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Message 1902244 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 0:39:59 UTC - in response to Message 1902237.  

my main concern would be that the potato chip/soda companies were running automated background operating tasks with fabricated points to keep the winning auction levels out of reach

but if that's not the case, you could use the $800 to buy a ton of soda and chips and then get the xboxes and sell those

Do you realize how much work that is? Just for 31 bottles and about 30 bags took Me hours to do. It's not worth the hassle, for 1 time ok. The codes in the bags are not easily read, and the codes in the caps need a bright light and a magnifying glass to be read with, and sometimes the codes in the caps look like they say one thing, when it could be a whole different code...

Example:

cssawrm9np
cssawha9np(<---this code was invalid when typed in like this, just cause of 2 characters being hard to read, both are now invalid, since the top one was entered by Me already...)

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Message 1902293 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 6:19:46 UTC - in response to Message 1902221.  

Vic, stop abusing folks who try to help.

You say you've got three "failed" breakers, out of five - that is NOT a good situation, indeed it is a very bad situation to be in. You had an electrician in "some time ago" who did some work, but that was some time ago, presumably before the breakers broke, thus he wouldn't have seen the condition of the equipment today.
Now breakers break for a number of reasons, as you are aware, sometimes they mechanically break, other times there there are internal faults, and other times there are faults in the wiring that make it look like a breaker fault. Any breaker that is mechanically broken is a safety hazard and needs to be replaced as soon as possible. Any breaker that "won't hold in" for no apparent reason also needs to be investigated, it might just be a faulty breaker, or it might be something far more serious. So get an electrician in as soon as possible to replace any mechanically broken breakers and investigate the others. I know this will cost you money, but your life, Gracie's life and your home are far more important than having the latest X-box or fancy TV.

Much the same goes for outlets that are worn out - I know its hard to accept that this happens, but the US mains plug and socket are not the strongest in the world, they look to be "designed to fail".

As for trailing leads - they have their place, and using them to run power around your home to supply power to areas that haven't got any due to breaker faults is, in anything other than the very short term very unsafe.
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Message 1902295 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 6:57:43 UTC - in response to Message 1902293.  

Vic, stop abusing folks who try to help.

You say you've got three "failed" breakers, out of five - that is NOT a good situation, indeed it is a very bad situation to be in. You had an electrician in "some time ago" who did some work, but that was some time ago, presumably before the breakers broke, thus he wouldn't have seen the condition of the equipment today.
Now breakers break for a number of reasons, as you are aware, sometimes they mechanically break, other times there there are internal faults, and other times there are faults in the wiring that make it look like a breaker fault. Any breaker that is mechanically broken is a safety hazard and needs to be replaced as soon as possible. Any breaker that "won't hold in" for no apparent reason also needs to be investigated, it might just be a faulty breaker, or it might be something far more serious. So get an electrician in as soon as possible to replace any mechanically broken breakers and investigate the others. I know this will cost you money, but your life, Gracie's life and your home are far more important than having the latest X-box or fancy TV.

Much the same goes for outlets that are worn out - I know its hard to accept that this happens, but the US mains plug and socket are not the strongest in the world, they look to be "designed to fail".

As for trailing leads - they have their place, and using them to run power around your home to supply power to areas that haven't got any due to breaker faults is, in anything other than the very short term very unsafe.

I have more than 5 breakers, if 5 were all I had you'd be right, but I don't, I don't remember off hand the exact number, but I do have more than 5 breakers, it's too late to take a pic and post it, so I'll try and squeeze it in on the 22nd here. The temp outside is 52F now, no way I'm going out in that, I just got My asthma under control.

I do know about breakers, though our system is not like in the UK, most breakers here in this place are 15A, but not all are that size, I have two 20A 110vac breakers from about 2007-2008 that I paid to have installed, though for the furnace it has a larger 220v breaker(2 hots, each being 110v, it works, a neutral, and maybe a ground since electricians here use neutral as if were ground sometimes, that's what I have seen in some cases, lights for a long time had no ground wires, or a place to attach one), in any case on outlets I only have 1 bad one, and that outlet is near My TV, and where the coax tv cable is at.
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Message 1902300 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 7:20:03 UTC

Ok I found a pic of My breaker box, I have 10 single breakers and one dual ganged breaker, the two 20A breakers are in the bottom left, the two 15A breakers on the lower right each have a broken(missing) hold down and when it rains from the SSE, they get shorted out, but since they are each controlling only 1 GFCI outlet, it's a nuisance that one day soon I hope to fix, the broken breaker is the bottom red breaker. This is an old breaker box, oh and the top beaker is the 100A main breaker, throw that breaker, and the whole house would have no power, the box was made by Slater in 1987.

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Message 1902324 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 12:10:18 UTC

I well remember those breaker boxes from when I worked in LA in the late 1970s...... And they are actually very similar to the sort of breakers we had in the UK back then. These days most re-wires and new installations are like that shown in Chris's picture.

We had an "issue" with the red/blue breakers in the (LA) house - red was meant to be one phase and blue another, but somewhere or other there was a crossover and there was a room which should have been on the "red" phase according to its breaker, but was really on the "blue" phase...

Those old "hynerman" style breakers were rather fragile when new, and will undoubtedly be getting worse with age.
Like you I'm somewhat skeptical about the availability of spares for that box, and the price of a new box may be "scary" to you :-(

Depending on the construction of the box it may be possible to replace the front plate with a more modern one which will take the more recent (and far more reliable) breakers - It is far better to have only one family of breakers, probably in two "sizes", smaller for the low current (up to about 30A or so), and larger for the main incoming 100A - Chris's photo clearly shows the more modern way of doing things with all the breakers work in one direction, the division of the board into sections with ELCBs (RCD on the labels). It is possible (but I can't read the labels to be certain) that Chris's board has three or four different breaker ratings (e.g. 10A lighting, 15A outlet circuits, 30A cooker) in the "distribution" area and a 60A or 100A incoming breaker.

A word of warning - Do not be tempted to tape or jam a broken breaker "on" - if there is a fault on the fed circuit that breaker won't work properly :-(
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Message 1902325 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 12:51:46 UTC

If you need 50' extensions cords in your house To run anything. You have a problem. Ive seen that picture Vic Of the octopuss of outlets you had on one outlet. The one where you had the CO detector. That's bad also.
You have crappy outlets so you over load the ones that work? Then you have bad breakers and you overload the good ones? Hopefully you do NOT tie breaker to keep it on?
And please never ever put an extension cord under any rug. If you cant see it you will walk on it. and it will fail at some point and start a fire.
Maintanance of ones house should take precendence over E-bay junk or eating junk food for a auction that you will not win.
[/quote]

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Message 1902326 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 13:04:30 UTC - in response to Message 1902325.  

A few months ago, I bought a freezer to be put in my basement, and was told I should have a dedicated outlet close to it. I called an electrician, and had the situation fixed.

I wouldn't run extension cords for major appliances; it's dangerous.
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Message 1902327 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 13:07:57 UTC

Yes.....
Vic needs to prioritize some things a bit better.
New TV and xbox are fine, but no good if the electrical service puts the whole shack, Vic, and Grace at risk.
I ran a subfeed box to the crunchers long ago because I was overloading the branch circuits.
Gotta prioritize, Vic. Gotta prioritize.

Meow.
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Message 1902359 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 16:12:53 UTC - in response to Message 1902327.  

Yes.....
Vic needs to prioritize some things a bit better.
New TV and xbox are fine, but no good if the electrical service puts the whole shack, Vic, and Grace at risk.
I ran a subfeed box to the crunchers long ago because I was overloading the branch circuits.
Gotta prioritize, Vic. Gotta prioritize.

Meow.

Running a subfeed is ok, but that would be for an electrician here, I'm not in shape to do that anymore, I just know how to wire stuff up, breakers either work or they don't, for 110v they go up to 20A, for 220v I don't know what the top is, nor do I know how many breakers can go with a 100A main breaker, though for the Main breaker 100A is it for this place, why? Cause that is what the Park can accept, money would be needed to upgrade the park to 200A capability, and that would mean new stubs, new sub meters, lots of careful digging, conduit maybe, cabling, and a new copper cable, possibly larger than My 1.5"-2.0" aluminum cable that is between the stub and the main breaker and is about the size of ones fist. My place is about the most modern in the park too.

Half the park(the B side) is from maybe the 1970's at most construction wise, (the A side) the other half is older, and could be from the 1950's, the dates are approximate.
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Message 1902363 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 16:17:48 UTC - in response to Message 1902326.  

A few months ago, I bought a freezer to be put in my basement, and was told I should have a dedicated outlet close to it. I called an electrician, and had the situation fixed.

I wouldn't run extension cords for major appliances; it's dangerous.

Did I say it was for major appliances? No I did not... Others did.
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Message 1902364 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 16:19:23 UTC - in response to Message 1902325.  
Last modified: 22 Nov 2017, 16:30:58 UTC

If you need 50' extensions cords in your house To run anything. You have a problem. Ive seen that picture Vic Of the octopus of outlets you had on one outlet. The one where you had the CO detector. That's bad also.
You have crappy outlets so you over load the ones that work? Then you have bad breakers and you overload the good ones? Hopefully you do NOT tie breaker to keep it on?
And please never ever put an extension cord under any rug. If you cant see it you will walk on it. and it will fail at some point and start a fire.
Maintenance of ones house should take precedence over E-bay junk or eating junk food for a auction that you will not win.

Even if the outlet was brand new and from the Home Depot, I'd still have the surge protector there, the area gets lots of lightning at times, more than LA does.
It works, nuff said, end of discussion.
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Message 1902366 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 16:25:08 UTC - in response to Message 1902324.  

I well remember those breaker boxes from when I worked in LA in the late 1970s...... And they are actually very similar to the sort of breakers we had in the UK back then. These days most re-wires and new installations are like that shown in Chris's picture.

We had an "issue" with the red/blue breakers in the (LA) house - red was meant to be one phase and blue another, but somewhere or other there was a crossover and there was a room which should have been on the "red" phase according to its breaker, but was really on the "blue" phase...

Those old "hynerman" style breakers were rather fragile when new, and will undoubtedly be getting worse with age.
Like you I'm somewhat skeptical about the availability of spares for that box, and the price of a new box may be "scary" to you :-(

Depending on the construction of the box it may be possible to replace the front plate with a more modern one which will take the more recent (and far more reliable) breakers - It is far better to have only one family of breakers, probably in two "sizes", smaller for the low current (up to about 30A or so), and larger for the main incoming 100A - Chris's photo clearly shows the more modern way of doing things with all the breakers work in one direction, the division of the board into sections with ELCBs (RCD on the labels). It is possible (but I can't read the labels to be certain) that Chris's board has three or four different breaker ratings (e.g. 10A lighting, 15A outlet circuits, 30A cooker) in the "distribution" area and a 60A or 100A incoming breaker.

A word of warning - Do not be tempted to tape or jam a broken breaker "on" - if there is a fault on the fed circuit that breaker won't work properly :-(


Yeah, neater, over here it seems battleship grey is the norm.
I inherited all but the 20A, but yeah this is My first time with those stupid Red/Blue breakers, I'll probably have to replace the 4(Red/Blue), not to mention the 15A below them, I don't know about the other Blue ones to the left of the Red.
Replacing the front plate, next time I get someone out here I'll ask.
No I won't jam or what not, not interested.
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Message 1902378 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 16:51:38 UTC

And one other thing, I think someone raised the idea of getting into another Xbox One X auction, I already won one, I'm not allowed, nor are other winners, of winning anymore auctions there, so why bother?
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Message 1902382 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 17:24:40 UTC

Vic,
Looking at the picture of your board - it would appear that all the breakers are "on" - I realise this picture is old, and so the status may well have changed since the picture was taken. That aside, there appears to be a bar connecting the two "blue" breakers" on the right - is this the case, or is it an optical illusion? - if it is a bar then it might be that those four breakers actually operate on the same set of circuits, just providing an additional current capacity to a group of circuits (this was a common practice all over the place until the mid 1990s). Such practice is now frowned on universally as there have been far too many incidents where the circuit should have tripped, but one breaker has dropped and the other has welded.
As to how breakers work - there are two main ways:
- Thermal - there is a bi-metallic strip in there that gets hot (well, not really that hot) and releases a mechanical latch, so the breaker drops out;
- Magnetic, a small electromagnet is arranged so it releases a mechanical latch when the breaker goes into over-current.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and both "age", and that's a problem (I could write a book about the issues of aging in circuit breakers). Depending on the exact construction of the breaker so aging can result in the breaker dropping out early or late - early is better. By dint of design work and materials selection more modern breakers age in a "safer" manner than many old ones.

Ratings, this is a real headache. When rating a breaker there are a number of things to consider, some are very easy, like AC/DC and cable current capacity, but what about impulse breaking current, DI/DT curve and so on. Fortunately in the domestic market most of these have been taken care of by the national standards bodies, so it's just a case of going to the catalogue and choosing a breaker with the right current rating for the load class (resistive/inductive/capacitive). A quick look in a couple of US catalogues shows that you can get single phase 110v/60Hz beakers up to 60A, and phase summing breakers up to 200A - more than enough for your needs! (Not forgetting of course that your incoming supply is only rated at 100A, but in complete ignorance of if that is 100A/phase or 100A total....).

I think in your situation the limiting factor is going to be the actual wiring in your home - wiring is expensive and intrusive to replace (unless it all runs in accessible trunking in which case it's only expensive). Given the age of your place it could be wired with plain copper, or copper clad aluminium, or plain aluminium - copper is by far and above the best, and I just hope that's what's been used.

In most places the incoming mains is in an armoured cable, so it will appear to be "quite massive", but the conductors will be typically between 0.125 and 0.25 inch diameter (maybe 0.375 if folks were feeling really generous) buried in something many times that diameter.

So get an electrician in to inspect the whole of your installation and then take his advice.
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Message 1902384 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 17:53:26 UTC - in response to Message 1902382.  

Vic,
Looking at the picture of your board - it would appear that all the breakers are "on" - I realise this picture is old, and so the status may well have changed since the picture was taken. That aside, there appears to be a bar connecting the two "blue" breakers" on the right - is this the case, or is it an optical illusion? - if it is a bar then it might be that those four breakers actually operate on the same set of circuits, just providing an additional current capacity to a group of circuits (this was a common practice all over the place until the mid 1990s). Such practice is now frowned on universally as there have been far too many incidents where the circuit should have tripped, but one breaker has dropped and the other has welded.
As to how breakers work - there are two main ways:
- Thermal - there is a bi-metallic strip in there that gets hot (well, not really that hot) and releases a mechanical latch, so the breaker drops out;
- Magnetic, a small electromagnet is arranged so it releases a mechanical latch when the breaker goes into over-current.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and both "age", and that's a problem (I could write a book about the issues of aging in circuit breakers). Depending on the exact construction of the breaker so aging can result in the breaker dropping out early or late - early is better. By dint of design work and materials selection more modern breakers age in a "safer" manner than many old ones.

Ratings, this is a real headache. When rating a breaker there are a number of things to consider, some are very easy, like AC/DC and cable current capacity, but what about impulse breaking current, DI/DT curve and so on. Fortunately in the domestic market most of these have been taken care of by the national standards bodies, so it's just a case of going to the catalogue and choosing a breaker with the right current rating for the load class (resistive/inductive/capacitive). A quick look in a couple of US catalogues shows that you can get single phase 110v/60Hz beakers up to 60A, and phase summing breakers up to 200A - more than enough for your needs! (Not forgetting of course that your incoming supply is only rated at 100A, but in complete ignorance of if that is 100A/phase or 100A total....).

I think in your situation the limiting factor is going to be the actual wiring in your home - wiring is expensive and intrusive to replace (unless it all runs in accessible trunking in which case it's only expensive). Given the age of your place it could be wired with plain copper, or copper clad aluminium, or plain aluminium - copper is by far and above the best, and I just hope that's what's been used.

In most places the incoming mains is in an armoured cable, so it will appear to be "quite massive", but the conductors will be typically between 0.125 and 0.25 inch diameter (maybe 0.375 if folks were feeling really generous) buried in something many times that diameter.

So get an electrician in to inspect the whole of your installation and then take his advice.

No the pic really hasn't changed, beyond more age, and the lower red one being busted, and no it's not an illusion, that is two blue breakers con-joined as it were, so you're not seeing things.
I've never personally seen anything for 110v beyond 20A, I do know 220v(two 110v lines really) goes higher.
Re-Wiring, yeah that would be expensive, no doubt.
Actually I have seen the armored conduit that carries the main, and I've seen the cable, small it isn't, it's a number 1 I think, the people that did the setup here had that in stock, seems to work pretty well.
Sure not a problem.
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Message 1902412 - Posted: 22 Nov 2017, 20:15:17 UTC

Vic's panel looks typical for a 100A service entrance and it looks in good shape for the age, especially if it is outside. Typical 100A 110v/220v service is #4 to #2 AL overhead and #2 to 1/0 AL underground wire. Copper wire is almost a size smaller.

Mobile homes in US everything is bonded and grounded back to distribution system earth/ground/neutral. All conduit and receptacle/switch boxes are grounded back to system earth/ground/neutral. Most any kind of fault in mobile home (it's a metal box) will trip breakers. Yes, a fire is always possible, nothing is 100%.

Typical US houses are 3 wire "Y" with a bond back to distribution system earth/ground/neutral. I don't know if UK has changed but they used to be 2 wire Delta with two hot legs and your earth/ground is in your house, not back to distribution system. Delta can be more efficient but "Y" is safer for people and equipment. I lived outside London (Denham, Bucks) for four years in 60s.

Typically a person that lives alone (been there) only has stuff turned on in the room they are in. Much different usage than a couple or a family.

A cord/plug that will not stay plugged into wall outlet the outlet needs to be changed.
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Message 1902435 - Posted: 23 Nov 2017, 1:10:48 UTC - in response to Message 1902300.  
Last modified: 23 Nov 2017, 1:15:32 UTC

Ok I found a pic of My breaker box, I have 10 single breakers and one dual ganged breaker, the two 20A breakers are in the bottom left, the two 15A breakers on the lower right each have a broken(missing) hold down and when it rains from the SSE, they get shorted out, but since they are each controlling only 1 GFCI outlet, it's a nuisance that one day soon I hope to fix, the broken breaker is the bottom red breaker. This is an old breaker box, oh and the top beaker is the 100A main breaker, throw that breaker, and the whole house would have no power, the box was made by Slater in 1987.


This is a Type BR panel Any breaker labeled "BR" will work. These are common breakers and Home Depot has them in stock. BR breakers at Home Depot

Also get that cover screwed back in place. Having it sag is putting stress on the breakers where they plug into your load center.
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Message 1902438 - Posted: 23 Nov 2017, 1:24:56 UTC - in response to Message 1902435.  

Also get that cover screwed back in place. Having it sag is putting stress on the breakers where they plug into your load center.

Good eye J. Mileski.
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Message 1902444 - Posted: 23 Nov 2017, 1:38:47 UTC - in response to Message 1902382.  

There appears to be a bar connecting the two "blue" breakers" on the right - is this the case, or is it an optical illusion?



It is not an illusion
BR type quad breaker
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Message 1902447 - Posted: 23 Nov 2017, 1:52:12 UTC - in response to Message 1902435.  
Last modified: 23 Nov 2017, 1:56:36 UTC

Ok I found a pic of My breaker box, I have 10 single breakers and one dual ganged breaker, the two 20A breakers are in the bottom left, the two 15A breakers on the lower right each have a broken(missing) hold down and when it rains from the SSE, they get shorted out, but since they are each controlling only 1 GFCI outlet, it's a nuisance that one day soon I hope to fix, the broken breaker is the bottom red breaker. This is an old breaker box, oh and the top beaker is the 100A main breaker, throw that breaker, and the whole house would have no power, the box was made by Slater in 1987.


This is a Type BR panel Any breaker labeled "BR" will work. These are common breakers and Home Depot has them in stock. BR breakers at Home Depot

Also get that cover screwed back in place. Having it sag is putting stress on the breakers where they plug into your load center.

The center Blue says 50 on each lever, is that a 50 or a 100? Never mind, I found one that matched.
The red ones are 20A each. I'm going to replace the Red 20A w/15A.
And yeah, screws, I asked an electrician once & He didn't know where to dig up any at.
I'd like to get a new cover for the load center too, one not so "holey".
I guess I could take the cover and the screw down to our half Home Depot and see what they have as a replacement.
My box looks sort of like a Square D, I didn't know D's could be Square. ;)
Sorry I could not help Myself, thanks for the tip on the breakers J. Mileski.
The T1 Trust, PRR T1 Class 4-4-4-4 #5550, 1 of America's First HST's
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