Key Considerations for Distribution Line Maintenance

To get an uninterrupted supply of electricity, it is essential to have the proper transmission line maintenance and repair as well as overhead line and power line maintenance and repair. This distribution line maintenance is done at least twice and year, and is increased prior to and after any significant weather events. If there are going to be high winds in the area, heavy snows, or lightning storms, that is all the more reason for distribution line maintenance and, if necessary, repair. 

Materials To Be Inspected as Part of Distribution Line Maintenance

Poles and Supports

Whether the poles and supports are made from steel, cement, wood, or a combination of these, they must be strongly placed and in accordance with all codes–as well as the higher standard to which Cache Valley Electric holds itself. Things to be investigated during regular and emergency distribution line pole maintenance are:

  • Pole strength
  • Type and size of the conductor
  • Maximum wind pressure
  • Maximum line tension
  • Presence of adjacent hazards, including trees, farms, windmills, traffic signs, etc.
  • Crossings where a distribution line goes over a river, road, railway, etc


 Aluminum conductors are inspected during routine and emergency distribution line maintenance. This includes AAC (All Aluminum Conductors), ACSR (Aluminum Conductor Steel Reinforced), and AAAC (All Aluminum Alloy Conductors). Each of these conductors has a designated minimum factor for safety based on tensile strength.


Insulators are also inspected during distribution line maintenance, which includes Pin Type Insulators, which are secured to the cross arm of the distribution pole, as well as Shackle Type Insulators which are used to isolate live conductors and are mounted on every electrical line. There are also Disc Type Insulators, which are used in higher voltage situations and require more manpower and time to work with and maintain. Guy Strain Insulators are only used for guy wires and work in mechanical tension or strain. 

Pins for Insulators

All pins for pin insulators are a single forged piece, and all ferrous parts must be galvanized. They come in two typical sizes, the Large Steel Head and the Small Steel Head. 

Guy Assembly

Guy assembly is an especially important part of distribution line maintenance, as it is the guy wires that keep the dead-end wires and angular distribution lines from collapsing due to line tension. 

GI Wire

GI Wires act as reinforcement of the distribution lines at places where they distribution lines cross something, such as a road, a railroad track, or some other power lines. These must be inspected regularly as part of power line maintenance to make sure they do not fail. 

GO Switches

GO Switches (Gang Operated Switches) act as a gang, with three switches together. Also called Air Break Switches, these are inspected as part of proper distribution line maintenance.

11kV Cross-arms

There are several different kinds of cross arms for 11kV lines, including the V cross arms, the double-channel cross arm, and the L.T. cross arms. 

L.T. Line Spacers

Finally the last main component of proper distribution line maintenance is the L.T. Spacer which comes as either Spiral or Composite. These are in the mid-section of the lines and prevent sag due to wind or heavy snow. 


Cache Valley Electric is expert at distribution line maintenance, and ready to inspect and repair any distribution and power lines in case of routine maintenance, preparation for a storm, or the aftermath of a disaster. Work with Cache Valley Electric today.