electric coil bathroom heater

Old 01-19-04, 04:11 PM
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electric coil bathroom heater

I obviously screwed up with my orig posting, so here goes again:

Nutone electric coil bathrn heater came as O.E. in my 40 yr old house. Unit was left on for an hr yesterday, and commenced smoking and emiting burning plastic smell. The overhead flourescent lites had become dim. This unit is wall mounted 1200 W. 120V. Unit has OFF ON switch. 2 vertical spring like coils get hot. This heats the rm. Unit enclosed in 12"x18" steel box in wall. 2 wires enter box from bottom hole. Some plastic insulation was burned/melted off the wires. A wire nut lay in bottom of box with broken piece of wire inside. One wire was sticking out by itself bare. Another (maybe the partner of the bare one) was dropped/fused onto another set of wires. There is a separate switch to turn this unit off and on located in the bathrm's electrical outlets box. It was not blackened nor smoking.

Can you help me?

Old 01-20-04, 08:35 AM
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Chances are there was a poor connection in the wiring at the heater. It can probably be fixed easily by cutting off any burned or melted insulation/wire and reconnecting all the wires securely. The wall switch should be fine, but if it's 40 years old, I'd pull it out and check for loose connections there as well.

Honestly, after 40 years of loyal service, I'd seriously consider retirement of the old unit and replacement with a newer safer one. Open coils are out these days.

Good luck,
Doug M.

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