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Posted: 10/7/2012 11:14:54 PM EDT
And wonder how in the BLUE FUCK your home hasn't burned down?  For the love of MILEY CYRUS!  I've been mounting ceiling fans and rewiring plugs/switches about my house and JEEEEESUS BALLS there's some fucked-up shit been wired.  
Link Posted: 10/7/2012 11:18:26 PM EDT
Just take it easy man. I'll order us a pizza to take the edge off before you go neck punching the guy who done you wrong
Link Posted: 10/7/2012 11:20:14 PM EDT
I'll just say that the "professional" electrician that wired our house was a jackass.
 
Link Posted: 10/7/2012 11:34:14 PM EDT
I lived in a house with aluminum wiring and in a couple old city houses with horsehair and creosote wiring running through the old gaslamp pipes.
Ceiling fixtures tended to be just screwed to the lath with no work box.
Link Posted: 10/7/2012 11:40:59 PM EDT
Could be worse

Link Posted: 10/7/2012 11:55:41 PM EDT
Quoted:
I'll just say that the "professional" electrician that wired our house was a jackass.  


+1
Link Posted: 10/7/2012 11:59:21 PM EDT





Should I be shocked or something?



I don't see any frayed or exposed wire.  There aren't any tangles... looks well organized actually...



What am I missing?



 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 12:00:52 AM EDT
My guess is that its open wire without any sort of protective sheath?
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 12:05:04 AM EDT
Quoted:


Should I be shocked or something?

I don't see any frayed or exposed wire.  There aren't any tangles... looks well organized actually...

What am I missing?
 


You'll still find setups like that but with bare cop wires in old houses around here. Fuck all that.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 1:18:51 AM EDT
Thats all fine and dandy until someone hangs a picture with a 3" framing nail
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 1:54:50 AM EDT
Like this, from a previous house of mine.






 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 1:59:40 AM EDT
Yes, I ran into several of those over the last 17 years.  I ended up replacing all of the original wiring and most of the upgrades that the previous owner had installed.



I think electricians regularly drank beer on the job in 1963.


 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 4:40:10 AM EDT
Yes.  The dumb fucks who wired my home when we built it should have been shot.



Fuckers...


 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 4:50:23 AM EDT
Quoted:
Like this, from a previous house of mine.

http://imageshack.us/a/img831/5540/00010b.jpg
 


That's pretty much how the slob of a previous owner wired my house. Shortly after closing, my brother and I were in the basement. Luckily he noticed the cut wire dangling 2" over my head. 220v, breaker on.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 4:53:00 AM EDT


How did you get a photo of my house?
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 4:55:03 AM EDT


LOL Ive seen knob and tubing STILL in some houses. I was like WTF
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:07:05 AM EDT



Quoted:



Quoted:






Should I be shocked or something?



I don't see any frayed or exposed wire.  There aren't any tangles... looks well organized actually...



What am I missing?

 




You'll still find setups like that but with bare cop wires in old houses around here. Fuck all that.


Its "knob and tube" installation of bare wires, I haven't seen that in many years.



 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:08:22 AM EDT
Wait until you get into a nice knob & tube wiring set up ...
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:16:42 AM EDT
My house is pretty new compared to some of this, and I'm finding loose wires in outlets or switches every time I change one.  
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:19:52 AM EDT
my wife wired most of our current home after helping me do just 2 hours of the work. The building inspector refused to sign the inspection card saying it had to be a pro as everything was done too neatly to be done by an owner builder. wiring is not hard at all, it just takes a strong desire to do it correctly
 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:31:30 AM EDT
Rent houses.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:32:36 AM EDT
There is nothing wrong with knob and tube as long as you don't exceed the limitations of the wire.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 5:49:55 AM EDT
I have aluminum wires built directly into 15" of mortar and rock. No conduit!
 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 6:01:13 AM EDT
Quoted:
Like this, from a previous house of mine.

http://imageshack.us/a/img831/5540/00010b.jpg
 


Link Posted: 10/8/2012 6:03:59 AM EDT
Wiring, plumbing, painting, texture, all pretty much thrown up as fast as they can with the cheapest warm bodies they can find these days when they build a house.

I swear all the doors and locks in my house were installed by a couple of drunk mexicans making $2/hour. If you want something to lock and stay locked, be prepared to remove and reset the door strike plate. Don't get me started on the builder grade lock sets. I ripped one off this weekend with a pipewrench so we could get in the house.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 6:23:07 AM EDT
Quoted:
Quoted:
Like this, from a previous house of mine.

http://imageshack.us/a/img831/5540/00010b.jpg
 




They even have the neutral wire in the socket for the hot wire.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:03:31 AM EDT
A few days after I bought my last house, I was wandering around the yard at night and happened to notice a glow coming from the old sheet metal shed that was built over the abandoned well pump.

I looked closer and the metal itself was actually glowing bright orange in a spot, looked about like a lit cigarrette. I immediately shut off the power to the shed at the breaker and looked around, there was a line going into a fuse box with 2 40 amp fuses in the shed, out of which came a line that went to the exterior and must have once went to the barn on the property. The thing is someone cut the line, rolled it up and hung it up on the side of the shed where the bare end was touched the shed and electrified the whole thing.

There was a long burn line where you could see the line had shifted over time, it took a special kind of retard to do something like that. The one thing I always wondered is why it didn't blow the fuses since I would think that much power flowind unrestricted would do it.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:11:42 AM EDT


I just replaced a bunch of that in my house.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:13:48 AM EDT
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:16:05 AM EDT
Quoted:


Should I be shocked or something?

I don't see any frayed or exposed wire.  There aren't any tangles... looks well organized actually...

What am I missing?
 


I'll bet a lot of the insulation is missing or so brittle it soon will be.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:18:33 AM EDT
Yeah..kinda.



We are in the middle of a gut-the-whole-house remodel on our home built in 1942.



Tar covered wiring, hidden treasures, the entire house being fed from a fan's electrical box in the kitchen, etc.



Nothing stupid, but it was normal for 1942...they didn't have too many appliances.


 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:20:22 AM EDT
I rewired my old house that had the old knob & tube wiring.  The wires were so old the insulation would fall off and crumble into dust as you touched it.  Parts of this house were also rewired by, most likely a previous homeowner without an electrician background.  Found some free hanging splices, just wire nutted and shoved into the wall.  When I pulled the kitchen cabinets to replace the countertops one of the screws holding the cabinet was through a wire.  There was some charred wood around it so it was sparking/arching inside the wall.  I probably could have gotten zapped by touching that screw head with my finger.

Even my new house I'm finding some odd stuff (now really safety related), but done by an electrician trying to save wire or just being lazy.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:23:56 AM EDT
Quoted:
I lived in a house with aluminum wiring ....


Is aluminum wiring a problem? seems really common in homes built in the late 60's.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:30:42 AM EDT
Reminds me of the house that I am renting now. The chandelier in the front hall is on a three-way switch that is wired in such a way that the light will only come on if the switches are in a certain configuration.

A few month ago, I inadvertently drilled through the line running to an outlet in my basement, and shorted power to ground. When I called the electrician to fix it, we shut off every breaker but the main breaker and the line was STILL live! In addition, all the outlets were wired in series in the basement, so that one outlet being out caused all of them to be out. He fixed the wire and rewired the outlet so that it was not wired in series anymore.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:31:26 AM EDT
Don't know what the laws are else where, but as  a contractor, I am liable for everything I do. There is no statue of limitations for bad work. If I wire up something incorrectly, it doesn't matter if its tomorrow or 20 years from now, if the house burns down and its proven to be my fault, I'm on the hook for it.

All the BS about using the least qualified is that, BS. I'm liable for the work of sub-contrators. There is no way I'm using Cletus because hes 5 dollars an hour cheaper. I only use licensed, insured, contractors.

Its all about liability.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:41:20 AM EDT
I was in my Wife Grandfathers home many years ago (after he died and the family was going to sell it).
As I left the basement and turned out the lights, I glanced up along the ceiling piping and saw a dim blue glow.
WTH is that I thought?  As I got closer I could tell it was the flickering of a blue gas flame.  Evidently he had
brazed some gas pipe fittings (YEARS) before as best we could tell. Evidently the sopa/water bubble test
for leaks was not in vogue then or for him. My FIL said they used to hold a lit match to check for leaks.

The amazing thing is this flame had to have been going for YEARS before I saw it and it never burned the
house down.  You can see some really stange things working in houses....
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:44:54 AM EDT







Quoted:
Quoted:



I lived in a house with aluminum wiring ....




Is aluminum wiring a problem? seems really common in homes built in the late 60's.




Two issues with aluminum wiring:
It has a higher coefficient of thermal expansion than copper, so connections tend to loosen more quickly over time as the wiring heats and cools.  I have seen many situations where aluminum wire connections to switches and receptacles have become loose enough to cause heat.  If it gets bad enough it can start a fire.
Aluminum and copper (or brass) don't get along - If they are in contact with each other and there is any trace of moisture present, electrolysis occurs quickly and degrades the connection.  I have such a juncture in my house where the original aluminum main grounding wire connects to copper plumbing.  When I had my panel upgraded last year, the installer drove two 8-foot spikes into the soil near the main panel and connected them to the panel with copper wire.  Present codes require that.  He left the original ground in place.
 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 8:52:58 AM EDT



Quoted:



Quoted:

I lived in a house with aluminum wiring ....




Is aluminum wiring a problem? seems really common in homes built in the late 60's.


Once upon a time, aluminum was cheap. To use aluminum wire you need to up the size of wire vs. copper. I'm pretty sure its outlawed by code now.

It also breaks easily when trying to wire up switches and outlets. Lots of fires from it too.



 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:04:52 AM EDT
Quoted:
Quoted:
I lived in a house with aluminum wiring ....


Is aluminum wiring a problem? seems really common in homes built in the late 60's.


Aluminum romex is bad. it can start fires. Most service drops are still aluminum, but they are designed to handle it. AL romex would heat up and expand/contract more, which would cause loose connections, and shorts/etc.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:09:40 AM EDT
My house was built in 1903 but was rewired with modern plastic coated wires but no ground wire sometime ago.  Whoever rewired my house deserves a beating.  Half of the outlets in the house are on the same circuit.  They cover the bedroom, living room, bathroom, and laundry room.  Want to vacuum and do laundry...click goes the breaker.  Have the home theater on and do laundry...click goes the breaker.  Running an electric heater and trying to do anything else...click goes the breaker.  It used to be fuses but I've upgraded the service to my house, moved the service to the other side of the house, added a new breaker box, replaced the small fuse box with breakers, and ran new wiring to all the major appliances.  Next up will be rewiring all the old circuits.  The lights in the basement are also wired into this circuit.  I've taken the cover off a light box to find 7 different wires coming into the box, secured by only electrical tape.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:24:25 AM EDT
As explained, Al wiring is problematic.
I was a renter so the fix wasn't on me but I spent 2 1/2 years wondering if one of my outlets was going to arc out and burn down the house.

The old horshair and creosote wiring is entertaining.
Both wires are black without a ground in sight.

Put a new bathroom medicine chest w/ lampbar into an apartment I rented for the landlord.
Added an outlet by the sink. Discovered the whole apartment was ungrounded.
Ran a GFI outlet home run to the cold water pipe for the sink.
Tested as a good ground so I was happy.

Told him he could have a real electrician do the same for the rest of the wiring or figure out how to tie it to ground some other way.
He couldn't have cared less. Actually questioned the additional expense of the GFI vs. a .99 cent outlet.
Attitudes like that are why we have codes and inspections.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:28:25 AM EDT


I had that shit, along with a smattering of "modern" wiring tied into it.

It's all gone now and I know more about electrical than I ever wanted to.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:28:33 AM EDT


Old knob and tube. Still an awful lot of that stuff in service.
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:30:18 AM EDT


In my last house I took down a wall with a recessed light fixture in it as part of the remodel.  We never used it much because it always seemed to get hot regardless of the bulb wattage used.  



I shit you not the "recessed can" was made out of a Campbell's soup can and bondo.





 
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:35:56 AM EDT
Quoted:
I'll just say that the "professional" electrician that wired our house was a jackass.  


Mine too.

Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:39:26 AM EDT
After finding the first "What the fuckkkkk?!?!" outlet in my new-to-me house, I hit Home Depot for five ten-packs of TR 120v outlets and changed every outlet in the house and most switches. It also let me figure out what all the circuit breakers do. For some reason, the TR outlets were $10/10 vs $16/10 for the non-TR ones. After a month of use, I didn't even notice the difference.

We had a renter who removed a wire from a switch on two different three-way circuits, we're still scratching our heads at that one, but the judge awarded us $200 for the labor it took to diagnose it and fix it when we sued them for all the damage they did to the house.

Kharn
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:41:41 AM EDT
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:41:58 AM EDT


I'd be more worried about the total lack of subfloor under those hard wood flooring strips.  WTF!?
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:43:49 AM EDT
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:47:23 AM EDT
Quoted:
Friend was having problems with his oven in his new home, they finally found the problem, romex had a nail through it inside a wall, it wasn't an accident!  Its a wonder the place hadn't burned down.  The whole house had to be completely rewired.  
One friend's basement laundry room ceiling collapsed randomly on her ~4 year old townhouse.  Turns out a screw had barely nicked the water line to her fridge, and it had been seeping onto the drywall since the day it was built.

Kharn
Link Posted: 10/8/2012 9:50:53 AM EDT
My house was built in the 50s and ordered though the Sears catalog, so ya I have 6 smoke alarms in the house
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