Installing outdoor sensor light -- Did I do something very bad?

Excuse me if my terminology is wrong:
I started a project installing an outdoor sensor light.
I had a 1 flicker light switch in my basement which controls a light bulb in the cieling. With help, I installed a second flicker light switch so now there are 2 nobs and a new plate. The idea is 1 to control the existing light bulb, and the other to cut power to the outdoor sensor light.
In the cieling, we tried "stealing" power from the light fixture in the cieling. Supposeably my helping partner knew what they were doing. We almost had it setup correctly, however we had an accident. The fuse/switch on the panel was not turned off, and we saw some sparks fly when 2 wires touched (I dont know what wires they were). This tripped the switch on the panel and turned it all off. My question: Can this damange anything in the house?
The reason I ask is because I have since noticed problems in the house with the cieling lights. The house is 3 levels. We were working in the basement level tryign to steal power from the light fixture in the cieling. The middle floor is where the kitchen is. I notice my ceiling lights flicker quite often, and I think they are always flickering if any appliance is plugged into any socket (except the oven's socket. When I plug an appliance in the oven's socket it does not cause lights to flicker).
I have noticed on the top floor, my computer room light flickers too. I can also hear my UPS (which I have my computer tower and monitor plugged into) flicker turning on and off sometimes. Sometimes its not as bad as other times.
I have other rooms in the house but I dont spend alot of time in them. Im mostly in the kitchen and computer room most.
I remember looking at the wires after the sparks flew from the basement cieling where the light is, and a few of them looked burnt. Oh, and apparently there were other existing power wires in that were also stealing power. My friend said we should probably be using a new line instead of stealing power from the light, but insisted that the sparks could not cause damage.
I dont know if my fuse box (its not really a fuse box, it has switches) has always sounded like it does, but I remember hearing electricity from it and it was not a constant buzz, but it sounded like some power was fluxuating or something. It was a buzzy/hummy sound, but it didnt sound constant.
I really dont know what to do now. I called the local power company to test the power connection from outside to verify that is okay.
Does it sound like something was damanged during my install?
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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Yes! First of all it can damage you and the breaker (that switchy thinky in the panel) can't prevent that. However SERIOUS damage to anything else in the house is not likely as the breaker will usually prevent that. That's what it is for.
You could have done some damage to some pass throughs however. I would suggest you hire an electrician to come out and check all those things out. While most of the checking is not all that difficult, it does take a little experience to know what you are looking at and to guess where it is likely to be. Failing to do so could (not likely but possible) cause serious problems later.

--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
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You have an intermittant open of some wire somewhere. Most likely the new work you did either disturbed a connection or it is flawed.
Flickering on lights when you plug in another sounds like an open neutral wire (white). This open will be upstream of all effected fixtures. It might also be caused buy a loose connection in the breaker box or a bad breaker.
The oven is on a completely seperate circuit which is apparently uneffected.
Start by determining which breaker is associated with the flickering lights then remove and inspect the connections on each receptacle and light fixture until you find a white wire that has fallen off its screw or out of the wire nut.

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PipeDown wrote:

Before going into panic mode and checking everything, first go back to the fixtures you were working in and make _sure_ that all wires are tight in the wire nuts and on any screws. Wire nuts in particular are noted for looking tight but one wire not making full contact. My bet is that if you didn't have problems before starting work, any problems you now have will be either in that switch box or in the ceiling fixture.
It also sounds like you might have an overloaded circuit if the ceiling fixture is feeding 2 other floors in the house. Calling an electrician is a good idea.
Harry K
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I had hoped the OP had enough common sense to start at his new work and call a pro when he was sure he was over his head.
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It sounds like you should call an electrician.
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flickering lights advise of danger. while you await an electrician, here's the faq for your reading: http://www.faqs.org/faqs/electrical-wiring/part1 /
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Hi guys.
I had the local power company come out to check the lines. The guy actually came into my house and looked at my panel. He told me one of my breakers looked bad and I should call an eletrician to look at it. He turned the breaker off.
A "friend of a friend" who is an electrician came over. He inspected my panel. He found 6 white wires (I think he said they are called neurtels) and they had burnt ends that were not making proper contact. He replaced fixed the 6 wires and now everything is working PERFECTLY. He also told me the wiring job and the sparks from my accident would not have caused this. He said the wires were old and just needed to be replaced from old age, and needed to have better contact.
So the problem was not related to my install. My electrican only charged me $40 canadian too as it only took him 45 minutes to diagnose and fix. Thanks for all the advice guys :)
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