I looked at a garage where the guy wanted me to move a welder outlet. It's next to a sub-panel (with holes) from the house. Leaning up against the sub-panel is some cardboard, and on the floor against the cardboard are two cans with gasoline.

After moving the cardboard and gasoline away from the panel I go in the house to see how the sub-panel is fed. I find a 40-amp, 240-volt breaker double-tapped with two 12-3 w/ground UF cables.

I guess his thinking was that if 12 ga. is good for 20-amps, then two of them are good for 40-amps. I told him if he had ten on the breaker it should still only be a 20-amp breaker. To top it off, the white wires were unused, with the bare ground going from neutral bar to neutral bar. No grounding in the detached garage, of course. I told him I'd have to fix the over-fuse before doing anything with the welder outlet and he wasn't interested.

I'm starting to give serious thought to charging the "diagnostics fee" that other contractors charge.



[This message has been edited by Dave55 (edited 11-16-2004).]