5.31.2010

More Electrical Work

My parents are in town for the long weekend, which of course means we're tackling some more electrical work. The last time my dad was here he mapped out the electrical system in the Hive and we discovered that most of the house is two circuits. The goal for this weekend was to split off a few of the more heavily used outlets to their own circuits with new heavy-duty wire.

Since I'm all moved into my new office, minus new storage furniture, our top priority was to dedicate a circuit to the new room so I can run a window a/c unit during the summer rather than cooling the entire house. My dad spent an entire day trying to figure out where the wire to the first office outlet came from, since the obvious answer, the outlet two feet away, proved to be a dead-end. S and I remembered seeing a junction box hidden behind the paneling in the basement when we removed it to replace the insulation a few weeks ago. So we took down the basement wall. Again. Success came in the form of a dedicated circuit to the new office merely an hour later.

We weren't so lucky finding the hidden junction box leading to the kitchen outlet, which was ungrounded and therefore completely useless. Over the past few months we had checked every single outlet and light fixture looking for the yellow wire leading to the outlet to no avail.  The guys removed the outlet in the kitchen and used a small mirror to spot what they thought could possibly be a junction box low in the wall. So with frustration mounting, S and my dad cut a hole in the perfectly good wall behind the kitchen outlet to investigate. How hard can it possibly be to fix a big hole?
Lo and behold they found the hidden junction box. (If you watch Holmes on Homes, you know hidden junction boxes are a big no-no. Plus, they're super frustrating if you ever need to, say, rewire an improperly wired outlet that causes the house to fail an inspection.)

With the junction box in question located, the guys cut a larger hole in the wall, which enabled them to string new wire from the circuit breaker all the way back up to the new kitchen outlet. Then, since we had a big old hole in the other side of the kitchen wall anyway, the stuck in a hallway outlet too.

So now we have a have panel of GFI outlets in the kitchen on a dedicated circuit that are properly grounded as you can see from our new tester here.
All of this electrical success means I can use our mixer without an extension cord, and we can probably make some toast, or bake cookies in the mini convection oven at the same time.

Next up is figuring out how to string wire so the pendant lamp above the kitchen sink, which we expect to be delivered in the next few weeks, has its own switch and doesn't come on with all of the recessed lights in the kitchen. We're dealing with several joists and 90 degree angles, so it's not as easy as we would like and will probably have to wait 'til the next visit from my family.

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1 comment:

  1. I hate electrical problems. Did I say hate? I meant loathe. My hubs did all of our electrical when we finished the basement. Needless to say, he did a better job than I thought but, I had anxiety attacks every time the permit guy came to check it out!
    Lila Ferraro
    Queen Bedroom Sets

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