Lights Dim When Using Iron

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  #1  
Old 06-10-03, 07:58 AM
dbclark79
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Question Lights Dim When Using Iron

My wife and I purchased a new house 2 years ago in the Chicagoland, IL area. We've found that when we use our iron to press our clothes that our lights dim when the iron kicks on and then go bright when the iron kicks off.

When we asked our builder about this situation he responded that the regular bedroom outlets are not wired for high amperage and that we should plug our iron into the bathroom outlets because they are wired for 15 amps.

I agree that the bathroom wiring does support higher amps but I'm not yet convinced that normal bedroom outlets shouldn't be able to handle an iron without dimming the lights. For example, I've never seen lights dim in a hotel room when an iron is used.

Am I getting a line of bull or is the builders response legitimate?
Is there anything I can do short of always plugging the iron into the bathroom outlet, which is extremely inconvenient?
 
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  #2  
Old 06-10-03, 10:26 AM
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In an existing home the lighting may have been put on the same circuit as the receptacles. So yes an iron would probably dim the lights a little. But this is not a problem more of a nusance. He is also correct that the bath has larger wiring , but so does the kitchen, diningroom and laundry.The iron canbe used where it is convienient for you unless it is triping the circuit breaker.
 
  #3  
Old 06-10-03, 10:39 AM
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I do have a question for you you said "When we asked our builder about this situation he responded that the regular bedroom outlets are not wired for high amperage and that we should plug our iron into the bathroom outlets because they are wired for 15 amps"
How many amps does he think the bedroom outlets are rated for?
How many outlets are on the circuit in question and what else is being used on that circuit?
I think your builder would be well off to consult an electrician about the situation from what you have said so far it seems he really is out of his element and may be trying to get out of correcting a problem that might come out of his pocket.

You have another post about voltage drop and I would say your dealing with the same problem but from a different angle. You would be well off to have the wiring inspected by an outside electrician and see if you have a conductor Or conductors damaged causing the problem and at the same time find out what size of wire was pulled though the house in the first place.
 
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Old 06-10-03, 01:27 PM
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I've never seen an iron that did not dim lights that were on the same 15-amp circuit.

The builder either misspoke or you misheard. I'm sure your bathroom receptacle is on a 20-amp circuit.

Just continue using your iron as you have been doing and ignore the dimming lights. Consider the dimming lights as a delightful warning feature that allows you to tell if you forgot to turn the iron off. Alternatively, do what your builder suggested and use the bathroom receptacle.
 
  #5  
Old 06-10-03, 03:36 PM
dbclark79
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Suprised!

Wow - I'm a bit surprised to learn that dimming lights when an iron kicks on is "normal" for new houses. I guess my expectation was that this "symptom", although expected for houses build 15+ years ago would, would not be prevalent today.

Thanks for the clarification that I probably have nothing to worry about.
 
  #6  
Old 06-10-03, 10:53 PM
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I believe most people would iron in the laundry area. Code prohibits any lighting on a laundry area receptacle. So for most people, it would not be an issue.
 
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