Tingling fingers when touching metal shower knobs

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  #1  
Old 03-08-07, 06:18 AM
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Tingling fingers when touching metal shower knobs

Does anyone have any idea what would cause someone's fingers to tingle when turning on & off the shower knobs? Could there be some electrical wiring in contact with piping that causes this? I thought it was just me, but my wife asked me about it this morning and said my kids felt it as well.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

Matt
 
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  #2  
Old 03-08-07, 07:03 AM
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Wink

You could start with a meter and read from it to ground and see what you get. Turn off one breaker at a time in the panel and see if it stops when that breaker is off. Unplug anything that is pluged in No mater if its on or off.
Sometimes its hard to find a electric leak. Do you have any GFI's are they working.
 
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Old 03-08-07, 03:24 PM
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do you have an electric water heater?

Do you have plastic or copper plumbing?

Are your fixtures grounded? (I'll bet you don;t actually know. Most folks don't)
 
  #4  
Old 03-08-07, 06:51 PM
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Where are you standing when you touch the metal shower knobs, and what is on your feet and are they wet or dry?

Do you have metal faucet handles on your kitchen or bathsinks or bathtub or laundry(washing machine) spigots... and have you felt them for tingling?

Is this a regular house or mobile home?

Has any electrical work been done recently?

Is your water heater on the same house level as the shower or is the water heater one floor or more lower?

Is your electrical panel box on the same level as the shower or is the panel box one or more levels below the shower?

Do you have a water meter and do you have a heavy gauge copper wire strapped to the water meter pipe?

Do you ever remember mowing your yard out by the meter outside and mowing over a copper wire to a ground rod?
 
  #5  
Old 03-08-07, 07:06 PM
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Where are you standing when you touch the metal shower knobs, and what is on your feet and are they wet or dry?
-In the Shower...Wet

Do you have metal faucet handles on your kitchen or bathsinks or bathtub or laundry(washing machine) spigots... and have you felt them for tingling?
-Yes they are metal...didn't notice anything, but I wasn't wet, either.

Is this a regular house or mobile home?
-Regular house on concrete slab

Has any electrical work been done recently?
-No...not besides replacing an arced wire about 1 year ago.

Is your water heater on the same house level as the shower or is the water heater one floor or more lower?
-Water heater is on the same level...one story house.

Is your electrical panel box on the same level as the shower or is the panel box one or more levels below the shower?
-Same level...out in the old garage area.

Do you have a water meter and do you have a heavy gauge copper wire strapped to the water meter pipe?
-???

Do you ever remember mowing your yard out by the meter outside and mowing over a copper wire to a ground rod?
-I don't remember any of the ground wires being loose. It's cold in NJ, so we haven't really been outside in months and this has happened recently.
 
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Old 03-08-07, 07:18 PM
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if you care to answer my questions, I have some ideas depending on the answers.

If you have an electric water heater, you might try turning off the breaker to the heater and then have one of the sensitive folks take a shower or do whatever it took for them to feel the tingle.

If you have electric heater and the tingling stops, you may have a heater element shorting out.\\

if this does not give you an answer, fill us in on the other questions I asked.

Do you know if you electrical system has a ground rod outside? Do you know where it is? Could somebody have damaged the wire going to it by shoveling snow or plowing the drive or other ways?
 
  #7  
Old 03-09-07, 10:49 AM
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do you have an electric water heater?
-Gas Water heater

Do you have plastic or copper plumbing?
-Copper plumbing inside the walls...plastic under the sinks.

Are your fixtures grounded? (I'll bet you don;t actually know. Most folks don't)
-Don't know...there are grounding wires outside and they all seem to be properly in place.

Thanks...
 
  #8  
Old 03-09-07, 05:02 PM
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The reason I asked MY questions was to establish how it is likely that while you are in your tub, that if a wire is in contact with your tub or plumbing, that it is simply not going to ground, downstream, with a short also being downstream. Now that you have said that both your water heater (gas, which now we can eliminate, unless you have a power vent model that is plugged into 120v) and the panel box are on your level, the path to ground can possibly share the direction it cares to travel (path of least resistance is now possibly more equal since the path from a possible short to ground is as close to the ultimate ground by going through your tub/pipes as would be if it took the path to the panel box) . Obviously, and lucky for you, the bulk of the short is going to ground the proper way, while some is going through YOU.

But this applies IF your electrical is grounded good. If it isn't, the bulk is traveling though the metal handles and pipes and you get some of it.

In touching the handles, have you only touched one knob at a time with just one hand? And are you standing in water in a metal or fiberglass tub?

Keep in mind that with electrical problems as this, it's not good to test fate and that IF you were to touch both handles at once...one in one hand and another knob in the other hand, the current could go through your body, crossing your heart.

It is possible also that a bare wire could be touching your drainpie somewhere and by you stranding in the water, you complete the circuit to ground, albeit weak, reverse of what you now think, by having the current go through your feet, first, and into your arm/hands and then into (rather than OUT of) the handle, where then it connects to the metal plumbing and gets to ground, that way.

You need to go on as search and destroy mission.

Make sure your electrical box is grounded for sure. Then make sure electrical wires are not touching either your drain pipes or water supply pipes somewheres.
 
  #9  
Old 03-17-07, 01:16 PM
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you have a hot ground in your house! call a electrican
 
  #10  
Old 03-17-07, 04:25 PM
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I'm with the cable guy. You have a potentialy serious problem. In the meantime, stay out of the shower! Yesterday's tingle could be tomorrow's fatal shock. Especially vulnerable are children.
 
  #11  
Old 03-18-07, 07:47 AM
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It's never a good idea to use your body as a piece of test equipement to measure a shock - get some pro help !!
 
  #12  
Old 03-18-07, 02:53 PM
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I wish he'd post back so we'd know he is okay, and what he found.
 
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