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Remodeling Don’ts – Plumbing

Plumbing provides you with water and gets rid of waste and smells. Joints in plumbing are the major source of leaks. This is why you try to have as few joints as possible.

This guy didn't get the memo.Waterheater-1

Routing plumbing can be a challenge. Then there is just plain stupid.Plumbingbad-1

 Cutting your floor joists is not a good idea. Especially under your bathtub.

Here is a design challenge. Keeping your toilet paper dry in the shower.
Toilet1-1

Remodeling Don’ts – Electricity

I have done a lot of remodeling over the years. I have done some crazy things like the 6 ceiling repair, the turkey feather floor,  the garbage disposal toilet adventure,(tales for another day) and some other remodeling disasters. I have seen some things that defy belief as well as gravity and or common sense.

My brother sent me a series of photos that are making the rounds, showing some really bad and some cases dangerous remodeling. I have no idea where they came from, but will be happy to credit the photographers.

Electricity
Make no mistake, I have a healthy respect for electricity. If I can't find the breaker for a circuit, I will pull the main. Healthy. Probably dating back to the time I was doing a gut job and trying to remove a stand up air conditioner that had only three wires holding it in place, so I took my pliers and snipped the wires,(220V) resulting in me being blown across the floor and ruining a expensive new set of pliers. In reality the closest I like to get to electricity is the molded rubber plug that goes into the outlet.

Here are some images of really bad and dangerous electric work.
This is a main panel somebody thought would be a good place to store tools and stuff.Electricnightmare3-1
TIP: Electric Panels are for Electric things only. Period. Full Stop!

Electric junction boxes come in many sizes and styles, depending on application. There is an electrical code that lays out the maximum number of wires/conductors in a box. There are 2 main reasons.
1. Heat. Copper wire gets hot when electricity runs through it. Boxes are sized, by cubic inches, which is either marked on the box or on the label at the store. The number of wires allowed insures that there is air flow in the box, to avoid an electrical fire. Electric fires are terrifying because they will burn for a long time before you notice smoke or it breaks through your walls.
2. Space. This is related to heat above, but is far more practical in being able to physically close up the box after you have made your connections.

Here is an electric box with way too many connectors. How the hell do you find anything in this mess? Junction3-1

Here is where somebody ganged together a bunch of boxes to make a turn. Junction2-1

According to the email, the pipe next to this connection is carrying fuel oil for the heater. Electricnightmare5-1

Speaking of Plugs here is an interesting switch concept.
Outletbad-1

Maybe it was for this bath fan?
Masterbathfan-1

Electricity is deceptively simple on the residential front. Some boxes, some romex, devices and covers. It is not rocket science, but does require some serious thought to do right.