bad wiring?

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Old 02-20-04, 03:56 AM
popcorn_popper
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bad wiring?

Hi, when I first bought this house 10 years ago the breakers tripped constantly. After replacing many of them it was much less frequent. What hasn't stopped is the flourescent lights in the bathroom not turning on everytime you flip the wall switch. Also the wall sockets burn out constantly. And lastly the appliances do not work correctly, I've replaced the stove twice, the fridge twice the disposal twice, the dishwasher once, the TV twice, the VCR twice, the hot water heater once, the central air(both units) and light bulbs blow constantly.
I called electricians in my area and other areas and they all say "we don't rewire houses, sorry".

Any advice is greatly appreciated.
 
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Old 02-20-04, 07:44 AM
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I really hope that when you replaced the breakers, you were incredibly careful to replace them with one of the same amperage rating!! If not, you're living on borrowed time.

Many fluorescent fixtures need a good ground to start reliably. If you have no ground, you could try new bulbs, new ballasts or new fixtures.

I'm not sure what you mean by "wall sockets burn out constantly," but it scares the hell out of me!!

Replacing appliance frequently could be indicative of a loose neutral connection. I'd start by having the power company check it out. However, this can't account for your water heater problem.

You need to find a good electrical residential service company. They exist. There's no way I'd sleep comfortably in your house.
 
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Old 02-20-04, 01:35 PM
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by "wall sockets burn out constantly" I mean you'll plug something into a wall socket, there will be a spark, and the socket no longer works. You replace the socket and it works for a while, then happens again.
 
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Old 02-20-04, 05:28 PM
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This really is scary!!!!! My guess is you didn't have the house inspected before purchase. It sounds like you need some new circuits ran & the old wiring removed.
 
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Old 02-20-04, 05:41 PM
popcorn_popper
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As I said, I've called all electricians in my area and surrounding areas, including the city, and they all say "we don't rewire houses, sorry".

Do you have any suggestions?
 
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Old 02-20-04, 06:30 PM
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You only have two options:
1) Look harder for someone who is expert enough to troubleshoot and find out what's going on with the electrical system in your house. Have them fix the problem.

2) Become an expert yourself (today), buy all the stuff you need to troubleshoot and find out what's going on with the elctrical system in your house. Fix the problem yourself.

There is a reasonable explaination for your problems but the process of discovering the cause of those problems does take some knowledge and equipment. If you wish to attempt fixing the problems then start by purchasing a good voltmeter and a clamp type ammeter. There are some combination units out there that have both instruments combined in a single unit. Very quickly learn how to use the equipment and become competent in troubleshooting electrical problems today.

Also start by calling your local power company and have them check out your service. I'd say that the chances are better than 50-50 that there is something going on with the connections to the pole transformer outside.

Were I to live in that house I'd be down inside the breaker panel taking some measurments of voltages and currents. Looking at the information that gives you will go a long way in deciding just what the problem might be.

While considering which options (or combinations thereof) might be best for you I'd make sure that the smoke detectors in my house were working and/or sleep with one eye open at night.
 
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Old 02-20-04, 06:42 PM
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Look harder for a good electrician. I can't imagine ever telling a customer we don't rewire houses. My concern for you is the fact that you are replacing appliances and I am not sure what you mean by burning out sockets. You could very well have a bad ground and neutral coming into your main service. I have seen where the neutral is lost coming into the house and the ground not being up to par may only work partially. This can cause some pretty large voltage fluctuations. This past winter I saw one house getting almost 160 volts on one leg. That will burn out most appliances.
Be extremely careful if you check your ground because if you have no neutral that ground is carrying the entire load for your house and can be deadly
Please call your power company to check your outside connections and call some more electricians.
Good luck
 
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Old 02-21-04, 11:36 AM
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Sorry I missed that in the O.P popcorn,as itngbolt said "look harder".Its still very slow here, I would love to do a rewire on a house now.
 
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Old 02-21-04, 11:55 AM
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The best suggestion is one that has already been given several times in this thread: call your power company.
 
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