Digital clocks now blip at second's outage

November 04, 1990|By New York Times News Service

Digital clocks are giving electric utilities fits because even short interruptions of power cause the displays to fail, precipitating floods of calls from frustrated consumers unable to figure out how to reset them.

The culprit, according to the Electric Power Research Institute, is cost-cutting on the part of clock-makers.

Clocks made in the 1970s came equipped with capacitors big enough to keep the display lighted through outages of up to 10 seconds. But newer ones fade in one second.

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