Simon B
  • Member for 3 years, 11 months
  • Last seen this week
  • England
Wiring Ethernet through Telephone Cable
7 votes

If it's a reasonably modern twisted pair telephone cable, then it's equivalent to CAT3 Ethernet. For Ethernet, that's obsolete by today's standards. It's only good for 10Mbps, or maybe 100Mbps over ...

View answer
Pulling outlets from the wall for backsplash install
6 votes

Leave the power off, or you risk having to explain the dead quartz countertop fitters. If you just remove the faceplates, then you will be leaving bare live wires exposed in the back boxes. Anyone ...

View answer
Why is a circuit out after lights were blinking?
6 votes

If you connected hot to neutral, and nothing went "bang", then there must be a break in the wiring somewhere. If the wiring is as bad as you say, then the chances are that plugging in the ...

View answer
Scorched plug and socket
4 votes

Most likely, a poor connection in the plug has caused it to overheat. The 13A fuse gets warm in normal use. But if there is a bad connection, it can get really hot. The faulty plug has then damaged ...

View answer
How to revitalize wood screw hole where screw won't stay tight?
4 votes

The simplest option is a matchstick or two. Push the match into the hole, and snap it off to length.

View answer
How is 240v derived from 120/208v feed
4 votes

It isn't. 120/240V is a 240V single phase supply, center tapped to produce a "split phase" with 120V between either side to neutral, and 240V between the two hot lines. 120/208V is two ...

View answer
Why do I need batteries to use solar when the grid is down?
4 votes

Because even when it isn't dark, there may be clouds. The amount of power you can get from solar panels depends enormously on the amount of sunlight hitting them. My rough rule-of-thumb is that ...

View answer
4 wire electric supply into 3 wires oven outlet
3 votes

You need to check if one phase of your supply is enough to power the whole oven. If it is, then leave the spare phase safely disconnected (in a way that won't let it come into contact with anything), ...

View answer
How would you patch such a coaxial low-power cable?
3 votes

If you're thinking of soldering it, then buy some heat-shrink tubing in different sizes. If you make a reasonably neat joint, you can slide some heat shrink over the join, and shrink it in place. But ...

View answer
How can I power a 120V 50A water heater?
3 votes

The thing draws 50A. There's no way it will work on any circuit that wasn't designed to supply (at least) 50A. So that means a separate cable back to the breaker panel, and a dedicated breaker. No ...

View answer
GFCI Trips immediately after energizing circuit
3 votes

There are various faults that can trip a GFCI, in addition to the obvious leakage from hot to ground. Neutral-to-ground shorts can lead to current that should have returned via the neutral going via ...

View answer
I hear coal burns hotter than wood. Can I burn coal in my wood stove, and just use less?
Accepted answer
3 votes

Coal burners and wood burners often have a different design. Coal is burned on a grate, with air flowing up from underneath. Wood can be burned in a stove with a solid floor, with air coming from ...

View answer
Can I have independent heating zones with a standard boiler?
2 votes

Yes, it can be done. It just needs to be plumbed (and wired) right. Each thermostat should control a valve that admits hot water to its section of the house. The boiler should be wired to fire up ...

View answer
How to connect switch to electric box containing 3 grey (twin and earth) cables?
2 votes

Looks like a standard UK ring circuit. The chances are that the top two are two sides of the ring, and the bottom one is to the fridge. It should be obvious if the fridge outlet is immediately below ...

View answer
Transformer won't work for US plug
2 votes

The socket on the transformer is a "CEEform" or "Commando" socket (they are two names for the same thing). It's a widely used international standard, but is completely ...

View answer
Should the steel pipe from the gas meter into a home have foam insulation like an exposed water pipe?
2 votes

The temperature at which methane liquefies is around -258°F (-161°C), and it doesn't freeze until -296°F (-182°C). If it's cold enough to freeze the gas in your pipes, you have bigger things to worry ...

View answer
My 5 years old Samsung Washer Keeps Tripping my gfci (Reason is Ground Fault)
1 votes

You either need to replace the machine, or get a repairer to find out what's wrong. There are several possible things it could be, all of them are a problem that needs to be fixed:- The heating ...

View answer
RIGHT FRONT BURNER DOESNT STAY LIT
1 votes

From the pictures in the manual, it looks like there is a flame-out detector next to each burner. If the burner lights OK, but won't stay lit, then the detector may have failed.

View answer
Rewire a ceiling light to a double socket
1 votes

A standard double socket is designed to deliver 20A, but a typical UK lighting circuit is only 6A. It's not actually wrong to connect a socket to an under-rated supply. But somebody might be in for a ...

View answer
How to upgrade apartment's power grid to protect my electrical devices
1 votes

What you are describing sounds like a TN-C system where the neutral and ground are combined all the way to the sockets, where a "bootleg ground" is used to both the ground and neutral ...

View answer
Changing end of charger
1 votes

The extra wires are likely part of a battery management system. These wires are used to monitor the battery being charged. But without any sort of wiring diagram, you have no idea what these extra ...

View answer
I think my gas boiler flue looks off
1 votes

Assuming it's a UK installation, then "snorkels" aren't unusual. They are required to prevent exhaust gases from entering through windows, or doors in this case. You can't have the flue ...

View answer
Electrical box size per country
1 votes

UK standard single back boxes are 70x70mm (about 2 3/4 inch square). The fixing lugs are around 60mm (2 3/8 inch) apart. They are available in a variety of depths.

View answer
Does the Metric system have a concept of a Board Foot?
1 votes

The nearest equivalent would be cubic metres. That's the figure you would use to estimate how much wood you could get out of a tree of a given size. But nobody would try to specify how many cubic ...

View answer
Are smart meters really dangerous?
1 votes

There are people who will claim that anything with a radio transmitter is dangerous to your health. Usually without any real evidence. The meters will be built to comply with the radio transmitter ...

View answer
Hole in wall behind and around plug socket (England, UK) – do I need an electrician to fix?
1 votes

It sounds like there is no back box on that socket. Sockets aren't normally screwed directly to walls, but to back boxes that are fitted into the wall. If there is nothing flammable behind the socket,...

View answer
Rewiring a lamp, finishing wire ends
1 votes

Don't solder the ends. That's an old-fashoned idea that went out a few decades ago. Solder is less springy than copper and leads to contacts that work loose over time. It also makes the wire more ...

View answer
Connecting LED strips lights under outdoor stairs
1 votes

In parallel. if you connect them in series, the last one in the string will be a lot dimmer than the first. It's up to you whether to use fat cables running from string to string, or separate ...

View answer
Why is my portable air conditioning unit increasing relative humidity?
1 votes

The amount of water vapor that air can hold depends on the termperature. Warm air can hold more moisture than cold. The relative humidity is the amount of moisture in the air compared with the ...

View answer
Can i ignore the 2 12volt dimmer wires on a new HIGH BAY LED, if i have an LED dimmer switch on the wall?
0 votes

You shouldn't try to run LED lamps from a dimmer unless they are specifically designed to be dimmable. This one is dimmable, but only using the two control wires. If you try to run the lamp from a ...

View answer