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#69633 09/15/06 01:27 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 482
Zapped Offline OP
I'll start with one from a couple of days ago.

I get a call to go out to a gentlemans rental property to address a problem with his AC. He explains that he also gets no fan, and has replaced the thermostat, but that didn't help.

He happens to be an electrical engineer.

I stand quietly and do my best to appear interested as he lays out for me what exactly I should be testing and inspecting, and in what order, for a good 15 minutes. The breakers, or maybe it's one of the busses, or perhaps blah blah blah...etc.

Then I walked up to the furnace and plugged it in.

The look on his face? Priceless.

#69634 09/15/06 06:46 PM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 821
About 10 years ago I went on a service call. Customer complained that the receptacle serving her living room television was not working. The first thing I noticed was no ceiling mounted light was present in the room. But just for giggles I decided to check for a tripped circuit breaker. Nothing was tripped so I asked the customer what each switch did in the living room. One was foyer light, another for outdoor coach lamp, and the third was for?

Yup, u guessed it, a switched receptacle was turned off!

Lady wanted to know if she would be charged for this "simple" service call. LOL

#69635 09/15/06 06:47 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,299
Likes: 6
Went to inspect a temporary out of the car, and couldn't stop laughing for a few minutes.

Posted a red sticker to 'call insp'

EC called, said 'what's wrong?' I said..'what's right is the two ground rods, that's it'

Re-inspect on 9/11...still all wrong, except the rods, and he installed a brand new panel.....NEMA1.

re-inspect 9/15....still the same as above, but now it's not making me laugh.


#69636 09/15/06 07:39 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 193
I've been working with a JW who seems to think he knows everything. Well we are working on the second floor of a building roughing in the slab.
All the open holes going down for various Coolers, Generators and such are covered with plywood for now. The plywood has "No pisar" written on it.
He looked at me with a straight face and said "You actually have to tell these animals not to pee in the holes"

I just left it alone.

For those who may not know. No pisar is spanish for "No step" or "Do not step"

"If common sense was common, everyone would have it"-not sure, someone here

#69637 09/15/06 07:40 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Cat Servant
My partner and I responded to a "no power to half the house" call from a property management firm.
We were greeted there by "Chong," who described the problem. Looking at the fuse box, the first thig we see is a good 30 amp fuse, carefully wrapped in aluminum foil. After removing this, checking the circuit with a meter, and installing the correct fuse, we went into the house.

Still no lights. Hmmm. As I approached the first fixture to look for clues, the roomate "Cheech" came down from the second floor.
"Hey, Man... I forgot to tell you I took the bulb, I needed it upstairs."

Let's see... light doesn't work... the first thing you do is get out the foil?

#69638 09/15/06 11:28 PM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 558
Back when I was a first year apprentice and was working at the retirement home, decided to play a little prank on our foreman.
Another apprentice and I were busy vacuuming out dirt and sucking in twine into all the underground feeder conduits when we got the bright idea to get the plumbers in on the prank too and pull a twine through one of the floor drains and tie it off elsewhere..
Immediately summoned our foreman and showed and told him that:
"When we vacuumed string into the pipe going to the west wing, the floor drain in the west wing shower room started to whistle so we put the string in anyway, and also Peter the plumber is having trouble with one of the toilets in the same area, said something about augering up some kind of wire out of the drain or something and would like to talk to you about it."

I swear, I have never ever seen someone get that worried / panic look on their face quite like that ever in my life, it was PRICELESS! Wish I had a camera THAT day!


#69639 09/16/06 01:18 AM
Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 717
I was 18 years old, a bonifide weakling of 118 pounds. My mom's connections go me working part time as a laborer at a bank construction site while attending the local JC. The super's name was Lucky. He was a fancy dresser. allways a white shirt and cowboy tie, and shiny cowboy boots. One day we were pumping concrete for one of the vaults when the hose tube got clogged up. Lucky ordered me to release the lever lock between hose sections. I pulled and yanked with all my might. No go. Finally Lucky got impatient and grabbed it out of my hands and gave it a yank. He got covered head to foot in concrete. All I could see was his eyes. After a little while he started laughing with everybody else in the room, and I kept my job.

#69640 09/16/06 06:53 AM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 81
Had a restaurant call me about servicing a toaster that did not work. He said he tried it in a different receptacle and no go. I was assuming it was one of those commerical toasters that cooks like 12 pieces of bread at a time. I get there and it is a Hamilton Beach toaster that probably retails for $9.99. I told him the unit was bad and gave him a bill for $75.00

#69641 09/16/06 02:10 PM
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 100
JJM Offline
You just gotta love restaurants... especially any electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and other "non-food related" work done by chefs and managers.

Chef says we need a new outlet, because the old outlet "wasn't powerful enough" for the fancy new commerical microwave oven, still with the blue plastic and stickers on it. They plugged it in, and "it no work".

Pull out my Fluke 335, and it's is reading 208V between both legs of the NEMA 6-30R 250V receptacle. I look at the cord on the new microwave, and it's a NEMA 5-20R 125V plug, but the vertical pin is twisted horizontally to "make it fit" into the receptacle. They said the company [manufacturter] must've put the wrong plug on, so they "fixed" it.

I explained to them that their fix just ruined the brand new oven... the new oven was 120V and they plugged it into a 208V outlet, and they new unit is now likely toast. They hoped it would only be a fuse, and I said I hope the Powerball ticket ticket in my wallet is the winner too, but that's not gonna be the case.

Since I felt bad they fried a brand new microwave, and it was on the way to my next stop and it was lunchtime, a turkey club and soda took care of the visit.



#69642 09/16/06 04:00 PM
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
e57 Offline
During a remodel of a lower floor, the owner one day complained of thier DSL being down - 'you must of cut something...'

So after tracing it out, noticed this line was NEVER CONNECTED. Not that it had a bad connection, it never had one. Not punched on the jack, not punched at the board.... [Linked Image] I punched it and charged for my time...

A few days later, owner passes on to the GC that there are some outlets not working in the kitchen, and the landscape lighting is not working. 'you must of cut something...' So I quickly notice a GFI CB in the panel is tripped - "Hey, they're on now" But the landscape lighting is still out. 'you must of cut something...' This one puzzled me, two switches in the kitchen had no voltage on the line side, I even ask myself 'did I cut something?' I break out the tracer, and start thinking if I wired this I would have put a 3-way to the other deck entrance to the deck.... Low and behold there is a 3-way switch there, I flip it, and the lights go on.... Seems someone wired it as some sort of unorthodox master switch to drop power to the two dimmers at the kitchen [Linked Image] I go back to the GC and tell him, and that I am going to charge for my time for that.... And I ask how long have they lived in this house - 4-5 years, and I tell him that in the past I have gone out to service calls for an outlet with no voltage only to find it was a switched outlet that they never knew about for people who lived in thier homes for 20+ years and never knew what that switch did....

Then a day later the GC says the customer says one of the recessed cans is out... 'you must of cut something...' I go to the GC and tell him, if I go up there, and it is something stupid I am going to charge for my time for that....I go out to my truck and hand him a bulb - try changing it? WOW - it works....

Then the GC asks me to get an estimate for adding some switched outlets that the owner wants in the finished areas of the house - 'this one, and this one...' So I take a quick peek - Funny, all the ones she wants switched are already switched... I go back to the GC and tell him, and that I am going to charge for my time for that.... It was a quick install..... [Linked Image] [Linked Image]

Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
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