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Old 03-19-2010, 09:19 AM   #1
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


I find myself completely lost when it comes to home based electrical questions and issues and as such am a bit nervous when it comes to doing any type of repairs. Does anyone have any good resources for an electrial newbie to check out? Websites, books, live in help? Plain (non-technical) english and lots of pictures and diagrams is prefered.

Thanks!

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Old 03-19-2010, 09:30 AM   #2
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


I never really found a good book on this sort of stuff. Over the past year or two, I find the best way to learn is to simply work on a few small projects with guidance from experienced people on forums like this one. You can gradually get more complicated.

Here's some general info (a lot of it) that may help you understand the basic principles.

http://amasci.com/elect/vwatt1.html

Do you have a project in mind you want to do?

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Old 03-19-2010, 10:27 AM   #3
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


at the moment it is super basic items like replacing outlets or fixtures but eventually i would like to be able to add circuits and small items like that. i don't forsee getting into major electrical work but as it stands now i feel like someone who can barely walk trying to climb up everest. i understand the basics from a physics point of view, at least to some extent (it's been a long time since i took physics) but practical application is a bit beyond me right now.
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Old 03-19-2010, 10:40 AM   #4
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


Well, simply replacing outlets/fixtures is pretty mindless. Just take the black/white off the old, put them on the new.
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Old 03-19-2010, 10:45 AM   #5
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


One problem with some books is they have been recalled due to errors:
So if you buy a basic book make sure it hasn't been recalled

Do it yourself books recalled!!!!

One of the 1st books I bought was Taunton's "Wiring a House" by Rex Cauldwell
It shows basics & has pics etc
I would never rely (just) on a DIY book for NEC code
I bought the NEC 2005 handbook which has illustrated diagrams
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Old 03-19-2010, 10:51 AM   #6
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


Here's a simple diagram I just made that may give you a start. In simple terms, think of it like this. Black wire comes from the panel, gives power to your loads (outlets, lights, etc), and the white wire brings the electricity back to the panel, completing the circuit. If the black OR white get disconnected, the load will not get power.

Say water was going down a tube, turning a water wheel. Stopping the flow of water before or after the wheel would prevent the wheel from turning, since the water needs a place to "go".

In the diagram, power comes in from the left on the black wire, hits the top screw terminal on the outlet. The jumper tab (connected by default on outlets) sends power to the bottom screw terminal on the left outlet, that wire feeds the next outlet. Then the electricity follows the white back to the panel.

This is one way of wiring outlets. There is also another way (called "pigtailing").
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Old 03-19-2010, 11:39 AM   #7
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Here ya go...
http://www.buildersbook.com/Merchant...tegory_Code=40
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Old 03-19-2010, 07:30 PM   #8
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Home Electricity for Newbies ?


I will not work without Wiring Simplified 42nd Ed Richter and Electrical Wiring Residential 2008 NEC Mullin. The Mullin is a commonly used textbook in into classes for electricians. Read and read and read.

I now feel very comfortable running new circuits and doing installs (and getting my inspections and permits).

But I am very aware of the fact that I am NO electrician and fixing what is broken is WAY out of my league. I simply don't have the experience to troubleshoot. Frankly, when I find something broken I decommission and re-wire - rather than trying to fix it. But I'm dealing with 130 years and four 'layers' of hybrid wiring (that's right my house got electricity in the 1890s).
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Old 03-19-2010, 07:39 PM   #9
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and codes keep changing
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Old 03-19-2010, 09:38 PM   #10
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The other thing to keep in mind is no question is too simple. So if you have one, just ask.
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Old 03-19-2010, 10:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secutanudu View Post
The other thing to keep in mind is no question is to simple. So if you have one, just ask.
Yup, cause as I like to say on a regular basis.... Electrical Forum ROCKS!

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