Wednesday, October 19, 2005

What's that Tingle?

Today we had lunch with an acquaintence that is thinking of investing in real estate. I tried to tell him as much as possible about what I knew and then we took him to the place. Remember my rule about not showing people in the remodel phase? I don't think he was too impressed. Oh, well. :)

As far as remodeling we had to fix the electrical in the hall downstairs because the "remodelers" (I use that term loosely) before us had just put the wires in front of wall surfaces instead of drilling pass-through holes. We went to Lowe's and bought some boxes and came back and had a hard time figuring out when wires were live.

Jeff used the halogen light to test his plugs and avoided a big shock on the hallway outlet. The wiring makes no sense. For instance, they used a pigtail from the laundry 110 to power an outlet clear across the hallway.

Anyway, later in the afternoon I was trying to finish up myself and kept feeling a little tingle in my fingers. I thought for a moment I had build up static by fishing wires through the holes. After the 2nd stronger "tingle" I realized that they had used power clear from the family room. Grrr. I put wire nuts on the ends and finished up a dead wire to the light box.

I figure we'll just have to be REALLY specific with the labels in the circuit box so no one gets an unpleasant tingle. We only want good tingles! I'm thinking of writing or taping the number of the circuit on the back of the faceplates of the outlets/switches so the future homeowners could turn off the right one. Of course that means I have to know the right one first.

Lesson learned:

Where the hell is the circuit tester?

If you feel a tingle when dealing with electricity (even when not directly touching anything) the power IS on (this is a good time to assume.)

When you are running wires, even in an unfinished space, run it properly through the joists/studs. You never know when someone will actually want to drywall.

When stealing/borrowing power make sure the circuit makes sense...or even better...hire an electrician. (Who am I to talk? :)

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