This simple electrical test could save your life!

Reblogger
Real Estate Agent with Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo.

I found this really informative post by MIKE COOPER

 

It truly could save your life !  You owe it to yourself and family to check your electrical outlets.

Original content by Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD 0225086119

Owning a real estate brokerage and an electrical contracting company has a number of advantages for me.  It's not unusual for me to offer electrical services to a client as a thank you for buying a home through our company.  We just did that for a broken water heater.  It can save the client a lot of money, and it endears them to both of our companies for the extra-mile service.

There is one issue that we run into a couple times a year that everyone needs to be aware of because it is terribly dangerous.  Normally about the time it turns cold or the time it turns hot clients start having trouble with receptacles.  It happens when they plug a space heater or an air conditioner into an outlet.

It works for a while, but then it stops working and normally knocks out whatever is down the line.  The culprit more often than not is what is called backstabbing.  A receptacle that is backstabbed  or back wired is one where the electrician stuck the wires that feed the device into little holes on the back of the receptacle.  It is perfectly legal and has been since the 70s, and it is probably one of the most dangerous "legal" wiring techniques you can employ in your house.

Devices should always have the feed wires wrapped around the screws in a fish hook fashion.  The screws are then tightened down and the connection is solid.  The backstabbed connections expand and contract with high energy appliances like heaters and air conditioners.  When they do that, they begin to break connection and heat up.  The heat ultimately melts the insulation off the wires causing a fire hazard.

This past year we inspected one house where the lady lost a line of receptacles, but the breaker stayed on.  When we inspected her devices we found one that not only was a backstabbed receptacle the culprit, but it had charred the 2X4 it was mounted to and had melted about 30% of the box it was installed in.  She was nearing a potentially tragic fire.  I'm glad it stopped working long enough for her to call us.

If you want to check your devices you can do it simply enough.  Turn off the breaker to a circuit.  Take the cover place off and unscrew the receptacle mounting screws and pull it out of the wall.  If the wires are plugged into the back, they are backstabbed.  If they are fastened around the screws, they are wired in the preferred way.  Check a couple more devices to make sure they're consistent, and always make sure the power is off before sticking your hands in any electrical equipment. 

 

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Give me a call, or email me for all your real estate needs, and let's make something am
azing happen. 

mikecooper@cbginc.net, 888-722-6029

Cell: 540-336-5522

 

Real Estate Sales and Property Management         

 

 

(Disclaimer:  All grammatical mistakes, punctuation breakdowns and misspellings are purely for your amusement and entertainment.   Feel free to cackle.)                                                                                                

Comments (23)

Bill Dean
Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo. - Fenton, MO
William Dean - Broker, Salesperson

Good Morning Sheila,

Yes, I was surprised I had never heard that this was a dangerous practice.    I am one of those guilty of installing some in my rentals.

Mar 24, 2018 09:41 AM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Thanks so much for sharing this excellent reblog selection.

Have a most productive spring.

May 07, 2018 01:38 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

What an awesome re-blog, in all fairness I do not touch anything electrical, and we had my favorite electrician totally rewire the house and update the supply  to 200amps... Endre

Aug 10, 2018 11:25 PM
Bill Dean
Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo. - Fenton, MO
William Dean - Broker, Salesperson

Thanks Endre,

I confess I still do my own  MINOR electrical work, just that over the years I have become more cautious, when I change a switch or outlet I turn off main power instead of just the one circuit! 

Aug 11, 2018 09:56 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

Great information to share, Bill! Thank you for re-blogging as I missed Mike Cooper's original post.

Aug 13, 2018 07:42 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Just checking in it has been a while hope all is well and you are not doing any electrical work that would cause you to stop being on this platform:))just kidding, Endre

Aug 28, 2018 11:30 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

Hi Bill! Just checking in to see if you had posted anything recently! I hope all is well in St. Louis and with you.

Sep 09, 2018 07:20 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Bill hope all is well and you did not mess with the Electrical Outlets, Endre

Nov 08, 2018 11:44 PM
Bill Dean
Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo. - Fenton, MO
William Dean - Broker, Salesperson

No but I did find a branch circuit in my rental house attic that has not been upated and is still knob and tube wiring.  Gonna climb up there with some marshmallows  to toast 

Nov 09, 2018 05:51 PM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

I was looking for your current posts. I hope all is going well for you.

Apr 02, 2019 03:29 AM
Bill Dean
Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo. - Fenton, MO
William Dean - Broker, Salesperson

Roy,

No, I have gotten lazy in my retirement, I keep meaning to write some posts but been busy with my rentals and cars.   no excuses but have not been .

Apr 02, 2019 09:16 AM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Tell us some stories about your rentals and your cars.

Have a lovely weekend.

Apr 20, 2019 10:52 AM
Bill Dean
Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo. - Fenton, MO
William Dean - Broker, Salesperson

Thanks Roy, 

Yes I have to quit making excuses and do some posts.

Apr 21, 2019 09:27 AM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Bill like Roy Kelley  just checking in.... and see when we will get a new post out of you, Endre

May 31, 2019 11:55 PM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

I hope all is going well for you.

Take care, be safe and have an outstanding summer.

Jul 08, 2020 07:43 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Bill great reblog and one that more people should be reading about here in the rain.

 

Jul 30, 2020 08:03 AM
Bill Dean
Haggerty Team St. Louis, Mo. - Fenton, MO
William Dean - Broker, Salesperson

Thanks Will,

I totally agree,  I encourage you to go to the original blog and reblog it again.  It never gets too much exposure.

Jul 31, 2020 08:09 PM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

I hope you are enjoying the summer.

Take care and be safe. 

Aug 29, 2020 04:58 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Bill. Thanks for the reblog by Mike. Missed his original post. Enjoy your day!

Sep 04, 2020 05:30 AM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Well hope all is well since we have not intereacted in quite some time Happy New Year Bill, Endre

Jan 16, 2021 10:01 PM