and protection from squirrel and critter damage. Answering a series of questions allows us to identify how substation design affects those who depend upon it.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

What Are Transformer Ratings?

transformer delivering electricity

There are many factors that determine the lifespan of a transformer and its ability to efficiently deliver electricity to its customers. The quality of the product, as well as the standard of care given to the transformer, will both affect whether a transformer will produce expected results or if it will have to be replaced earlier than expected, leading to increased costs to the customer. Proper maintenance, compliance with transformer ratings, and protection from outside elements, including from squirrel and rodent damage, are all important parts of ensuring you get the maximum lifespan out of a transformer.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Monitoring Electricity with Smart Meters

smart meter

Smart devices and the Internet of Things have been popular the past few years, but how does a smart meter differ from the older-style meters still in use in most places? A smart meter is a digital device without any moving parts that records electric energy consumption just like an older-style meter; however, it communicates monitoring and billing information directly to the electric utility company. Smart meters record energy consumption hourly, if not more frequently, and typically send daily reports that can be very helpful in locating the source of problems, such as a blown transformer or damaged components by critters. Additionally, smart meters allow two-way communication between the meter and the central utility company system. Collectively, the meter and system are referred to as advanced metering infrastructure (AMI). The meter communicates either wirelessly or via a fixed-wire connection.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Transmission Lines in Transmission Systems

power cables at sunset

Power companies must consider a lot to ensure the successful, consistent operation of an electrical grid, and transmission lines are just one part of that system. Power transmission lines are used for electricity to be transported from generation sources (such as wind or solar farms, coal, or natural gas power plants) to its destination (like your home or business). They must meet technical specifications that obey the laws of physics as well as deal with what nature throws at them, whether it be lightning strikes or critters bent on chewing through that wire. Various strategies can be implemented to minimize such risks to service continuity, but why are components, specifically transmission lines, so important?

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

What to Do with Substation Fires

electrical power substation

Substation fires can be among the most intimidating destructive forces, and there are a number of ways they can get started, depending on the equipment used. The fires are commonly caused by hazards such as a mechanical failure combined with a combustible source, water getting into the system, or even an insulation failure. Many times, squirrels, rodents, raccoons, and other critters are culprits in damage, when they climb into substation plants via unprotected electrical lines and utility poles. These fires are exceptionally dangerous because of their potential for explosions, due in part to leaking oil that causes hazardous smoke. There can also be loose wires that aren't insulated, which could cause shock or electrocution. So, what actions should someone take should they encounter a substation fire?

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

How Drones Are Helping Power Utility Companies

quadcopter drone in flight

Keeping squirrels and rodents from damaging your power lines is a top priority for Critter Guard, but these pests are not the only thing to worry about when it comes to keeping the power on. Heavy rainfall, high-speed winds, and debris caused by major weather events can also wreak havoc on a power system. Maintaining the grid calls for regular inspection of potentially damaged equipment to ensure its continued integrity. In recent years, drones have become a safe and cost-effective way of inspecting the grid.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Wildlife Interaction with Electric Utility Components

squirrel on power line

Human-wildlife interactions are inescapable, even in dense, urban areas. As our populations expand, animals must adapt, which sometimes causes expensive or dangerous damage to property. Power lines and utility components showcase a major conflict; they're crucial for maintaining our modern lifestyle but are attractive to wildlife like squirrels. Rather than turning to traps or poison that are inhumane and dangerous to pets and non-pest wildlife, physical barriers are extremely effective at blocking wildlife access to electrical components. Our Pole Guards and Line Guards act as deterrents and prevent costly damage.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Why Are Power Lines Overhead and Not Underground?

eletrical lines and pylon trusses at sunrise

Most people have probably stopped noticing overhead power lines a long time ago; they just feel part of the landscape now. But have you ever wondered why our power lines are up there in the first place? Sure, they're out of the way, but the same would be true if we put them in underground conduits, so why do we still send them skywards?

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

What is Undergrounding?

underground utility line construction in middle of street

When you think of electric power lines, you probably envision overhead lines. Held up by utility poles, they're such a part of your life that you probably don't notice them until one goes down. However, while overhead lines get the job done, there areas of improvement to see our power delivered, not from above, but from below ground. This process of burying power lines is called undergrounding. While it is not the norm now, it is becoming more common.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Protect Your Roofing Insulation from Rodents

3 small houses close together with electric line

The insulation for your roof system is generally found in the attic area or crawl space beneath the roof. Several different types of insulation materials are available to hold in the heat and cooled air from your heating ventilation and air conditioning system. Your pipes may also be wrapped with insulating materials, and various types of insulation can also be found in your walls.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

How Do Squirrels Survive Winter Without Hibernating

squirrel on snowy ground next to tree trunk

When the weather starts to get crisp in the fall, you might notice local squirrels start putting on some pounds. This "fattening up" for winter reminds many people of what bears do as they prepare for hibernation. While tree squirrels have a few behaviors that help them survive winter, they don't actually hibernate. You'll see them running around in all seasons, so it's crucial to be wary of them and protect anything they may claw and damage year-round.

Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments
We use cookies and data collection to improve your experience. By your continued use of this site, you accept such use in accordance with our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. I Understand