16,601 reputation
13881
bio website gregmaclellan.com
location Canada
age 32
visits member for 3 years, 9 months
seen 55 secs ago

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


Nov
4
comment Can rotary tool bits be used with a drill?
I'd also think using a cut-off wheel would be nearly impossible to control in a drill. If you don't hold it perfectly straight, the wheel will basically just shatter.
Nov
4
comment New light switch has blue, black, and white wires. Wall has black, white, and ground. Can I make it work?
Not a direct answer, but for cases where you have no neutral in the switch (many older installs; NEC 2011 now requires neutral at switches), there are many switches/timers/etc sold as "No neutral required". If you are faced with rewiring, simply using a different switch may be a much cheaper/easier option.
Nov
1
comment Can I connect to any neutral wire in the house?
Add-on questions that I think would be necessary for a complete answer: What are the any sections of NEC that would apply to this specific situation? How do you actually go about this, eg run a 14/2 wire up to the switch, but leave hot disconnected? Any special markings necessary or expected?
Nov
1
comment Finding the temperature sensors in a room
It varies quite a bit, often by the age and way the office was built. Newer designs are more likely to have per-room settings, and older designs are more likely to be zoned (several rooms grouped together controlled by one thermostat). The really bad places are where renovations have happened (adding/removing walls) but the HVAC system was never really considered, and you'll end up with one room too hot and one too cold but both in the same zone so you can't adjust temperature for one without making the other unbearable. These problems can be quite expensive to fix correctly.
Nov
1
comment How can I tell if my bathroom ceiling vent is working properly?
The vent to the outside could also be an issue. Is it clogged? Does the vent on the outside open correctly? Is the size of the pipe big enough? Length, duct type (flex vs rigid) and number of elbows also effect the efficiency of the fan, eg, each adjustable elbow adds the equivalent of 15' to the pipe length.
Oct
30
comment Do I need to add roof vents if I close off a small attic space in the garage?
It will be used as a typical garage. Cars parked in it in the winter time (at least) and coming in/out daily, sometimes with snow on them. Sometimes used for workspace, sometimes the door open, sometimes closed.
Oct
23
comment Do I need to add roof vents if I close off a small attic space in the garage?
The other thing I found while researching was it might be possible to treat this as a hot roof -- spray foam the deck, seal off the soffits, and have no roof ventilation. Is that doable here? Can I then drywall the bottom and leave a dead space or do I have to do something else? (From my understanding, spray foam has to be covered -- usually with drywall -- for fire protection, but maybe because this isn't "living space" that rule doesn't apply?)
Oct
23
comment Do I need to add roof vents if I close off a small attic space in the garage?
@mike Hadn't really thought about that, but I can add one. Had considered exactly the thought on the exhaust fan, but still looking for an authoritative answer on it and some more details (eg, does it run all the time or on a thermostat/timer/something else? how many CFM?)
Oct
22
comment Nicely mounting 2x4s to wall
I like the general idea, but I would use hanger bolts (with predrilled holes) instead of nails. I think larger gauge fasteners would work better, and large gauge nails are really hard to work with. Also, nails -- especially if you clip the head off -- are harder to get out without damaging the drywall. Some double-sided tape/foam adhesive may also be necessary just to stop it from moving at all.
Oct
21
comment How can I install a ceiling fan, recessed lights, and receptacles on the same circuit?
@BrianMoore yes, you can use the existing feed for this -- just keep in mind code requirements for junction boxes in attics and if you're going to cover junction boxes with insulation, some inspectors may not like it (I personally wouldn't cover them in insulation, and avoid the issue). Junction boxes must be permanently accessible, which means you must not have to disassemble/destroy structure to get at them.
Oct
21
comment How can I install a ceiling fan, recessed lights, and receptacles on the same circuit?
Per code, the white wire needs to be marked (usually a band of black or colored tape) at both ends, since it's not neutral. Additionally, as of 2011 NEC, neutral is required at all switch locations, so if you're going to run a new wire anyway you'll be able to do that.
Oct
20
comment How would I wire a thermal circuit breaker and switch together?
I agree with the general sentiment that you shouldn't do it this way. Why not just use a normal switch (that meets code for this situation) in a handy box (aka surface-mount junction box)? Also, what is the point of having another circuit breaker beyond the one in the main panel? The only danger is in wiring it for 15 amps and then connecting to a 20 amp breaker, and the easy fix is don't do that. Either wire it for 20 amp, or only plug it into a 15 amp circuit. Adding a chinsy circuit breaker to allow you to use 15 amp wiring/fixtures on a 20amp circuit is a terrible idea.
Oct
15
comment What type of junction box cover do I need?
I think what you're referring to is a "box connector".. but I'm failing to see why you'd want one in the cover. Can you take a picture and annotate it as needed to explain what you're trying to do? To meet code, it's not just that junction boxes need a cover, but they need to be accessible. You can't drywall or apply other finishes over top of junction boxes.
Oct
15
comment How do I remedy mold/mildew that has appeared since blocking off ventilation?
It's hard to say for sure if it's the direct reason or not, but it's certainly not going to help. Stagnant air means no drying, and moisture leads to mold growth. Aside, it's a very bad idea to remove return air vents: without them, the air the furnace is trying to force into the room has nowhere to go and the furnace is nowhere near as effective. To that point, while older houses might have one return per floor, a couple decades ago, returns started showing up in nearly every room.
Oct
11
comment How can I soundproof a grille in a wall?
By "grid" do you mean a vent? A picture would help quite a bit, especially if you can also get one after you take the vent off (it should either unscrew or just pull out). It might also be used for circulation in the room. Is the house heated/cooled using forced air? Do you have a separate air return in the room, or just a single supply vent?
Oct
8
comment How do I make the connection for 2 lights with a power source between them?
And what are you trying to accomplish: either sensor controlling both lights, one controlling both, or independent sensor control? Is the switch is supposed to power both?
Oct
6
comment What do I do if there are only two wires coming from my ceiling electrical box?
@Skaperen code citation?
Oct
6
comment What do I do if there are only two wires coming from my ceiling electrical box?
@Chris The OP doesn't have 14/2: he has a white and black, with no ground wire. My answer was more concerned with how to safely wire and use the fan, not how to control the light and fan separately, though I've edited it because if you're going to rewire at all, it's worthwhile to run 14/3 to give you that option.
Oct
3
comment What is the best way to secure (2x6) wood framing to the concrete portion of the garage opening?
A picture would go a long way here. Link to it and someone with higher rep will embed it for you.
Oct
1
comment Can I run a 50 amp circuit underground?
When you run it underground, it's a good idea to also bury a marker several inches above it (often a red poly tape that says something like "CAUTION: Buried electric line below"). This helps prevent anyone who is digging from hitting it. You also need to use conduit above the minimum burial depth including when it's above ground.