Siding guy nailed into service entrance cables!


Old 04-29-08, 09:52 PM
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Siding guy nailed into service entrance cables!

I came home today to find that the guy doing the siding put a nail into each of my new 200amp entrance cables that are going to be hooked up after siding is done. They each contain three 4/0 insulated wires and one 2/0 uninsulated, all wrapped in the gray covering-Type SE, Style Ser. Both of these cables have long runs (from the disconnects outside the garage, through the wall, up to the trusses, across the 24ft wide garage, back down the wall and through it into my basement and into the circuit breaker boxes.) I would say each is about 60ft long. I do not know if he pierced any of the insulation on the conductor wires. I will be telling the general contractor about it tomorrow and will have to tell electrician also, but wanted to know if this can still be used? Can you strip away the gray jacket so that the conductors can be checked? If the conductors all look fine, then re-cover that area and if the conductors insulation is knicked at all, can you tape them individually and then replace some kind of jacket over everything? Or does it all have to be replaced? This is not cheap wire, I think I saw it at $1100 for 150ft, which is nearly what I need. Of course I wouldn't have to pay for it, but since it is so expensive I don't want them telling me that it is OK to fix if it isn't. Would a fix be allowed by code?
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Old 04-30-08, 01:01 AM
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I will be wise get ahold of electrician to insepect the SER cables due the alum cable are pretty tricky to find a nick in the wire[s] once it get nicked it will be matter of time if the cable get corrored over the time.

because the way i see hard to say if they used proper wire strap to support it or not.

the electrician can able tell if everything is ok or not.

Old 04-30-08, 09:05 AM
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The aluminum cable makes this extra tricky, because even a small break in the insulation will let water in and corrode the cable from the inside. It could possibly be repaired with some "liquid tape" type material if the damage is only to the outer jacket, but the safe bet would be to replace the damaged cable.

Since it's not your fault, I would really push on the GC to replace the cable. Might as well make him fix it on his dollar. If the repair leaked, it would end up costing you down the road.

The siding guy better thank his lucky stars it wasn't hooked up yet!

edit: upon a second reading I saw this was the indoor portion of the cable -- less of a problem due to weather, but still the conductors need to be examined up close by the electrician.
Old 04-30-08, 01:07 PM
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If my undersatnding is correct, the "damaged goods" are two 200-amp Feeder cables routed across the interior of the building.

The safest, and most economical solution is to cut off the cables just past the point where the screws entered, and replace the cut-off cables with new cables that connect to the ends of the "in-place" cables at the cut-off point.

DO NOT GAMBLE with the damaged cables !!!!
Old 04-30-08, 03:56 PM
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Siding guy nailed into service entrance cables!

The contractor made a mistake that you can see.

If that is the case, call him and ask him to get a LICENCED electrician out to look at it or you will call an electrician before you pay him anything. If it helps, say you have photos (even you don't have them, but could take them).

Be nice and businesslike and give him at least 15 seconds before you call an electrician.

This is not a code item, but is a SAFETY item. - The required insulation has been penetrated.
Old 04-30-08, 08:58 PM
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I would not mess with any "fixing of the insulation" but request that the cables be entirely replaced or, as Pattbaa stated, that a proper splice be made in an approved splice box that is permanently accessible.

In my opinion nothing else is acceptable.
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