Distribution and use of electricity throughout the home. Electrical standards vary greatly worldwide, so providing your location in your question or your profile helps ensure you get answers that are relevant to you.

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3
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4answers
95 views

How to determine if a 20 amp breaker can be upgraded to 30 amp

I recently purchased my first home and the breaker the electric clothes dryer is connected to is 20 amp. I was told it should be 30 amp by a home inspector but foolishly did not have the seller ...
3
votes
0answers
56 views

What do I need in order to fix the sloppy work done by cable providers? [duplicate]

As some of you have surely experienced, residential telecom installers can leave a thing or two to be desired when it comes to how they get the service into our homes. A small project I've had in ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

What is this switch plate cover with a pyramidal bulge across the top of the plate?

We were trying to replace old switch plate covers at our new house when we came across one that is a type I've never seen before. It's a light switch cover that looks like an ordinary cover except for ...
4
votes
2answers
65 views

Is there a keyed switch that can be used to power off a subpanel?

I'd like to be able to power off the sub-panel in my home workshop using a simple key-based switch. I envision a junction box just before the sub-panel with a key that can be turned "on" or "off", and ...
1
vote
3answers
60 views

How many amps does it take to power 2 AC's, a freezer, a refrigerator, 2 TV's, and a computer?

I'm making my garage into a living place and I put in a 50 amp line from my house to the garage. The garage has its own fuse box but I want to have an upstairs living area and a downstairs man-cave. I ...
1
vote
1answer
163 views

Why is high voltage coming out of HDMI port on my TV?

I am plugging my TV into a grounded outlet. When I plug an HDMI cable into the back of the TV and measure the voltage coming out of the other end of the cable (should be 0 shouldn't it?) it reads 380 ...
0
votes
3answers
104 views

Should data ground wires be attached to plumbing?

I have ground wires attached to copper plumbing on the house side of the dielectric coupling. The telephone service box has a ground wire which I found attached to copper plumbing. The satellite ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

Outside flood light problem

A two light outdoor flood light fixture has stopped working. I have replaced the bulbs, checked the circuit breaker, the GFI, the switch (including bypassing the switch). I have also checked for ...
0
votes
3answers
139 views

A spark from a power strip recently made the electricity go out is it safe to turn it back on?

About a week ago my daughter plugged up her iPod to a power strip that was plugged into an outlet in her bedroom, she said she placed the iPod onto the power strip and let it sit there while she ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

Video / audio ground on ungrounded equipment

There is a great question regarding reversed polarity wall outlets which gives me pause. I recently moved my mother-in-law's television and DVD player, and I noticed that both use ungrounded C-style ...
-1
votes
2answers
48 views

Can this transformer supply 2000 Watts according to its labeling?

I have a 5M voltage transformer, can I use it to my 110V appliance with 2000 watts? Insert is the picture of my transformer
1
vote
3answers
48 views

Need help determining if a multiwire branch circuit is wired correctly

When I opened up my walls for a kitchen remodel I discovered what I'm pretty sure is a multi-wire branch circuit. It has a 12/3 (black + red + white + ground) NM cable going back to the breaker. I ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

Is there ever a reason for reversing hot and neutral on a receptacle?

I moved into a new home and several receptacles have the hot and neutral reversed. I confirmed this with a basic receptacle tester. I opened one up and found the white wire on the brass terminal, ...
0
votes
2answers
40 views

Is it possible that my GFCI receptacle is bad?

I have a double wide mobile home. The outside receptacles and the one in master bath do not work. They are GFCI protected but the GFCI is NOT tripped. Is it possible that the GFCI is bad? I think the ...
6
votes
1answer
104 views

Can a private electromechanical meter be placed between the utility's meter and the main breaker?

I want to run an experiment which compares the readouts of the newer electronic smart meters against older electromechanical meters. Is there anything in the NFPA 70 or any other law or code which ...
8
votes
2answers
246 views

There are bare copper wires in the light box?

I opened the light switches and electrical outlets on the walls before the painting job and found in the metal casing boxes there were two bare copper wires attached on the same screw, they were laid ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

For installing a new exterior light on a brick wall, can I connect the wires in a junction box mounted on the opposite side of the wall?

There is plenty of room to install the junction box on the other side of the wall and I would rather not put a box on the outside of the wall. Can I simply connect the wires in the junction box on the ...
2
votes
1answer
62 views

How do I properly ground a light fixture?

I installed a light fixture in my bathroom and need help grounding it properly. The previous fixture wasn't grounded. When I removed the fixture, there were two wires, one black and one white, from ...
1
vote
2answers
109 views

Is it possible (and safe) to adapt a 4-prong dryer outlet to a NEMA 6-20?

I'm considering an appliance that is 240v 16A 3500watt with a NEMA 6-20P plug. Is it possible and safe to create an adapter for this so that it can be plugged into a standard 4-prong 14-30R dryer ...
0
votes
0answers
56 views

Why is my bathroom vent fan tripping the GFCI when being shut off?

I have a GFCI tripping when a vent fan is being shut off. I saw in KeithS's answer to a similar question that the blades rotating after shut off causes an imbalance, tripping the GFCI. In my case the ...
2
votes
1answer
89 views

Is it OK to have more than one neutral wire in the same connection on the neutral bus bar on a main panel?

I'm installing a new 100 amp panel and have almost run out of openings on the neutral bus bar and still have 4 more breakers to install. Can I double up on the neutral side or should I start using ...
3
votes
2answers
334 views

Can I drive a ground rod near a gas meter?

I am redoing the electrical in my 1940s house. The house has no grounding electrodes but the meter and panel are grounded to my water pipe outside in the front of the house. (This actually looks like ...
0
votes
2answers
130 views

I have 220V cable on a 110V circuit. Should I be worried?

I'm reconfiguring my kitchen and moving some stuff around, which necessitates moving some outlets and switches. This is my first attempt at any kind of electrical work, so finding weird things makes ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

How can I tell if there's an electrical issue or if I have a bad dryer?

I purchased a dryer from Sears: recently, which didn't work upon being connected. I performed a couple electrical checks (more on that in a moment), then called them up and told them that it was dead ...
1
vote
2answers
85 views

Could power fluctuations have killed my refrigerator?

Bought a house (built in 1937) recently. When the clothes washer runs (particularly, when it agitates), lights in the house flicker. I've read in numerous places online that this is possibly due to ...
1
vote
0answers
172 views

What size wire do I need for a 100amp underground 300 ft run?

I want to put in a 100amp subpanel in my garage. The run will be underground and 300ft long. I have a Siemens panel with breakers rated at 60/75 deg C. What is the proper wire size I need? I was ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

What to do about hot neutral in switch?

The light switch only controls a ceiling fixture. But, the cable powering the switch also powers 2 grounded outlets. The neutral wire on the switch is live/hot. The black wire is not. Right now all ...
3
votes
2answers
273 views

How do I change which half of a receptacle is controlled by a wall switch?

I have a switched outlet in a bedroom. The top receptacle is controlled by a wall switch while the bottom is always hot. Can I make it so the top is always hot and the bottom is switched by just ...
0
votes
0answers
26 views

Can two ground rods be bonded via a PVC conduit above ground?

According to my understanding, if a supplementary ground rod is installed, it must be bonded to the existing rod via a buried 6 AWG cable (NFPA 70). However, because virtually every side of my house ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Unplugging Alarm System

The house I am had an alarm system put in when the house was being built. The previous owners of our house used it but we haven't and all its been is a pain in the butt. Before it would beep when ...
0
votes
2answers
82 views

Is it okay to drill a ground rod through pavement?

All the sides of my house are paved, and I need to drive a new ground rod for an antenna. Would it be against code (NEC) to drill a hole in the concrete to pound in a ground rod? Bonus question: How ...
0
votes
2answers
66 views

How far does a ground rod need to be from the foundation?

I need to ground an antenna strapped to my chimney, which requires hammering in a new ground rod. However, the entire side of my house is paved, meaning I can't dig it up to find the foundation ...
1
vote
2answers
73 views

Why use AFCI receptacles rather than AFCI breakers?

Is there any reason to use an AFCI receptacle rather than replacing the breaker with an AFCI type? It seems that providing protection on the whole circuit makes much more sense than to just one ...
0
votes
1answer
50 views

Beeping light fixture

I have been renting a house for a week. The light/fan woke me up beeping every 30 seconds. It continues if the light/fan is switched off. Its the middle of the night, and I am not handy. What should I ...
1
vote
3answers
89 views

Running a new kitchen light circuit from a receptacle with a “traveller.”

I'd like to power a set of three ceiling-mounted down-lights from an existing receptacle in a kitchen reno. A picture of the existing receptacle is attached. My confusion is it has a fourth wire ...
0
votes
2answers
108 views

Is ceiling fan missing grounding wire from the ceiling box, and is this safe?

I recently had a contractor/handyman install a Hunter ceiling fan for me. It worked great, but my wife came home and thought it was too big. I ordered a different Hunter fan, and figured I could ...
0
votes
2answers
67 views

Home Light Automation - Emulate 4 way switch with relay

I've been thinking of ways to do home automation that is somewhat future proof (hardwired); and the best idea I have is to use relays for lights on a 3 way switch circuit. Put in a dual pole dual ...
0
votes
3answers
157 views

How do I wire a ceiling fan?

I recently purchased a ceiling fan - Harbor Breeze Tilghman WITHOUT a light - to replace a ceiling fan WITH a light. The wires coming from the (old)ceiling are red, black, white, green, and copper. ...
2
votes
1answer
54 views

How to determine polarity on cloth covered wires?

I am wiring a ceiling fixture. There are three cables in the ceiling box. Only one of the cables has power. This cable powers the others that go on to power switches to ceiling fixtures in two ...
1
vote
2answers
146 views

How to rewire house electrical?

I just had an electrician replace the old 100A fuse box of my 1954 house, with a 200A breaker box. The breaker on my meter base and wires between breaker and breaker box were also replaced with 2/0, ...
-3
votes
2answers
154 views

Can I use a UPS as a Voltage Stabilizer for 32 or 42 inch LED TV? [closed]

I need a voltage stabilizer for 32 inch or 42 inch LED TV. Can I use a UPS for this? I'm expecting the Voltage control when the input power is beyond 270V or 290V and to produce output 240V range. ...
0
votes
4answers
93 views

Should a neutral wire ever be connected to the neutral for the power meter?

I was not working with this circuit breaker box but I was interested to see what was going on with only 3 breakers for the entire apartment. I found a neutral from the apartment going into the ...
1
vote
1answer
121 views

Can I use a 20 amp breaker in the situation of having 15 amp wire connected to a 20 amp main wire?

Can I use a 20 amp breaker in the situation of having 15 amp wire connected to a 20 amp main wire? If I can't would using a 15 amp breaker be ok?
0
votes
2answers
63 views

Drilling holes behind existing walls/ceilings

We are remodeling a 1914 house, and want to keep damage to the walls and ceiling to a minimum. We had to take a few walls down already, and as a result have the ability to drill new holes behind the ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

2 circuits connected in one box?

I'm swapping out outlets and this one has me stumped. This is in a room of switched outlets (top outlet is always hot, bottom is switched) so the red/black side tab on each outlet is broken off. The ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

Electrical problem - loss of power to fixture and outlet

Hot to ground and neutral to ground read 120 V. Hot to neutral 0 V. This is a portion of a circuit that appears to be at the end of the wiring. An overhead light/fan and one duplex outlet are not ...
0
votes
3answers
182 views

2-wire switch loop controlling 2 outlets - replacing with 3-wire to fix?

I am in nearly this exact situation: Can I use a switch loop to power a ceiling fan? We are trying to install a fan, but instead of having a single duplex outlet on the same wall as the switch, we ...
1
vote
2answers
113 views

How do I interpret a central air conditioner label?

The label on my central air conditioner looks a lot like this one (photo below). What do the two numbers (separated by a slash) mean for voltage and the three amperage ratings?
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Can I replace Slater boxless receptacles with conventional ones?

Most of my receptacles have stopped working on one side. When I went to replace them, I found out that they are Slater Boxless Receptacles. Can I replace the Slater ones with conventional outlets?
1
vote
2answers
62 views

Running power to an external building

I'm thinking of running power to my garage, it's about 40 meters away (as the cable flies). I've been researching and already know the best way to do this would be to run a cable from the house ...