Posts Tagged ‘electrical’

Wrong Electrical Boxes for These Sconces

August 13, 2022
This is the mounting bracket for a sconce / light fixture . The fixture itself is exactly the same size as the bracket.
So it’s unfortunate that the electrician used an electrical box that is too large . As you can see, the blue box shows on both the left and right sides of the light fixture.
(I will also add that I think this light fixture is narrower than most – I suspect it was made overseas where boxes and codes are different from here.)
In addition, the blue box juts out from the wall and will create a bump under the wallpaper , plus prevent the paper from adhering tightly to the wall . The jaggedly cut drywall will leave impressions under the paper, too.
Here the plastic electrical box is recessed better into the wall. But there are still gaps on the left and right sides of the bracket.
To get the wallpaper around the brackets without gaps showing , I removed the brackets, and then brought the wallpaper in to cover the electrical junction boxes by about 1.” (no photo)
If the electrician needs more space for his wires , he can always trim the wallpaper back a little.
In the instance of the box in the top photo, there will still be wallpaper that can’t sit tight to the drywall , but once the sconce is replaced you really won’t notice.
I also had the option of leaving the mounting brackets in place and then placing the wallpaper over the metal plates. But first of all, I think this is against building Codes. And second, if the sconces are changed out later, or if someone needs to access the electrical connections, removing the mounting plates would most surely tear the wallpaper in the process.
So, best to have the wallpaper behind the plates, rather than pasted on top of them.

Odd Things I Did 30 Years Ago

February 8, 2022
I hung this wallpaper back in 1996, and was back this week to update it with new ‘ grown-up ‘ wallpaper. You are looking at the mounting bracket for the towel bar. For some reason, I didn’t remove the bracket like I usually do today, nor did I cut around it. Instead, I cut the paper so that the towel bar would be able to grip onto the bracket, but left some of the paper intact.
The cover plate is off the light switch. Here I cut the paper very tightly to the electrical switch. I didn’t cut out for the screw holes, but, when the cover plate was replaced, I let the screw drive itself right through the wallpaper.

Soaring Seagulls – Montrose “Burst Pipes” Home

September 23, 2021

I hung this same paper in this same kitchen not even a year ago. A few months later, the homeowners suffered “burst pipes” from the big freeze storm that hit Houston in February 2021. Consequently, their whole kitchen had to be torn out and replaced – drywall, flooring, cabinets, electrical, plumbing, and, yes – wallpaper.

They chose to go back with the exact same pattern they had used last year.

The manufacturer is Anderson Prints, it’s a traditional paste-the-paper product, and it was purchased from Stacey at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet.

More pictures tomorrow!

Messy Workmen

January 28, 2020


Hiring an electrician?

I hope you like cleaning up after them – because they won’t!

I measured an under-construction home in the Heights for wallpaper today, and found messes like this under EVERY electrical box.

Questionable Electrical Connection

December 30, 2019


Usually, according to code, a metal electrical junction box should be in or on the wall before a light fixture can go up. All wire connections should be enclosed inside this box.

In the photo, some light sconces were added to an existing wall. Maybe because of stud placement inside the wall, or maybe laziness, or maybe ingenuity, the electrician fished a wire through the wall and out a hole, and then hooked up the sconces. All without benefit of a junction box.

I do believe this is perfectly safe. The wire connections are all tight and secured with wire nuts, and enclosed inside the housing of the light sconce.

However, while I don’t know electrical codes, I doubt that this is up to code. From what I understand, most such connections should be made inside a metal junction box.

I do have to say, I have seen this sort of thing many times – including in cities like Bellaire, Texas (Houston), where the building code inspectors are really tough.

You Can’t Put Wallpaper Over a Hole!

September 2, 2018


I was told this job was ready to go, but when I got on-site, look what I found. They removed a noisy and ill-placed exhaust fan and drywalled over the hole. But when they removed the electrical switch for the fan, they forgot to patch that hole.

I can put paper over small holes, but not one this large and not in such an obvious place. It will be visible, and it’s likely to get punched through.

So I had to go home, and will wait for the contractor to repair this (along with a few other dings).

Yet More Reasons to NOT Let the Contractor / Painter “Prep for Wallpaper”

March 22, 2018

Pics of some “wallpaper-ready” walls left by the contractor.

In the last photo, note joint compound jammed into the box of an electrical outlet. This water-based material resting between the connectors on the electrical outlet, could serve as a conductor – and could have easily short-circuited the circuit … which could have blow out every light and electrical appliance on that circuit. As well as potentially started an electrical fire.

I chipped the gunk out of the outlet, and then spent about fours smoothing this mess on the walls, and then priming with a wallpaper-appropriate primer.

Tomorrow the paper will go up.

A Little Creative Wiring

January 6, 2016

Digital Image

Digital Image

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I am working in powder room in an expensive home in a brand new subdivision in far northwest Houston, built by a big-name tract home builder. I have removed the wall-mounted light fixture and found this … The horizontal bar is the mounting bracket for the light fixture, and the round tube is the nipple that holds the fixture in place. No on to the electrical wiring …

Electrical connections are supposed to be enclosed in a plastic or metal electrical box. As you can see, there is no box in sight.

The wires were fished through the wall and pulled through a hole, sans box, and then connected to the light fixture.

The other problem is, the wires you are seeing are not the 12 or 14 ga. AWG copper wires that carry the household current that the light fixture is supposed to be hard wired to. Instead, thinner braided wire has been used to make connections somewhere inside the wall, hopefully inside a proper box, and then pulled through the wall and connected to the light fixture. You might also notice that these wires are silver (aluminum?) instead of copper.

At least there is a ground wire.

I suppose the electrician did this so he could center the light fixture over the sink. The subdivision may be outside any incorporated city limits, so possibly there are no governing building codes. Either way, I doubt this would pass code in Houston, or any city with an attnetive Building Inspector.