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Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: iwire] #168134 08/27/07 06:13 PM
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 169
ChicoC10 Offline
Assuming the inspector came to have a look at that and found a properly strained cord plugged into a neatly trimmed receptacle would he have:

Called it for grandfathered internal bonding that they made a no no in 1999?
Pulled the cover plate and even the device to check for mis wiring, conductor sizing and grounding of any metal boxes?
Checked the over current protection rating at the panel feeding this device?
Crawled every inch of the branch conductor to insure it was properly supported and any splices were done in an appropriate box(grounded) with cover?
Just said "Looks good from here." and taken the citizens money without a real and true inspection?

I'm not saying having third party verification of a contractors work is unnecessary. I'm sure without any inspectors quality would suffer.
I'm just saying that the ultimate responsibility for a code compliant and safe install falls upon the installer in the end and anyone who's livelihood is on the line is probably going to take that seriously or go out of business.
And even then who's to stop someone from going in behind you and modifying your work rendering it illegal? I saw that it had happened to me just this morning.

How many people will live with a loose receptacle or an iffy switch or even a fixture dangling from the conductors because they can't afford an electrician much less a permit.
Then there's the scheduling process than even seasoned GCs can't get right sometimes and it becomes a very daunting thought to some people. They just might and probably do choose to live with the fire hazard rather than the unknown of what the city/county might throw at them. Or they may attempt it themselves.

And above all nothing short of outright fascism is ever going to stop the motivated homeowner and his neighbor who "knows how" from performing work that varies from very scary to quite impressive.

my 2 cents


2017 / 2014 NEC & Related Books and Study Guides
Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: ChicoC10] #168189 08/28/07 07:36 PM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 174
kale Offline
There is a 'tipping point' at which the requirement for permits and inspections make them less likely to happen. If you make the process too difficult or too expensive, then people will do it themselves or not do it at all.

Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: iwire] #168583 09/09/07 10:12 PM
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 362
Obsaleet Offline
Here in Pa this common place. The appliance delivery guys are the ones who install the cord when they drop off the unit, unless someone is there to do the install or they are told not to. Another good one is the hot tub guys, but thats another story.


Choose your customers, don't let them choose you.
Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: kale] #168663 09/12/07 12:59 AM
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 288
yaktx Offline
If you make the process too difficult or too expensive, then people will do it themselves or not do it at all.

That's it in a nutshell. Recently, I was explaining this to a customer who was afraid that a service upgrade would require a complete rewire. I explained that if replacing a sketchy 60-year old service required gutting the house, no one would do it, and that could only adversely affect safety.

Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: yaktx] #168664 09/12/07 01:38 AM
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 288
yaktx Offline
And the whole NEMA 10/NEMA14 thing...

It's a can of worms, but it was a can of worms long before 1999 (actually '96 IIRC). You can't explain the proper way to ground a range or dryer to a DIYer (something that really ought to be dirt simple), because every manufacturer has a different way of making the jumper.

Suppose you remove the bonding jumper and install a four-wire cord. Then the customer moves to an older house, and installs a three-wire cord, but fails to restore the jumper.

Or, suppose the customer buys a Bosch or other European-made dryer, which has no 120V components and therefore requires no neutral. What it does have is a floating neutral terminal that serves only to park the unused conductor, and a NEMA 6-15R on the back for plugging in a 240V washer. There is no jumper from the "neutral" terminal to ground. This particular oddity was not covered in the appliance installer's five-minute training session, so the appliance had no equipment ground, and would still not have one if an electrician had not been called in to relocate the receptacle (since it was a long circuit, wired with 10/2 NM, never code-compliant but long accepted here, I couldn't justify a NEMA 14 upgrade to the customer).

That's not to say that I think the '96 change was a bad idea. The confusion is traceable to 1947, when the practice of grounding an appliance through the neutral became officially sanctioned. The 1940 NEC allowed it only with special permission of the AHJ. Apparently, many inspectors allowed it due to wartime shortage of copper, and it was later formalized.

I personally blame this anomaly for the common practice of blurring the lines between neutral and EGC in subpanels. I wish it were only DIYers who were doing this stuff, but I've seen numerous examples where the offender was clearly an electrician. My codebook collection goes back to 1940, and I can't find where it has ever been legal to ground a subpanel with a neutral.

I received an email today from the Texas licensing authority. Today's news is that appliance installation now requires a license. I'm certain that the NEMA 10/NEMA 14 confusion is responsible for this.

The permitted practice of grounding certain appliances through the neutral was long justified on the basis of the excellent safety record of these appliances, but IMHO this missed the point. For simplicity's sake, we need one rule for services, and another for branch circuits and utilization equipment. I look forward to the day when NEMA 10 is a rare curiosity to be written up on an Electrical Nostalgia thread, but I doubt I'll live to see it.

If you make permits and inspections too complicated, people will DIY without them. If you make the code too complicated, sometimes even the pros will mess it up. And some people will DIY no matter what you do, so doesn't it make sense to make things simple enough that people can understand them?

Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: yaktx] #168666 09/12/07 06:20 AM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,492
Texas_Ranger Offline
That's it in a nutshell. Recently, I was explaining this to a customer who was afraid that a service upgrade would require a complete rewire. I explained that if replacing a sketchy 60-year old service required gutting the house, no one would do it, and that could only adversely affect safety.

Actually that's the legal requirement in Austria. Do any major changes (and changing a panel already counts as one) and have to bring everything up to code, down to the last receptacle. Of course reality differs a little... most electricians have fairly loose interpretations of what a major change is. The Germans on the other hand are usually far worse - most I know would refuse to add a circuit to a panel older than let's say 30 years without redoing the service.

Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: Theelectrikid] #168673 09/12/07 03:10 PM
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 810
Theelectrikid Offline
To quote myself:

Originally Posted by Theelectrikid
What I wound up doing was shutting the breaker off, and just swapping the cord to the new range, as my mother wouldn't let me pull down the green board (or cut a bigger hole in it) to move the receptacle to the outside of the wall. Oh well, can't win 'em all I guess.

Oh bother, I told my mother one of the reasons to remove the board and put the outlet on the surface (thus covering that hole) is that mice love Levittown houses. Lo and behold, the cat got an early dinner last night...

Ian A.

Is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
Re: Another Hack Dryer Install [Re: iwire] #168929 09/20/07 05:11 PM
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 152
Ann Brush Offline
Iwire, like I said I am a perpetual violator - while there are many good reasons to do it we have yet to find one that's practical.

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