Inspectors are not evil

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I had my electrical inspection yesterday for my whole house re-wire.
The guy came around 10 and checked every outlet with a plug-in three light tester. Pulled a few outlets to make sure I didn't cut the wires too short. Pulled a few switch covers to make sure I switched the black wires. Checked the operation of every GFCI: kitchen, basement, Lavs, and garage. Made sure my stapling was adequate. Checked for grounding screws on every metal box. (I used mostly plastic)
Failed me for: more than one cable entering a handy box with an outlet self- tapping sheet metal screws used for grounding (I ran out of green screws) ceiling box with three 12ga wires
I told him I was going to fix it all right now. A couple of box extensions and green screws and I was done. He called me around 3:30 and said he was finished with his last inspection and asked if I was done. He actually stopped back that day and passed my job. This saved me from having to call and schedule a re-inspection and maybe getting a different guy and another day off from work. He was very helpful and was just making sure it was done right.
Maybe my town is different but this is the third permit I've pulled and had inspected and never had any problems. They are doing exactly what they should be doing, making sure work is done properly and the house is safe. I don't know if others have had problems but I've never had an inspector needlessly fail a job because he was out to get me.
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On 2/1/2011 9:16 AM, Limp Arbor wrote:

Inspectors here will constantly bother a homeowner with repeated visits. OTOH, a developer will receive less visits unless the inspector need free nails or something ;(
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I'm curious as to how he's checking outlets, switches, and your cable stapling. How does he see your staples behind the sheetrock?

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I didn't have to staple behind the sheetrock. You don't have to remove finished materials to run wire. He was checking the stapling in the basement and attic.
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I didn't have to staple behind the sheetrock. You don't have to remove finished materials to run wire. He was checking the stapling in the basement and attic.
When you said "whole house rewire" , I just assumed you gutted the place. That's a lot of work to do, leaving the walls up
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.
I built a 18x22 workshop in my backyard two years ago, completely insulated and wired for 220V. I pulled a permit and had inspectors out probably a dozen time thru the entire process. All of the inspectors were friendly and even provided advice during the upcoming stages of construction. I passed on the first try on each inspection. Unfortunately, on my final inspection, they failed me because my door stepped down 6" onto grass. They wanted a solid surface as a stoop, so I put down some sidewalk pavers. They came back the next day and passed it.
Rob
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.
The hardest part was getting from the attic to the second floor outlets on the eaves. Not a job for a full-figured guy.
The first floor ceiling lights were also a little tough but a few strategically placed access holes helped out.
I ran all the feeds for the second floor through an interior wall up to the attic. Not bad because I just pulled down the upper cabinets in the kitchen and cut the drywall near the top of the wall. Patched the drywall and did one coat of spackle then put the cabinets back up.
some must have tools to do this job: string with a nut tied to it and a magnet on a stick fish sticks fish tape flexible drill but right-angle drill helper
If you don't have those tools you could just rip out all the drywall. I remember as a kid going to help the old man who did wiring on the side. We went to a house where the guy cut 4" strips out of the plaster walls all the way around every room at outlet height. My dad didn't have the heart to tell him that he was going to run the wires up from the basement.
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The hardest part was getting from the attic to the second floor outlets on the eaves. Not a job for a full-figured guy.
The first floor ceiling lights were also a little tough but a few strategically placed access holes helped out.
I ran all the feeds for the second floor through an interior wall up to the attic. Not bad because I just pulled down the upper cabinets in the kitchen and cut the drywall near the top of the wall. Patched the drywall and did one coat of spackle then put the cabinets back up.
some must have tools to do this job: string with a nut tied to it and a magnet on a stick fish sticks fish tape flexible drill but right-angle drill helper
If you don't have those tools you could just rip out all the drywall. I remember as a kid going to help the old man who did wiring on the side. We went to a house where the guy cut 4" strips out of the plaster walls all the way around every room at outlet height. My dad didn't have the heart to tell him that he was going to run the wires up from the basement.
Cutting out the 4" strips would save a lot of cable, but plaster patching is more time consuming than sheetrock patching, so I suppose if the walls are in good shape, looping up from the basement and down from the attic is the way to go. You must have a fairly steep roof pitch to be able to reach the top wall plates at the eaves.
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I didn't have to staple behind the sheetrock. You don't have to remove finished materials to run wire. He was checking the stapling in the basement and attic.
reply:
You have to forgive the clueless, uninformed, inexperienced and the ignorant.
Steve
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clipped

I'm sure inspections vary wildly, but gas and electricity seem to be treated seriously ... our roofing should not have passed inspection, but the insp. obviously didn't climb a ladder to spot the bad nailing. Same inspector (Florida) red-tagged holes for seawall tiebacks that had water in them...ready to pour marine cement and the tide was up. He didn't get back to pass it for two days.
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Most people fail because they either didn't do the work correctly, or the homeowner tells the inspector when he gets there that he's an idiot, and that the inspection process is just another way to steal money from taxpayers.
Steve
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Limp Arbor wrote:

Did he check to make sure your screw were lined up correctly?
Jon
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On Feb 1, 11:22am, "Jon Danniken"

Not very hard to line up one screw.
R
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In typed: :: I had my electrical inspection yesterday for my whole :: house re-wire. :: :: The guy came around 10 and checked every outlet with a :: plug-in three light tester. :: Pulled a few outlets to make sure I didn't cut the wires :: too short. Pulled a few switch covers to make sure I :: switched the black wires. Checked the operation of every :: GFCI: kitchen, basement, Lavs, and garage. :: Made sure my stapling was adequate. :: Checked for grounding screws on every metal box. (I used :: mostly plastic) :: :: Failed me for: :: more than one cable entering a handy box with an outlet :: self- tapping sheet metal screws used for grounding (I ran :: out of green screws) :: ceiling box with three 12ga wires :: :: I told him I was going to fix it all right now. A couple :: of box extensions and green screws and I was done. He :: called me around 3:30 and said he was finished with his :: last inspection and asked if I was done. He actually :: stopped back that day and passed my job. This saved me :: from having to call and schedule a re-inspection and maybe :: getting a different guy and another day off from work. He :: was very helpful and was just making sure it was done :: right. :: :: Maybe my town is different but this is the third permit :: I've pulled and had inspected and never had any problems. :: They are doing exactly what they should be doing, making :: sure work is done properly and the house is safe. I don't :: know if others have had problems but I've never had an :: inspector needlessly fail a job because he was out to get :: me.
That's my experience also.
Twayne`
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On Tue, 1 Feb 2011 13:48:46 -0500, "Twayne"

I have done a lot of "owner/builder", a pool, a driveway with culvert work in the right of way, a pretty good sized addition, a power upgrade, a shed and a boat dock with a lift. My inspectors were very easy to work with but I did have some hassles in the permitting process.
The inspectors on my last project were even using the internet and Email very effectively. I had an issue on the "steel'" inspection, I fixed it and Emailed pictures, he passed it from his laptop and I was pouring concrete right on schedule the next morning.
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Limp Arbor wrote:

The inspector failed you for using the wrong color/tapping screws and you don't consider him evil?
And what's this about only one cable per box? How do you daisy-chain outlets?
And how much was your tribute in gold and treasure?
Spawn of the devil, I'd say.
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wrong type of screw for grounding purposes

Depending upon the wire size, conductor count, connectors, devices, etc. , not all boxes have enough volume for daisy chaining

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On 02/01/2011 05:53 PM, HeyBub wrote:

one cable per *HANDY* box. perfectly right. a handy box doesn't have enough volume for 4x 14AWG conductors, a ground, and a device.
http://ecmweb.com/nec/code-basics/electric_box_fill_calculations /
typical handy box is 13 in^3
you have 4 (hot & neutral) + 2 (yoke & device) + 1 (ground) "conductors" (add 1 if your inspector considers a romex clamp "internal" but I would not)
7x 14 AWG conductors requires min. 14 in^3
you may think it's BS but per the NEC the inspector was correct
I'd have used a 1900 box instead if surface mount, or a deep single gang box if on a stud.
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote:

Oh. Thanks.
I was working on the theory that "If the wires will fit, you must acquit."
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What surprised me was he said I cut put an extension on the handy box (which I did) or replace them with plastic boxes.
I thought that exposed boxes in basements and garages had to be metal. He said no. He also said I didn't need to use conduit to run the wire down the cement walls, I could have just stapled NM to a 1x2 Tapcon'd to the wall.
He even said my junction boxes in the attic didn't need to be metal. The question I didn't think of at the time is do they make a plastic cover for plastic junction boxes?
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