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RIP 1959-2015
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Client calls;

"My TV Buzzed out it was loud!, Then I heard a crackling sound and more Buzzing on the other side of the room next to the sliding door to the back porch, there is a switch-box there and the wall is burning hot with a melted plastic smell.....

Okay, go to your basement and shut off the main breaker and I'll be there in an hour.

So I look at the switch box, it looks fine and the wall is cool now, no smoke marks around the box are showing so I open it up to have a look it stunk of electrical burning,but nothing is showing in the box itself, but there is no power there either( I turned on all the breakers when I got there),,,Hmmm:blink: Okay so I open the receptacle below in, nothing showing there either, this box had 2 14/3's feed through red leg switched,that still had power from the red leg, but that's coming from a 4 way switch near the front door. So I open some of the other receptacles just to make sure they're ok, then I open the panel (ITE) everything checks out.

So there is only one thing left to do,,,,That's Right Cut open the wall around the switch, the last thing I want to do because now the grand total will jump big on the client, so I told him there really is no choice and your insurance will cover it, I started out with a 4" hole saw and sure enough the paper on the insulation was black from flames, so out to the truck for the sawzall, let the fun begin...:laughing:

Here is the inside of the switch-box..



This is the inside of the wall....:eek:



As you can see on this one is that if the outside-wall was not so tight it would have had more oxygen and this four family condo would have gone up in flames, but I suspect that there was not enough oxygen to feed it so some of the paper burnt itself out.



All the wiring was good here, the problem was the siders were using long nails in their nail gun about 15 years ago when this place was built, these outside-walls are 2x6 construction so you would think that there would be enough room for the wires,,,,Nope...

 

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RIP 1959-2015
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39,618 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
This is the top of the switch-box...



So I pulled that off of the stud because the problem was behind the box, as I was doing so I got more sparks but the breaker held, so they are probably "NO-BLOW-BREAKERS":laughing:




These two are in love....



Gotta love those nail guns...:eek::laughing:

 

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Challenger boxes, Ettcoflex and bakelite wirenuts...I just talked about that in Shockdocs thread the other day. :laughing::laughing:
 

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Yikes :eek: Good find. Drywall patching is a drop in the bucket compared to getting your house burnt down.
 

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So how did you fix it Harry?
 

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RIP 1959-2015
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yikes :eek: Good find. Drywall patching is a drop in the bucket compared to getting your house burnt down.
Man that's a four family condo with kids dogs cats and other critters so that timing was just right.

Bu here is the question, That whole complex was done by the same siding crew....:eek:
 

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Man that's a four family condo with kids dogs cats and other critters so that timing was just right.

Bu here is the question, That whole complex was done by the same siding crew....:eek:
Sounds like fire extinguishers need to be issued, :001_huh: :eek:
 

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Sometimes its unavoidable but with new houses i try to tell them we dont drill and run wire til the siders are done for this very reason. I know you cant help it when it gets re-sided and you cant stop everything. I had a builder complain because i said i wasnt starting until they were done, told him i had to fix problems like these before, then he was ok with it.
 

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RIP 1959-2015
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So how did you fix it Harry?
"Made safe" for now, the condo owner wants the insurance to have a look and then we can jump in and do it.

I called out my Carpenter buddy for the patch and paint work, This is a VIP client so there will be no issues on getting paid......:thumbup:
 

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RIP 1959-2015
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
After hours rate.:thumbup: What made you open up the drywall?
Absolutely everything else checked out, so that is the next step, I knew off of the bat however if I did not check everything else I could have screwed myself if nothing was showing in there.
 
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