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#103713 - 11/02/02 09:31 AM Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
Joe Tedesco  Offline
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,749
Boston, Massachusetts USA
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[This message has been edited by Joe Tedesco (edited 09-27-2003).]

Joe Tedesco, NEC Consultant

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#103714 - 11/02/02 12:56 PM Re: Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
HotLine1  Offline

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,810
Brick, NJ USA
Fixing the violations would be a good thing.
The "split" greenfield is not that uncommon in a drop ceiling w/troffers that have been around a while. (debris on top of fixture leads me to believe this is an "older" building.)Just noticed you ststed that it's a year old??? Looks like "years of dust, dirt, and debris to me.

The EMT and 4" square probably was "in the way" and someone "relocated" it above the ceiling. It's an "oldie" also, note the single screw holding each receptacle.

The disco that's laying on it's back is "sloppy work". BTW, is this a plenum rated ceiling? I see PVC pipe, and I can't tell if thats NMC (RX) or phone/data cable draped around.

THe "18" disco" could be for "in sight of" reasoning, but if it's for a sub-panel, and it appears to be MC/Greenfield, and both go "down" in the photo, makes no sense. Maybe the disco was mounted there already, and someone re-used it. (More sloppy work)

The shot with the I-beam; what's wrong there?

If the masonry wall is a fire wall, the penetrations must be fire stopped. RX going thru w/HVAC pipes?? Unsupported RX? Plenum ceiling??

You're going to do another tap off the main disco?? Looks like dual lugs on load side already; can't be sure from photo. What plans do you have fot the taps?? What's the load on the ains now??



#103715 - 11/02/02 07:58 PM Re: Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
Scotts  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 209
Ventura, CA, USA
Run Forrest Run!!! Sorry my wife Watched Forrest Gump this morning.

Unless you are a starving electrician living in the streets you do not want your name associated with this pace in any way, the liability is too big!

#103716 - 11/05/02 07:41 AM Re: Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
JuddsAirco  Offline
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 49
Well I took my suggestions to the manager of this facility, he more or less told me that if I didn't get it done he would find someone else who could. Me being the way I am, explained in a professional way that it would be a good idea to look into getting these problems taken care of. But, moving toward the present, I would say that some less self-respecting electrician is there adding to the already maxed limits of the system. And on the troffers, I was just going by what I was told, I also brought up the fact that they looked older than they were estimated by him. But he seemed very insistent on the fact that he knew everything so I dropped it. No the ceiling is not plenum rated. One of the BX runs from disco 22 to a water heater mounted above the bathrooms, as you can see the shut off in the corner of the picture. The picture of the EMT going thru the channel is just another example of shoddy work. The mains in this facility usually pull around 350 to 400 amps per leg, during the normal 8A to 6P day. I also found a ground wire which runs from the stove in the employee kitchen to a single ground rod over 75 feet away, the wire is a single #12 THHN,(at least it's green). Hopefully this will shed some more light on the subject.

The lesson is in the struggle, not the victory.

#103717 - 11/05/02 11:54 AM Re: Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
mamills  Offline
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 745
Wharton, Texas, USA
As bad as the violations appear in the other pix, the service equipment looks to be the worst of all. I'm not an electrician, but there are a number of things which seriously concern me; 1)the fact that there is so much "double lugging" (or triple or quadruple lugging) going on in the main disco; 2) I'm not sure, but it even looks like something has been added to the line-side of the switch (it appears that the main conductors enter through the back of the box, and there is a tap to another disco somewhere which exits from the top of the box); 3) It looks as if that fusible MDP has become several sizes too small over the years, evidenced by the additional feeder main CB's at the top and bottom on the right side; 4) there appears to be a filler plate missing from the bottom of the MDP (is that where the main lugs are located...?); 5) And to all this, the owner/manager wants you to add another 100a. sub-panel (kinda like pouring 3 gallons of water into a one gallon bucket)?

I don't see how anyone can expect a service installation to last forever. This particular one looks to be well past it's life expectancy.

Kinda interesting to notice that the MDP, the main disco, and the four smaller switches beneath, are mounted to a large "back-board" while everything else is fastened directly to the cinder block wall.

Just my thoughts...BTW, what kind of a facility is this?

Mike (mamills)

#103718 - 11/05/02 04:44 PM Re: Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
Bjarney  Offline
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,527
West-Southern Inner-Northeast ...
Some situations are serious enough to walk away from and hope something doesn't vent plasma behind you on the way out. Then, to protect yourself, you might want to send the owner or manager a certified letter detailing a few of the deficiencies; qualifying your description as, " no means a complete list." [It would be a shame if the the local building and/or fire official were made aware of this building.]

Looks like a sure case of "...a bomb with a very short fuse."

#103719 - 11/05/02 08:22 PM Re: Lots of Problems Here! Any Suggestions?  
John Steinke  Offline
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 518
Reno,Nv., USA
Sounds like the facility manager has a bad case of thinking that the world revolves around him. Why don't you look up NEC refs, and provide with copies of the photos to the AHJ. I'm sure the AHJ will have the FM realize that he stepped on his own dick. Oh- and raise your rates to compensate for his attitude.
People need to learn that you hire a professional for his training, experience, and JUDGEMENT. They also need to learn that there are limits to one's own expertise.

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