17,247 reputation
14293
bio website gregmaclellan.com
location Canada
age 33
visits member for 4 years, 3 months
seen yesterday

Professional software developer, with several years working on industrial control and monitoring systems. Slowly remodeling parts of my house.


Jun
9
comment Do I need to install carbon monoxide detectors to be up to code?
@JMD Updated with a note on applicability. Sorry, I was approaching it thinking of the question as "can I get away without installing a CO detector?" and not "Am I doing everything required to comply with codes?" which I think is what your intention actually was.
Jun
9
comment Do I need to install carbon monoxide detectors to be up to code?
@ThePopMachine What, you don't have that date where you live? (thanks, fixed)
Jun
5
comment How do I wire LED lights directly from the panel?
This answer is good and I'd suggest two things additionally: Use a separate transformer for each room (you can use a smaller transformer for the shorter strip, obviously), and plug the transformers into 120V outlets switched by regular wall switches in each respective room. The 120V wiring for the switches and outlets is absolutely standard stuff. The benefit of this is that the transformers are only on when the lights are on, instead of 24/7 (they still draw power, even with no load).
Jun
4
comment Can I run 2 well tanks from 1 well
Do you mean putting a second pressure tank in the garage? A pressure tank's job is to provide a buffer so the pump doesn't rapid cycle every time you open a tap. If you have a tap open for a while (watering lawn, shower) it's normal that the pump would cycle on/off every few minutes. Can you better explain what you mean by "the tank in the house is not sufficient for watering the lawn"? eg: Are you actually running out of water, is the pump rapid-cycling, or something else?
Jun
2
comment Wiring LED undercabinet lights to switch (US based)
You're planning on mounting the transformer to the bottom of the cabinet, with the romex wire that comes out of the wall directly hardwired into the transformer? I'm not sure if you can hardwire it like that exactly, but you most definitely can't have the contacts on the transformer exposed like that- it would have to be in an enclosure. A picture of where the wire comes out now may help someone provide suggestions.
May
23
comment Can I run heat tape on my water pipe behind drywall without hardwiring?
Why do you even need the heat tape -- is the basement unconditioned? Seems very strange that you'd have drywall up if that's the case. Generally a basement would have the exterior walls insulated, either have HVAC vents (though perhaps not as open as the rest of the house) or have radiators/other heat source. Especially if the floor between basement and main floor is uninsulated, there will be a lot of heat loss and it will be noticeably cold on people's feet (even if the ambient air temperate is otherwise ok, generally this will cause people to still feel cold).
May
22
comment Should I expect a level ceiling when my kitchen was completely gutted?
"Change the ceiling joists"?? Yikes.. That is a pretty major structure modification, which could easily double the cost of a typical kitchen reno. The typical way to level a ceiling is with strapping and shims, which would easily take under a day for the average kitchen, and not involve any structural engineers..
May
21
comment What is the best way to run underground electrical and low voltage in the same trench?
You should also bury some underground marking tape a few inches below grade. This is so if someone digs they will find the warning tape before they find the conduit/wire.
May
20
comment How to remove wires from doorbell
I assume that you don't intend to replace the door bell? And that "look good" is a relative term, considering it was mounted on a piece of crappy-looking weathered plywood?
May
20
comment How to control a dimmable LED light?
It's not that it won't work, per se, but it's that the wires (traces) in the strip itself are only rated for a certain current.. get beyond that, and it will heat up too much. This can lead to something from nothing happening, to the LEDs lifetime being shortened, to the strip actually failing, to starting a fire. This is really no different from regular household wiring, and the reason we don't use 14/2 for dryers and stoves, for example.
May
20
comment How to control a dimmable LED light?
Most of the strips I've seen actually have a limit on the total current they can handle, and so only allow you to chain power for a few strips at a time. You'd need to run separate wires for each set of segments you need; whether you power them with one or multiple transformers is your call. There are different wiring requirements depending on the types of LEDs you're using (individually addressable or not; white vs RGB vs RGBW), so you'll need to figure some of that out before you start.
May
7
comment How should I run wiring for my above-fireplace mounted TV?
It's also worth pointing out that hanging a fireplace above a TV isn't a great idea: the TV can be harmed by the heat; it's hard on your neck; and the image quality can suffer because of off-axis viewing. The best height to put a TV at is eye level when sitting. But don't just take my word for it.
May
5
comment HoneyWell Wifi Thermostat and C wire
You'll likely find the answer if you look at other thermostat-c-wire questions. To get a specific answer, you'll have to take a picture of both ends of the wire, showing the labelled terminals on the furnace/air handler as well as the thermostat itself. Wire colors are not actually standardized and so you can't make assumptions, and usually HVAC installers don't connect the C-wire at the furnace unless it's actually needed.
May
1
comment Why would a light switch be wired with the neutral wire?
Are there other switches/wires in this box? A labelled picture may help here.
Apr
30
comment Hang 3 flat-screen monitors from a tilted wooden beam
Possible duplicate, believe it or not: diy.stackexchange.com/questions/22183/…
Apr
29
comment How to use fiber optics to illuminate glass tiles?
LED strips commonly have IP ratings: IP67 is rated for immersion in up to 1m of water for 30 minutes, IP68 is rated for >1m indefinitely. You'd have to separately deal with the electrical connections (ensuring they are IP67 rated or equivalent as well). Sounds like an interesting way to do it.
Apr
25
comment What factors are important when selecting a rotary tool?
Yes, "right tool for the job" is a key phrase here. For example, I would never try cutting PVC pipe with a rotary power tool. It would take longer than other options, and be nearly impossible to get a flat, straight cut. I would use a pipe cutting tool, hacksaw or straight saw in a mitre box, or a (power) mitre or chop saw, depending on what's handy, the size and thickness of pipe, and how many cuts I have to make.
Apr
25
comment Does my crawl space need venting
@JustinK that isn't strictly true, depending on the type of crawlspace. A crawlspace, like any other space in the house, is either conditioned space or it's not. If it's conditioned space, it's part of the building envelope and should be insulated accordingly (including vapour barrier). If it's not conditioned space, then it should separated accordingly and as far as the rest of the house is concerned treated as if it's "outside" (meaning: there is insulation and vapour barrier between it and the rest of the house).
Apr
24
comment Installing water softener outside or inside? Already have“Easy Water” device. Does that change water hardness grains entered into new water softener?
You can get hardness test strips online for $10-20. You need them to properly calibrate your softener anyway, and it helps to test how effective it is after. Depending on the water source (even the city uses well(s) and/or lake/river intake(s)), you may also have some seasonal variation, so it doesn't hurt to check it a couple times a year or if you notice build up or that the water is too soft. You'll also be able to use one to see that the electronic softener is in fact a scammy, useless waste of money.
Apr
23
comment Light won't turn off
Can we assume that you didn't pay attention to what wires were connected to what prior to removing the old fixture?