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Aug
14
comment Can I wall-mount a TV when there is an air gap between the drywall and the wooden stud?
@bib Agreed. Updated answer to advise against using strapping to support overhung load.
Aug
14
revised Can I wall-mount a TV when there is an air gap between the drywall and the wooden stud?
expanded number of cases covered
Aug
14
comment Can I wall-mount a TV when there is an air gap between the drywall and the wooden stud?
@bib I should clarify here: I was assuming that whatever strapping existed wouldn't have a significant air gap with the drywall. In that case using normal wood screws into the strapping might be the least worst option. But, if there is much of an air gap between the drywall and strapping, I don't think driving a fastener through the drywall into the strapping is a good idea.
Aug
14
comment Can I wall-mount a TV when there is an air gap between the drywall and the wooden stud?
@bib While it's not ideal, strapping does a nice job spreading the load over a wide area of drywall. I wouldn't categorically rule out using the strapping/drywall composite for bearing load, particularly if it is type "X" fire grade drywall which is remarkably sturdy. I've done this successfully where it was the least bad option.
Aug
14
answered Can I wall-mount a TV when there is an air gap between the drywall and the wooden stud?
Aug
13
comment What are the pros and cons of different types of smart switches (that are on the US market) ?
I've had great success with Insteon so far. I've had about 20 modules for about 8 months. As with any complicated system, I expect components to fail. The controller I am using automatically reprograms an installation when a module is swapped. I have tested that and it works as expected. I haven't had to troubleshoot finding which module has failed, but I've read that it can be done.
Aug
13
comment What are the pros and cons of different types of smart switches (that are on the US market) ?
For Insteon, the awkward programming, laborious replacement of devices, and scene limitations are overcome by using a controller like this.
Aug
13
comment Which communication bus systems for home automation?
+1 for Insteon. My installation is almost 100% reliable. I have never been able to get X10 work well enough to be usable. For Insteon budget about $70 per circuit. You'll also want some sort of controller like this.
Aug
13
comment Alternatives to signal on power for home automation systems (such as UBP) - low-voltage circuits, wireless…?
For lighting automation I am having great success with Insteon switch modules and one of these.
Aug
13
comment How should I run speaker, HDMI and electrical wiring for my ceiling mounted projector theater room?
This topic comes up enough that somebody ought to ask "what type of cable is safe/code to put inside walls and ceilings?"
Aug
13
comment How should I run speaker, HDMI and electrical wiring for my ceiling mounted projector theater room?
No problem. I think that's how this site is supposed to work. This permalink that jumps to the answer about flame test rated wiring is probably more useful for casual readers.
Aug
12
comment How should I run speaker, HDMI and electrical wiring for my ceiling mounted projector theater room?
It is not just voltage and current ratings that are of concern -- the flame test rating of the cable is critical to prevent flame spread. This applies whether the cable is high or low voltage or even fiber optic. Flame test ratings are usually a code requirement or specified for UL rated wood-frame building assemblies (i.e. walls and ceilings). Your statement that "it is safe to run these hidden or exposed without channel or conduit" is incorrect. Installing a bare HDMI cable in ceiling without an appropriate flame test rating (as most if not all HDMI cables are) is dangerous.
Aug
9
comment Why is ENT rarely used for electrical wiring?
I doubt ENT would meet code where impact or weather resistance is required. wrt low voltage wiring, for platform framing it's usually most cost effective to use wire with the appropriate stamps to meet code when installed bare. For exotic cabling (e.g. RF) where the right rating isn't available to meet code, I've seen ENT used in preference to EMT.
Aug
6
comment How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?
Motion detectors are your primary means of intrusion detection. Window and door contacts are primarily for ensuring your home in physically secured when you arm you alarm. Any room with a window or door that could conceivably be a route for intrusion should have a motion sensor trained on the door/window.
Aug
6
comment How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?
@RyanWalkowski - your statement is confusing. Cat6 comes in both stranded and solid.
Aug
6
comment How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?
The down side of daisy chaining windows is that you end up going to multiple rooms to figure out which one is preventing you from arming and causing you to be late for your appointment.
Aug
6
comment How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?
+1 for rule about which windows need contacts
Aug
6
comment How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?
I have never seen a glass-break detect an intrusion that a motion did not. I would rather have another motion sensor than a glass break detector.
Aug
6
comment How Do I Plan for an Intrusion Detection System?
Door and window contacts are primarily for ensuring doors and windows are closed when you arm. They should not be relied upon for intrusion detection - use motions for that purpose. Contacts should be installed on every door and window that must be closed to physically secure your home or prevent false alarms.
Aug
6
comment How should I wire for a security system during construction?
I disagree with omitting door and window contacts: window and door contacts allow you to check for and set rules about whether any doors or windows are or are permitted to be open when you leave home. Open windows and doors can attract theft, compromise insurance claims (theft is harder to claim than burglary), and cause false alarms from motion sensors (think wind blowing through your home). I'm not saying that you always need to close every window, but without contacts you can't systemically enforce that certain windows must be closed when you arm your alarm.