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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

3
votes
4answers
1k views

Can I run an extension cord through my crawl space?

I have a lack of plugs outside my house and was wondering if it's okay to run an extension cord through my crawl space (from the garage, underneath my living room and through a crawlspace vent). Edit ...
0
votes
0answers
63 views

Is it possible to get wiring for charging USB devices? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Do USB sockets draw power when not in use? We're about to re-wire our house (in the UK). It occurred to me that having the ability to plug USB devices directly into ...
2
votes
2answers
5k views

How to wire two light bulb sockets inside a ceiling fixture?

I purchased a flush-mount ceiling light with 2 light bulbs. The wiring is a simple 1 black, 1 white, and 1 ground to the ceiling box, but there were also wires connecting one bulb to the other. ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What are my options for installing 240v receptacles in an attached garage?

My workshop (attached garage) is currently wired with 120V receptacles fed from the main panel in the house by #10/3 with ground (1 black, 1 red, 1 white, 1 ground) attached to a double-pole 30A ...
4
votes
3answers
28k views

How can I figure out why my washing machine is tripping the GFCI receptacle?

I have a Kenmore 80 Series (Model No. 110.24872300) washing machine which up to this point has been working fine. Since it is near a sink, the outlet it is plugged into is a GFCI outlet. On the last ...
3
votes
2answers
56k views

How do I wire this Australian ceiling light?

I want to install a ceiling fixture. I have the manual and it looks pretty easy, but in the manual, it looks like I should have 2 cables coming out of my wall. Instead, I have 3. I don't know what ...
0
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I hide the wires to a self-made ceiling light fixture?

I have a simple self-made ceiling light fixture, but it currently lacks two things: some kind of a pipe to hide the wire. a cover to hide the ceiling junction box. I'd like to use something ...
0
votes
1answer
427 views

How do I wire a 4 terminal light fixture

How do I wire a porcelain ceiling light fixture with two sets of terminals (two hot/two neutral) instead of the usual two terminal fixture?
3
votes
2answers
5k views

Do outlets in damp locations require GFCI protection?

The title says it all. It appears wet locations require not only GFCI protection but also weatherproof boxes and appropriately rated everything, but I can't find much addressing damp locations. Most ...
6
votes
0answers
58 views

Beeping in My home [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: what is beeping in my house? For the past 3 weeks there has been a beeping in my house. It sounds like a smoke alarm. It beeps at about 40 second intervals. Early on ...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

Should I be concerned about fridge/freezer airflow?

We just recently had the following counter/cabinet system put into our basement family room. After everything was done, I started to get concerned about airflow. The enclosure was built in such a ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Are there octagonal box extenders that are slimmer than 1 1/2" deep?

Is there an octagonal box extender that's slimmer than 1 1/2" deep? So far I haven't been able to find one. Here's why: to cover up 30 years of patching on one of my plaster and lath ceilings, I'm ...
4
votes
1answer
7k views

Convert line voltage heating system to use low voltage thermostats

I currently have two line voltage ceiling radiant heating systems in my condo each with their own DPST thermostat. I'd like to use low voltage thermostats such as the nest. I found this ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Should I replace this fixture box or get creative with the mounting?

I recently took down a ceiling fan/light in order to replace it with track lighting. After disassembling the fan I was left with this fixture box: As you can see there are two holes in which to ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Will security system wiring cause interference in data cables?

Is it acceptable to run 22/4 security wire along side Cat6 and Coax cables, or is there any possibility for interference?
2
votes
0answers
80 views

Should I separate neutral and ground wires in the main breaker panel and why? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is it ok to have mixed grounds and neutrals on bars in a breaker box? I've recently opened my breaker box to connect a new line. I found that all the wires that go into ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

Can I replace an old exhaust fan and connect it to an existing light switch?

I just purchased a new home and in one of the bathrooms there is an old exhaust fan and two light switches. There is a recessed light located in the ceiling above the shower and another light above ...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

How can I add a GFCI breaker on two circuits with a shared neutral without rewiring? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do I install a GFCI receptacle with two hot wires and common neutral? I have a pool to protect correctly. There is a 12/3 wire: red serves the receptacles at the ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?

I would like to plan for an intrusion detection system in a home that is currently under construction. The home has a walkout basement that is sloping, shown in the rear elevation picture shown ...
7
votes
2answers
14k views

Why does my fluorescent light fixture take minutes to turn on in high heat and humidity?

Our kitchen fixture won't come on for 3 to 5 minutes when the temperature goes over 90°F (32.2°C) and 90% humidity. It flickers and only reaches 80% brightness after that. It will occasionally ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

Do open-back low voltage boxes have advantages over standard outlet boxes?

I will be running LV wiring in new construction. I've seen the open backed Carlon boxes, but have read that they are difficult to insulate, and therefore should not be used on exterior walls. I ...
15
votes
4answers
12k views

What should I use to secure/organize data cable runs?

I am running Cat-6 and Coax in new construction. I am looking for advice/best practices on how to organize and secure the cables during the runs. I will be running 2 Cat-6 and 1 Coax to a ...
5
votes
1answer
12k views

How do I wire a duplex outlet from a switch/outlet combo?

The power comes first through a switch/outlet combo and I need to it take further down to a duplex outlet. The switch will control half the outlet and the other half will always be hot. This is ...
7
votes
1answer
8k views

How can I remove a switch and terminate a circuit in its place?

I have a switch that used to control outdoor lighting. It no longer does any more and I'd like to just leave it off permanently. Is there an easy way I can terminate it from within the gang box? ...
5
votes
3answers
7k views

Does one wall socket share power between both ac plugs?

In a standard wall outlet (two three-prong sockets) do both sockets share power? Say I plugged a surge protector into one and a surge protector into the other and have 5 devices connected to each ...
7
votes
1answer
5k views

How to open NM box knockouts?

I've found the knockouts in NM boxes hard to fully open. I've had trouble with both Carlon boxes and Madison Smart Boxes. The plastic molded to make the knockout is very resistant to actually being ...
6
votes
2answers
438 views

Induction power source across 1/2" of wood?

I'm looking for a way to put a small lamp inside a piece of furniture through which I do not want to drill any holes or run wires along. Are there any premade induction power systems that can get a ...
0
votes
2answers
192 views

What could cause my newly installed disposal to not work?

I just replaced my garbage disposal. Completed install. Darned thing won't start. Checked the wire nuts two and three times. Nothing. Ideas?
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What kind of light can I install in a small, low-ceiling coat closet?

Our Northern California house has a small coat closet (really a hallway with 2 doors and hooks for coats) between our front entry-way and our basement. It's a tiny space: 3 feet wide, 5 feet deep, and ...
7
votes
4answers
10k views

Why would a CFL bulb dim by itself after 60 seconds?

I have some GE Energy Smart CFL bulbs which are advertised as "Bright from the Start". This is true, except within 60 seconds after I turn the bulbs on, they will dramatically and immeidately become ...
9
votes
3answers
3k views

Is an ungrounded GFCI outlet safer than a plumbing-grounded non-GFCI outlet?

I'm in the United States. I have a handful of three-prong outlets that have been grounded to the underground water main just as it enters the crawlspace. All of the ground wires are home runs to the ...
3
votes
4answers
5k views

GFCI not tripped, but no current downstream

I have an outside shed with a non-GFCI outlet and a light fixture. Only the light is controlled by a switch. The shed is wired off of an outside GCFI outlet. Everything, including the outlet, was ...
5
votes
2answers
9k views

How can I replace multiple 3 way switches with motion sensors?

My tenants never turn the lights off in the stairwells of my 3 family house, so I'd like to replace all of the light switches with motion sensors. Here is a crude diagram of how this is set up now. ...
1
vote
2answers
742 views

Are CFLs available with mini candelabra bases? [closed]

Trying to replace a light bulb that has a mini candelabra base and want to replace this bulb with a CFL bulb but can't find any. Are CFLs available with mini candelabra bases?
5
votes
1answer
820 views

Do I need to attach a wire fished through a ceiling?

I have a finished basement and am mounting a flat-screen TV on the wall and I want to put an electrical box behind the TV. The two existing outlets are both two joists over and each separated with a ...
16
votes
4answers
118k views

What is a GFI outlet used for, and where should I install them?

What purpose does a GFI serve? Where should they be used?
4
votes
4answers
12k views

How to diagnose an electrified refrigerator frame?

Recently (or, perhaps, I recently noticed) my garage fridge started shocking me if I touch it in the wrong place. (A sampling of "wrong" places: the door hinge, a spot on the other corner where the ...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

Can I add four 20Amp circuits in a subpanel with a 10-3 feeder?

My garage has two 20 Amp circuits and an unused 10-3 w/ground connected to two 30 amp breakers. I want to use those unused wires for a subpanel but i'm not sure how big of a panel could I install? I ...
4
votes
2answers
890 views

Can I add a second circut using an existing ground and neutral?

I would like to add a second circuit to my BBQ area. There is conduit running from the panel to the BBQ with three wires, hot, neutral and ground. Can I just add a second breaker and run a second hot ...
2
votes
2answers
5k views

Where can I get NM cable clamps for a metal box?

Doing old work with 12 AWG cable makes finding large enough boxes tricky. I have seen some appealing metal boxes, but I am wiring using NM cable (Romex), which needs cable clamps where it enters a ...
10
votes
3answers
16k views

Why is ENT rarely used for electrical wiring?

As best I can tell, the National Electrical Code 2011 allows electrical non-metallic tubing ("smurf tube" or ENT) to be used for running 120 V electrical wire. But everywhere I look, I see remarks to ...
3
votes
1answer
766 views

How do I attach a receptacle box to brick instead of a stud?

I need to install some new outlet boxes in an old lathe and plaster wall. I have the baseboards pulled out so I can see where the studs are, which is just great. However, behind the lathe is a brick ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Why am I measuring low voltage when I connect this fluorescent fixture to an existing circuit?

My bathroom has two switches: one [was] connected to two overhead can lights (with CFLs), and one [was] connected to a fluorescent wall sconce (one of those ugly circular plastic things that I can't ...
4
votes
2answers
8k views

How can high and low voltage be mixed in a junction box?

So I'm aware of the standard rule of thumb, keep high and low voltage away from each other, preferably on opposite sides of a stud. However, while looking at some properties, I'm seeing telephone and ...
2
votes
2answers
6k views

Connecting a digital timer with 4 wires in a box with only three wire, white, black, and ground

I installed a digital timer in a box that previously contained a switch to an outside porch light. The box has only a white, black, and ground wire. The white wire in the box is hot, not the black, ...
3
votes
1answer
518 views

What is this orange clip my ground wire is connected to?

I am trying to replace a dome light with a nice small ceiling fan. When disassembling the old light, I notice an odd orange/clear clip connecting the lights ground to the house. What is this called, ...
11
votes
15answers
63k views

When wiring outlets should I use pigtails or both sets of outlet screws?

I'm replacing the outlets in our house and pulled out one that had two black and two white cables. My first thought was that it was two circuits, one of them being switched, but then realized the tab ...
4
votes
2answers
5k views

Why does my computer have a ground fault only when a peripheral is attached?

I have a weird problem regarding grounding: I have a computer, printer and a LCD screen connected to the electric outlet through a power strip. My computer is zapping me when I touch the body so I ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I extend a wall outlet?

I have a interior brick wall, with wall outlet in it, I am covering the wall with 1/2" sheet rock. But I am ancoring 1x2's on the brick so I can hang the sheetrock. How would I extend the wall outlet ...
5
votes
4answers
13k views

What could cause ceiling fan lights to flicker on with power and then go out immediately?

I have ceiling light fan. The fan works fine. The light used to work fine. All of a sudden one day the light started acting up. When I turn on the switch, the light flickers on for about a second ...