Question Sudden Voltage change cause a problem to write files?

rockman413

Commendable
Apr 7, 2017
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Hi there,
Maybe this is a stupid question... When someone in my house turned on the garbage disposal which uses a lot of Amp most times I see lights dimmed a little bit, probably it's because the house electrical panel is not large enough, and cause voltage/amp change to all other electronics.
So I'm saving an important project file to an external SSD, but during this save someone turned on that, I wonder if the file has been saved correclty and would not have any corruption part in it. Since it's a save from my pro software, there's no way to check the Hash to verify the save as it is not a copy.
Can I understand that since the computer is still running and looks like it's normal when the garbage disposal was turned on, even there are amp/ voltage sudden changes, but as long as the computer is still running looks fine then the save and everything is not affected by that sudden changes? Weirdly this time the lights are not dimmed like other times.

Thanks a lot.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Actually it's because the power configuration in your house was poorly designed and there are likely too many other circuits on the same leg that the garbage disposal is on. Garbage disposals are high amp draw appliances and should generally not be on the same leg as lighting or outlets that are liable to be in use at the same time as the garbage disposal. Often the garbage disposal and the dishwasher will be on the same circuit, just those two items, because it is rare that both would be running simultaneiously.

Unless there has been a complete loss of power however it is unlikely you would see any problem with your file write operations. It might however be a very good idea to get a UPS battery backup AND also if possible, plug your PC into an outlet that is not on the same leg as the garbage disposal to preempt any possible issues. I doubt there would be any but if the disposal pulls enough current because the motor has become weak or there is some other issue with it, then it might be possible for it to have something of an effect similar to a brown out. Fortunately modern power supplies, if they are very good ones, have a lot of built in protections and features to help eliminate problems with this kind of droop on the circuit, but it might be best to just eliminate the problem altogether by either wiring the disposal to it's own circuit, connecting it to a different circuit or plugging your PC into a circuit that is not on the same leg as the garbage disposal.

Having a battery backup UPS system would pretty much eliminate the need to do or worry about any of that though.
 

jonnyguru

Distinguished
Hi there,
Maybe this is a stupid question... When someone in my house turned on the garbage disposal which uses a lot of Amp most times I see lights dimmed a little bit, probably it's because the house electrical panel is not large enough, and cause voltage/amp change to all other electronics.
So I'm saving an important project file to an external SSD, but during this save someone turned on that, I wonder if the file has been saved correclty and would not have any corruption part in it. Since it's a save from my pro software, there's no way to check the Hash to verify the save as it is not a copy.
Can I understand that since the computer is still running and looks like it's normal when the garbage disposal was turned on, even there are amp/ voltage sudden changes, but as long as the computer is still running looks fine then the save and everything is not affected by that sudden changes? Weirdly this time the lights are not dimmed like other times.

Thanks a lot.
Your PC should be fine as long as it's not a 230V only unit and has decent hold up time.
 

rockman413

Commendable
Apr 7, 2017
59
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1,630
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thank you both!
It's not a PC but a iMac Pro, which is:
  • Line voltage: 100–240V AC
in this case, can I trust completely that my saving process was not affected by the turned on of that garbage disposal?
Thanks a lot. I'll do correction soon so right now I just worried about this save process.
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Herald
Most times when the lights dim (which almost always are on a different circuit entirely from any kitchen outlet or appliance line) it's not a power to which is the issue, but a power from. 9/10 times it's the neutral at the mains panel is a little loose in the lug, especially if it's aluminium feeders not copper.

Any qualified electrician can run through a panel and make sure everything is right and tight in about 5-10 minutes.

Your psu can handle small power fluctuations and not be unsafe. If the power drop is significant enough, it'll trip protections and shutdown. That'll be the cause of any possible loss of data or data corruption.

Best bet until you can get the panel looked at is firmly caution everybody that you are doing something important and nobody is to touch the garbage disposal until you are finished.
 
Reactions: Darkbreeze

rockman413

Commendable
Apr 7, 2017
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"Your psu can handle small power fluctuations and not be unsafe. If the power drop is significant enough, it'll trip protections and shutdown. That'll be the cause of any possible loss of data or data corruption."
What is psu?
So do you mean as long as my computers are still running, I shouldnt worry about the that saving process gets any corruption?
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Herald
Psu: power supply unit.

Basically yes. Imagine the pc saving the letter 'G' . It gets halfway around and power shuts down. On reboot, it's going to look at that partially saved letter and not have a clue if it was a G or a C that was being saved, so your data has a 50% chance of being corrupted. (in very simple example). Something more complex, like an I could be an I or a E, T, P, D, H, K, L, N, M.

A Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) is designed to supplement power, either just a little (bring 210v upto 230v minimum etc) or fully (no power, so battery kicks in), for those 'brown outs' or 'blackouts' where house power is compromised so that data transfer isn't stopped.
 

rockman413

Commendable
Apr 7, 2017
59
0
1,630
0
Psu: power supply unit.

Basically yes. Imagine the pc saving the letter 'G' . It gets halfway around and power shuts down. On reboot, it's going to look at that partially saved letter and not have a clue if it was a G or a C that was being saved, so your data has a 50% chance of being corrupted. (in very simple example). Something more complex, like an I could be an I or a E, T, P, D, H, K, L, N, M.

A Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) is designed to supplement power, either just a little (bring 210v upto 230v minimum etc) or fully (no power, so battery kicks in), for those 'brown outs' or 'blackouts' where house power is compromised so that data transfer isn't stopped.
So just to confirm that , if the computer is still running and didn't get shut down during the saveing process, I can trust that saving is correct , right?
 

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