Questions tagged [safety]

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

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0
votes
1answer
201 views

line locator indicates voltage over the whole wall, I need to drill some holes

I am living in a 1950s apartment house in Germany, with a TN-C installation (that is, a combined earth / neutral in every socket). Now I need to drill some holes. Usually it's quite obvious where the ...
17
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6answers
3k views

What sorts of appliances will malfunction on a reversed AC outlet?

The house I recently acquired had some wiring done in the basement by the previous owner. I've identified 3 outlets (all on the same circuit) where the live and neutral wires are reversed. I've ...
1
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1answer
490 views

attaching eye-bolt to roof ridgeline

I would like to attach an eyebolt to the ridgeline of my metal roof. I can then attach a rope to that when I need to work on the roof. I am a climber and have the knowledge and gear to secure ...
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3answers
79 views

Electrical wiring capped with wire connectors exposed to weather: bad idea?

I noticed what appears to be electrical wiring exposed at the peak of the gable end of our office. I don't have any way to know if there's current flowing to those wires. Is that a problem? I ...
0
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1answer
71 views

DIY Desk - Trestle stability

I am trying to build my desk. I can see a lot of positive comments about the Karlby worktops from IKEA and I think the 2.46m x 0.63m walnut worktop is exactly what I need. My problem is that I ...
0
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1answer
74 views

How much lead abatement is necessary to reach safe levels?

I'd like to buy an older home (I live in CT), but with 2 little kids, I'm worried about lead. The confounding issue is that our real estate agent strongly discourages us from doing lead testing for ...
4
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2answers
240 views

Router safety - what did I do wrong?

Long story short I was running my DeWalt fixed base router (8000-24000 RPM) on a piece of work when it started making a funny noise. I lifted the router up to see why it was making the noise, and ...
2
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2answers
81 views

Can I safely install outlets in my basement?

My house has an unfinished basement, and I want to set up a workbench in one area. Unfortunately, there is only one usable outlet in the whole basement, and it's not conveniently located, so I want to ...
27
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7answers
93k views

Extension cord and power strip safety

I've heard that there are some safety and building code issues involved with using extension cords or power strips (surge protectors) for anything other than temporary use. What are the issues, and ...
0
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2answers
67 views

Is it safe to touch wire testing at low to medium voltage on a 14 or 12 gauge wire, 15 or 20 amp (current) circuit?

Title is the question. I'm using a Klein NCVT- 3 Voltage tester with a bar graph indicating voltage, and don't see anything in the instructions, and haven't ran across anything in a textbook or ...
6
votes
5answers
73k 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
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1answer
27 views

Safest way to mount Bench Grinder

I have very little room to work with and have decided some things I am going to end up sticking where there is room, but would it be any less safe, if suppose I wanted it on a stand alone platform ...
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5answers
51k views

Using half of a 240v dual-phase circuit as a 120v single-phase circuit (US)

Usually when I see a 240v device, it is wired to its own double-pole circuit breaker, with each pole connected to a different 120v phase (to provide 240v total). If there is a 120v device in the same ...
3
votes
1answer
106 views

Why is the non-contact voltage detector beeping over large area of a wall?

Before drilling a wall (drywall at the surface; not sure what's beneath) separating the bathroom from the corridor, I took a multimeter with a non-contact voltage (NCV) detector to check that the ...
1
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1answer
1k 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 ...
0
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0answers
52 views

Weber Genesis caught on fire

I was grilling chicken and some of the fat dripped into the cabinet and the gas line caught on fire burning through the sheathing and making a hole in the line itself, leading to a major fire inside ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

Can I build 11' x 5.5' loft with 2x2x8 beam and 2x4 joist?

I have looked at a lot of span tables and calculators and am not sure if I can safely build this loft. It is in a garage and will need to bear the weight of two or three people and a build-in desk ...
14
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3answers
3k views

Why did my leaking pool light trip the circuit breaker, but not the GFCI?

This is, I am sure, an extremely naive question. I hope that's okay (and I hope it can be answered at a level I'll understand). The background: My swimming pool has underwater light fixtures, on ...
1
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2answers
108 views

At what height should support handrails be mounted in a home?

Mom broke her hip, and I am trying to make her home more elder-friendly while she is in rehab. While I have found lots of hardware that is available, I have not yet been able to find specs, such as ...
0
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1answer
31 views

Should I use Fire Bricks in Wood Stove

I recently bought a new place with a wood stove which needs the Fire Bricks replaced. I have read they reduce heat generation in the room and might not be needed. (More efficient without but possibly ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I attach a safety gate at the bottom of the stairs?

I have a wall on one side with trim molding at baseboard and opposite end is the wooden banister. What type of gate can I attach. The drywall is not holding the screws in place and we we frequently ...
2
votes
1answer
167 views

Is it OK to drink water from newly-cemented PVC pipes?

It has been my habit to use Christy's Red Hot Blue Glue to mend PVC pipe. I am happy with the performance and the repairs turn out very well. I also note, with great interest, that it is rated for ...
0
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1answer
70 views

How to switch off/on a Hot Water System

I believe I have what is called a gas-boosted, solar HWS (although there is only one solar panel on the roof). On the outside of my system, apart for the valves/pipes/wires leading into and out of it, ...
3
votes
3answers
187 views

Do water lines that contain lead need to be replaced if it doesn't flow out of a valve that I normally drink out of?

A plumber had came to my house to sweat pipes to install a water valve which controlled water going to the garden spigot. Upstream to the valve is a t-joint. The other output to the t-joint went to ...
4
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1answer
2k views

What should be on my pre-purchase house self-inspection checklist?

I’m looking at several homes and may purchase one, but realized that I’m probably missing important details when trying to identify potential money-pits. I have a simple checklist so I can save the ...
7
votes
4answers
9k views

How to I safely anchor a safety line to a chimney?

I am going to be installing an antenna at the top of my brick chimney and I'd like to be able to use a safety line with a fall arrestor. The chimney visually looks OK. I'm trying to figure out the ...
1
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2answers
95 views

How can I safely bury unused speaker wires in my wall?

Just bought a new place, and I've got a speaker wall plate with 2 binding posts sitting chest high in the room that are driving me nuts aesthetically. (two actually, one on either side of the room). ...
0
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1answer
66 views

Why isn’t there a solution to detect loose neutral

Loose neutrals in a house can easily cause house fires and are not always detected until it is too late. Why isn’t there main “smart” breakers that not only detect loose neutrals / phase imbalance and ...
0
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1answer
91 views

Plumbing venting into apartment

I am a renter and my house often smells overbearing of sewers gas. I guess this is a two part question. The smell cures up from all the drains and I’ve made the landlord aware of this, she has not ...
1
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1answer
119 views

Could I move a piano ALONE this way?

To move a piano from a first floor to another first floor, using a pickup truck, it seems like a ramp, a strong rope and some pulleys, and a furniture dolly would suffice. Plus a basketball and pump (...
2
votes
1answer
210 views

Safety when modifying old electrical work

I have a relatively old house, built in the 1950s. I am slowly updating it to have smart switches etc., but the existing electrical wiring is fairly haphazard. Just yesterday I replaced a dimmer ...
0
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1answer
38 views

What is the name of the part used to fasten a pendant light cable to the ceiling circuitry case

I'm looking to purchase this part (see image below) but cannot find the name. The part is located on the case mounted to the ceiling from which the cable to the pendant light comes down. One half is ...
5
votes
4answers
57k views

Is it safe to shut off cold water entering water heater?

I have a pretty bad situation at my place. I have a leaky shower faucet which has gone from drips to a steady stream. I calculated the flow at .3 gallons per minute. My very old home has no private ...
2
votes
1answer
100 views

Is there minimum clearance from gas stove to door?

I know there is a minimum clearance to hood and cabinets above, but I can't find a side-clearance to a doorway. My concern is someone coming through the door and not seeing the hot stove around the ...
1
vote
1answer
137 views

Fridge has a weird smell coming from where the compressor is

I have a fridge that has some kind of weird smell coming from where the compressor is. Ive checked the wires and any connections to see if theres any burnt wires, theres nothing. Its not really a ...
1
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1answer
50 views

36-70V stray voltage from switch box?

Today I wired in a new LED utility light in my work room. The light I replaced (wired by a former home owner) was a typical bulb hung from an electrical junction box light bulb cover. The box from ...
6
votes
7answers
23k views

Should a smoke alarm be installed in the attic?

I installed hard-wired and interconnected smoke alarms through the house. I wondered, though, if a fire spread through my attic I might not know about it until the ceiling or roof collapsed. Should I ...
0
votes
1answer
117 views

Why are U.S. residential circuit breaker service panels so poorly designed?

I find as a knowledgeable home DIYer, that my Siemens 200 amp circuit breaker panel to be a pain in the butt to use. It is less than 25 years old, and yet it seems to have been intentionally designed ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

Is it safe/allowed to adapt a shaver socket (BS4573) to a standard BS1363 plug (UK)?

Bathrooms in the UK may have a shaver socket that is (to my understanding) limited to supplying 200mA, is protected by an isolation transformer and uses a two pronged plug similiar but not identical ...
0
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2answers
104 views

Proof butt connectors are up to code

I'm about to add butt connectors to the plan for wiring my power circuit. How can I prove, with documentation, that these are safe and up to code? My location is Ontario, Canada. My application is ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it safe to harvest rainwater that fell on solar panels?

I am working on creating blueprints for my new home. My plan is to have both solar panels on the roof and a rainwater catchment system that directs water from the roof into some tanks in the basement. ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

Why is TV size relevant for wall-mounting?

Looking at specifications of TV wall mounts, in addition to maximum weight they are also rated for maximum size (screen diagonal). Why is that? Assuming the mounting holes match and the TV doesn't ...
6
votes
8answers
161k views

How do I pressure test a natural gas line and what do the valve pressure ratings mean?

I'm planning to add an appliance to my house, and will want to do a pressure test of the newly installed gas lines. My main shutoff says 175 PSI, but most of the appliance valves say either 1/2 or 5 ...
1
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5answers
11k views

How do I take a live wire off of a two way switch?

if I know how to take the live wire off then my job is easier.
0
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1answer
68 views

Need handrail for drop off of 600mm?

Need handrail for level difference (600 mm) in a walkway area? this question has to do with safety, please also tell me what is the maximum acceptable step without hand rail. I live in Qatar
4
votes
2answers
105 views

Is storing hot water over 140F a regional requirement?

It seems to be "common knowledge" that to help prevent Legionella, hot water tanks/heaters should be set at 140F. This temperature is enough to cause terrible burns and scalding so devices like ...
1
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1answer
7k views

Is earthing required for a submersible water pump?

I have a submersible water pump with a power cable that ends with a three-pronged plug with a protective neutral contact. Having a matching outlet is problematic - there are only unearthed outlets at ...
22
votes
11answers
18k 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
54 views

How do I know what LED bulbs are safe to use in fixtures that are part of construction?

In a recent question, I asked about different power ratings for LED and traditional incandescent light bulbs. In the accepted answer, the author explained that the different ratings are due to heat ...
1
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4answers
5k views

I have a flooded basement and have an electric cord plugged into an outlet. How can I unplug the cord without getting shocked?

We recently got a lot of rain and my basement has standing water. The water is about a quarter inch deep. I have a freezer that is plugged in with an electric cord that is submerged in the water. I ...