Category: News

test leads

Tech Tips: Twist Guard Test Leads

A successful project comes to a great strategic vision, even the little things or the tiniest details count if you put your job and craftsmanship.

With Fluke, they think what a successful project is because working with professionals who use the products are taken into a “little thing”. Hence, electrical leads and added features make them more versatile, durable, and above all, safer.

The new Fluke TL175 TwistGuard™ Test Leads is the world’s first adjustable length tips designed to be used for CAT II, CAT III, and CAT IV environments. For CAT III and CAT IV higher-hazard conditions, a twist retracts the tips to reduce the possibility of accidental contact with energized surfaces while for CAT II, it extends the tips for better access to hard-to-reach contacts such as within wall outlets. The Fluke TL175 TwistGuard™ shows the correct category rating whether the tips are retracted or extended.

A system for safe testing

Test instruments and accessories used for electrical testing comprise a safety system called the personal protective equipment (PPE). According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 70E Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace, test equipment is an important part of PPE. Each piece of equipment used for testing such as clothing, gloves, and eyewear to digital multimeters and test leads must be designed and approved to work safely in the testing environment.

Test leads and other accessories should make sure that are rated for safe use where you’re working. Leads should maintain its usage category (CAT) rating or as high as the multimeter you are using. If the test leads did not reach the multimeter, you are putting yourself in danger. But in today’s standards, does lead come with the product?

Double-insulated, extra-safe

The Test leads that gathered years ago may not be fitted with the insulation needed for today’s electrical environment. In relation, the test leads would likely suffer from wear and abuse that can damage the insulation such as leads that have been strained in a panel door or kinked due to sharp bends have decreased insulating capability at stress points.

Fluke TwistGuard™ together with the double-insulated WearGurad™ wires can provide a safer advantage. The inner contrasting color shows through if the outer layer of insulation gets nicked or worn means it is time to replace a new set of leads.

The wires which rated at temperatures of -20 °C to 55 °C (-4 °F to 131 °F) are insulated with silicone can withstand high temperatures and remains flexible in the cold and their universal input plugs are compatible with all instruments that accept standard 4 mm shrouded banana plugs. Accessories like the Fluke AC72 Alligator Clips simply slide onto the extended tips. The TL175 test leads also accept threaded accessories, such as 4 mm lantern adapters.

The Fluke engineers planned for another “little thing” which is durability because TwistGuard™ leads have extra-heavy-duty strain relief on both probe end and plug end that tested more than 30,000 bends without failure.

For best Fluke TwistGuard™ in the Philippines, check out our products at https://presidium.ph/shop/.

insulated tools

Why insulated tools are important?

For anyone working around electricity, always make your safety a priority. How? One is, be wary about how you are dressed up, make sure to be guarded with safety suits, shoes, glasses, shields, hard hats, gloves, and especially the tools that you carry. And by tools, we mean insulated tools such as screwdrivers, pliers, cutters and other battery-operated tools.

Deenergizing the equipment is your first resort in working with electricity but sometimes it can be so risky especially that energized equipment has unknown energy pathways that may be fed on the equipment you are working on.

How insulated hand tools keep you safe?

High-quality insulated hand tools are duly designed to protect you in hazardous and unforeseen situations such as electric shock or may reduce the possibility of arc faults caused by short circuits.

But first, it is necessary to be familiar with both regular hand tools and insulated tools. The regular ones are mostly coated with rubber over plastic handles while the insulated ones are built with a special combination of materials that blocks potentially hazardous voltages.

According to NFPA 70E (National Fire Protection Association), using insulated tools is required when dealing with electricity beyond 50 V. This move is especially important for electricity-centered businesses as this could not just save an employee’s life but could also free you from additional expenses and liabilities caused by the accident.

Insulated tool certification

A certified insulated tool must pass through with international standards including IEC 60900 and ASTM F1505. They must undergo thorough testing by third-party labs and can withstand hard use, extreme temperatures and even live flame. They also need to achieve a 1000 ac rating so it can be used in a live panel but only if necessary.

Given that, Fluke insulated tools are engineered to reach that level of protection complying with international standards. We do the same line of stringent requirements and testing to our hand tools for safety, reliability, and ergonomics. They are built by CMV steel for superior durability and designed using the most state-of-the-art facilities and advanced techniques in Germany.

Safe and ergonomic

Fluke insulated hand tools are manufactured with best practice to serve the best way possible. They adapt to the hand so as to prevent you from getting motion injuries or fatigue. Our insulated pliers and cutters work with extreme gripping strength and slim enough to be held easier.

Again, if you work around electricity, you need to look for the best options around you for your safety. With Fluke, we got you covered. Visit our website at www.presidium.ph to know more about our products.

electric motor efficiency

All electrical machines are powered by an electric motor. In fact, a common industrial plant may consume up to 46% of all generated electricity worldwide. That’s nearly half of the energy consumption that we use. Electrical machines are especially critical for industrial processes hence, any machine breakdown may cause a lot of disruption and a lot of money. Ensuring that motors are efficient and operating at their maximum capacity is one of the most important tasks that technicians and engineers deal with every day.

It’s safe to say that efficient use of electricity is mandatory especially for businesses as inefficiency may lead to financial losses. And since electricity is one of the highest consumers of energy in the industry, it has become a primary target for generating savings and maintaining profitability.

The traditional processes of testing machinery used to be costly and difficult to apply in the working process and at times, it might require you to completely shut down the machine which would mean downtime, just to technicians can check the machine. Luckily, electric motor testing tools that provide more accurate results and have easier processes are now available for us to use anytime.

Fluke 438-II Power Quality and Motor Analyzer

Testing tools such as the Fluke 438-II provides a streamlined and cost-effective method for testing motor efficiency while eliminating the need for external mechanical sensors and costly downtime. It provides mechanical measurements (motor rotating speed, torque, and efficiency) by applying proprietary algorithms to electrical waveform signals.

Using modern and advanced testing tools gives technicians the ability to decrease downtime and give them the opportunity to trend motor performance over time. This way, they are able to see the overall system health and performance. With this, you are sure to save a lot of time and energy consumption at a lesser cost.

Make sure you are buying authentic measuring tools. Visit www.presidium.ph for more product information.

thermal inspection

How to best present thermal inspection results

Designed to communicate results and produce action, Thermal imaging inspection reports detect repair orders or requirements to monitor equipment.

This report usually includes thermal and digital (visible light) images and shows details such as the date and time of inspection, location of potential problems and even work order numbers.

On top of this, thermal inspection reports should present a summary that shows potential problems, locations and the corresponding level of urgency (how critical) the problems or issues are.

While the main purpose of the report is to point out issues, it is still crucial to take note that not everyone who reads the report are as well-versed in thermography.

This brings in the importance of having and using a thermal imaging analysis and reporting software to improve the image and make the results more visible to the untrained eye.

Here are the three easy ways of how experienced thermographers can enhance thermal images:

Adjusting level and span

Thermal images exhibit a hot spot and a cold spot, that may or may not be problematic. With a thermal imaging software, you can easily readjust the level (mid-point) and span (the difference between the minimum and maximum temperatures) of your image to highlight the area of concern.

Choosing the right color palette

Thermal imaging software allows you to change the palette in the camera or in the software. A monochromatic palette like grayscale or amber works great to show subtle differences. On the other hand, high contrast palettes make it easier to quickly find obvious anomalies.

Blending infrared and digital images

If your thermal imager is equipped with a built-in digital camera, it’s advised to set the blend to 100% thermal when you’re scanning the component. As the digital camera will still be capturing the visible image in the background, you can blend the digital and infrared images in the software to highlight any anomalies you want to call attention to in your report.

For the best Fluke thermal imaging solutions in the Philippines, check out our products at https://presidium.ph/shop/.

relative humidity

Evaluating Relative Humidity: Factors and Measurements

There are a lot of factors affecting the cooling performance of an air conditioning unit, such as the relationship between dry bulb temperature, wet bulb temperature, relative humidity, and dem point temperature. Making sure that these facets are good to add to the overall performance of the unit and, essentially, occupant comfort.

To make sure that an air conditioning unit is running at maximum capacity, HVAC technicians usually use a sling psychrometer and psychrometric chart. These devices are also called “humidity” meters, and in order to make sure that your unit is still working great, you need measuring devices that are accurate, more convenient to use and can be used in various locations even unsuitable for sling psychrometers.

If you want to do an HVAC evaluation and diagnostics on your unit, you need a device, such as the Fluke 971- a measuring device that can calculate wet bulb temperature and dew point temperature.

To better understand how to properly measure and evaluate your air conditioning unit, here are key terms you need to be familiar with:

Wet Bulb

Closely related to enthalpy or the total heat in the air (dry bulb and wet bulb). In a psychrometric chart, the wet-bulb lines are nearly parallel to the enthalpy scale and values.

Dew Point

This is critical in both hot and cold weather evaluations. Duct surface temperature must be maintained above the dew point to prevent condensation whether inside or outside of the conditioned space.

Relative Humidity

This must be kept low enough to ensure inside wall and window surface temperatures do not approach dew point. If condensation appears on window or wall surfaces, condensation hidden within envelope walls will be likely.

If you want to do an HVAC evaluation and diagnostics on your unit, you need a device, such as the Fluke 971- a measuring device that can calculate wet bulb temperature and dew point temperature. Visit www.presidium.ph and view our wide range of measurement devices that will suit your needs.

insulation resistance tester

How to Choose the Best Insulation Resistance Tester

No idea what kind of insulation resistance tester to use? Not sure which model is working with the best efficiency? We have conked-out our answers to your queries when it comes to deciding which is the best insulation resistance tester to use.

Make A List of Equipment for Testing

First things first, make a list of all the equipment you will need with their nominal voltage rating (seen on the equipment’s nameplate) for an insulation resistance testing. It is necessary to identify the nominal voltage rating so you could determine what test voltage is needed from the tester. Also, you will also need to indicate the number of insulation resistance tests you plan to perform in a year. As you go along the process, you will surely be surprised of how features of the tester work, the quality, and durability it brings as how it is designed to be, especially how relevant it is for everyone.

Identify Voltage Requirements

It is important to know that the output test voltage applied to equipment has to be based on the manufacturer’s recommended DC insulation resistance test voltage. However, if the test voltage is not indicated, you may refer to the International Electrical Testing Association’s table of recommendations. It is important to note down the most suitable insulation resistance tester that can supply the output test voltage needed. Also, not all insulation resistance testers are the same – some testers can only support somewhere between 5000 V dc – 10,000 V dc. Please refer to the table of recommended test voltages and minimum insulation values below.

insulation resistance

Know Where Will the Testing Take Place

Knowing the testing environment and the other uses of your insulation resistance tester can greatly benefit you in choosing other additional features. A digital multimeter and the ability to use one instrument for both insulation resistance tests can also add convenience to the process.

Some insulation resistance testers can be very large and not portable, so there is a need for circuits and equipment to be verified as electrically de-energized first before an insulation resistance tester is connected to the equipment so it wouldn’t be a hassle for you to carry the insulation resistance tester to various locations.

What You Learn from an Insulation Resistance Test

Insulation Resistance Testing puts a qualitative value on both conductor insulation and internal insulation. It is done by applying a dc voltage to the conductor equipment under test.

There are a couple of things to remember as you go along the test and it’s essential to always be guided by these. First, as the charging current begins to build, it is normal to see a low value on the meter face. With more current flowing out of the test, the lower the megaohm reading.  A higher megaohm is directly associated with good insulation quality.

Absorption or polarization is the next current flowing towards the equipment. The amount of absorption is dependent on the contamination of the insulation. When there’s moisture in the insulation, the absorption value will be high and the resistance is low.

Experience Level

The ability of the test instrument will be as good as the person’s experience level on reading it. You must consider your expertise in selecting the insulation resistance tester that you must use. Though, insulation resistance testing training needs not to be extensive.

Also, make sure the insulation resistance tester that you will purchase must support the output test voltage and other functions.

If you having trouble choosing the correct resistance insulation tester, you must choose the ones that provide troubleshooting efficiency and complete maintenance records over time.

Learn more about the various products of Fluke Industrial Group and Fluke Calibration, check them out at Presidium.PH!

infrared camera

What Does Infrared Mean?

Infrared means “beyond red.” Thermography then pertains to a “thermal picture.” Put together, infrared thermography then means beyond a red temperature picture, which is taken by thermal cameras. This explains why in thermal imaging, we can see a gradient of red and purple captured in a photo.

 

Infrared, just like visible light is part of the electromagnetic spectrum. Infrared just has a longer wavelength and lower frequency compared to visible light. Infrared thermography is the science of detecting infrared energy emitted from an object, which is then converted into apparent temperature, then displayed as an infrared image. This is what the thermal camera takes.

 

Any presence of anomalies is often an indicator of potential problems.

 

This is very helpful in detecting things not otherwise visible to the naked eye such as heat patterns and the infrared wave spectrum. It aids in identifying components that are going bad before they get even worse.

 

infrared camera

 

How does thermal camera work? Instead of giving a numerical test result with various test meters, a thermal camera (also known as a thermal imager) captures the image that you can enhance using different color palettes and highlighting tools in order to point out a problem. An advantage of the thermal camera is that you can capture an object when it is under load and is used as it allows you to take a picture without making direct contact.

 

Most of these thermal cameras are able to capture “radiometric” data which means you can see the temperate for each pixel within the range. Very useful in detecting an anomaly, you can drill down and see the temperature of the exact points in question and see if it is in the normal range or not.

 

Infrared thermography can be useful in seeing beyond what is visible the data that is found all around us. Get to see in infrared with Fluke’s Thermal cameras, the world leader in the manufacturing and distribution of electronic test tools.

 

Learn more about our products here at Presidium.PH or contact info@presidium.ph!

thermal imaging

Thermal imagers are excellent tools for troubleshooting motor issues and monitoring the motor condition for preventive maintenance for power generation, manufacturing, and commercial plants. Infrared images reveal a motor’s heat signature to tell you about its condition.

 

What to Scan?

 

In building your heat profiles, it is best to start capturing good quality infrared images when the motors are running under normal conditions. Doing so will give you baseline measurements of the temperature of components.  Thermal imagers or infrared cameras can capture temperatures of all the crucial components: motor, shaft coupling, motor, shaft bearings, and gearbox.

 

However, working with loads can be more difficult as the indications of issues are subtler. Thus, a minimum of 40% design load is recommended (National Fire Protection Associate NFPA 70B), and it is better to have a higher load. When you are inspecting in low load situations, take note of all possible issues, be sure to note all possible problems, even if they reflect only a minimal temperature difference. When the load increases, the temperature rises too–and if a problem exists, assume larger temperature differences at higher loads.

 

What to Look For?

 

All motors should have the normal operating temperature listed on the nameplate. An infrared camera/thermal imager is unable to see inside the motor, but the exterior surface temperature is an indicator of internal temperature. When the motor is overheating, the windings rapidly deteriorates. As a matter of fact, every increase of 10°C on a motor windings’ designed operating temperature cuts the life of windings’ insulation by half even though the overheating is temporary.

 

If a temperature reading in the middle of a motor housing comes up abnormally high, an IR image of the motor can tell you where the high temperature is coming from. If a coupling is warm, there may be a misalignment.

 

There are three primary causes of abnormal thermal patterns:

 

  • High-resistance contact surface, either a connection or switch contact, usually appears warmest at the spot of high-resistance, cooling off the further away from the spot.
  • Load imbalances, normal or out of specification, appear to be equally warm throughout the part of the circuit that is overloaded or undersized. Harmonic imbalance also creates the same pattern. If the entire conductor is warm or hot it may be undersized or overloaded. Check on the rating or the actual load to know the cause.
  • Failed components may also appear cooler than normally functioning ones. The most common example is a blown fuse. While, in a motor circuit, this can result in a single phase condition and the possibility of costly damage to the motor.

 

Practicing regular inspection routes including thermal images of all critical motor and/or drive combinations as well as tracking baseline images will help you know if a hotspot is unusual or not. It will also help you verify if the repairs were a success.

 

Interested in getting an Infrared Camera or Thermal Imager? Get it now at www.presidium.ph!

thermal inspections

Three Ways to Conduct Thermal Inspections

Have you ever wondered how most pipes in buildings get maintained? Or how about some unwanted leaks?

These are just some of the things that thermal imaging can do.

Thermal came from the Greek thermē which means heat. With that said, thermal imaging is done using a thermal camera or thermal imager and is essentially a heat sensor that is capable of detecting any small difference in temperatures in objects. It collects the infrared radiation from the objects then proceeds to create an electronic image based on the information collected.

While it is never a complete guarantee that nothing will be overlooked, thermal inspection is a way to ensure further unforeseen damage can be prevented. The use of thermal imaging has been becoming part of practice when it comes to inspections and for good reason. Thermal imaging is important in the detection of unwanted and excessive moisture in building materials, insulation gaps, heating, and cooling placement, leaks, and unwanted water infiltration to name a few.

Because the purpose of imaging is different for each case depending on what equipment is being inspected, there is no one imaging solution that fits all infrared inspections with the thermal camera. However, there are three commonly used methods that can cover most situations.

Baseline Thermography

This is an easy way to dive into thermal imaging as it can work for almost any application. This is done by first scanning the object or equipment when it is first commissioned or used, which is then turned into the point of reference for future inspections. That is called the baseline. This approach allows you to spot any anomalies down the line of the object’s lifecycle.

Thermal Trending Thermography

Once the baseline has been set, this approach of thermal trending thermography can be used to compare how temperature is distributed in the same components over time. This helps in detecting any change in performance over time and over the object’s lifecycle. This allows you to be one step ahead in scheduling the maintenance for the object before it becomes unable to function.

Comparative Thermography

This approach is based on the idea that you expect similar components under similar loads to have similar temperature profiles. Under this approach, you scan similar components with the thermal camera under the same conditions and compare the results. With three or more components it becomes easier to pick up any deviation or irregularity.

While this approach may seem simple at first, it becomes complex depending on the component being compared. The real difference in temperature that can be considered normal or irregularity will also be different for each component depending on their respective functions.

 

All of these approaches all work to help maintain appliances and ensure that it is running properly. Thermal inspections are a good measure to maintain the objects and also prevent them from further damage. With Fluke’s Thermal Cameras, you are guaranteed to perform thermal inspections with confidence and faster results and better imaging.

Get this product now and contact info@presidium.ph!

Learn more about the various products of Fluke Industrial Group and Fluke Calibration, check them out at Presidium.PH!

thermal imaging for your business

How Thermal Imaging Can Help Your Business

For ages, the temperature has been used to give an indication of a machine’s condition, as machines with unusual temperatures are proven to have potential damages.

Touching the machine with our bare hands can sometimes help determine if the heat is in within limits but it may lead to serious accidents.

According to Westindrives.com, in order to obtain precise machine temperature, thermography or thermal imaging should be used. Other than precision, this technique is also safer.

Thermography – or thermal imaging – allows visualization of heat for maintenance or diagnostic purposes. The application’s infrared radiation is converted by a thermal camera to the visual image.

This thermal camera will speed up troubleshooting and aid in preventive maintenance that can provide a substantial return on investment.

Thermal imagers have also affected the way electricians monitor the operation of electrical systems. These devices gather vital information about electrical components, cooling levels in data centers, backup uninterruptible power supplies, and electrical support equipment. By using infrared (IR) cameras to take noncontact heat measurements of energized equipment, it is possible to diagnose potential problems before they occur.

However, according to Fluke, in order for a thermal imager to serve you right, you must certainly know how it works in different facets of your business. These are:

Electrical and Power Distribution

  • Troubleshoots and maintains electrical panels
  • Monitors substations and switchgear
  • Commissions new installations through the documented condition at the time of acceptance
  • Inspects and monitors power generation components

Industrial

  • Inspects and troubleshoots motors, drives, and bearings
  • Finds pipe blockages or leaks
  • Assesses tank levels from a distance
  • Identifies circuit board hot spots at the design stage

Energy and Environmental

  • Detects heat loss throughout your HVAC
  • Locates moisture in your building envelope
  • Conducts residential and commercial building energy audits

Thermal imaging technology is very dynamic, and there have been developments in products for over a decade, bringing new products and expanded capabilities.

Thermal imaging may sound so expensive but it is actually a very affordable option for many businesses that need best security, protection solution and a higher return of investment. It, in fact, it costs lower than CCTV. If you are looking for an affordable yet high-quality thermal imaging product, visit https://presidium.ph/ or call +63 2 464 9339 to know more.

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