For questions generally relating to preventing or avoiding injury in the home or on the job site.

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0
votes
3answers
43 views

Who should I contact about having my water tested? [on hold]

I would like to know who I should contact other than the EPA about having my water tested. I moved to this town 4 days ago and in those 4 days I now have boils over 25% of my body and a second degree ...
1
vote
1answer
29 views

Air Quality Concern in Apartment

I just moved to a new, old apartment. At first I did not notice anything, however I am now smelling an old, greasy, cigarette sort of smell in the kitchen near the stove and stove vent. I understand ...
18
votes
9answers
11k views

Would bullet proof glass help deter burglars? How does it compare to normal glass?

We consider buying an apartment, which has previously been used as a shop. Our only concern is that it has large windows (2,5 meters x 2,5 meters), which would function like an invitation to burglars. ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

What is the purpose of a GFI outlet tripping on low voltage?

As I went looking for a replacement for a GFI wall outlet, I noticed that the advertised features of one outlet included "low voltage trip" – that is, the GFI will trip not only when a ground fault is ...
8
votes
6answers
11k views

Is an LED light strip safe to use under a bed?

I see a lot of RGB LED light strips being sold on sites like Amazon etc. The lights appear to be of decent quality, run off of 12V but do need up to 5-6 Amps to power. This is a lot of current, so I'...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

Can re-closing a circuit-breaker be dangerous?

I have a circuit breaker that keeps tripping. When i try to reset (close) it, it immediately jumps back to the open position with a noise that sounds a little scary. I have now stopped trying to do ...
0
votes
1answer
54 views

Is it safe to put a window a/c unit over kitchen sink window?

Pretty self explanatory. I have a small window unit that would fit right over my kitchen sink window. About 2.25' of clearance above the counter top. Just thinking being near a water source may be ...
4
votes
4answers
721 views

How to (safely) retract and lower a 40' extension ladder?

Last time I was using a 40' extension ladder, it was a major challenge to retract it back from being extended and up against a wall. There were two of us and it was seriously scary. Could have gone ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

Any problem with installing two identical circuit breakers in series?

Suppose I want to reduce risk of a circuit breaker malfunctioning and failing to disconnect a shorted circuit. What if I install two identical breakers sequentially (one after another) so that if one ...
1
vote
2answers
131 views

Is it legit to use this disconnect this way

This is more an expert question for the senior users here, i.e., licensed or former electrician, and/or engineer. I want to replace a rusted out sub panel that feeds 3 circuits at a residential dock ...
21
votes
3answers
2k views

When doing electrical work, what do I use to check wires are safe?

If I am thinking of replacing a light switch, a light-fitting, a socket/outlet or doing other work with household wiring where there may be 120 Volts or 240 volts present ... There is already a ...
1
vote
1answer
23 views

Where can I find Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS's)?

Are there government websites where I can view MSDS's? Or do I need to go to the manufacturer's website or make a request to the manufacturer for the MSDS's?
4
votes
3answers
28k views

Why does my laptop charger make a spark when plugged in?

From time to time (not always but often enough) when I plug my laptop's charger in the wall outlet it makes a spark (even if I use different outlets it's the same). Why does it do this? Is this a ...
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Building home on slab foundation on lot above natural spring

We are towards the end of costruction on a new home in rural northeast georgia on a flat lot(slight slope towards the street) and as the electric company started digging to place the final wires they ...
1
vote
2answers
161 views

Is insulation around a dryer vent hose safe?

I live in an old apartment which does not have laundry, or even laundry hookups. Since I despise laundromats, I took it upon myself to get a portable washer which connects to a sink, and a portable ...
3
votes
4answers
8k views

How can I safely work around power lines?

I have to do some painting and repair work on the outside of the house near the incoming power line. The repair is pulling off molding and replacing it as well as painting the surrounding area. I am ...
0
votes
2answers
85 views

How should I end this wiring?

I am doing a minor reno in a new house. I took out a wall and in it was two strands of 12-2 that went to one outlet. That wiring will not be used anymore, I don't want to splice into them or run ...
3
votes
1answer
35 views

Is it safe to plant shrubs or flowers in the soil above my septic tank?

I have a septic system that has a tank underneath my front lawn. This is an eye-sore as the access points are clearly visible to anyone coming down our driveway. I would like to plant some shrubs/...
6
votes
7answers
753 views

Why is a steel security door safe if they can break the glass, slide their hand in, and unlock the door?

OK I had a hard time thinking of a good title but here's the gist of the problem/concern I have which I can't find an answer to anywhere online. Please note that this is a very specific but common ...
2
votes
3answers
145 views

Are these blue spots on stove coil cups poisonous Verdigris?

I live in the USA and have one of these stoves: For me who comes from Europe, the design of these stove tops always baffles me compared to flat (metal or glass) stove tops seen across Europe (it ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

When is it generally safe/acceptable to use a wire nut?

Can someone please clarify for me when exactly it's safe/acceptable to use wire nuts? Regional building codes withstanding, I think the general rules of thumb are: Only use wire nuts in enclosed/...
0
votes
3answers
117 views

Will 2 multi-port USB chargers overload a 13A socket?

I am a bit confused about some supposedly basic electronics concepts :/ (I kind of have an answer but just want to confirm) So let's say I have got this setup: A 13A 220V mains socket A 13A ...
4
votes
2answers
8k views

Should I convert a single light switch to a receptacle/switch combo?

First I want to say I've done a little research on my question. I'm familiar (I think) with the wiring, but I'm uncertain if my solution is a good one because of what I plan on using the outlets for (...
1
vote
0answers
31 views

Why are water heaters generally installed on a pedestal? [duplicate]

Why are tank-style water heaters generally installed on a 2-3 foot (~0.6-0.7 meter) tall pedestal?
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Can I salvage aluminized roofing paint

Through impatience, I failed to adequately mix a 5-gallon bucket of aluminized roofing paint before I hauled it up the ladder and painted my roof. Now, I am left with a huge wad of putty like ...
1
vote
3answers
557 views

How to install 230V Light with Light-activated-resistor?

I am trying to set up light-activated-resistors that activate a light during dark hours. I have bought a ready Chinese thing that apparently contain a driver to change from AC to proper DC output for ...
3
votes
2answers
105 views

Is this flue dangerous?

I had access to a ladder the other day, so naturally I was poking around in the attic of our house where we have lived for about a year. Above the closet where the furnace and water heater are located,...
13
votes
5answers
3k views

What is the relative importance of cut-retardant safety gloves when using a chainsaw?

I am evaluating some cut-retardant gloves for use with a chainsaw. At first the idea of protecting my hands appealed to me, but later I couldn't really justify to myself why that purchase would make ...
3
votes
1answer
568 views

Can Rhino lining be used for a residential roof?

Is Rhino® lining a viable option for a residential roof? I know for many people it is cost prohibitive, are there any regulations concerning polyurethane coatings on a roof? Has this been done before?
1
vote
2answers
80 views

Does my furnace's air filter do anything at all?

Our house seems very dusty. The tops of bookshelves, computer screens, etc seem to accumulate a thin film of dust just a few days after cleaning. Certain other co-inhabitants of my house have ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

Best room for egress window?

I have a basement with a partially finished bedroom (currently used as storage) on one side, a gas furnace and tankless water heater at the foot of the staircase in the middle, and a newly finished ...
4
votes
3answers
200 views

Is it acceptable to attach elevated deck joists to rafter tails?

I'm having an attached patio built by a contractor. I am concerned about the quality of the construction. In particular the attachment of the patio joists to the house rafters. Instead of using a ...
1
vote
2answers
151 views

Weight bearing glass furniture

I've seen some furniture (beds, tables, media units) that are made of wood but sit on glass legs. See this bed with glass legs. The glass legs are usually rectangular and appears to be double ...
2
votes
1answer
50 views

Likelyhood of lead paint in 1970s build UK

I'm currently stripping some horrible old anaglypta wallpaper and noticed that under the lining paper there is a bright yellow paint underneath. Some of it is coming away, most of it is not and I'm ...
8
votes
1answer
520 views

False positive from a non-contact voltage tester?

I'm replacing a 240-volt split-phase electric baseboard heater. I've shut the power off at both the thermostat and the breaker box. Testing the wires with a non-contact voltage tester shows an ...
3
votes
5answers
15k views

How can I make wooden stairs slip-proof?

My wife loves the idea of removing our stair carpet and putting bold/bright wallpaper on the vertical faces (risers)... ...but we're concerned that the horizontal parts (treads) would be much more ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

Fire Extinguisher In Unheated Garage & Shed

We are talking about getting fire extinguishers for the various areas of our house. One place where it seems a fire extinguisher would be a good idea is the garage. I also plan on adding a shed to ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

Tool for joining tightly-woven, 2mm-thick PP webbing [closed]

By tight I mean like in seat belts. I think it's called "high tenacity". Manual stitching takes 4 painful minutes per centimeter. This would be a step up from needle held in pliers, but is there ...
0
votes
1answer
127 views

Safe location rules for bathroom sink recepticle and light switch

Bathroom sink with mirror & vanity light. Presently, the vanity light switch and single receptacle are separate from each other and in awkward locations. I intend to put them together in a single ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

What can I do about electric code violations in a rental unit?

My fiance and I are currently renting an apartment in Baltimore, MD and recently we have become alarmed by much of the house's wiring. Things we have seen included: countless wires that are spliced ...
6
votes
7answers
1k views

What is the safest way to cut up an old kerosene storage tank?

Folks, I need to remove an old kerosene storage tank (for central heating) from my in-laws back garden. The tank is moulded plastic, and has a 1,000 litre capacity. The access point it was ...
1
vote
1answer
86 views

Ladder is warped; how much is too much?

I recently bought a 28' fiberglass extension ladder (big-name brand from the blue box store), but I found that it's a bit warped. When I lean it against the house, with both feet firmly planted and ...
3
votes
2answers
201 views

Should threaded pipe be torqued to spec?

Most, if not all threaded automotive fasteners have specified torque, which is ensured by using torque wrenches. But how about threaded pipe, galvanized steel for water or black pipe for gas, ...
3
votes
1answer
60 views

Correct way to attach outlet wall plate?

I have been replacing the outlets in my house with Tamper Resistant outlets. On some of the replaced receptacles, the plate does not tightly attach to the wall—it can be pried back by my fingers. (I ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is my light switch leaking electricity?

I have a home built in 1950 and a laundry room added sometime in the unknown future. There is a light switch that seems to be emitting electricity according to my Fluke voltage tester. I noticed it ...
15
votes
6answers
10k views

Which tools should not be operated while wearing gloves?

Does anyone know of any safety organization like OSHA that gives a list of tools that should not be operated while wearing gloves? It has always been my understanding that a person should not wear ...
5
votes
2answers
110 views

What is the *interrupting rating* of a GFCI receptacle?

Say, we have a UL943 compliant 15A GFCI receptacle on a garden-variety 15A grounded branch circuit. Some nitwit comes along and wirenuts the receptacle's load-side hot to the branch circuit ground, ...
23
votes
4answers
2k views

How can it be dangerous to feed a water heater from two separate panels?

In a recent question, a user asked "Can a water heater be installed between two apartments and wired to both apartments' breaker boxes, effectively splitting the bill between the two?". One of the ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

Is this bell circuit safe?

I have an old-fashioned doorbell (like this one: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c1/DoorBell_001.jpg) Is it safe to connect it directly to a power supply (I am using a ac/dc ...