Hot answers tagged

70

Shut the circuit off. Leave off til fixed. You took a chunk out of the wire, if not severed the whole wire. That means it's thinner, or out of contact entirely. If it's thinner, that means current is squeezing through a narrow part. This will make the wire hot there. It could get hot enough to ignite a fire on the wrong side of the walls. Of if the wire ...


46

It needs to be fixed now. That nail has contact with electricity and anyone touching it that and is also grounded can die. It can also heat up the wire and cause a fire. Turn off the breaker for that circuit until it is fixed. Do not leave until it is fixed. It is dangerous to you and your house. Turn off the breakers one by one until the light goes off. ...


15

Go ahead and cap the unused white (neutral) wire off Your plan to cap the unused white wire off is fine, and for the best even, as it'll leave it available in case someone else wishes to run a 4-wire appliance off this circuit in the future.


15

That looks like it was part of a whole house smoke detector system. Smoke detectors do have a limited life and when they start failing folks just pull them out. Since the detector was close to the furnace it could have been smoke , carbon monoxide or both. I would see if the other detectors in the home work and in any case get replacements that are ...


14

Do AFCI and GFCI protect against cheap equipment? Not really. A GFCI will limit a shock and an AFCI will limit arcing. There are many other things that can happen with non listed equipment. I specifically look for a UL listing or TUV true verification that the devices are safe to use. Some JUNK may not arc or have ground faults but overheat and start a fire....


12

These don't get "removed", they get cut off. Snip the copper solid wire at the end of those connectors, strip off the insulation and then use wire nuts or some other approved connector to connect the wires for your new light.


8

PV wires use fatter insulation As you have found out the hard way, PV wire uses much thicker insulation than ordinary THHN building wires, so it won't fit into ordinary insulated-type crimp terminals. I'd use an uninsulated terminal or splice with a separate adhesive-lined, heavy-wall heat shrink sleeve for this as a result of that fact. You'll have to ...


8

I resolved this issue and am posting what I found. Comments and answer so far were in the right direction, thanks. The first bit of feedback I got was the shave down the insulation on the PV wire, to fit it in the regular 10ga connector's insulation. That does work nicely, but doesn't seem like a proper fix. It turns out regular 10ga connectors don't fit ...


7

Now you've changed the question significantly to describe a wire fed from underground. Except you still have a trunk running down the pole, so this is still a wire coming down off a pole. Again, you do not know what that wire is crossed up with. We see live voltage on CATV jackets all the time, not least due to lost neutrals at the other end of the cable. ...


7

I have 4 First Alert smoke and CO detectors in my home that are all interconnected and are model SC9120B. The orange wire does the connecting. The sockets look exactly like the one in your photo. They make heat, smoke, CO, and combinations of these controls. They have a life expectancy of 10 years and are warranted for that long.


7

Brhans has the answer in a comment. There are two plainly marked ground screw holes: one is occupied from the backside, and the other awaits a #10-32 self-tapping screw you'll need to get from a hardware store*. My local shop sells them by the one for a dime. It doesn't have to be green, but from the look of it, it has to be self-tapping. Do not use a ...


6

Simplest option is that outlet F was also half-hot/half-switched and you were not aware of that, so breaking its tab (or isolating that red wire from the outlet and insulating it, if you don't want it half-switched) might fix your problem. I would guess that you missed that in the original wiring, or it would work as expected. Connections at B look like a ...


5

No you can't combine them. If you (as code requires) finished assembling the conduit before pulling wire into it you should be able to pull the old wire out without digging up the conduit. But seriously, don't pull cables into conduit. Two cables were quite likely over maximum fill allowance and difficult. Pull individual THWN conductors.


5

Something no one else said, placed here for future readers; Yes, you should worry. Do not do this ever again. If you need to put pointy metal things in walls, get a cable tracker/wire finder/wire tracer device and find out where the cables are before you start. Mark them on the wall. Draw a diagram. Photograph it. Write it down. As a rule cables installed by ...


5

You can not use 14 awg wire on a 20 amp protected circuit it would violate code and create a fire hazard. One example is 14 awg wire can fit into back stabs and even on 15 amp circuits these regularly fail on a 20 amp circuit they would be a fire hazard. You can use an extension cord and there are several reasons this can be safe. Extension cords are ...


5

They do it because they can. It costs money to remove cables. If the municipality doesn't require them to do so, why would they? Most people don't notice or complain, and there's the off chance they'll use it again if the next owner wants service. I've gone so far as to cut them free of my home, neatly coil the cable, and wire it to the pole on the alley. ...


5

First the breaker must match your panel (Square D in a Square D panel; Eaton BR in a Challenger panel; sometimes it's tricky). Then, the breaker must be the correct ampacity for the wire. So if the wire is #14 use a 15A breaker. Do not use a 20A breaker unless all wire in the circuit is known to be #12 copper or #10 aluminum. If it is feasible for you to ...


5

You are fine with just capping off the white wire in the outlet box. Usually people here have the opposite problem: Needing a 4 wire feed and only have 3, you have a good problem! Which isn't exactly a problem. If you want to be double/triple sure, remove the cover of your main panel and see where those wires land. Probably both the neutral and ground will ...


5

What you're seeing is a traveler spur Oftentimes, when power is available at a switch box and a 3-way switching arrangment is desired at that location, the cable bringing switched-hot to the light also terminates at the switch box where power enters. This creates what I call a "traveler spur", not to be confused with a switch loop where power is ...


5

If the cheap equipment is so cheap, that you experience a live-neutral shock, you will die, and neither the GFCI/AFCI will trip, because killing you became the load. You'll be long dead before the lowest rated breakers will trip from shocking you. AFCI/GFCI do not cover all possible source of danger. It covers some of it and can make things safer, but ...


4

No problem. The metal conduit connecting the subpanel to the disconnect switch will carry the grounding for you. You can simply terminate the ground in the subpanel and let the metal conduit carry it back. From looking at the photo it appears you have not installed the metal conduit yet, you have individual THHN wires going through the bare knockout and ...


4

Read our FAQ for receptacle/switch replacements. So I gather you prefer using receptacle A to plug in your light. Here came an error in logic: since you only want a split receptacle at A, you only broke off the tab there. You missed the fact that receptacles B and F also had broken-off tabs. By wiring it up as you found it but not breaking off the tabs, ...


4

Generically, since so far there are no pictures or specs to refer to: Yes, 15 (or even 10) amp two-pole 240V breakers are available. They are somewhat uncommon, but my mini-splits happen to call for a 15A 240V breaker. No special-ordering was needed to find one, they were on the shelf. More efficient on 240V is not exactly false, but is also a rather small ...


4

At the very least, you need to comply with NEC 110.2 (it's on the first page) which says you must use approved equipment. In practice that means listed by an NRTL such as UL, CSA, ETL, BSI, TUV and the like, this being independent lab testing to positively confirm the appliance complies with the relevant UL White Book standards so it won't kill you. And ...


3

The Problem I'm trying to run wire to my shed 30 feet from house. Should install a subpanel. Up-front cost, but long-term benefits. I thought it would be nice to have two circuits, one for lights and one for heavier current applications. Which also has the benefit that if one of your tools trips a breaker, the lights stay on. So I ran 2 10/2 18inches ...


3

The kitchen counter tops require 2ea 20 amp circuits the circuits have to be GFCI protected I prefer using normal breakers and putting A GFCI receptacle in the first position for each then if there is a fault you may hear it and can reset it without going to the service panel (if GFCI breakers are used the reset will be at that location). Additional devices ...


3

Forget about buying this thing. It's an "impulse buy", and that does not work for engineered products like whole-house generators and automatic transfer switches. It's an Automatic transfer switch It has a sequenced system which will automatically spin up the generator and then throw the loads over onto the generator. With an ATS there is a simple ...


3

Looks like they just covered the connector and textured everything. Using a volt meter put one side to the cover plate then one side of the receptacle should show line voltage the other much less or nothing, there is a possibility of a voltage being measured on the neutral with no connection to a load (called phantom voltage) in that case the lower voltage ...


3

Yes, you can. Chances are that you have a white wire connected to one of the terminals of the old 240-volt breaker, and you can repurpose it to neutral. When you put in the new 120-volt breaker, connect the black wire to the breaker terminal and the white to the neutral bus bar, removing any black tape on the white wire. Replace the 240-volt receptacles with ...


3

There are certain cases (see recommended wire gauge for well pump and float switch for one) involving certain motor loads which can be on a larger breaker than the wire size needed. But that doesn't apply to most residential situations, such as heaters. However, there is a big difference between the wiring that is part of an appliance and the wiring between ...


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