What is stray voltage?
Stray voltage is a small amount of voltage between two
points that, when contacted simultaneously by an animal, form a
complete electrical circuit. All farms with electric power have
some degree of stray voltage. It is commonly caused by damaged
grounding devices that elevate neutral-to-earth voltage, faulty
wiring and electrical equipment such as electric fences and cow
trainers, or by improper grounding.
If the stray voltage is high enough, you may notice some of the
following changes in your cows' behavior:
- Nervousness or excessive movement during milking
- Hesitation to enter the milking parlor or stall
- Reduced feed or water intake
- Slow milk let down
Where is stray voltage found?
Stray voltage occurs when livestock touch two points. Some common sites are:
- Water bowl to floor
- Water bowl to stall
- Stall or parlor steel to floor
- Heated waterer to floor
- Feed bunk to floor
WPS offers free stray voltage testing
At no cost to you, WPS will conduct comprehensive
stray voltage testing at your farm. Our agriculture consultants know where stray voltage
is likely to be found and have the proper equipment for accurate testing.
They'll review a printout of voltmeter readings and test results with you.
There is something you can do about stray voltage. Call 877-444-0888
and arrange to have a WPS agricultural consultant
conduct thorough testing at your farm for free.