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Old 23.01.2013, 11:04
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Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

I recently bought an apartment in a shared building near Nyon and noticed that between midday and 2pm the power appears to be cut off in the utility room to stop anyone using a washing machine or dryer during this time! At first I thought my washing machine had packed up but was advised on this by a neighbour later.

I know about the rules on cutting lawns on Sunday or between 12 and 2pm but was just wondering how common switching off power was in Switzerland. Is this a common rule?

Thanks
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:07
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

Welcome to the forum. In my previous place when I still did not understand German, I too noticed that the wash machine and dryer was put out of action on Sundays. This is because of house rules ( the neighbour closest to the shared machines objected rather bitterly and got his way ) but might also be related to power savings.

As to noise, search the forum for Nachtruhe ( not sure of the French equivalent ) to understand about limits at Federal, Cantonal, communal and even house rules.

One thread is here:

Noise rules, fact or fiction?
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:08
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

I've not come across it before, and it seems a little excessive. We have our own washer and drier in the (owned) flat and can use it whenever we want, I'm not sure if there is a rule for the communal washing room which is available.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:17
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

The parents-in-law own a chalet in the Valais and their (heavier-duty electricity supply) utilities are cut off between 12 - 2 every day, apparently it is due to freeing up electricity for the lunchtime rush, or so I have been told.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:19
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

@Paddy G: Yeah, we thought so too! Apparently though one of my colleagues said the same thing applied to his building. In my previous place I was in the same position as you; had a washing machine in the bathroom which I used whenever (before 9pm).

Our building has three separate apartments in them and the power is cut to each of their utility rooms during this time about midday. I was just wondering if this had happened to anyone else.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:21
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

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The parents-in-law own a chalet in the Valais and their (heavier-duty electricity supply) utilities are cut off between 12 - 2 every day, apparently it is due to freeing up electricity for the lunchtime rush, or so I have been told.
That is correct, and usually the time is from 11:30 to 13:30
There is a relay-contactor behind the switchboard, which cuts the power, it is often a cantonal ruling. The machines usually restart with no problems.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:23
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

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I recently bought an apartment in a shared building near Nyon and noticed that between midday and 2pm the power appears to be cut off in the utility room to stop anyone using a washing machine or dryer during this time! At first I thought my washing machine had packed up but was advised on this by a neighbour later.

I know about the rules on cutting lawns on Sunday or between 12 and 2pm but was just wondering how common switching off power was in Switzerland. Is this a common rule?

Thanks
Many of us get caught on this the first time with communical washing laundry area

I was told it was because many go home for their lunch and it to lessen the usuage on the Grid & so save on cost of Electricity.

The exact timing though does vary from one part of the country to the other.

As far as I can work out in present place is that the machine wont start if the end time will be during the cut off time, so in the morning have to put it in earlier, rather than do something else first. Afternoons/evenings seems to be no problem.

In the UK, as seen from one of those TV documentaries, it was explained how they got more electricity from different sources for times of high usuage, typical example, TV breaks where people switch on electric kettle /jug for hot drink. The source where they got the extra electric from at peak times, was more expensive for them.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:26
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

It's the same for all heat pump heating systems, but only for one hour - any time between 11.00am and 12.30pm - it varies depending on electricity demand.

More than at any other time, it is almost guaranteed that the majority of CH will stop for lunch between 12 and 1 (many at home), which creates a peak demand for the predominantly used electric hobs and ovens in the hour before.

When the demand is high the electricity companies remotely operate a relay switch to cut power to heating systems.

This could also be the case for other non-essential usage.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:30
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

It will depend on the tariff you have with the power utility. Allowing them to switch off power during peak power demand will reduce the tariff. It's quite common in communal buildings such blocks of flats.
I don't believe there's any law behind it, at least not in most places, just an offer from the local power utility.
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:34
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

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I recently bought an apartment in a shared building near Nyon and noticed that between midday and 2pm the power appears to be cut off in the utility room to stop anyone using a washing machine or dryer during this time! At first I thought my washing machine had packed up but was advised on this by a neighbour later.

I know about the rules on cutting lawns on Sunday or between 12 and 2pm but was just wondering how common switching off power was in Switzerland. Is this a common rule?
Yes. Maybe not universal, but certainly not at all unusual, and generally from 1130. Allegedly the reason is that all the Swiss wives and mothers will be cooking lunch for their families, so they want to reduce the draw on the electricity grid at that time. It's one of those aspects of Swiss life that one could imagine was part of a social control conspiracy, if one had a mind for such things...
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Old 23.01.2013, 11:45
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Re: Power for utilities cut off every day at Midday

It is certainly a gemeinde thing. We own a private house, and until recently the power to my washing machine and tumbler in the cellar was cut off over the lunchtime period. When we first moved in, I attempted to circumnavigate the problem by simply plugging the machines into extension leads and using a plug in the main part of our house. This simply resulted in an overflow of power and I had to constantly re-set the power breaker.

It is annoying when a piece of delicate washing ends up sitting in water for an hour or so, but the machines always seem to restart themselves with no problem.

Luckily, this year the practice seems to have stopped in Stäfa so I am once again free to wash and dry to my heart's content!
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