Can I file a lawsuit for crappy electrical service?

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My subdivision has had over 20 power outages over the last month. We haven't gone more than about 12 hours of continuos power without an outage. Sometimes we have gone 2+ days without any power. All the food in the fridge/freezer goes bad, etc. They keep telling us it will get better, but it never does. It has become a safety issue too. The power is not going to the traffic lights and there are frequently accidents. It is 90+ degrees outside and having no AC is a pain.... I am worried this will continue into the winter and our pipes will burst from a lack of heat.

Suggestions? What is the FW way to handle this situation? I have filed a complaint with the public service commission. Others have been talking with the media and they made a local news story out of it. 

Would a legal threat speed things along?

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One can do anything and hope laws and rules aren't enforced, could you be more  egregious?

I have faith....you can do it ... (more)

fattywallace (Sep. 22, 2016 @ 12:55p) |

um no, selling the electricity produced is not the same as selling the generator yourself. you are seriously clueless ab... (more)

rufflesinc (Sep. 22, 2016 @ 1:09p) |

Another option is a 1500 to 2500 watt inverter. Just run it off the vehicle..just attach to battery, not cig lighter. ... (more)

drew2money (Sep. 22, 2016 @ 2:31p) |

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A law suit will take a long time to resolve. In the mean time, if you have natural gas, you can have a whole house generator installed for $6-8k , which is probably less than the transaction costs of selling and moving, and you can recoupe some of it by selling it later on.

I would also try calling the local news, traffic lights out and car crashes make for good visuals.

A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

Getting local media aware was/is a good suggestion however.

Thanks for the red FW!

I stand by my posting, throwing 6-8Ks to solve a temporary problem would wind up compounding others. I don't know the OP financial status but I don't see myself doing it even when able to afford it.

For those that red me, will see you at HD, Lowes the next black out -- me getting a flashlight and you of course...BUYING A 6-8K generator -- peace!

A small gasoline generator to save the fridge might be a good first step. < $500.

Sure

OP which state is this or the provider? Most utilities have insurance coverage for things like brownouts that cause equipment damage or other situations. Maybe if enough people make claims?

As for the traffic lights out, yes media is a good call. Also calls to your municipality (or Certified letters) asking what they're doing to address frequent outages and traffic lights being out. Same with the accidents, utility company and city being named as defendants or being put on notice (even if by media coverage so there's no way they can say "we didn't know") would likely result in some progress.

rufflesinc said:   A law suit will take a long time to resolve. In the mean time, if you have natural gas, you can have a whole house generator installed for $6-8k , which is probably less than the transaction costs of selling and moving, and you can recoupe some of it by selling it later on.if you're gonna spend that much, might as well get solar panels and a battery.

A slightly larger portable generator and transfer switch would run the fridge, furnace (if gas), and a few other critical circuits of your choosing for around the $1,200 range.

Contact the PUC, I guarantee that will get there attention

TravelerMSY said:   A small gasoline generator to save the fridge might be a good first step. < $500.
And there's everything in between including larger gas gensets with manual transfer panels that can run the ac. You'd have to decide how big is big enough and handle refueling.

fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

Oversize the generator and run extension cords to the neighboring houses (for a price) to recoup the cost.

tedteddy said:   My subdivision has had over 20 power outages over the last month...They keep telling us it will get better, but it never does...
 

Who is the "they" that are telling you it will get better?  Why are the outages occurring?  Is it related to construction in the area, new power lines going in, replacement of some major component somewhere in the system?  You say that the last month has been especially bad, but what was it like before that?  Is there any reason to believe that this really is a temporary situation, or has this been a chronic issue?

My response would really depend on the total picture. 

What type of Utility, is it city owned? Is it publicly traded? Typically the best approach is to contact the state commission that oversee's the electrical utility. Lodge a formal complaint, and in it make clear the reasons why you are upset, and the safety issues you think it is causing. In most states, this will get you a response ASAP.

Also call the utility directly and ask them to reimburse you for your lost food items.

dcwilbur said:   
tedteddy said:   My subdivision has had over 20 power outages over the last month...They keep telling us it will get better, but it never does...
Who is the "they" that are telling you it will get better?  Why are the outages occurring?  Is it related to construction in the area, new power lines going in, replacement of some major component somewhere in the system?  You say that the last month has been especially bad, but what was it like before that?  Is there any reason to believe that this really is a temporary situation, or has this been a chronic issue?

My response would really depend on the total picture. 

  
I work for a mid-sized electrical utility, and 20 outages in one month, even if a "temporary" issue, would never be an OK situation.

plannerium said:   Contact the PUC, I guarantee that will get there attention
  This. Power companies are regulated by the PUC. To get some quick response from them have as many as your neighbors contact them also.

If you google your state name and the term "PUC" you will find a complaint form on-line.

Are you in Iraq?

Is it literally just your subdivision and everyone else is fine?

scripta said:   
rufflesinc said:   A law suit will take a long time to resolve. In the mean time, if you have natural gas, you can have a whole house generator installed for $6-8k , which is probably less than the transaction costs of selling and moving, and you can recoupe some of it by selling it later on.
if you're gonna spend that much, might as well get solar panels and a battery.

Even if you assume that the OP is a good candidate for solar (proper orientation of the house, roof that's not too old, etc...), it only works for relatively short outages. A permanently installed generator with an automatic transfer switch is a far more robust solution for extended outages, as natural gas powered ones, for instance, can run indefinitely, which is the reason that they're the go-to solution for backup power. A lot of homeowner's insurance companies also give a discount for permanently installed backup generators and in a lot of areas they also give a significant boost to the value of your house.

There's certainly a time and a place for solar, which has its own set of pros and cons, but right now it's not a solution for extended power outages.

That's ridiculous. In addition to the media and public utility commission as others have suggested, you should also contact your city council, mayor, county commission, and all relevant law enforcement agencies (focusing on the public safety issue with the traffic signals). The squeaky wheel gets the grease, so get some attention on the issue.

tedteddy said:   My subdivision has had over 20 power outages over the last month. We haven't gone more than about 12 hours of continu
 

  
Guess OP's power went out again

Power outages can be life threatening for seriously ill people, is there nobody in that position in your subdivision?

I could suggest a lot of different things but until I know the reason for the outages I will not suggest anything. There is no reason to throw $5,000 at a problem that is caused by certain things. We are flying blind.

geo123 said:   scripta said:   if you're gonna spend that much, might as well get solar panels and a battery.Even if you assume that the OP is a good candidate for solar (proper orientation of the house, roof that's not too old, etc...), it only works for relatively short outages...

There's certainly a time and a place for solar, which has its own set of pros and cons, but right now it's not a solution for extended power outages.
What do you mean not a solution? Assuming OP is a good candidate for solar, with enough generation and storage capacity he wouldn't need the grid at all.

rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.
 

fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

scripta said:   
geo123 said:   
scripta said:   if you're gonna spend that much, might as well get solar panels and a battery.
Even if you assume that the OP is a good candidate for solar (proper orientation of the house, roof that's not too old, etc...), it only works for relatively short outages...

There's certainly a time and a place for solar, which has its own set of pros and cons, but right now it's not a solution for extended power outages.

What do you mean not a solution? Assuming OP is a good candidate for solar, with enough generation and storage capacity he wouldn't need the grid at all.

Solar batteries have a limited capacity and the solar system itself depends on the weather. Hence, the reason that an overwhelming majority of solar customers remain connected to the grid.

Back-up generators serve a totally different purpose, as they're designed to provide back-up power regardless of the weather or the length of the outage. Having said that, if you're a good candidate for solar, it is cost effective in your situation and you are not particularly concerned about extended power outages, I do agree with you that solar is a good option. It is just not a replacement for permanent back-up generators, as, unlike solar, they can power your house indefinitely and do not depend on the weather.

rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

  Neither have you, unless wasting 6-8Ks is portrayed as solution on your books?

This is temporary and should be treated as what it is, it does sucks but throwing bad money (6-8Ks) at a bad/temporary instance will just compound the problems. When was the last time you used at generator because of lack of power and for how long?
Did you buy one for 6-8K?

Provide us with the answer oh mighty selected one, please?

ps: The OP mentioned living in a subdivision and am assuming part of a city -- --- adding a whole house generator might just be against city ordinances and permits/inspections shall be required. Its just a bad idea, but it seems everyone else has 6-8K to throw at a generator every time a light flickers go figure. Be real, I certainly don't have that amount of money for a generator and so is most of FW.

Another poster who would love to know where this area is in America?

fattywallace said:   rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

  Neither have you, unless wasting 6-8Ks is portrayed as solution on your books?

This is temporary and should be treated as what it is, it does sucks but throwing bad money (6-8Ks) at a bad/temporary instance will just compound the problems. When was the last time you used at generator because of lack of power and for how long?
Did you buy one for 6-8K?

Provide us with the answer oh mighty selected one, please?

ps: The OP mentioned living in a subdivision and am assuming part of a city -- --- adding a whole house generator might just be against city ordinances and permits/inspections shall be required. Its just a bad idea, but it seems everyone else has 6-8K to throw at a generator every time a light flickers go figure. Be real, I certainly don't have that amount of money for a generator and so is most of FW.

The price includes permits and inspectors.

I thought everyone on fw made 399k and has 100k in emergency funds? I don't, but if I was presented with ops problem, I would buy a portable generator off the shelf, then schedule an install of whole house generator

the 6-8k wouldn't be sunk costs, as the generator could be sold later.

you're just mad because I came up with an idea and you didnt

LOL......As I mentioned on my very first reply "great" suggestion.

fattywallace said:   LOL......As I mentioned on my very first reply "great" suggestion.
still waiting for your suggestion... any suggestions at all

ledwards said:   Another poster who would love to know where this area is in America?
  OP previously posted about deals in Georgia, but who knows if he is still there.

rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

  Neither have you, unless wasting 6-8Ks is portrayed as solution on your books?

This is temporary and should be treated as what it is, it does sucks but throwing bad money (6-8Ks) at a bad/temporary instance will just compound the problems. When was the last time you used at generator because of lack of power and for how long?
Did you buy one for 6-8K?

Provide us with the answer oh mighty selected one, please?

ps: The OP mentioned living in a subdivision and am assuming part of a city -- --- adding a whole house generator might just be against city ordinances and permits/inspections shall be required. Its just a bad idea, but it seems everyone else has 6-8K to throw at a generator every time a light flickers go figure. Be real, I certainly don't have that amount of money for a generator and so is most of FW.

The price includes permits and inspectors.

I thought everyone on fw made 399k and has 100k in emergency funds? I don't, but if I was presented with ops problem, I would buy a portable generator off the shelf, then schedule an install of whole house generator

the 6-8k wouldn't be sunk costs, as the generator could be sold later.

you're just mad because I came up with an idea and you didnt

  You have no idea the OPs location but you know for sure how much a whole house generator + installation + permits + inspections + anything else  = 6-8Ks...........amazing the power of your crystal ball dude!

fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

  Neither have you, unless wasting 6-8Ks is portrayed as solution on your books?

This is temporary and should be treated as what it is, it does sucks but throwing bad money (6-8Ks) at a bad/temporary instance will just compound the problems. When was the last time you used at generator because of lack of power and for how long?
Did you buy one for 6-8K?

Provide us with the answer oh mighty selected one, please?

ps: The OP mentioned living in a subdivision and am assuming part of a city -- --- adding a whole house generator might just be against city ordinances and permits/inspections shall be required. Its just a bad idea, but it seems everyone else has 6-8K to throw at a generator every time a light flickers go figure. Be real, I certainly don't have that amount of money for a generator and so is most of FW.

The price includes permits and inspectors.

I thought everyone on fw made 399k and has 100k in emergency funds? I don't, but if I was presented with ops problem, I would buy a portable generator off the shelf, then schedule an install of whole house generator

the 6-8k wouldn't be sunk costs, as the generator could be sold later.

you're just mad because I came up with an idea and you didnt

  You have no idea the OPs location but you know for sure how much a whole house generator + installation + permits + inspections + anything else  = 6-8Ks...........amazing the power of your crystal ball dude!

permits are going to be a fraction of the total cost.

http://www.generac.com/for-homeowners/home-backup-power/build-yo... 

16kw whole house (I have gas everything so my needs are lower) for me is $3700 materials.  generac estimates a "simple" install to be $2000 so double that $4000. Boom. $6000-$8000. 

fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

  Neither have you, unless wasting 6-8Ks is portrayed as solution on your books?

This is temporary and should be treated as what it is, it does sucks but throwing bad money (6-8Ks) at a bad/temporary instance will just compound the problems. When was the last time you used at generator because of lack of power and for how long?
Did you buy one for 6-8K?

Provide us with the answer oh mighty selected one, please?

ps: The OP mentioned living in a subdivision and am assuming part of a city -- --- adding a whole house generator might just be against city ordinances and permits/inspections shall be required. Its just a bad idea, but it seems everyone else has 6-8K to throw at a generator every time a light flickers go figure. Be real, I certainly don't have that amount of money for a generator and so is most of FW.

  People install backup generators all the time, even without daily power issues.  It's isn't a waste, and it isn't a solution for a temporary problem.  The temporary problem would just be prompting him to install it sooner than later.  

Move

(now)

Right, there are many, many good reasons that people install back-up generators in the absence of frequent power outages. For instance, if you have sump pumps, you need something to protect you against power outages. Backup batteries are one such solution, but are expensive and only protect you against relatively short outages, so back-up generators are a common recommendation. They cost a little more, but provide significantly more protection and convenience. Likewise, if you have very elderly or other vulnerable people in your house who really cannot be without power, a back-up generator is an excellent solution. Further, if you frequently work from home and cannot have any downtime, you'll probably be looking into a back-up generator. The list goes on and on.

As I mentioned above, in plenty of areas back-up generators also increase the value of your house and also get you discounts with homeowner's insurance carriers.

seems like OP is in the midst of another power outage....

Glitch99 said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   
rufflesinc said:   
fattywallace said:   A whole house generator installed for 6-8Ks, man, what a "great" suggestion. OP, do you happen to have 6-8Ks laying around?

.

Op needs electricity. a generator makes electricity.

  So does the wind and the sun -- why don't you offer the OP to purchase a bank of solar panels or a set of windmills to solve the matters? I mean, if spending is what would solve this, lets spend, no your money right?

***OMG, wait, this has also been suggested, WTF?***

Really folks, are we losing our minds, I mean, this is FW, every penny counts ....SMH.....

Suggesting to spend 6-8K for a whole house generator is a hasty, to say the least and irresponsibly decision at best.

  So , einstein, what is your solution? You have provided no help to OP's problem of no electricity.

OP has indicated that his problem is indefinite so either he moves (transaction costs) or gets another source of electricity.

  Neither have you, unless wasting 6-8Ks is portrayed as solution on your books?

This is temporary and should be treated as what it is, it does sucks but throwing bad money (6-8Ks) at a bad/temporary instance will just compound the problems. When was the last time you used at generator because of lack of power and for how long?
Did you buy one for 6-8K?

Provide us with the answer oh mighty selected one, please?

ps: The OP mentioned living in a subdivision and am assuming part of a city -- --- adding a whole house generator might just be against city ordinances and permits/inspections shall be required. Its just a bad idea, but it seems everyone else has 6-8K to throw at a generator every time a light flickers go figure. Be real, I certainly don't have that amount of money for a generator and so is most of FW.

  People install backup generators all the time, even without daily power issues.  It's isn't a waste, and it isn't a solution for a temporary problem.  The temporary problem would just be prompting him to install it sooner than later.  

 
What a condescending answer, but that isn't the funny part as I totally agree with it, the funny part is that two of the heroes which have followed and red every one of my replies have greened this one answer, WTF?

Comprehension problems?

ROF...
 

What the hell happen to FWF? Why all the red to fattywallace?

So... according to rufflesinc,

everyone in the subdivision should drop 6-8k install their own whole house generator because the electric company is not doing their job???

What else do you install if your water is out? A pond in the backyard?

What about the internet or TV? Do you install a satellite disc just in case your cable doesn't work?

Isnt it obvious that the utility company is the ONLY ONE WHO CAN FIX THE PROBLEM.

How does installing a whole house generator fix the "Power outage" problem?


The whole subdivision should just let their house run on natural gas? and dont worry about the power outage?

I am confused.

Skipping 67 Messages...
Another option is a 1500 to 2500 watt inverter. Just run it off the vehicle..just attach to battery, not cig lighter. That is my emergency solution. We don't loose power often..



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