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Troubleshooting a “Wall Wart” transformer, Connecting a 3-Wire Range Plug to 6/3 with Ground Romex and Wiring a Commercial Paint Booth

November 14, 2009

Question Ned asks:
My child’s baby monitor has a transformer at the wall plug for the camera. I recently noticed a light brown stripe around the middle of it. The transformer box is about 2?h x 1.5? w x 1?d and the stripe, which goes nearly all the way around, is about 1 cm wide. It looks like it has been caused by heat. It is plugged in right next to my kid’s crib, and I’m pretty concerned that this is a shorting, sparking, or fire hazard. Is this something I should be concerned about?

Answer:
Yes! I recommend unplugging it and take it to your local Radio Shack. They can look at it for you and they stock these if you need a new one.

 

Adrienne asks:
I ran 6-3 wire in my new addition for the range. It has 2 hots, a neutral, and a ground. We are wanting to temporarily use the old range we took out, however it is a 3-prong. How do we wire up a 3-prong non-grounding receptacle to 6-3? Where does the ground from the wire attach or does it need attached?

Answer:
At the receptacle, just hook up the 2-hots and 1-neutral wire. If you have a surface mounted receptacle or a metal box, then I recommend connecting the ground wire to the metal frame of the receptacle or the metal box.

 

Mike Boyer asks:
I’m replacing 10 old luminaires in a commercial paint booth with 10 new fluorescent fixtures that come with a magnetic normally open switch. The instruction sheet says for disconnecting the paint equipment upon opening the door of the fixture, but the equipment is run on compressed air. I assumed the switch was for disconnecting power to the fixture with some type of relays incorporated. Please help me with wiring these properly. The fixtures are rated for class 1 division 1.

Answer:
You are not permitted to have switches in a paint booth (unless they are in an explosion proof box; which is very expensive) because they spark when you turn them on which could ignite any fumes in there. This is why someone designed a more complex system using air switches; which do not cause a spark. At any rate, for commercial and industrial wiring you are required to be a licensed / qualified electrician to do this work. This is just one example why. If something is wired wrong here, there could be an explosion in addition to the risk of electric shock or electrocution. I highly recommend hiring a licensed or qualified electrician to complete this project for you.

 

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