Different Saturdays

short circuit examples
Short circuit examples. Short circuits shown in red/black (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have been writing about how my working schedule has changed lately in that all the work seems to be only coming in during the latter part of the week leaving the first two or three days free. I went to do a job on Saturday morning as I had promised my customer having not been available to do it the previous day when he had found one of his power circuits at fault. Checking the location of a fault on a power circuit is simple enough but it can take anywhere from a few minutes to over an hour or more. As it happened his wife told me that she suspected a certain outlet to be the problem so I decided to start my investigation there and found that on testing the circuit no fault was apparent. It seems the action of removing the outlet removed the fault. In fact the rear of the outlet showed signs of there having been a short-circuit. One of the live conductors had been trapped against an earthed terminal. I exchanged the outlet for a more modern one, the faulty one having been something like forty years old. I was back home an hour or so later but whilst preparing a drink received a call from a guy asking if I could fit two ceiling lights, that is replacing existing ones whilst at the same time moving the position of one of them and providing an earthing conductor for both. The installation had been wired in 1966 and just prior to a change in wiring procedures whereby an earthing conductor would be incorporated within the cable. Sometime since the original installation someone had installed a separate earthing conductor for the lighting system but not all of the lights were included. There is nothing wrong in supplying the extra conductor especially if it means not having to have a total rewire. This was the situation at this address and because it was a bungalow with access to the wiring in the loft it didn’t take long to do the work which I had agreed to do for him. Before I started off to the address someone else called asking if I could help with a loss of supply to a power outlet circuit! Now where have I heard that one before? Seems many are having the same problem of late. I advised the caller over the phone what should be done to reinstate the supply by first unplugging all appliances from the circuit and then attempt to reset it as the cause might well just be a faulty appliance. They were to call back if the problem persisted. I didn’t get the return call so I imagine the problem had been found. It would be nice to receive a courtesy call letting me know how things turned out but most people neglect to do that. Had I called to check out their problem they would have been billed for it so a courtesy call isn’t too much to ask is it? Anyway after the second job I didn’t get back home until two-thirty. So there went my Saturday off. My purse is happy though!

Shirley Anne