Earth leakage hack

Happy New Year! Best wishes to all my friends for 2024.

I have this weird problem with my new studio computer ‘verve‘. When I press the power button, it doesn’t turn on. It does have 15 USB cables plugged into it, and quite a number of those are powered, which seems to affect the system.

The power for most of the devices on my bench goes through a PowerShield Defender 1600VA UPS battery, and then through an Arlec PB91 Residual Current Device (RCD).

The RCD has a test feature so you can press the button on the RCD and it will trip the safety which will disconnect the power. If I do this most of the equipment on my bench will turn off (but, importantly, not my workstation ‘verve’) including all the powered USB devices which are interfering with my computer.

After I trip the RCD I can power on my computer, and then once it’s powered on I can reset the RCD and bench power is restored. It’s a bit fiddly but at least it works!

Arlec Single Outlet Safety Switch

Thanks to my mate Raz I now have an Arlec Single Outlet Safety Switch from Bunnings. It’s a 30mA residual-current device (RCD), which is a type of earth-leakage circuit breaker (ELCB).

Over here:

You can see my bench UPS in the bottom right:

It’s a PowerShield Defender 1200VA.

The UPS then has the Arlec device in the back of it, which then powers the rest of my bench (behind the scissors):

You can see I still have my Xbox power cable plugged in. We’re not sure exactly what that does. In addition to an electronic fuse maybe an RCD or maybe an arc-fault circuit interrupter (AFCI) or maybe all of the above.