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playing electrician this weekend...


RowdyRebel
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So Wednesday night, if lightning DIDN'T strike the house, it didn't miss by much. "BOOM" was gone and the house was dark before the flash of light was gone. Yeah. Close. BOTH kids immediately start bawling. I walk to the back window & look out, and see the street light is still on...so there's power to the neighborhood. I walk outside with a flashlight expecting to see my new antenna is toasted, but the plastic parts on the antennas aren't melted, the insulation on the cable to the ground rod didn't appear to have been heated up. I looked up at the power meter, and it was still on...so there's power to the house.

Head back inside & into the boys room and open the closet (where the breaker box is). There's a wicked bad burnt plastic smell in that closet. The 200A main, along with half the single-pole breakers and a couple of the double-pole breakers are tripped. I start resetting breakers, and things start coming back on. One breaker won't reset...it's the one for the master bath, along with the outlets for my alarm clock, and the bottle warmer in the kitchen. Even with the breaker reset, the TV, freezer, and 3 outlets in the mother-in-law's room (SHOULD be the baby's room...😡) are still dead. Grabbed my 10/3 extension cord for my MIG welder and used it to plug the freezer into an outlet in the kitchen that had juice. Wife had me grab the fire extinguishers out of the Mack & F250 (both been parked & OOS in the driveway) to have in the house if we needed them. I found myself up in the attic checking for smoke/smoldering/fire. Stayed up for about 2 more hours...figured at that point if the house was still standing, we were in the clear. STRANGEST thing? The wife's Harley out in the garage. We had an extension cord running over to the bikes, and a pair of battery chargers keeping 'em juiced up over the winter. Now, her parking/marker lights won't shut off. Pulled the side cover to disconnect the battery, and found it's the positive terminal. To get at the ground, you've got to pull the seat & possibly more...but there was a 30A fuse there. Pulled it and the lights shut off...good enough.

Picked up another breaker after work Thursday to swap out the bad one...but by the time I went to do the swap it was working just fine...so the new one is laying in the bottom of the box as a spare. Reset the breaker and the bathroom was still dead...then I remembered we had this issue a while back. Reset the ground-fault outlet in the bathroom and the circuit started working again. Today I'm swapping receptacles on the still dead (freezer/TV) circuit. Meanwhile, the TV is plugged into the bathroom with another extension cord. HOPING to get things working normally again. If not, I'm stumped & might have to call a guy. If nothing else, it'll give me a reason to call in tomorrow. Left the Mack there if they needed to load my truck for Monday...and I took off in the 1-ton with some stuff for a customer a few hours away. When I got back, the Mack was gone, and they had loaded the Kenworthless. I hate that truck. It's not spec'd for what we do...it's big, cumbersome, not very maneuverable, visibility sucks, and it gets stuck on a paved lot if it's not perfectly smooth and you don't lock in the power divider...but it's air-ride and has pneumatic doors for loading, so all of the lazy guys prefer it. Mack handles the job with ease, and I just prefer to use a truck that's spec'd right. Sure, you COULD frame a house with a sledge hammer...but a framing hammer works better.

Anyway, 2 outlets down, 3 to go. Boy wants to go outside. Girl fell asleep while feeding...so she'll be OK for a bit.

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When approaching a 4-way stop, the vehicle with the biggest tires has the right of way!
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Wouldn't ya know it was the LAST outlet I changed. Everything is working again, plugged into the outlets where they belong, and my extension cords put away. Life is just about back to normal, except for the issue with the running lights on the wife's Harley. Bummer. There goes my excuse for calling in tomorrow...

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When approaching a 4-way stop, the vehicle with the biggest tires has the right of way!
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