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Thread: Some Non-trivial Things That Annoy Me.

  1. #4921
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Yikes. I’m glad all the people are safe, even though there was substantial property loss.
    Ditto.

    I'm reminded of a story many years ago from an acquaintance of mine, whose house burned down. Everyone got out fine, but the house was destroyed. Everyone kept telling him how lucky he was, that everyone was OK. He said "yes he was, but if he was REALLY lucky the house wouldn't have caught fire".
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  2. #4922
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    It's still sinking in.

    I've been in a burning building in my life. It was a completely different kind of scary. The terror was in waking up, realizing the danger, running out, running around to wake neighbors, getting lost in the smoke (I had lost my glasses), checking on everyone, dealing with the fire fighters, etc.

    This was a few seconds of sheer terror followed by hours of slogging boredom and cleaning up. Followed by a day of endless paperwork and cancelling reservations.

    The good news is, we haven't given up on a vacation. We're making alternate arrangements and we will be having our day at the beach.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  3. #4923
    Glad to hear everyone is alright, sucks it happened.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
    https://davidsuniverse.wordpress.com/

  4. #4924
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    ... The most important people in my life were all there in the car with me.
    He aha te mea nui o te ao
    He tangata, he tangata, he tangata

    Maori proverb

    (What is the most important thing in the world?
    It is the people, it is the people, it is the people)
    Measure once, cut twice. Practice makes perfect.

  5. #4925
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    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    He aha te mea nui o te ao
    He tangata, he tangata, he tangata

    Maori proverb

    (What is the most important thing in the world?
    It is the people, it is the people, it is the people)
    I was having a discussion recently about prehistoric human behavior and relationships, and pointed out that for 99% of human existence, settled lifestyles were almost unknown. We moved in seasonal hunting camps and went where the food was. So the concept of "home" was not a place, it was the people you walked with.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  6. #4926
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    Came back from a week in Florida...and found that our garage refrigerator wasn't working. No power. The good news was that the GFI outlet was only tripped and that the food was still cool, although thawed. Which means it hadn't gotten to the nasty stinky stage and that I could refreeze the stuff that now gets thrown out on Monday. But it also means an expensive shopping trip next week to restock what we lost, mostly meat. I know...a first world problem. But still annoying.

  7. #4927
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    Came back from a week in Florida...and found that our garage refrigerator wasn't working. No power. The good news was that the GFI outlet was only tripped and that the food was still cool, although thawed. Which means it hadn't gotten to the nasty stinky stage and that I could refreeze the stuff that now gets thrown out on Monday. But it also means an expensive shopping trip next week to restock what we lost, mostly meat. I know...a first world problem. But still annoying.
    You may want to confirm this, but the electrical code may allow a single plug non GFI outlet (not one of the usual duplex type) in that location for use with a single fixed appliance, like a refrigerator. At least my home inspector said that was okay a number of years ago.
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  8. #4928
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    You may want to confirm this, but the electrical code may allow a single plug non GFI outlet (not one of the usual duplex type) in that location for use with a single fixed appliance, like a refrigerator. At least my home inspector said that was okay a number of years ago.
    Thank you Iíll look into that. I donítí understand why a GFI is required. The outlet is tied into the same circuit as the garage door opener and a ceiling light but thatís all. And the outlet is four feet from the garage floor.

  9. #4929
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    Thank you I’ll look into that. I don’t’ understand why a GFI is required. The outlet is tied into the same circuit as the garage door opener and a ceiling light but that’s all. And the outlet is four feet from the garage floor.
    The breaker is to prevent fire, the GFCI is to prevent fatal shocks. The USA has changed the rules and now uses 5mA GFCI actually allowed to be 4 mA to 6 mA and that sensitivity can be a nuisance with inductive or capacitive loads. In fact I have tested 50 feet of cable tripping a new type GFCI. That is due to cable capacitance alone. It varies from town to town but many USA socket outlets are actually +- 55 volts and you would be unlucky to die from a shock from 55 to ground. 48 v is the usa safe low voltage.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  10. #4930
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    5mA? That is very sensitive. Overhere, we have a 230V network and the current to ground protection is 300mA for dry spaces and 30mA for wet spaces. Yet people don't Claude FranÁois themselves all the time here so apparently it's safe enough. Each individual group is also protected with its own current breaker and the entire house has one breaker to break them all. All in all, pretty difficult to kill yourself here.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  11. #4931
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    5mA? That is very sensitive. Overhere, we have a 230V network and the current to ground protection is 300mA for dry spaces and 30mA for wet spaces. Yet people don't Claude FranÁois themselves all the time here so apparently it's safe enough. Each individual group is also protected with its own current breaker and the entire house has one breaker to break them all. All in all, pretty difficult to kill yourself here.
    Yes most places use 30 mA residual and it proved effective. I find the usa new GFCI odd in that the reasons given are a) some animals are more sensitive and b) you might not be able to open your hand grip at 30 mA. Given the residual device also is fast, you can let go when it trips in a few ms. We now have to specify a GFCI near the actual equipment because of cable length, usually cable mounted for economy, and many electricians scrath heads because they do not understand virtual current.

    While all homes in Europe have an RCD as we call it, many USA homes have none or only fit GFCI for wet areas. The combined breaker GFCI types are both expensive and touchy, and when we ask for 240 v versions, as many equipments do need in USA, the cost gets rather high.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  12. #4932
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    When these townhomes were built the code required GFI outlets only in wet areas such as baths and kitchens. Hence my perplexity over the need for one in an enclosed garage and elevated above the floor and far from the garage door. If that outlet got wet then we might have fish swimming in our living room.

  13. #4933
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    When these townhomes were built the code required GFI outlets only in wet areas such as baths and kitchens. Hence my perplexity over the need for one in an enclosed garage and elevated above the floor and far from the garage door. If that outlet got wet then we might have fish swimming in our living room.
    Code creep, it makes work for the manufacturers, but that might be a safety sceptical view! I meant cynical!
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  14. #4934
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    I'm not an electrical code expert, but I think the principle behind the GFCI in the garage is because the garage floor could be wet or damp and you could be standing in it (possibly barefoot) while plugging something into the outlet. The height of the outlet is irrelevant... if you have water up to the level of the outlet, you have bigger problems.

    I wonder if the code allows for an exception for a dedicated refrigerator outlet that will normally just have the fridge plugged into it and nothing else, not being used otherwise by someone standing barefoot on a wet garage floor.

  15. #4935
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    I think the wet floor makes sense. The water heater is in an attached utility room and if the heater leaked it would spill into the garage.

  16. #4936
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpatz View Post
    I'm not an electrical code expert, but I think the principle behind the GFCI in the garage is because the garage floor could be wet or damp and you could be standing in it (possibly barefoot) while plugging something into the outlet. The height of the outlet is irrelevant... if you have water up to the level of the outlet, you have bigger problems.

    I wonder if the code allows for an exception for a dedicated refrigerator outlet that will normally just have the fridge plugged into it and nothing else, not being used otherwise by someone standing barefoot on a wet garage floor.
    Any safety guy would worry that a fridge has a metal case and could have a cable fault, from a mouse say, gnawing the cables. Metal should be grounded but, being metal, could go live and shock you on a well grounded floor, never mind being wet. I think the GFCI is a good idea there and might save the mouse too.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  17. #4937
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Any safety guy would worry that a fridge has a metal case and could have a cable fault, from a mouse say, gnawing the cables. Metal should be grounded but, being metal, could go live and shock you on a well grounded floor, never mind being wet. I think the GFCI is a good idea there and might save the mouse too.
    Well there goes my 22-cubic foot mouse trap.

  18. #4938
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    That's why we have them protected by 300mA (unless placed in a wet room like bathroom). That kind of sensitivity doesn't trigger unnecessarily so your food is safe, but when something is truly wrong, you're safe. I've never had a 300mA trigger falsely. I've never even had a 30mA trigger falsely. And within their spec our electric equipment is sensitive and fast. A good old light bulb blowing out could trigger a breaker once a while.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  19. #4939
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Any safety guy would worry that a fridge has a metal case and could have a cable fault, from a mouse say, gnawing the cables. Metal should be grounded but, being metal, could go live and shock you on a well grounded floor, never mind being wet. I think the GFCI is a good idea there and might save the mouse too.
    If it's grounded and goes live due to a fault, it will cause a short that should trip the breaker. And if it's not a hard enough short to trip the breaker, the ground prong should provide a lower resistance path than your body, preventing a severe shock.

    A GFCI will certainly trip in that situation, but they are designed more to trip when the ground path is something other than the grounded enclosure of the fridge (like your body while standing in water).

    Are GFCIs of specific trip currents readily available? I always thought they were all sold with whatever code requires for wet locations. When I've bought them, I never noticed a trip current mentioned on the box anyway.

  20. #4940
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    In my state, and I think in all of Australia, all new dwellings, all properties for sale and all rental properties are required to have separate GFCI's on both the power and lighting circuits. (Although they are usually called RCD's - Residual Current Device - here.) Only houses that were built before the mid 1990's and not sold or rented in the last few years will possibly not be fitted with them and that number is rapidly diminishing.

  21. #4941
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    That's why we have them protected by 300mA (unless placed in a wet room like bathroom). That kind of sensitivity doesn't trigger unnecessarily so your food is safe, but when something is truly wrong, you're safe. I've never had a 300mA trigger falsely. I've never even had a 30mA trigger falsely. And within their spec our electric equipment is sensitive and fast. A good old light bulb blowing out could trigger a breaker once a while.
    Indeed here in France it’s 300mA overall but I never tried a shock at 220 v 300mA, I think it would hurt! But every circuit has a 30 mA trip, that invention has saved a lot of lives, ( including rock stars who write “my way” songs). Of course if you manage to touch both live and neutral, or both hots in USA, without being grounded, the residual current trip will not save you. That is the basis of the double insulated idea which only needs a current breaker to be safe. Shock deaths have receded but electrical fires still kill people.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  22. #4942
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpatz View Post
    If it's grounded and goes live due to a fault, it will cause a short that should trip the breaker. And if it's not a hard enough short to trip the breaker, the ground prong should provide a lower resistance path than your body, preventing a severe shock.

    A GFCI will certainly trip in that situation, but they are designed more to trip when the ground path is something other than the grounded enclosure of the fridge (like your body while standing in water).

    Are GFCIs of specific trip currents readily available? I always thought they were all sold with whatever code requires for wet locations. When I've bought them, I never noticed a trip current mentioned on the box anyway.
    The trouble with a fridge is that the grounding provision can corrode or be left off. But as to GFCI being available , indeed they are and always have their trip current on their label. The USA lower voltage has been safer for years but codes are now using GFCI more. You can even get three phase ones. Most other countries that I have encountered stick at 30 mA to save lives in all circuits in houses. Industrial electricity in another realm. In the UK site work has to have a transformer down to 110 volts to be safer and that is inherently +/- 55 v so pretty safe.

    The one bad feature in my experience is that in humid conditions the RCD, GFCI tends to fail “on” and therefore does need regular testing with its button. So cable mounted types near equipment are not as good as those in a warm cabinet. For that reason alone, the USA has made a mistake going to 5mA in my opinion. 30 mA on 240 v supplies is safer IMO. But I lost that argument.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  23. #4943
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    Oh My Gosh! I just checked a message on our landline answering machine and if I didn't press 1 right now (several days ago) the FBI and Social Security would be coming to arrest me AND lock my Social Security account! I'm sure if I'd only pressed 1 I could have gone to the store and bought gift cards to pay what I owe!

    It's non-trivial because people fall for this stuff. Including another customer at my wife's hair salon, who'd given them access to her computer AND her bank account number before she wised up.

    Humans can be just awful.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  24. #4944
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    Ok, seriously non-trivial.

    It was 9:00 AM, I'd just started pedaling my Cubii and watching Formula One practice when there was a knock on the door. It was a young girl saying her mom yelled at her and she got scared and left. Said she lived next door but I don't remember seeing her before.
    My first thought was that it was some sort of scam and she'd be asking for money, but then I realized she was younger than I had first thought and WASN'T WEARING SHOES. So I called 911 and told my wife what was happening.
    I wasn't happy with having her just sitting on the concrete so asked if she'd feel safer if she was on the deck in the back. She said yes. I brought her through and my wife came out to sit with her.
    Eventually two Sheriff's vehicles arrived and I brought her out to talk with them. Another car pulled up and a woman got out; presumably was looking for her. The deputy that talked to me indicated this was not the first incident. After a while everyone left. I'm trying resist getting in my car and driving around the block to see if they are next door.
    I'm actually shaking a bit.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  25. #4945
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    This event has really upset me. I failed to mention she looks to be 10-12 years old. Should I have done any different?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  26. #4946
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    This event has really upset me. I failed to mention she looks to be 10-12 years old. Should I have done any different?
    Your actions seem totally appropriate to me.
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  27. #4947
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    I agree.

  28. #4948
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    The only thing that would be bothering me is the idea that maybe the mother is so bad that the kid really needs to escape... but there's nothing you can do in such a case, within a system that's hellbent on returning abuse victims to their abusers. They'll do what they intend to do with your cooperation or without it.

  29. #4949
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    This is where a system of emergency social workers might have helped better than the police, frankly. Not your fault there isn't one at all. But if it's a thing that frequently happens, that's a family that needs some kind of intervention no matter why it frequently happens, and police aren't what's needed in the long term.
    _____________________________________________
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  30. #4950
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    Ugh, part of a big oak tree came down in the front yard and woke me up. It landed partly on the roof. I havenít been able to see much damage but it is dark, also Iím worried about the rest of the tree. I found someone who will look at it when the sun comes up. They have a thing here where it is hard to get a permit to remove oak trees or I would have had it removed already, too big and risky. Not fun, crossing my fingers it wonít be too big a problem.

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