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Home Electricity

~26400 answered questions
Parent Category: Home Improvement
The majority of homes in the world include electric circuits for lighting and power to appliances. Some provide cooking and heating through electricity.
Don't think there was a way to test it so I replaced the switch without having to remove the steering wheel. Two bolts held it on and Advance Auto had an after market switch for $79.00
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Simple is just to know two formulas Ohm's Law V = IR Power P = IV From those you can calculate voltage, amps, watts, ohms V = Voltage (volts) I = Current (amps or amperes) R = Resistance (ohm's) P = Power (watts) Just solve for what you are missing. Voltage times amps being drawn shows wa…
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You cannot. It must be taken out of the circuit and then tested on its own. That's not 100% true because, if it has wires at its ends, you can cut through one wire with an appropriate tool and then test the capacitor "out of circuit". If the capacitor is ok you can then re-join the two cut wire end…
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I would suggest you try to find the manufacturer of your tachometer on the web and check out their support site and email them if needed for your particuliar vehicle. For instance below is a link to Autometer's Tech Tip web site however unless you own an Autometer Tach this may be useless to you. T…
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You don't want to wire the fan "always on". It'll kill your battery when not running. There is a heat sensor near the thermostat housing in my GM 3.8L that controls the fan. Because GM wants the engine running hot for fuel economy, the fan is triggered at 224 degrees even though the "stat" is set to…
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%DETAILS% Answer Hey John==On the intake close to the EGR there is a solonoid that has wires and vac lines going to it. Make sure the wires are connected and not shorted. GoodluckJoe
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Hi, I'm not sure if this helps but I'm having a similar problem with my 1996, here's what I've found so far:- the wires i have are bk/bl (ground) and a green/brn these appear to have the 12 volts for the heater.the two others i have are light brown/white (your tan?) and black/whitethe black/white ap…
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Try thishttp://www.hmaservice.com/webtech/iindex.asp?id=10119&modelyr=1999&modelid=5&enginemotormmc=0&pre=0&reviewed=1#_10119
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Well somethings i need to know? Is the truck engine turning over and just not starting? If the truck is turning over i would first off guess either gas or elelctrical problems. If the starter is not turning the engine over, then i would point at the starter relay (you should hear that click when…
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I have the same car, and from looking at the recalls I think I remember seeing this problem had a recall associated with it. I found all recalls associated with jettas at consumerreports.com but Im sure there are many other sites that will tell you the same info.
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The blue wire is usually just an auxiliary wire. The blue wire does not need to be connected. Tape the end of the blue wire off.
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I personally don't know. This link is for one for sale. Visit their store and ask them. They should know. http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1959-60-Chevy-Impala-headlight-switch-knob-542s_W0QQitemZ110128128030QQcmdZViewItem#ebayphotohostingGood luck. Dave
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U disconnect the NEGATIVE battery cable & put a 12Volt test light IN BETWEEN the cable & battery post(connection) THen U start pulling fuses un- till the light goes off MAKE SURE U have ALL switches & doors shut because (doors-radio-etc) will turn on the test light.IF IT still doesn't go…
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There is an in line fuse coming off the battery cable...check this first then check fuse panel inside car. Go to www.autozone.com, enter car info and click on repair manuals and look at the fuse locations under electrical section...good luck
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You get a properly sized low value resistance of high accuracy like 1% known resistance say 1 ohm. Then you place the wire that you want to measure in series with the resistor and place the voltmeter across the resistor. So if you have a 1 ohm resistor and the meter is reading 1 volt then you have…
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It has no circuit breakers. It has fuses, and fusable links.Unless GM made changes from 1990-1995......the owner's manual for my 1990 Camaro RS shows circuit breakers. Also, it says the wipers are protected by fuse, and circuit breaker. Myself, I have been trying to locate this circuit breaker, but …
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I would say in a somewhat short period of time, a battery, assuming its in relativly good condition, would expire with its normal and expected drain if NOT running and recharging. Today's vehicles all drain something, keeping those digital clocks and radio staions alive plus multple computers, need …
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I had the same problem in my 03 SE-R, so I know exactly what you mean. Yes, it's only the bulb, and it's a pain to replace. I waited about 6 months before tackling the job. You have to "pop" up the shifter surround (the part with the PRND21 on it), and hope you don't scratch anything in the process.…
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Electricity comes from many sources. Such as coal power plants, nuclear power plants and renewable energy sources such as wind, solar and hydroelectric dams. There is a great EPA calculator to help you know which sources your electricity comes from and how clean they are: If you live in Minneapo…
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Security Lights Over a Garage Probably, but it may be dirty and unable to "see" the daylight and turn off. Here is more input and advice: If your daylight/nightlight sensor has a setting level you can increase or decrease the sensors level which will cause it to go off in a more appropriate man…
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Pool light Call the company or person that leased you the property and ask them where the switch is to the pool light. If they don't know; often a pool light is turned on by a breaker in the panel marked "pool light." A breaker is an overcurrent protective device, it can not be used to "switch" a l…
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I would help out the elderly and I know many others that would. The question is whether the 'problems' are actually problems, i.e. safety / fire hazards, or normal electrical work. I don't think anyone will do normal work for free, but fire hazards and life safety issues should be taken care of. I'm…
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Exit signs in public, commercial and industrial locations must have a back-up means of remaining illuminated should the power fail. Most signs meet this requirement with a back-up power supply, such as a battery. . There are special exit signs that use phosphorescence (photoluminescent) material (…
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The UK uses 50 Hz, and the US uses 60 Hz. (US is 120/240V, 60Hz; UK is 230V, 50Hz, though formerly it was 240V.) It's correct that 230 v is the nominal voltage in the UK but the actual voltage nearly everywhere is 240 v. For more detailed information see the answers to the Related questions shown b…
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for USA, Canada and countries using similar 60Hz household electricity supplies First, get the circuits around the house tested to make sure it's happening everywhere. You should call the power company to check the connections where your electrical service enters your house. (Meter base and breaker…
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Heaters use a lot of power and can easily exceed the capacity of an already loaded circuit. Anything with a motor or fan will use more power when starting up than after it is already running. If the circuit breaker or fuse is tripping when you plug in or turn on the heater, then you may have too man…
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Old electrical wiring There are no advantages. In fact, old wiring like this has insufficient power capacity to handle today's normal loads. Most of the old 60 amp fuse panels have only four circuits to power EVERYTHING in the house. Overload city. My dad's house came with such a service. Fortuna…
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The way I have 110VAC/60Hz is to take 12DC power supply and 12DC to 110AC 60Hz converter, designed for car use and can be found in the netshops. The way that industry used to do this is to run a motor-generator combination. The motor is matched to and runs from the available power supply while the…
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This used to be a valid question with older fluorescent fixtures, but not anymore. A light that is off doesn't use power and it doesn't use extra power when turning on, so turn it off to save power. It depends what you want to consider. If you throw bulb life into the mix (most bulbs fail due to the…
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If you live in a multi-family dwelling, and you can't figure out this simple of a circuit, hire a licensed electrician. The fire you prevent may save your own life and others living in your building. cheeky anyways buy a circuit tracer fairly inexpensive. it plugs into wall plug and you use a freque…
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for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz supply service. 1. On a 120 volt system in which the house is located in the United States, how do I wire a light switch that only has one point which will control the device? A: (TURN OFF THE CIRCUIT FIRST) In order to wire this switch, we'll assume yo…
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for USA, Canada and other countries running a 60 Hz supply service The device could be faulty or it could be working perfectly, as they typically do. If you mess about with it without understanding how it works you could receive a life threatening shock. Another likely possibility, as GFCIs are extr…
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%DETAILS% Answer One possible reason is arcing inside the lamp socket. Loose bulbs can arc inside the socket. One sure sign of arcing is if the light "flickers" when it is on. Take the bulb out of the fixture and examine the contacts on the base. If any part of the base appears burned, there is…
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All a solid-state dimmer does is fire a triac at the correct point in the phase to control the power output. It does not dissipate the excess power like a variable resistor. The triac has about 3/4 of a volt drop across it. With a 120W light bulb this means that the dimmer will dissipate 3/4 of a wa…
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That smell is caused by the panel and/or feeder cable overheating due to excessive current draw. This is a FIRE HAZARD!!!!!!! The electrician did you no favor by putting in a new main breaker. The old one was tripping to protect the wiring from overload. You should have had a whole new panel install…
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Certainly. This is why the US 2008 NEC requires "Tamper Resistant" receptacles to be installed. These receptacles attempt to prevent foreign objects being inserted into the slots. A normal plug will press into all slots at once, resulting in normal connection to the outlet. If a child attempts to pu…
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If a breaker will not stay in the off position it is defective, no matter how you wire it, and needs to be replaced.   there was probably a hot wire in that mess in that box and you just mistied them when you installed the switch are you sure that was a ground and not a hot going somewhere el…
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YES. By duplex breaker, you mean 'tandem breaker', a special breaker designed to allow you to get more circuits into a panel that is full or almost full.You most likely have a 'CTL' type panel in your home.You MUST use 'CTL' breakers, or CTL tandem breakers in that panel. By design, if you look at …
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for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz supply service. This can be a complicated project. First and foremost turn the breaker off that supplies the voltage to that circuit. A light fixture outlet is usually switched and the majority of times it is on the ceiling. To bring this circuit down t…
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Use a multimeter set to continuity position and touch one probe from your multimeter to each conductor. If you hear a tone from the multimeter then your fuse is good.
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Having the surge protector should not affect individual circuits. It sounds more like to me you have a bad neutral somewhere. By that I mean a wire is loose. So say the light switch or TV is left on and the bad connection is currently open, neither work. So the wind or gremlins in your house do thei…
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%DETAILS% not alot of info but do you have something on a timer that is coming on at that time what are you calling a main safety?   Does your hot water tank start heating at that time? Safety switches will trip, when loads are switched on, if either the active or neutral connections are i…
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Most TV sets don't draw enuff current to make an extension cord unusable. The real problem is getting which kid to confess to throwing that heavy toy at the screen which caused the implosion. OK, maybe it wasn't the kid--your kids must be as perfect as mine--but it is very, very likely that the scre…
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One thing to keep in mind when you talk of upgrading an electrical service. That is that a permit will have to be taken out, inspection made and the whole house will have to be brought up to current standards of the code. This could run into a large amount of money on a 50 year old house. Contact an…
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Use a voltmeter and an ammeter to measure the supply voltage and load current; the product of these two readings will give you the apparent power in volt amperes. Use a wattmeter to measure the true power of the load, in watts. Divide the true power by the apparent power, and this will give you the …
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This is a form of corrosion sometimes found on wiring or in the outlets. You need to have a licensed electrician replace the receptacles and to inspect the wiring to see if it may also need to be replaced. Either turn off the breaker or pull the fuse that supplies power to this room until it is repa…
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I had a problem with a noisy hunter fan last month. After going to similar post like this one, I found this site www.fanshack.com and ordered a bottle of fan motor oil (I know it sounds funny) but it cleared it right up. I couldn't find this oil at lowes or home depot for the life of me. Anyways, tr…
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US Single-pole switch In the US, the standard "single-pole" light switch is single-pole single-throw, with only 2 terminals. In the ON position it connects the two terminals, and in the OFF position it doesn't.The standard US "3-way" light switch (used for switching a light from two different switc…
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not enough information to give an most buildings have at least 100 to 200 amp service what specifically are you talking about? a water heater is 30 amps but it does not use 30 all time Low resistance and high voltage cause high currents [in amperes] an Ampere is the unit that is used to measur…
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AMP (part of Tyco) manufactures the COPALUM system. It's a form of pigtailing, but the electrician uses a special machine that applies (IIRC) over 20 tons of force to the crimp. When it's done, it is as safe as you can possibly get with the notoriously unsafe aluminum wiring. 12-gauge aluminum and …
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You might be plugging something in that could have a fault on it, sometimes plugging in a transformer could trip out your fuse, but more often than not your electricity will go due to its breaker tripping at the board due to something being plugged in. Check the cord on the appliance, if no visible …
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do you mean from a switch? plates dont have wires you can cut the wires or if it is stabbed in the back there is a slot you can insert something to loosen it TURN OFF POWER
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Static Electricity Static electricity is usually a 'high voltage' but low power form of electricity. You can experience it by getting a shock when touching a door knob (winter time, dry cold air, walking across a carpet) or seeing socks clinging to other clothes in a dryer. While static electricity…
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The problem sounds like it could be a simple as a loose wire at the outlet, sometimes the outlets are wired using the stab in terminals in the back of the outlet instead of the binding screw,any movement causes the circuit to open. However if you are tripping the circuit breaker when you plug in you…
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The questions are the same for a house that may be only 40 days or less old. Is the wiring adequate for your needs. Is the wiring 'safe' and up to code? Do you have your own inspector, do you have any 'special' needs, and what would changes or upgrades cost from a contractor? You need the basics for…
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If I was upgrading, I would install a 200 amp box so there would be adequate power in the future. You should upgrade to a 200 amp service even if your local code does not require it. This will allow you or future owners to upgrade or install new circuits as needed. Also, if you are renovating a…
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Be safe and make sure your electrical repairs and wiring meet local safety codes. And please use common sense and take the appropriate safety measures when working with electricity - for your own safety and for the safety of your family.Code Check: Electrical: A Guide to Wiring a Safe HouseThe Compl…
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The reason that 120v service was chosen, was economic. Originally electricity was delivered to homes, and most businesses, for a single purpose and that was lighting. Can openers, TVs, washers, dryers, electrical factory machinery, etc. came later. At the time the most cost effective form of light b…
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The short answer is "no". A 100A panel will be protected by a 100A or smaller main circuit breaker or fuse, and if the sum of all the loads on the various branches exceeds the main breaker rating, it will trip and power will be disconnected long before any damage can occur to the panel. for USA, C…
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This is an excellent question and yes it could.There is a "drip wire", there is a "drip loop".The drip wire is in the triplex that runs from the utility pole providing power to your house and the service mast on your house. The lineman will leave a sag in the wire so that water that accumulates on t…
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for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hertz supply service. This is a complex question that requires you to do some reading, as it confuses even electricians. The applicable reference is: NEC 220.40 Feeder and Service Calculations. Typically if you are asking this question you should call an e…
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Absolutely.As long as the converter (or any power source) is rated at the same voltage, with more current than the device needs. Sometimes, a device may have a higher initial current surge than it's operating current, keep this in mind. Some converters do a good job handling momentary surge, some do…
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The fact of your asking really says you would need a lot of coaching to keep you out of trouble here. Meters, by nature, aren't really designed to be dependably or safely put into electrical outlets. I suggest you buy a outlet tester at your local home store for $6- or so. Instructions are with it, …
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Well it is only a guess but I would say your bathroom and bedroom were sharing the same cct and you have not kept the cct going by placing the dimmer in line. There would be a continuation of wiring from the dimmer to the bathroom that you have perhaps not reconnected.
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Pamela, Sure you can move the feed yourself. Couple things to keep in mind ok. Where you splice the wires has to be in a junction box , that junction box has to remain accessible in case you ever need to get to it again. You cover the box with a 4x4 metal blank plate. If you are moving an oven you w…
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%REPLIES% Answer Actually I have experienced this problem, as I bet have a lot of other people. An AC uses a large amount of electrical current. Whenever it switches on it causes a temporary power drain and lights will often dim or flicker. My neighbor is a retired electrician from Boeing Ai…
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All electrical heating is 100% efficient. Every nickel you spend is converted into usable heat unlike other sources, they just go up the chimmney. The type you choose depends on you and where you are. You can go baseboard, there is a calculation a qualified electrician will make for you so you get t…
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(1) Re-wire the fridge circuit and/or the range circuit with larger gauge wire.(2) The range should be on its own circuit already (if not, put it on its own circuit like NEC mandates). You could try running a separate circuit just for the fridge too. You only _need_ to use 14 gauge wire, but use at …
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As an electrical engineer for a power company I see on average a house that is 1600-2000 square feet and having electric appliances except for the furnace use an average of 1500Kwatt-hours per month making 50 Kwatt-hours per day and a total of 18,000 Kwatt-hours per year. If one is trying to determ…
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Running it on 60hz will just make the motor spin faster. This may not be a problem, and if it is, it will probably only be one of personal preference.
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for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz power supply service.It is important that you should read see the answer to the Related Question shown below.<><><>It won't run, there is insufficient start up voltage. It's all in the way the windings in the motor are connected. Since …
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   for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz power supply service.The two insulated wires would be your 220 legs and you have to scrounge around for the ground. Sometimes in older homes the ground wire was run outside the box and attached with a little clip on the face of the box. You…
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I'm going to assume that the switch that's getting warm is the dimmer. Even when a dimmer is working correctly it gets warm and that's just the electronic parts of it. The face of a dimmer is actually a heat sink to help remove excess heat.If you swap out the dimmer you will likely find your problem…
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s for USA, Canada and countries using similar 60Hz mains supplies Conversion Dangerous and NOT RecommendedUmmm no. If you did try to do it, you'd have a pretty good chance of burning your house down.More Information:I want to say "no" you can't do this based on what you've told me.What matters he…
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It's not advisible but depending on what condition your equipment is in it might be possible at least temporarily. I would strnogly discourage leaving it unattended for long.
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GFCI receptacles are extremely sensitive, there are any number of reasons this may not be working for you. The first thing you can do is to make sure that the wire feeding your 2 other outlets off of the outside GFCI are connected to the line side of the device. There are 2 sides to any GFCI: the "l…
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%DETAILS% Answer I would wonder if the items that are tripping the breaker are being plugged into the same outlet. There could be a problem with the outlet or the wiring in the box in the wall that the outlet is mounted in. If one of the screws on the back of the outlet that connects the wire…
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I believe that the wires supplying a 30 amp circuit must be at least 10 gauge. If you have 14 or 12 gauge wires going to or from your 15 amp breaker, then drawing 30 amps over it could cause a fire hazard. It's like using those cheapo non-UL certified extension cords to plug a MILLION X-mas lights i…
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With direct current, the charge flow is distributed throughout the cross-sectional area of a conductor. With alternating current, the charge flow tends to flow towards the surface of a conductor due to what is called the 'skin effect'. The higher the frequency, the greater the skin effect. In fact,…
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Murray, The plumbing part of this can be hooked up, however, the motor will not be suitable. The European system is based on 50 Hz where in Canada we opporate on 60 Hz. That would be the first problem, of course, the second would be the voltage connection and I don't think that Europe has the capaci…
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s for USA, Canada and countries using similar 60Hz mains supplies Better to Change Cord or Plug on Appliance The 4 prong receptacle should be more in line with the latest wiring code. It is best to change the plug or the cord on the appliance you wish to use. If you have a 4 prong outlet, the pu…
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This is a pretty dangerous area for the "do it your self home improvement." There are National Electric Code rules for have GFI (ground fault interruption) circuit breakers and other safety precautions that apply here. You could have some real safety and liability issues on your hands if it isn't wi…
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How did you want to switch on the bulbs? If there isn't a separate circuit already running from the switch, through the wall, and to the chandelier, then you'd have buy pull chain switches. The chandelier would have to have holes drilled to mount the switches. The load wire from the house would be …
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No! At this time I wouldn't have less than a 200 amp service for a 3 bedroom house. Keep in mind just because there is a place to plug "stuff" into doesn't mean there is enough capacity in the wiring to handle the load. Please call an electrician. The Fire Department call would be much more expensiv…
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Sounds like a 220 volt stove. If you have a volt meter, checking the red to the black wire should show 220 volts AC. Checking the Black to the White should show 110 volts and the red to the white should show 110 volts.The 4th wire in the stove is probably green which is a ground for safety. If you c…
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Grounding a pool is serious business, there are many risks if this is not done right. Grounding also varies depending city, county, state, country. For starters, you can't have a good enough ground for your pool. This is one case where more is better. As a general rule, you could drive a 10 ft coppe…
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"Load Factor" is an indicator of how steady an electrical load is over time. If your electric billing rate includes both an Energy (kWh) and Demand (kW) charge, your load factor can be calculated by the following formula: L.F. (percent) = [(Total kWh)/(# Days in Bill Cycle x 24 hrs/day)]/[Peak kW …
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for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz power supply service.  You would probably have to open up portions of the sheet rock (or whatever wall material you have) in order to snake electrical cable from the switch up to where the fan is going to be mounted. There are wiring code restric…
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Answer I believe it has to do with the windings in the motor. When wired to 120V, half the motor has a positive polarity and the other half has a negative polarity. Then as the current alternates (60 hertz AC) the polarity flips, the magnetic poles oppose each other and cause the motor to spin. …
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220 volt AC current is achieved by having two 110 volt lines with opposite waves or phases. One line will be positive while the other is negative then they flip or alternate 60 times a second (60 hertz). When connecting a volt meter to each of these lines it will read 220volts. Connecting a volt met…
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Most (if not all) city codes require outlets be wired with 12 gauge wire and a 20 amp breaker. Lights can be wired with 14 gauge and 15 amps. One, or possibly a million. The question you need to ask youself is how do you intend to load this 15A circuit. It already has a light on it. Is that all? …
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Answer Your power supply will fluctuate small amounts without you even noticing. But when the lights start dimming then you could be getting into the amount of fluctuation that can cause damage. Since you said your neighbors house dims when your a/c comes on, (you must have a huge a/c!) I would w…
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Gary, If you do this you are going to toast your CD player. I suppose you are thinking because the VA that it will be ok. It won't. Your CD is not desinged to handle the higher voltage . This is really no different that taking a 120 volt microwave and trying to plug it into 240 volt source; and I …
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There are lots of ways to wire 3-ways. Since I can't see your setup I'll just give you the basics. Each switch has a common . Between the switches, you have to have the traveler wires. You can use your 14-2 for this. On the common screws, you have either a feed, or a switch leg . Now how you get tho…
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This depends upon the circuit breaker capacity. You may never load a circuit to greater than 80% of it's capacity. So you may load up to 12 Amps on a 15 Amp circuit, and, 16 Amps on a 20 Amp circuit. The National Electrical Code requires you to calculate each receptacle at 180 VA.If the circuit is …
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Gunny, Planning your outlet location requires following a couple simple rules. You need to have one every 12 feet of runnning wall space and one for every 2 ft of usable wall space. You usually find those in between closet doors etc, it does not count the space behind doors. You also consider usable…
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Absolutely not. #2awg conductors are only good for about 100 amps depending on Cu or al. see nec table 310-16.
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for USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz power supply service.Circuit loading In North America there shall be not more that 12 outlets on any 2 wire branch circuit. Such outlets shall be considered to be rated at not more that 1 amp per outlet. Where the connected load is known, the number of o…
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