Electrical: Most Popular Articles
Learn the appropriate wire size for the amperage of the circuit that you are using. The wire gauge is the size of the wire.
Find out what the electrical wire color coding is when working on electrical projects. Learn which wires are used as hot, neutral, and ground wires.
Installing a 4-prong electric dryer cord when replacing a 3-prong electric dryer cord is easy when you follow thee directions.
Learn how to install a 3-prong dryer cord. Some electric dryers comes with 4-prong cords that have a ground connection. Older wiring setups may only have a 3-prong outlet, so you will have to add a 3-prong cord to fit the outlet and here's how. Page 5.
Electrical work requires many different tools. Here's a look at the top sixteen electrical tools.
A look at triplex, main feeder, panel feed, non-metallic sheathed wire (NM), and single strand wire.
If you want to learn how to wire and install outlets, follow these simple steps. These steps include stripping the wire, making proper connections, and wire placement on the outlet. Outlet installation is made easy and safe in this tutorial.
Grounding and electricity go hand in hand. In fact, to safely use electrical devices, equipment, appliances, and tools, make sure that your connection is grounded properly. Here's why grounding is important.
Learn how to determine the electrical circuit load capacity for your home.
In the world of renewable and sustainable alternative power supplies, solar energy is free for the taking. These are my top ten solar energy uses in a home.
Metal and PVC conduit both have a maximum number of allowable electrical wire fill. This article will tell you these amounts.
Electrical wiring can be as simple as following these tips. This tutorial will make wiring a breeze, whether you're wiring an electrical service, the branch circuits, or the devices connected to them.
Learn what line and load connections are and what connects to each.
If you need to know how to wire a dryer outlet, or convert the wiring from a three-wire system to a four wire system, or just the opposite, here's a great source for information.
Learn how to wire an electrical panel with these simple step-by-step instructions. Knowing where to make the connections in a breaker panel is explained in detail.
If you've ever wondered how to size air conditioners for your home, look at this article on air conditioner sizing.
When it comes to ground fault circuit interrupter outlets, commonly known as GFCI outlets, there is always a question as to how to connect the wires to them. In this article, I'll give you the information you need to connect them properly.
If you've ever wondered what the typical height of a switch is, this article gives you some insight to installing switches in your home.
Learn how to connect the wires to the terminals of a dryer outlet.
If you are in the need to wire your home, want to know how to run the wiring or how to connect it to devices, this is a detailed list of tuorials for you.
The National Electrical Code has some very specific rules and regulations about underground wiring methods and points of attachment. This is a look at the highlights of the outdoor sections of the code.
Learn how to install hardwired smoke detectors with battery backup in your home. These detectors are wired so that if any detector goes off, they will all sound.
In order to determine the safe capacity of a circuit, you'll need to consider the voltage, amperage and wattage of a circuit, then take that times 80% for the safe capacity.
When a fuse blows or a circuit breaker trips, was it a short circuit or a ground fault that caused it? Find out what the differenceis in this article.
When considering the appropriate wire size for a circuit, don't forget to take the circuit length into consideration.
This is the first step in bending conduit.
Learn what electrical circuit overloads are and how that can effect your home's electrical wiring.
Three-way switch wiring is made easy with this diagram. With this labeled diagram, you'll be able to see where each of the wires connect to the switch terminals.
Learn some of the warning signs of defective switches so that you can identify them before they cause problems.
Find out what can cause light bulbs to burn out early in your home.
A room by room look at common electrical code requirements in the home.
Learn how to safely remove and install a circuit breaker in an electrical panel.
Learn how to make the electrical connections to an electric meter. Electric meters have two hot connections, and a center neutral/ground connection.
Learn how to properly connect two or more wires by connecting a pigtail connection.
Learn what the five different types of electrical wires are and what they are used for.
Baseboard heater thermostat wiring is easily accomplished in this how-to electrical article. Read the steps, wire the thermostat, and heat your room. It's just that simple!
Have you ever wondered if you can improve the value of your home? Why does one person get more money for their home when they sell it while another gets little or can't sell theirs at all? Why does one person seem to find wealth and prosperity with everything he touches, while another person never succeeds at anything? Could it be luck or is it something he did to his home to make it a more attractive sale?
This is a sensible look at preventing electrical shock. These tips will help keep you safe.
Learn how to test different types of fuses using a multi-meter. By setting the meter to ohms, a measurement of resistance, you can effectively determine if the fuse is good or blown.
Light fixture problems often leave you in the dark. Find out what the problem may be in this insightful article.
Learn how to connect the wires together in a junction box by using wire nuts in this step by step tutorial.
You've heard the term blown fuses, but what is this exactly?
Learn how to make a regular outlet into a split outlet to have it be controlled by a switch. By breaking the center tab out of the hot side of the outlet, the outlet can serve two different purposes. Page 6.
Learn what the letters on the terminals of a thermostat mean and what connects to each.
Learn what color wire goes where on switch and outlets terminals and why.
Adding an outlet to an existing wall are made easy in these steps that will allow you to add an outlet to an existing wall without damaging it.
Learn how to insert a dryer cord in order to connect it to an electric dryer.
Space heaters are best used as supplemental heaters and are usually one of three types.
Here are some great tips for determining the proper wire gauge, ampacity, and the maximum wattage allowed.
Learn how to test continuity with a multi-tester.
Some cables are meant to be run indoors, while others are meant for weathered areas and underground like direct burial cable.
This is an informative look at electrical switches and will give a an insight to many different types of switches, how they are wired, and what they are used for. Just click the link and start your free lesson today!
The question is often asked, whether it is better to install a GFCI receptacle or a GFCI breaker.
Electrical tips on how to replace a single pole switch.
Overhead power lines have some strict guidelines for height clearances over streets, sidewalks, alleys, roads, and driveways.
Learn how to hang the ceiling fan, make the electrical connections and secure the housing. Page 9.
Learn how easy it is to install and wire a 4-prong dryer outlet.
Learn the locations that conduit is designed to be used in.
Learn how to wire electric range receptacles with this easy step-by-step guide.
If you are remodeling your kitchen, you will need to be sure these ciruits are in place.
A look at the basics of series and parallel circuits. Find out what the likenesses and differences are.
You've heard the term three-way switches, but what are they and what do they do? Find out in this article.
If your ceiling fan is making a lot of noise lately, this article is for you.
Learn what the phrase main breaker means in this article.
Ever wonder what the letters on electrical wire mean? Find out in this informative article.
Double-pole breakers use two spaces in your electric panel versus one space by a single-pole breaker.
Ground fault circuit breakers are used to protect humans from electrical shock hazards. These breakers are connected in the electrical panel and protect branch circuits in and around the home.
I'm often asked why switches make sizzling, popping, or crackling sounds when they are turned on and off. The answer is they are probably defective and/or worn out.
Installing and wiring a single-pole switch couldn't be easier than with this step-by-step guide from About.com's electrical guide, Timothy Thiele.
Wiring baseboard heaters is as simple as adding a 20-amp circuit. Simply pull a 12-2 non-metallic sheathed wire from the electrical panel to the area of the wall you want to place the baseboard heater. Since baseboard heaters have a built-in junction box, you won't have to cut in a junction box to feed it.
Find out what the average cost is for common electrical projects.
Learn how to change an bake element in a electric oven.
Electric water heaters often encounter problems and these troubleshooting tips will help you diagnose the problems.
Fuses and circuit breakers are used to protect electrical circuits. But when fuses blow or circuit breakers trip, do you know why? Do you know what to do to get the circuit working again? One you can reset while the other needs replacing. Find out why and how to make the circuit work again.
There are many reasons to add a subpanel to your home. when you main panel is short of adaquate space or many things are powered from another location in your home or garage, a subpanel may be for you. learn how to size the subpanel before you install it.
Wiring through receptacles is a method that many people have used for years, but it is not the preferred method according to electricians and the National Electrical Code.
The National Electrical Code was written to provide a set of rules and regulations to keep the use of electricity in your home safe. Here are the top bathrooms codes you need to live by to remain safe and keep your electrical devices working properly.
There are many benefits to balancing the loads of the two legs of power in your electrical panel and here's why.
A home's electrical system has feeder wires that supply power to the panel and branch circuits that leave the panel to power devices. Find out what these branch circuits are used for.
When you need to change a breaker, learn why brands are not interchangeable.
Have you heard the term circuit breaker panel and really never knew too much about them and what they do? In this article, I explain what a circuit breaker panel is.
Learn about the top electrical connections in and around the home. Whether it's the service connections that feed the house, the branch circuits that feed the devices, or the devices themselves, this collection of electrical connections will have power flowing through your home safely.
Learn how to wire electrical circuits to feed the kitchen area of your home. This list shows you the circuits you may need to power the kitchen effectively
Learn where to place smoke detectors in your home.
If it's time for a new window air conditioner, but you don't know what size you need, this chart will be helpful.
Here's a quick look at what an electrical inspector may require you to do.
The subpanel wiring sizes can be determined after finding the appropriate sized circuit breaker.
Light bulbs can burn out from time to time and should always be replaced with the right wattage light bulb for the light fixture that you are installing it in.
Have you ever wondered how the utility company knows how much power you used each month? This basic article explains how it all works with an electric meter.
Have you ever walked into a room and turned on a light switch only to hear a pop? You look at the light fixture and one of the bulbs isn't working. Under further investigation, you see that one of the sockets has outlived it's usefulness. The socket is discolored and one of its wires is burnt to a crisp. Learn how to replace the socket here.
Learn how to install an F-Connector crimp ring onto coaxial cable.
Testing electrical circuits is a must when they go on the fritz. Knowing how they work and how to test for power will help you track down the problem.
Here's a simple couple of ways to test a single-pole switch in and out of the circuit.
A grounding system is comprised of a ground rod, wiring to connect it to a service panel, and a ground buss. It is a very important part of your electrical system to ensure electrical safety.
Here's a look at the differences and similarities between tandem and double-pole circuit breakers.
In order to keep bathrooms free from mold and mildew, bathroom exhaust fans remove moisture and odor quickly and easily. The real secret is getting the right sized exhaust fan for the proper room size.
Learn which wires go where in the how-to article about wiring an electrical disconnect.
Learn how to correctly install dishwashers in your home. By following these steps, your dishes will be clean and shiny in no time.
There are three distinctive fluorescent light bulbs: T12, T8, T5. Here are the differences between them.
Electric motors incorporate thermal protection to protect the motor from burning up, find out why.
These simple step-by-step instructions will guide you through a range cord installation. Just follow the instructions and you'll be cooking with bacon in no time!
Electrical extension cords are great way to extend circuits to areas that you are working, away from available outlets. Many times, the user doesn't heed the extension cord size compared to th elength of the run.
Learn the basics of how to install ground fault circuit interrupter outlets.
Electrical projects often involve taking devices out of boxes and opening up existing circuits. For these reasons, it is imperative to know how to turn a circuit breaker off in order to safely work on a project. Shutting off the circuit that you're working on and then testing the circuit will ensure that you won't be electrocuted. Electrical safety should be your number one concern for the welfare of yourself and your family.
Learn how to connect the wires to the cord plug so that the wires cannot be pulled out easily.
Power that flows from the utility company's power lines feed a service entrance pole. This connects utility wires to the electric meter through a weatherhead. Page 2.
This is a look at some very common electrical mistakes made by do-it-yourself homeowners. These need-to-know items will ensure proper electrical installations without problems.
Wiring methods have changed over the years from knob and tube to flexible armored cable (Greenfield) to nonmetallic cable (NM), conduit (EMT), and underground feeder (UF) cable. From about 1890 to the present, wiring methods have become much safer due to the installation types of wiring and the addition of ground wires.
Many people still have land-based telephones in their homes and they have their share of problems. This guide will walk you through ways to troubleshoot your telephone system for problems before you call the telephone company or their technition.
Learn how to wire the telephone jack connections. Page 4.
Fluorescent lighting is cool, soft lighting that works well in kitchens and utility rooms. If you’ve ever had one of these lights turn itself on and off, you may have a bad ballast. Sometimes it will seep a tar-like substance into the cover of your light. Either way, it is time to change the ballast.
Learn how to calculate safe circuit loads on home wiring circuits.
There are many dangers associated with electricity. The real danger with electrical shock is amperage, not voltage.
Diagnosing electric water heater problems can be a snap if you know the shortcuts in finding the problems. Why sometimes, it is as easy as turning on a faucet to find the answer.
In order to understand how electricity flows, you must first understand what the key terms mean. This simple list gives you some of the most commons terms.
Learn what an arc fault is and what causes it. Find out why it's important to protect against it.
Spas and hot tubs require special electrical connections. Here are some guidelines to ensure these units are connected properly.
Learn how to reset a circuit breaker that has tripped.
To ensure safe operation of a portable generator, here is a list of do's and don'ts.
Take a look at what can be installed in a circuit breaker panel and how each of these things has a specific role to play.
When working with electricity or on electrical circuit or equipment, ladder safety should be observed. There are many different types of ladders and they are made of different materials. Metal ladders should never be used when dealing with electricity. Always choose a nonconductive ladder made of wood or fiberglass.
This tutorial will make you aware of the different parts of a home's electrical system.
Single-pole breakers are an important part of electrical distribution as a safe way to manage branch circuits from a circuit breaker panel.
If you've ever had to add a new wire, for an outlet or switch, in an existing wall, this tip will surely help.
Learn what the the term wire connectors means and what they are also known as.
Here are a few outdoor lighting and receptacle codes that you will need to know before wiring your home or making room additions.
Learn what the recommended wattage is for the living area of a room of your home for electric heating.
Find out what the national electrical Code states about ground-fault circuit-interrupters in dwellings.
If your home suffers from frequent light bulb failure, there is probably a reason for early burnout.
An over-the-range microwave oven will need an outlet to run it. This outlet should be installed somewhere in the upper cabinet that the microwave will hang from. Page 2.
Learn proper electrical do's and don'ts in this code requirement tutorial. Electrical safety around pools and spas must be followed to ensure backyard fun.
My readers often ask what the proper sized wire is for installations in a home. Here's a look at the common sizes.
Find out how to install a wire clamp.
If you ever wondered about whether your wiring in your house was safe, here's a few things to consider.
Learn how simple it s to turn on a circuit breaker.
A look at why window air conditioners often freeze up.
When pulling wires through pipes, an electrician's tool list wouldn't be complete without a fish tape. This coiled spool of thin wire is a must-have tool to make wire pulling an easy job. A fish tape is nimble enough to go around corners and bends in conduit and is strong enough to pull wires through piping without breaking.
Do you know what a weatherhead is and what it is used for on your electrical service?
When connecting electrical wires to switches and outlets, the way you strip, bend, and tighten the wire on the terminal will determine how good the connection really is.
Learn how to support a cut-in electrical box by installing Madison straps. Page 5.
When you need to add a second switch on a lighting run in your house, wireless switches may be the way to go.
Front-load washers, like the Whirlpool Duet washers, have some advantages over the top load washers. They are commercial grade washers and are much larger than a standard top-load washer. Because of their size and because they have no agitator in the middle of the drum, they can hold more clothes. Can you guess how many pairs of jeans this unit can wash?
Have you ever heard the term rotary dimmer switch and wondered, what is that? Obviously it's a switch, but what makes it so special? Find out what it does and what it is used for in the article.
Learn how easy it is to wire a single-pole switch. This simple how-to will have you turning lights on and off in no time.
It is important in this day and age to have a ground on the receptacles in your home. You likely have one of two types of receptacle, a polarized or a three-slot receptacle. In order to perform this test, you’ll need some type of electrical tester. This could be a neon tester, a receptacle tester, a voltage tester, a receptacle tester, or a multi-meter.
Receptacles are a convenient way to plug all types of appliances and lighting into to supply power. However, these convenient devices have their share of problems over the years. Here is a look at the many things that can go wrong.
Just as color codes mean something on individual electrical wires, so too is color-coding for nonmetallic cable.
If you have a fuse panel, it's likely that sooner or later you'll be needing a cartridge fuse.
Find out what split outlets are and what electrical installation that they are used for.
Intermediate metal conduit, or IMC for short, is a rigid steel electrical conduit that is lighter in weight than another conduit, but in some cases much stronger.