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Old 01-27-2009, 01:11 AM   #1
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


When I turned off our basement light earlier, I swear I saw a flash of light behind the panel ( in the wall). I just passed it off as nothing. Now when I go to turn off the light switch, it felt pretty damn hot. now I am scared to go to sleep, as I hae a 4 and 8 year old in the house. The longer I have left the switch off, the cooler it gets .. however, I am still worried .. anyone w/ any ideas??!!

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Old 01-27-2009, 01:14 AM   #2
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


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Originally Posted by LAKECREEK View Post
When I turned off our basement light earlier, I swear I saw a flash of light behind the panel ( in the wall). I just passed it off as nothing. Now when I go to turn off the light switch, it felt pretty damn hot. now I am scared to go to sleep, as I hae a 4 and 8 year old in the house. The longer I have left the switch off, the cooler it gets .. however, I am still worried .. anyone w/ any ideas??!!
When you say panel do you mean the main electrical panel or the switch cover plate?

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Old 01-27-2009, 01:15 AM   #3
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


switch cover plate
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:24 AM   #4
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


Switches do arc somewhat when turned on and off.....but a hot feeling switch.....if you have no electrical knowledge at all or any testing equipment, if it is possible, I would turn on the light (so you know you have the right breaker) and then find and turn off the breaker until someone with more experience can take a look at this for you.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:28 AM   #5
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


done deal!!! thank you for the help!!!!! have a great night!!!
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:33 AM   #6
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


You too. Be safe.
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Old 01-27-2009, 08:37 AM   #7
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


It sounds like the switch is wearing out. When they wear out, the contacts inside may not make a good connection, and could heat up.

I would replace the switch ASAP.
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Old 01-27-2009, 08:44 AM   #8
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


If you found the correct breaker and it killed the power to the light you can replace the switch your self.
If there is more than two wires draw a diagram of how they hook up. If you control the light from two different locations you will need a 3way switch.
It is an easy task if the power is off.
Good luck
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Old 01-28-2009, 12:15 PM   #9
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


Kill power. Replace switch. Drink two beers. Done. Sleep!
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Old 01-28-2009, 12:29 PM   #10
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help!! I want to be sure my house doesn't burn


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Originally Posted by thegonagle View Post
It sounds like the switch is wearing out. When they wear out, the contacts inside may not make a good connection, and could heat up.

I would replace the switch ASAP.
Maybe it's just that the screw terminals are loose.

A good switch dissipates less than 1/2W at 15A; you wouldn't notice this temp. rise. Yours might be cooking itself with a few watts.

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Last edited by Yoyizit; 01-28-2009 at 12:31 PM.
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