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46

The purpose is to allow natural light into the room. Generally these room-to-room windows are used for rooms which have no external wall, and so cannot have a “normal” (outside) window. The risk of someone “spying” on you through a window is true for all windows. Although hopefully you trust the people who live in your house more than the general population, ...


24

Very difficult to diagnose. If there were other people in the house at the time you could ask them if they did anything to cause it. Otherwise .... The bang itself, what you heard, may have been an electrical arc caused inside (or worse, outside) a junction box. They do sound a bit like a book being dropped. It may have been caused by damaged wires, ...


20

Let me tell you a story about insurance companies and how they will screw you. First, before you call your insurance company to report an accident, call them and ask for a policy review to see if your particular loss is covered. If it is not hang up and do not report the loss. Here is what happened to me. I assumed that the loss that I had would be covered ...


15

What I would do ( have done) is replace the elbow with a "T" and add a valve to be opened in winter . Presumably the valve will be below grade and will need something like a sprinkler valve box. I have a few similar drain valves in my sprinkler system.


14

In my last house, (in U.K.), I took out a stramit block wall from a bedroom, and replaced it with thermalite blocks. Since the bedroom was dark-ish, I built a narrow double-glazed strip (something like 18" x 6') into the top of the wall. It could have been frosted glass - but even my bathroom windows were clear. That was into a corridor where there was ...


12

The reason it bursts is because inside the tap is a non-return valve which is required to comply with water regulations. The valve stops the tap draining. In this instance it is better to fit a tap without the non-return valve and instead fit a separate on inside the property next to your isolating valve. Your plumber will be able to do this when he repairs ...


9

To add to @matt's answer, it is specifically for extra natural light in otherwise dark corridors. In a small British terraced house, there is generally a corridor between rooms on the first floor to allow access to bedrooms, bathrooms etc, without having to do through another room. This is common in Victorian (1800s) and Edwardian (early 1900s) terraced ...


7

Not sure if this is applicable, but here in the US we have something called "yard hydrants". The weather were I live (western Washington state) is similar to the UK. The taps are controlled by a rod to the valve which is substantially below ground level. Not only that, they have a drain that drains the upper part into the ground when the valve ...


5

I think it is in theory possible for a device like this to be designed and certified as a shaver socket in the UK. I don't think having output voltage of 5V (or 9, etc) would disqualify it. I do not however think this particular device has been designed or certified to "shaver socket" standards for use in a bathroom and I don't think such a thing ...


5

Those masonry units (UK: Breeze blocks, US: Cinder blocks) are hollow and the cable is inside the hollow space. to avoid the cable drill into the solid parts of the masonry units (the middle and the ends) If that's an exterior wall it may be a double skin wall done in half-thickness masonry units, but the same advice applies.


5

Make sure it's the right type. Generally AWG gauges of wire are under the North American regulatory system, which flows from UL White Book standards. (and CSA equivalents). In that system, cordage is serious business. There are a set of standards for cords. They start with S, and have a variety of other symbols including J, O, OO, W, and others. They need ...


5

Another thing to check: water where there shouldn't be water. Wet electrics can short with a bang, generating enough heat to dry them (mostly steam pressure expelling some of the water) so the breaker will turn back on. Also check devices that you don't think are on the circuit. Perhaps turn that circuit off again and check all the sockets in the house with ...


4

If the indoor valve is higher up or lower down than the outdoor valve without a vertical u shape in the pipe, the outdoor valve, you can install a plug indoors downstream of the indoor valve. Before the cold season, close the indoor valve, open the outdoor valve and remove the plug to drain. If it can't naturally drain you can use a wet/dry vac on suck ...


4

As for the spying - these are normally within houses built as the home of a family, so it's not a major issue - annoying siblings rather than anything nefarious. When these houses are rented out by the room (e.g. as student housing) the glass can be painted or the occupants can cover the windows with something, even newspaper, on the room side. Normal ...


4

UK power circuits are (with certain exceptions), wired in a ring with a 32A breaker. Each plug has either a 13A or a 3A cartridge fuse (other values are available, but discouraged). It's quite unlikely that a problem in one of your loads would trip the breaker, rather than blow the plug fuse. It's even more unlikely that the total load exceeded 32A by enough ...


3

If you cannot find an adequate door to cut down your only option is to build out the frame to accommodate a smaller door. Once you select the door that works for you build out the framing on top and sides using whatever sized material that will get you to the proper dimensions. 1x4 or 1x6 or even 2x. The casing can be installed over it and trimmed out ...


3

I already accepted an answer for this, but I thought I'd post back because what I've learned since may be of help or interest to others. After cleaning up the damaged coving and chipping off the wall plaster, it seemed more apparent (as some commenters suggested) that this coving was made in situ. In fact, it seems as though the plaster of the coving was the ...


3

You can only spur off a ring once but by installing a fused connection unit (FCU) as you have there, you can extend to the lamps under BS7671. The FCU will have a maximum 13A fuse so this would be your design current for the spur.


3

Since red is usually live and black is usually neutral (with sufficiently old wires) and since you have two cables with red switched and the black wires connected .... it is reasonably safe to assume that one cable is power, the other goes to the light, that the blacks are in fact neutral. You can connect the blacks using the existing terminal block to the ...


2

You can install a standalone tempering valve on the line to the sink, or (probably a larger one) on the line to "everything but the shower" which would protect the kitchen sink as well, for instance.


2

Your guess may be correct. From what I can see from the photo the valley flashing doesn't appear to extend all the way down the pitched roof (although that may be from the angle it was taken). What it also can be from is the chimney above the flashing. Flashing chimneys is extremely detailed work and must be done properly. Extend the valley flashing if ...


2

Can you confirm the socket circuit is currently protected by an RCD? All new sockets must be protected by an RCD, and in most cases all new wiring must be too. It is preferable to extend the ring wherever possible, but occasionally using a spur with one single or double socket or one fused connection unit (FCU) is preferable as it reduces the total cable ...


2

Before you do any adding of sockets, you should check the size of the cable used for the ring main. If it is 2.5mm^2 and still in good condition then extending the ring is not a problem, but don't just add spurs to the ring. It is better to increase the ring loop to encompass the new sockets and, while you are at it, add more than you need ie be generous - ...


2

Swap the travelers and that will reverse the switch position. Note: make sure NOT to swap the common, as if this is done, the switch combinations won’t all work.


2

If the base for your stairs are not at the same level in ground as your foundation for your house, your stairs could or will be subject to frost heave. For that reason a thin layer (1/2") of insulation between the house and steps will act as a slip sheet so when one moves slightly, one will not affect the other. If there is any concern of wicking it ...


2

Water in pipes tends to use gravity. It doesn't like to go uphill. It appearss that the tap outside is higher than the pipe feeding it. In order to drain that pipe - which obviously didn't happen, but needs to - there needs to be a cock at the lowest point. If that's where the elbow is, that needs changing - a T with a cock will do. Otherwise, if the pipe ...


2

Can go below the ground floor, between the floors or through the roof. All you have to do is find it. I put one in and the gas copper pipe is in a 3" plastic tube actually buried in the new concrete floor. My parents bungalow has the gas in the roof as the boiler is up there and the cooking stove in the kitch so the gas comes down behind the kitchen ...


2

Looking at the top part of the picture, someone had the same problem there, and solved it by using a larger connector block to take the two thicker wires down to one thinner one. You could do the same, taking just one neutral wire into the fitting. I guess this is U.K., and a 1mm blue wire will suffice.


2

Of course, the theoretical point is letting daylight reach spaces (where one desires it) that it might not otherwise reach. A similar thing occurs with basements, before modern codes, here and there, began requiring windows large enough for escape. But there are other reasons too. For example, "this is what I grew up with and it doesn't seem 'right' to ...


2

Usually turn them to remove/replace. The two triangle shapes in centre of first picture seem to be alignment marks. Usually recommended to replace batteries every six months, spring forward/fall back. It could also be a hardwired unit that does not contain a battery, and could be time to replace unit, they have a ten year life usually.


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