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Hot Topics: Mystery Wires | DoItYourself.com



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Original post: Can anyone tell me what this is?

RKPDiy ̵

1; Member

This is located on the veranda and seems to go down the ground floor apt.

I've been curious for a while, but now I have electrical problems with lack of juice from some stores in my apt.

Here is a link to several pictures.

Norm201 Member

To me they look like telephone wires.

Geochurchi Member

Hello, I would also agree, quite careless phone cables.

PJmax Group Moderator

Definitely telephone lines. It looks like with the screw holes that there was a small ground block there, which has been removed.

Definitely will not cause problems with AC outlets.

RKPDiy Thread Starter

Thanks everyone, I actually have a small area in my kitchen where "I" wanted to put a real phone booth in (maybe some clear kentlas that are glued or some form of gag) because it looked like it was going to go there and it had an old phone socket.

I was sitting on the porch waiting for the signature required email and it bugged me again, I thought maybe it was to the building linked fire system (but I pretty much wanted to snap it lol) so I thought it would be a good time to ask.

I was planning to register anyway to ask a few more possible related questions, but it was only in my face then. I have a ground-based switch with 240 vac earth. I run a top UPS line with LCD off, and it drops 4-5 volts when my neighbors drive things.

I'm in an old style building … but I still don't "I don't see it's legitimate because they have their own switch. So I control what I can.

Estimate the answers.

PJmax Group Moderator

It is possible that Services providing the old building are under-dimensioned for the building which is a fairly common problem for older buildings.

The distance between the transformer and the electrical service and loads can also play a role in voltage sacks.

RKPDiy Thread Starter

Can I ask you to put it in a little more lame terms … even if I thinks it was quite lame as it gets … release for completely uneducated, zero terminology (or special red. haha), I'm all for learning (house cables really interest me), but trying with book / online just isn't realistic t, at least for me.

What do you mean by providing the building services?

At the risk of looking like a total nap, I don't have time today to investigate before asking … but I thought the transformer was on the pole outside? Or this if I'm not wrong, l etc.

  outer thread connections

I had thought of the whole building drain as an opportunity because it honestly does not seem like theft (as I was trying to fix it), but the possibility of how it might happen was far beyond my reach.

If someone doesn't care about wasting their time giving me some peace, I have all the breakers and so photographed and on video on youtube that I'm more than willing to publish tomorrow, just tell me the preferred method of putting this one and I will surely, after taking better pictures and / or a video.

I've been driving around for like two months trying to figure out the stupid hard way because my landlord is worthless and I won't even bother anymore. Left my refrigerator without ground, he said heh.

By the way, sorry for the editing on this … but thank you.

Norm201 Member

This is not yours? Aren't you the owner? Then you should not touch it! The landlord must fix any electrical problems. Report him to the authorities if necessary. If that means he will try to punish you, it's time to look for new digs.

RKPDiy Thread Starter

I ask that I write the landlord a legal letter (involving another question also) one rather than accuse a tenant of theft I would like to know what is happening, because both only happened when they moved in after 5 years of tenant.

I'm not going to touch anything myself, no need to worry there. I know it's a DIY site, but I've got a better idea here than anywhere else … thought it couldn't hurt to get opinions.

If my special ed. comment didn't give it away, I'd probably cook myself lol. 196

I have put a lot of work into this apt, built my own room from a storage room, several repairs and work around (all with permission), but I am really only skilled at two things – all things computer based and legal situations. Both unlicensed, self-taught and pretty much unintentional (I probably don't even belong here).

But if there is one thing I learned from it in my life, it is that someone with a paper for support is not always the best person to ask for best results.

If that situation forbids anyone to help further, I fully understand, and I close the post now … but I'm really just looking for answers.

It is a bit much to explain, but too many occasions at one time for me to deny the idea that someone is arguing with things themselves behind their backs.

Norm201 Member

You are on the right track.

PJmax Group Moderator

I added your image and tagged it. We can only warn you not to do your own work in an apartment. You can take or leave our warning but you are still welcome to ask questions.

In your picture ….. old 100A covered cable. Have never seen that type of fixture to bring cable into the house. The meter must be in the basement. The old telephone cable is covered with 12 pairs, while the new cable is made of 6 pairs of PVC.

Yes …. the transformer is off the post. The distance to the building and the size of the conduit make a difference. It looks like there is a single 100A service in your building. Are there several meters in the basement? If not, a person pays the entire bill.

Many old buildings were transformed into multifamily. It was not always easy to completely separate the units so it is very likely that a circuit is shared between tenants.

RKPDiy Thread Starter

As I said, I have pictures or I can YouTube a short clip of everything, in terms of gauges, there are four meters, one old look one, and two others .. 30 second clip here I already had. I'll grab one of the wires tomorrow, I don't want to keep making you notice my pictures again (because though).

The middle one (of the three similar ones) is mine, the last one NEVER moved, and I JUST noticed that mine seems to be the only one spinning (I checked the number on my bill)

You have all been more helpful already than I might be able to tell you, things I didn't feel like the spinning disc just strikes me from the comments. I really appreciate everything, really.

PJmax Group Moderator

Adding a 100A service cable to your image is incorrect because you have four external meters. There must be a service cable up to one of the apartments.

RKPDiy Thread Starters

Well, it's ironic, there are only three units, two downstairs upstairs that extend above both lol.

That's why the fourth elder sees the meter and the one that never moves (since all units are occupied) is so suspicious, and I don't mean the counter, I tracked the numbers for over a week and they never budged. Two units (including mine) are gas, one is oil if it does something.

See why I'm so sketchy about all this? I've never checked a meter or anything before, but sometimes over the years my electricity bill has doubled in a month (and I am extremely common) … because it was rare, I just let it go.

At this point, my living situation is really bad here and he doesn't listen, so now I'm on my own hunt … if for no other reason than to tie someone on a wall. I know something is big time, I just can't prove what.

I was quickly looking for differences (incognito) so my numbers from then are pretty scrap paper and hard to find out now, but what I can say for sure from left to right, if I follow the apt number that most things here do , the oil moved less than me but they are younger and all the time, mine has moved the most, one the last one has been at 1-1-1-9-2 for as long as I can tell, being the second gas unit and where I know that the drain is off.

You obviously have access to my device folder the first time, I've added more pictures I had already shown where it all connects if it helps.

I will add a short video blank. on YouTube showing the layout so you don't have to reload photos (I need a web host for photos). by 100A, I suppose you mean amplifiers, but beyond that given that I have a normal meter line, I don't understand what that might be for. I have no massive connections to tools like washer and dryer, just an assortment, fridge and basic outlet. Although I think it does below me (part of my second question, breathing problems)

Sorry, but that's all I have – don't like to connect my device myself … but in this case it's worth it do .

RKPDiy Thread Starter

Main short video – Wiring Video

Secondary set of wires, just looks like a bowl to me.

In the case

I couldn't edit the original post, probably because of how long it's been, but this would be all the pictures and more.

Here is a question I should have asked long ago, there are four circuit boxes in the basement (a landlord by label), should a meter that never move with all occupied units be an obvious blaring red flag? Heh.

The older meter made me guess otherwise, or I simply would have called it already.

Sorry for all the editing duties lol … I would buy a kill-o-watt and some other simple tools, is there anything I can take without tampering with the house or dropping myself that would allow me to check if my excitement goes where it should be?

Rather than pushing you people with pictures, if something you might not even be able to answer with the sight alone. Although I have to say, I am extremely impressed with what you replied to from pictures alone lol.

Zorfdt Forum Subject Moderator

The three meters are probably for the three apartments and the fourth is the landlord meter. Usually, there is not much on landlord meters except for regular area lights. However, an LED front light should also register a certain amount of electricity usage for a week.

A somewhat common problem with older (and sometimes newer) buildings is that the circuits are inadvertently interconnected. It is difficult to say whether this is a possibility – it usually happens when buildings are being remodeled. If this has been a 3-family house forever, it is less likely to have the problem.

RKPDiy Thread Starter

Yes, the old one is not the one that does not move. .. which went up slightly, the last of the three meters still have not crossed past

1-1 (left side) almost a month ago which is not meaningful in the direction they calculate by looking at mine .. otherwise their all pretty screwed up lol.

I was running an AC and my triple bit UPS reading at about 11kva / 13kw per hour (plus my fridge and maybe a light or two) and I could actually see that the left number goes up slowly and my disc spins like a CD (eh, bad analogy, microwave perhaps?) where the first one moved less than half of it and the third barely crawls and (unless my eyes play tricks on me) sometimes jumps and crawls again. The numeric I generally had no idea if it was even electric because we have oil and gas in the building.

When it comes to the thread crossing – this fits. definitely had new three tips at a time because the two tips are low enough to be a violation of today's code standards if I found the right information when I checked the way back to it, and I would guess since my apartment is over two, it was maybe split down, one is nice (one question) and the other still has only two pin offices (I didn't care about my last neighbors, heh).

As I said, I intentionally said my UPS from a 240vac grounded outlet that was in the spare room I did all the work on, Never intended for use, no heat, etc., directly above where I think my problem is – the third apt, which is the barely moving meter. [19659005] So sure it would be to call and let them check the meter for starters I guess … and go from there. I had to stare to notice the disc spin and I never have before, my un guessed guess is that it uses enough power to redirect mine. Of course I do not feel the arm from the elbow, but it would make sense given that they seem to run heavier appliances than I do as laundry and the same exact AC.

I just killed my AC and checked a barely noticeable change in speed (with my eye) and I also had my "odometer" turned in this post so I wanted to correct it (twice corrected, no I didn't, but my left side actually went up when I stared). Ironically, I have never seen the left side of the third meter NOT be at 1 … which, considering my went up a half figure or so while I saw for about a minute, drive only 16kw and my fridge … can't be legitimate. Somehow they do not run a refrigerator, and I doubt that 16kw (UPS LCD) is more than an air conditioner or stove that people always use … and I know, by the way, that there is a built-in working dishwasher.

Either that meter is broken, which I guess wouldn't stay that way, or any other def. fishy here.

Appreciate all help everyone, bouncing ideas around alone made me much more attentive. I will call the meter and keep an eye here if anyone else has anything to add.

I wish I had the right skill sets to return the favor to other users, but I'm better suited for Tom's hardware in PC build and software categories unfortunately heh. However, I will keep my account and hold on. Everyone has been good, maybe I'll get the chance eventually.

If any of you ever have a PC related issue or problem, feel free to message me … I am always happy to help people who are willing to do the same. ???? * ????

Thanks again, if I figure something out I will release an update, no one likes unanswered questions, even if it is not their own. ????

RKPDiy Thread Starter

I actually have a question about the very first image I published … we have a fire alarm that goes through each custom if one goes off. The "telephone wire" I was told could not have anything to do with it can it?

The thing is extremely annoying to go up my steps, as well as a moment, I just want to snap it … is it safe?

PJmax Group Moderator

Doubtless it has something to do with the fire alarm.

The fire alarm should be tightly coupled – battery backup devices.

Can You only cut if you do not know who is feeding.

RKPDiy Thread Starter

Unfortunately the disappearance of the action. I moved lol … problem solved. Well, a problem – unfortunately, the new questions have no place here. But that was the end result.

Appreciate all the help … when my refrigerator reported an open ground and I found a second circuit box hidden behind an old looking led light that I had just left.

New site has kept me too busy to even bother with my other emails, but I said I would publish the end result … so there you have it.

Thanks again.

PJmax Group Moderator

19659005] Now you see him …….

Thank you for knowing how you did it.


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