Started by flyingvan, January 29, 2012, 04:11:35 PM
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Quote from: flyingvan on February 11, 2013, 06:45:44 PM Makes me want to compare and contrast foreman vs. princess. Both seem to know what they want and expect people to make it happen. I think the biggest differences are how they motivate those people to make it happen, and how they look in a white dress.
Quote from: flyingvan on December 28, 2012, 12:19:00 PMElectric Rant... Just got off the phone with someone who needed electrical basics explained. I've found with all the steps invloved with building, electrical was one of the easiest steps, just keep the NEC book on hand as a reference. There's one thing that bugged me, so I didn't really comply with the letter of the law, explained to my inspector why, and he agreed! Arc fault circuits. It's the breaker with a white pigtail that goes into the neutral bar. There's circuitry that detects an arc, like from a frayed cord, that isn't shorted enough to trip a breaker but IS shorted enough to burn a house down. They went from being required in just bedroom outlets, to ceiling lights too, to any living area. Word on the street is, enforcing this rule has been pretty loose. Here's the thing. I DID install the arc fault circuit for the outlets, but the ceiling lights are on a regular breaker. The smoke detectors and CO detector must be hardwired in, with a battery backup. OK so far....Also, the smoke detectors should be wired to a circuit that gets used regularly, so if that circuit trips for whatever reason, it won't go unnoticed. That's a good idea too, in my opinion. So my detectors are wired in with the upstairs ceiling lights. Now they want those ceiling lights on an arc fault protected circuit. It makes no sense whatsoever to put my smoke and CO detectors on a circuit designed to trip if there's an electrical arc somewhere! Fortunately my inspector agreed. (I had a spare breaker ready to plug in anyway if he insisted). Basic wiring rules----1) Black (or red) is hot. They go to the brass screws on switches and outlets. White are neutral. Don't reverse these.2) 15 amp breakers get 14 AWG wire or better. 20's get 12 AWG. Don't try to put 15 amp switches or outlets on 12 AWG wire.3) Balance your two hot legs coming into the house---the goal is to have as little load on your neutral, which basically dumps into the ground, as possible. You wil actually use less electricity if you pay attention to this detail.....If your TV is always on, or there's some light always on, put those on the leg the fridge isn't on. If you list out all your electrical needs and guess at how often each thing is used, then divide them between one leg and the other (the two 'hots' coming in) you're doing good. The neutral is the same throughout the house, so if you're using two 100 watt bulbs on the same leg (even if they are on different breakers) that hot is energizing your bulbs, going to neutral, then returning to ground or the powerplant. If those same two bulbs are on different legs, some of the return through the neutral goes back through the other bulb that's in a different phase. Your meter spins slower, your building is more efficient. I kind of went overboard with this theme---my outlets in the kitchen are wired with one leg on top, the other on the bottom.4) VERY IMPORTANT---ground and bond everything---water, gas, foundation rebar. A very common mistake is people cut their copper pipe and put a water filter in line. One side is grounded and bonded, the other isn't. You just built a battery---one side is energized with any unbalanced neutral current, the other isn't. Minerals in your water will take advantage of the potential and you'll start getting pinhole leaks in the plumbing where ions are being stripped away. Any place you make a break in your plumbing you have to bond it---just bridge it with some copper wire and copper clamps so everything metal is joined together. When there IS a short somewhere, you want the path of least resistance to be parts of your house, not you or a family member.5) Always switch through the hot, never the neutral......If you followed rule #1 you did this already. If you ran the white wire through the switch to that ceiling light, and that white wire was properly wired as the neutral, it WILL work. The light will turn on and off....However, the appliance is still energized. Wiring it backwards means you've made the whole thing 'hot' all the time, and when you flip the switch you ground it and the light comes on. In a few years you climb your metal ladder to change that bulb, thinking it's dead because the light's out, then you can't figure out why you're taking 110v and trying not to fall.6) If you get weird electrical problems, like some lights are super bright while others are dim, TV's are smoking, lights are coming on by themselves---you lost your neutral somewhere, either the panel or the acorn nut in the drip loop, and the electricity is backfeeding through the other leg. Or maybe your house is possessed by evil spirits.
Quote from: eddie1278 on December 15, 2013, 08:23:09 AMYet lots of things you say are wrong. I'm an electrician that has been properly trained and do it everyday I'm not a diyer.
QuoteYet lots of things you say are wrong. I'm an electrician that has been properly trained and do it everyday I'm not a diyer.
Quote from: flyingvan on December 15, 2013, 11:50:13 AMYes---I'd appreciate that too. My need to be right is way lower on my list than my need to not electrocute anybody or burn my house down. I have no doubt a concrete guy could find thngs in my foundation he'd do different. Same with a framer, plumber, glazier, architect, roofer, interior decorator, cabinet maker, stone mason. I still maintain comparing all those disciplines, electrical was the easiest---NEC is pretty clear and easy to follow and there aren't so many variables. I believe I followed the electrical code, and my inspector sure didn't pencil whip anything... That said, if you're offering free constructive criticism, could you look at my thread titled 'portable generators'? My resources were pretty slim on assuring that was all done correctly. Now THAT project had variables galore---inlet pressure, generator sizing, grounding and bonding, heat loss, etc.. We've already had to use it for a 42 hour grid failure and everything worked as planned, although I had to explain to the neighbor way down across the street why we couldn't just run 1000' worth of extension cords from my generator to her fridge.... MY training is in fire suppression. By far the most common point of origin is 'faulty wiring'. That faulty wiring is rarely from a DIY project (push ins, aluminum wires, improperly sized wires are frequent culprits)
Quote from: eddie1278 on December 15, 2013, 09:00:55 PMHonestly almost everything you say about electrical work is completely absurd and I don't even know where to begin.
Quote from: eddie1278 on December 15, 2013, 09:46:39 PMI could point out all his bad info but it would take too much time honestly.
Quote from: MountainDon on December 15, 2013, 10:06:02 PMJust one thing and the "fix" would be helpful. You mentioned grounding and bonding; yes that is an area that confuses some. Is there some other more simple to explain issue; one not requiring It need not requiring a lengthy commitment of time. Hopefully you have found some information here that has been helpful to you. A small repayment should not be too much to ask, I would think. But then again, I could be wrong on my assumptions. I would appreciate your wisdom on this as one of the things I personally consider important is building in a safe manner. That's from the ground up, the foundation to the roof with heating, ventilation, insulation, plumbing and yes, electricity included. If you have looked around here much you may have observed questions or critique from myself and other knowledgeable folks on a number of occasions. You would have also noted that when members with expertise in some area of construction raises an issue they make suggestions as to what could or should be done to correct the situation. By and large we do not simply sat "that is wrong". We continue with a "here's what would work better", sort of a thing. The whole point of the forum, IMO is to help others to do a better job if not the best job. Doesn't that make a lot of sense?