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#16438 - 11/11/02 05:10 PM Violation after Violation
master66 Offline

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 260
Loc: Masontown, PA, USA
As most of you know, I am working for a large electrical contractor after giving up my business of 10 years.

I have been frustrated to see work installed on a couple of jobs that violates the NEC.

This is stuff that isn't necessarily unsafe but it just isn't right and I would have never done this in my own business.

In most cases the supervisor not only knows about it but is the one telling the others to install it that way.

- Troughs / Pull boxes WAY undersized.
- 3" EMT conduit entering a pull box through a concrete floor using compression connectors with the compression nuts removed (because they wouldn't fit through the cored hole) secured with duct tape.
- oversized flex/MC box connectors used on #2 MC feeders.
- #12-2 / 12-3 / 14-2 MC not secured properly. Secured with cable ties to sprinkler lines and plumbing lines. Not secured within 12" of boxes and tied only to other cables for support.
- (Almost forgot) 3" PVC adapted to 3" GRC with a PVC coupling pounded over the unthreaded end of the GRC.

Am I just "Nit-picking" ?

[This message has been edited by master66 (edited 11-11-2002).]

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#16439 - 11/11/02 05:38 PM Re: Violation after Violation
Wirenuttt Offline

Registered: 11/10/02
Posts: 267
Loc: Massachusetts
I know where your at. It's injustice to the ones who work according to workmans like manner, not only for code puposes, but for piece of mind. It's hard fighting these guys out there in big companies if their policies are good fast and cheap. There's not much I feel you can do, you'll only end up looking like the bad guy if they are all against you.

#16440 - 11/11/02 05:59 PM Re: Violation after Violation
sparky Offline

Registered: 10/18/00
Posts: 5545
I've also worked for similar companies, i sense the 'tude is that if nobody notices just do it....

#16441 - 11/11/02 07:05 PM Re: Violation after Violation
sparky66wv Offline

Registered: 11/17/00
Posts: 2334
Loc: West Virginia

Let me guess, you're working in West Virginia...

I worked three weeks for an outfit whose EC's favorite phrase was "see no evil" when I confronted him with questionable practices...

Another who said (I mentioned somewhere before) if it lasts a year, it'll be a service call (but that was in Wisconsin)...

Two more that I thought were "code geeks" like us, but turned out to be snowing me...

It's the main reason I became determined to do this on my own.

#16442 - 11/11/02 10:11 PM Re: Violation after Violation
EDW Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/10/02
Posts: 5
Loc: Delavan WI USA
No master66 I don't think your "nit picking"
I think you take pride in your work, somthing
we could use alot more of in this bussiness and this country. I too have seen some pretty
bad things out there and can only say that the only thing we have to sell as profesionals is our work. If you can,t take pride in what you do it ain't worth doing, so in turn theres times I've had to walk.Just my opinion.

#16443 - 11/11/02 10:12 PM Re: Violation after Violation
nesparky Offline

Registered: 06/21/01
Posts: 650
Loc: omaha,ne
Now you know why bids are so low. These clowns doing that type of work are easily able to under bid those who plan it right.
The bad part of it is the AHJ,s let them get away with it because their " THE BIG BOYS".
I have seen this too many times in more than one area/state. Junky work make all of us look bad.
Those of us who try and plan to do work correctly are getting under bid by these short cutters.

#16444 - 11/12/02 03:28 AM Re: Violation after Violation
gramps Offline

Registered: 08/25/02
Posts: 120
Loc: ohio
i know exactly what your saying! i got fired from a large "merit" shop once, for taking too many manhours to do a job, and for using materials the estimator hadnt figured into his bid, causing the company to lose money on the jobs i did. no one mentioned the fact that all of my final inspections were successful, and that the customers were pleased with the work. that seemed secondary to the company's philosophy of doing the job cheap and fast the first trip, then charging for an additional service call, when we have to go back and fix it right.
btw, this particular company "prides" itself in the large numbers of young apprentices it signs off on each year, compared to other shops in the area. makes the future kinda scary, doesnt it?

on a final note, the guys doing the estimating and bidding for this company are not electricians at all.....they were hardware store salesmen or wholesale sales reps., before becoming "highly qualified" electrical estimators.........go figure..

#16445 - 11/12/02 04:53 AM Re: Violation after Violation
electure Offline


Registered: 12/24/00
Posts: 4226
Loc: Fullerton, CA USA
A lot of my job involves warranty work.
I see all the "little nasties" that are done by the crews. When I report these to the company, they are noted, more vigorously when it's cost the company $$$. Often these are passed on to the crews with a warning not to do it again. More often than not, the guys in the field ignore them (Have you ever heard "That's the way we always do it?").
Unfortunately, many inspectors here in SoCA either have so little time to inspect, are lazy slackers, or just don't have enough Code knowledge to properly inspect the jobs and these practices continue.
(Although not quite as bad as some that you describe.)
so the vicious cycle goes on...and on...and on. S

#16446 - 11/12/02 05:30 AM Re: Violation after Violation
electric-ed Offline

Registered: 07/08/02
Posts: 184
Loc: Canada
This situation could not exist if it were not for another factor that I don't think has been mentioned yet - the blissful ignorance of many customers.


[This message has been edited by electric-ed (edited 11-12-2002).]

#16447 - 11/12/02 07:48 PM Re: Violation after Violation
Jim M Offline

Registered: 08/10/01
Posts: 453
Loc: Chestertown, MD, USA
I can echo all of the feeling above.

A few weeks ago I was talking to someone who had done some work at a job prior to me. They had used white PVC adapters for part of a feeder to an outbuilding. I asked if this was inspected. He said the inspector had no problem with this. At the same job the neutrals and grounds are terminated in the same hole on the buss. This too has a sticker from the inspector that all is OK. I got the red sticker for work that I hadn't done, the ears were loose on an old work box. Go figure.

I have also heard that the inspectors will also approve NM-B outside in conduit. So much for quality control. What do you do when you need to teach the inspector their job?

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