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Arlene

10:02PM | 09/05/00
Member Since: 09/05/00
2 lifetime posts
Bvelectrical

I was told by a handyman in our complex, that my lights dim off and on because the electricity is "arcing". It seems to happen after I have used the outlet in that room to connect the vacuum. I had an electrician look at the fuse box, but he was unable to find anything. The complex has over 200 units, so I don't know if these symptoms are just a part of living in an area that wasn't planned for this many units?
I also have a slide switch in the kitchen that makes a sizzling sound sometimes when I switch it on and off. Is this possibly a short?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated...Damsel in distress!

rpxlpx

03:54AM | 09/06/00
Member Since: 03/13/00
1675 lifetime posts
Frequently, problems like you describe are caused by a loose wire on one of the outlets --especially if the installer used the push-in type connections instead of the screw connectors on the outlet. If you're not comforatable removing outlet covers and switches to check the wires, ask someone else to do it. That's a good place to start. If no problem found, also check the wires on the switches and connectors (usually wire nuts).
And be sure to check the wires on the dimmer that "sizzles". If the sizzling sound is internal to the dimmer unit, it's probably safe, buy you might want to consider replacing it.

[This message has been edited by rpxlpx (edited September 06, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by rpxlpx (edited September 06, 2000).]

ElectrcBil

07:16AM | 09/06/00
Member Since: 07/21/00
76 lifetime posts
Electricity can do some unusual things, but what you are describing is quite frequent. Older installations were not designed for todays high powered devices. You are probably creating a significant load on that circuit when vacuuming. As for the slide dimmer, I would not hesitate about replacing it, better safe than sorry.
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