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Home / Technical Articles / Erection Procedure for Power Transformer
Erection Procedure for Power Transformer
Erection Procedure for Power Transformer

This technical article deals with transformers and their installation so we restrict ourselves here to the procedures associated with their commissioning. Transformers should be inspected for internal or external damage, particularly if they have been dropped or tipped over.

This should include such items as:

  1. Drain valves, selector switches,
  2. Conservator tanks,
  3. Buchholz relays and
  4. Winding temperature indicators.

All transformers must be tested for winding insulation resistance and the readings confirmed as acceptable.

However HV D.C. tests on a cable connected transformer cannot be done because the windings of the transformer short out the d.c test set.

If between-core tests are required on transformer feeder cables after installation then a link box must be provided to disconnect the cable from the transformer windings. If transformer covers are taken off to achieve internal disconnection the tools used must be clean and secured externally by white tape so that they may be recovered if inadvertently dropped.

All nuts and washers must be accounted for and all operatives should be asked to empty their pockets while working over the open tank.

Waterproof covers should be provided during the period when the transformer tank is open. If it is not possible to disconnect the cables after jointing they must be tested beforehand. This means that the jointing and testing programme must be carefully planned to avoid leaving cable ends unsealed for long periods.

Transformer diagrams should be inspected and the phasing diagram confirmed as correct. Also before energising, the voltage selector must be set on the appropriate tapping having regard to the voltage level of the system.

Transformers which are to operate in parallel must be set on the same tapping and they should be checked as having the same impedance. Voltage selectors should be locked in their set position and if they are of the ‘off-circuit’ type they must not be adjusted without the supply being first switched off. Earthing arrangements for the tank and the neutral or other system earthing must be confirmed and completed before testing and commissioning.

Where special tests for losses, ratio, phase angle or winding resistances are specified the assistance of the manufacturer should be sought.

The following points should be checked on the particular type of transformer as appropriate:

Oil immersed naturally cooled (ON)

Ensure that the oil level is adequate and that breather tubes are clear. Commission silica gel units by removing the airtight seals from the cannisters and filling the oil sealing-well to the correct level with transformer oil.

The colour of the silica gel must be checked and the filling changed if it shows dampness (red for wet, blue for dry).

Erection of oil immersed transformer
Erection of oil immersed transformer

Dry-type transformers

As dry-type transformers are more susceptible to external damage they must be carefully handled and stored on site.

They must also be kept in a dry, warm atmosphere until they are put in service, to prevent ingress of moisture.

Satisfactory insulation tests are imperative before commissioning. Because they are wholly dependent on surface radiation and air convection for cooling, they must be checked for any accumulation of dust or dirt which can block the air ducts and reduce the flow of air. Cleanliness is essential, particularly where the connection leads leave the windings and at the terminal supports. Damp dust leads to tracking and causes expensive damage.

It is particularly important to check such transformers for dust in package substations which may escape the notice of commissioning staff.

Erection of dry-type power transformer
Erection of dry-type power transformer

Resource: Handbook of Electrical Installation Practice – Eur Ing Geoffrey Stokes (Get it from Amazon)

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More Information

Edvard Csanyi

Electrical engineer, programmer and founder of EEP. Highly specialized for design of LV/MV switchgears and LV high power busbar trunking (<6300A) in power substations, commercial buildings and industry facilities. Professional in AutoCAD programming.


  1. yuvaraj
    Apr 12, 2018

    when we go for transformer erection in apartment, colon, lower rise building..which rated of kw is exceed to go for transformer erection

  2. Akhil
    Nov 22, 2017

    The article provided is good. For a common distribution transformer what is the value for earth resistance and capacitive calculations??
    if the line voltage is minimum can we use a industrial grade capacitor to boost the voltage?
    Please feel free to reply

  3. Azam
    Dec 01, 2015

    Dear Mr. Edvard,

    Could you please suggest me post energizing test of dry type transformer 20KVA??

    I shall be grateful to you for you quick response.

    Best Regards


  4. Ramesh
    Mar 25, 2015

    Sir I follows ur concept regularly….I want to produce power using only heat ,would you please tell me is it possible?

  5. Evans Sunday
    Mar 09, 2015

    Hi Edvard! please i want know to control “B” STROKE. i will appreciate your warm guide lines.

  6. muthuram.n
    Sep 06, 2014

    i like this website

    • muthuram.n
      Sep 06, 2014

      i invented “online transformer erection device” for distribution transformer erection without affecting T supply.please go through the goole search online transformer erection device

  7. jaffer
    Jun 26, 2014

    GD ….


  8. Tony
    Jun 06, 2014

    Hi Edvard,

    I am a regular reader of your articles, helped me in my profession. I would like to know some thing about the timing tests of circuit breakers. Is there any reference for the timing test, to make the comparison between the measured with some internationally acceptable data. Coz recently i faced this question, from my colleges. The question was how much will be the timing test value for a circuit breaker – 11 Kv,22,kv,33 Kv, 132 kv, 220 Kv. My belief was that its with the designer. And each manufacturer has their own values depend on the product they produce. Can you please guide me through this ….

  9. farhan
    Dec 22, 2013

    hello i am new to this site. and i have read many articles on transformer and motors. but i cant find the different tests carried out on transformer after erection and on load.
    and also the control circuits of induction motors and transformers.
    please help to find the same thanks…

  10. Ajay Linge
    Jun 17, 2013

    i am regular reader for your technical article & these article very useful for me in my working style.
    but i have require design concept for distribution transformer (mostly focus on primary & secondary winding)

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