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MeasurementBlues

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Senior Technical Editor

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MeasurementBlues

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  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • Michael, Check out this segment of This Old House on electrical inspections. http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/tv/house-project/overview/0,,20870180,00.html BTW, I know the house in this project. My aunt and uncle owned the house for 45 years, selling it tothe current owners in 2011. I drove by the house last week after watching all of this season's episodes.
  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • Michael, Looking at the terminal strip (fourth figure from top), I'd suggest making better connections. The wires should be wrapped around the screws and not sticking out. Also, too much bare insulation.
  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • Michael, I'm in the process of choosing new colors for my house. Your lighthouse is cool. When the time comes, give it some accent color.
  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • Michael, Before you set out to deal with house wiring, make sure you know what you're doing. Being an electrical engineer doesn't necessarily qualify you as an electrician. At a previous place of residence had the kitchen renovated by the owner who sold it to us. He was an electrical engineer. One day, we noticed that the refrigerator sometimes stopped working. If I recall correctly, the breaker kept tripping. I called an electrician. The previous owner had run a line and installed an outlet, but the connection he made was done just using caplugs and the connection was left in the wall. No fire box. The electrician had to make several cuts in the wall to find the connection. Clearly, this was a DIY job that couldn't possibly meet code. So if you do your own wiring, at least make sure you have and study the local electrical code. In my locality, you are allowed to do your own wiring but plumbing must be done by a licensed plumber. A neighbor found that out when he renovated last year.
  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • I had also made a breaker map of the previous house. Don't need one here. One breaker per room, plus others for fridge, diswhasher/disposal, washer & dryer, and dedicated circuits for window air conditioners. When I specified the locations of the lights and switches, I increased lighting in the basement from three bulbs to eight. But, I forgot to specify basement outlets. There was one duplex outlet that the contractor installed to use for saws and such. It was mounted on the ceiling but fortunately, it had enough wire to bring it down to a useful place. But, the basement still needed more. I installed a double duplex in a work area and a single duplex near the boiler and water heater to make things easy for plumbers.
  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • My previous house had a 60A service with fuses when we moved in. We upgraded to 100A with circuit breakers. There was one circuit that had lights and outlets all over the house. Whenever the laser printer turned on, the lights in that room and others would dim. In my current home, all wiring was replaced when we renovated in 2011. It sure is nice to have all grounded outlets in the house. No more 3-prong/2-prong adapters. When we first moved in, the office lights would dim whenever the laser printer turned on. I don't recall if that ended when we replaced the printer or when I replaced the lighting with LED. Well OK, one of the three recessed lights is now a CFL. The LED developed a heat problem in that after being on for about 15 minutes, it would turn off for a minute or two while it cooled, then turn on again. The cycle continued every few minutes after that. The CFL, which preceded the LED, takes about 3 minutes to reach full brighness. But, it's one of two bulbs on the switch. The other is LED, which comes immediately to full brightness. So, nobody complains about the CFL coming up slowly.
  • 05.19.2015
  • New house brings electric woes
  • Speaking of Mr. Bell We all know the famous words of Alexander Graham Bell, "Mr. Watson. Come Here. I need you" spoken in 1876. That first use of a telephone occurred in Bell's lab in Boston. Of course, Bell didn't stop there. His lab occupied space at the Charles Williams Jr. shop where Williams manufactured telegraph equipment. http://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/rowe-s-and-columns/4438031/Help-save-a-part-of-engineering-history
  • 05.10.2015
  • Football and the Ideal Gas Law
  • Now that the Patriots have accepted the NFL's punishment, the case is closed even if the NFL is technically wrong. Here in Boston, sports radio has been 48/7 (two stations) deflategate for two weeks. It's time to move on. The Patriots will win the Super Bowl again, which will be the ultimate of "in your face."
  • 05.18.2015
  • DesignCon 2016 opens call for papers
  • "we are one week earlier this time because of the Super Bowl being played in Levi’s Stadium" I almost didn't make it to DesignCon 2015, just managed to beat the approaching snow.