How many times have you or a team member been out in the field on a tough locate and wondered if the difficulty is being caused by the accuracy of the locator in your hand?
Many professionals recommend having a permanent locate at your facility. This permanent locate could be a direct connect wire buried in your yard a foot deep for 75′-100′. You might have a permanent ground rod near the exposed wire that you could direct connect to. The end of the wire needs to be well grounded. If possible, try to create this circuit in a remote location on your property to minimize any interference to the electromagnetic field. You can permanently mark the location of the wire for the operators.
Prior to heading into the field for a locate, the operator can quickly hook up to the permanent locate to check the accuracy of their equipment. After energizing the line, the operator can locate the line in both directions. If the locator is responding well to the electromagnetic field and the operator is confident, they can then head into the field to work. If the machine is not functioning properly, locate your local Owen representative for service.
Remember, locating is 12 shades of grey. Having confidence in your equipment will just make you a better operator!