Questions tagged [usa]

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11
votes
1answer
4k views

Why are adjacent breakers for unrelated circuits ganged?

I'm looking at electric panels in some newer residences and seeing something confusing: Circuit breakers that are adjacent to each other, but that cover unrelated circuits, are ganged, as shown below. ...
9
votes
3answers
643 views

Are “terminal block” style junction boxes allowed in the US?

In the UK it seems pretty common to see junction boxes with built-in screw terminals that are used only for splicing wires from 2 or more cables together. Typical example: (source) Sample wiring ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

GFCI for aluminum-wired house

I recently bought a house built in the US in the 1970s. It has all-aluminum wiring. A last-second fix to pass the occupancy inspection involved replacing some malfunctioning GFCIs with, unbeknownst ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

What else would an hot red wire be for in a split-tab outlet?

We are replacing some older outlets in our home with newer, more modern outlets. In one room, we found that two of the old outlets have two hots: a black and a red wire. The tab has been removed on ...
4
votes
3answers
401 views

First time changing switches and outlets (receptacles). Anything special I should know?

I am replacing a bunch of switches and receptacles in my house. While I understand the basics, this is pretty much my first electrical project, and I figure there must be some hidden "gotchas" or ...
6
votes
4answers
6k views

Dimmer switch not connected to ground

I know just the basics of electricity and am trying to replace an older dimmer switch that broke with a new very similar switch. The old switch is not connected to ground. The new switch has the ...
21
votes
5answers
4k views

Central Vacuuming: Is it worth it, and how does it compare to normal vacuuming?

I am in the process of buying a brand new home in the US through a builder. The home will be approximately 3,000 sq ft and I was given the option of buying a central vacuuming system for the house. ...
2
votes
1answer
159 views

Electrical box replacement latch

(I apologize if this seems like a shopping question - but I am out of ideas right now) The black plastic, flat handle of the door to my domestic electrical box snapped off and I stupidly threw it ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Are tamper resistant receptacles really safer?

Tamper-resistant receptacles (marked with TR, sometimes know as TRR) are designed to be safer than regular outlets by making it more difficult to insert foreign objects. That said, there are lots of ...
0
votes
1answer
282 views

Grounding Wire to copper pipe for cable

I'm working on renovating my basement, but first am replacing all of my existing copper pipes with modern CPVC to eliminate the constant leak headache since we are on a well. Last night I found this ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Toilet Seat Style

Why is it that in most home or apartment environments you find toilet seats that look pretty much like this: (Picture Source) And yet in offices and public places you will most often find toilet ...
1
vote
2answers
75 views

Operational Electrical Panel in an unfinished building — safe? Sane? Legal?

Is it realistic to have an operational and functioning load center panel (with power supplied only to temporary outlets mounted near the panel), fed by an offgrid solar system, in a half-built ...
0
votes
3answers
79 views

How to wire a USA 50amp 2 phase double pole breaker supply for a UK 240v high capacity shower pump

I have recently moved to the USA from Scotland. I brought with me a "Waterfall" 3 bar shower pump, operating on UK 240V, 50Hz A/C,rated at 4 A, 850W, IPX2. In our house we have a disused 50amp supply ...
0
votes
1answer
195 views

Can I install junction box on a basement rim joint from inside

I am pulling wire from my basement for an outside receptacle. I drilled a hole through the rim joist. To secure pvc pipe from inside, I wanted to install a junction box on inside, and use a metal box ...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

What is this sensor/device located near the master bath tub?

This thing was in my old house and the new owner is asking me what it is. I never knew, and asked a few people. It is the size of a standard electrical outlet socket, and it is located near the master ...
0
votes
2answers
95 views

How do I know which wire is which is this old switch?

I'm replacing the following: With this one: But since there's not a white, I have no idea which is neutral. I tried hooking it up as pictured, but only the red wire had any power (and the switch ...
2
votes
1answer
182 views

Sturdy privacy barrier on rooftop

My townhome has a rooftop deck. A waist-high wall about 10 feet long separates it from my neighbor's deck. The other walls are taller, maybe shoulder height (~5 feet). I would like to construct some ...
0
votes
2answers
629 views

Adapting 3/4 gas outlet to 1/2" appliance?

One of these things is not like the other. That's a 3/4 gas outlet and a gas dryer with a 1/2" fitting. What's the best approach to making them connect? The dryer is old so I'm a bit leery of trying ...