Electrical help, i drilled into a cable!

Home Forum Chat Forum Electrical help, i drilled into a cable!

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 58 total)
  • Electrical help, i drilled into a cable!
  • YOu need to take the wall apart and fix the wire, sockets go on a ring so there will be an alternate path even if you have completely broken the wire. Or you may just have damaged the insulation on it.

    Needs to be sorted I’m afraid.

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    I know it sounds obvious and slightly patronising, but call a sparkie out. Let his liability insurance take the strain.

    swisstony
    Member

    ta, i’m not paying for a spark to come out, not for something like this.

    So however i get to it what’s the best way to repair the wire?

    if it’s not damaged that much, insulation tape?

    Premier Icon paulosoxo
    Subscriber

    You’re going to have to cut it and put a junction box in at least

    Digimap
    Member

    Open up the wall so you can see the damage and post a picture. Not much point speculating how to fix something you can’t see yet. Oh and switch off / remove the circuit breaker for whatever circuit it’s on first.

    swisstony – NO!!!!! you need to do a proper repair which depends on what damage you have done. Junction boxes and splice a new piece in might be the answer.

    If you get it wrong you could burn your house down. If you don’t have the knowledge then pay for it

    isn’t this where someone says mending a power cable is like making love to a beautiful woman ? It’s quite dangerous and you may (not) live to regret it…

    theflatboy
    Member

    and sparks will fly. 🙂

    Gary_M
    Member

    Bearing in mind your comment that ‘if it’s not damaged that much, insulation tape’ suggests that you really haven’t a clue what you’re doing. This isn’t a toaster with a wee nick in the cable, it’s behind a wall where you can’t see/feel if there is any heat build up. At the very least use a junction box and if you haven’t already, then get some smoke detectors fitted.

    Premier Icon NZCol
    Subscriber

    D’ya know what. Me and thw wife were out for a walk on Sunday. Beautiful winters day it was as well. Off we toodle from the house and up onto the Southern Walkway, its in Wellington you know. Lovely view out to the South Island, snow on the Kaikouras.

    Anyway, as we look down into Breaker Bay she says “Hey look theres smoke coming out the back of that house”, and right enough there was, then a woman and two kids, then the back windo blew out then the house went up in flames. We’re talking a 900K+ 3 bedroom quite new house. Destroyed, Less than 5 minutes. And her car too which was parked outside. That bit was quite spectacular. By the time the fire brigade arrived all they could do was stop the houses each side burning down.

    See now – i wouldn;t f*** with my electrics !

    49er_Jerry
    Member

    If the cable is in a wall and you weren’t expecting to find it, ie. it wasn’t in line with a socket switch or other fitting, and everything is working (in a house where there is dodgy wiring) switch off all the power before you go digging around in the wall. It might not be the circuit you assume.

    You should not use a junction box in a wall. Jctn boxes should not be placed where they are not accessible and connections cannot be checked in future. It sounds like you need to get a spark in for reasons already mentioned. The cost will be minimal, versus the potential consequences of getting it wrong! Don’t bodge it. Also, if it is a ring, a sparky will test it after a repair to make sure that it has been fixed properly. Important!

    Depending on where in the wall the damage has occurred, you might not have to take the whole wall down. A couple of smaller holes may suffice.

    If you are in the Sheffield area, give me a call. I doing paperwork today.

    swisstony
    Member

    Ta all,

    Gary, i’m offended, i know the live brown bear sleeps under the neutral blue sky, what more do i need to know!

    ( i’m joking, i’m no expert but i was hoping someone on here does and i can learn)

    I think what i’ll do is chase it all out my self and go for the junction box option and if i struggle i’ll get someone out.

    ps I’ve already got smoke alarms thankfully.

    swisstony
    Member

    Drilling into a wall on sunday and next thing there was a massive flash and sparks as i must have drilled into a cable. I didn’t get a shock and when i checked my drill and lights, sockets they were all working. Nothing seems to have blown on the fuse board which i know isn’t good.

    My question is is there anything i need to do?

    I was actually drilling through a studwall timber which was loose so to get at the bit if wall properly i’d have to take the wall out which would be a major job. I suppose i could go in from the side but again i’d have to remove quite a lot of plaster to get to it.

    I’m thinking though that it could be a random wire, it’s an old house that’s been extended a couple of times so the wiring is ‘interesting’ to say the least. My worry is a risk of fire especially as it’s next to wood, perhaps but i could squirt a load of caulk or something into the hole to insulate it.

    ?????
    ?????

    -m-
    Member

    ps I’ve already got smoke alarms thankfully.

    Let’s hope it wasnt the power supply to them that you drilled through 😀

    nigew
    Member

    How do you know it was a wire you hit?
    Could it of been a bit of old metal conduit?
    There were loads of it in our house when we moved a few walls around.

    Let’s hope it wasnt the power supply to them that you drilled through

    mine all use batteries…

    Various people are correct here.

    The cable does need to be replaced, could have drilled through power socket, and turned a ring mains into 2 radial circuits.
    (which is a big difference). Possibility that the insulation has been completely damaged and the cable is quite happily arcing away
    underneath the plaster.

    You need to either replace the whole run of that cable or junction box it, but must have the junction box in the loftspace/floorspace above the cable and below the damaged cable, so that you can acces it. a sunken JB in the wall itself is unacceptable.

    if it’s a stud partition wall, you maybe lucky and able to pull teh cable out, with the new one attached to it, otherwise if it’s
    a brickwall, you’ll need to chase all the plaster awayabove the cable for the length of the run on the cable.

    you need to

    1, switch all power off.
    2, get into the roofspace or open the floorboards directly above where the cable is and locate it.

    you Failed to mention if there was a socket or lightswitch in line with the big bang location.

    If there is, it’s a good guess that the cable in the socket/switch is traveling up the wall and you;ve located the top part of it.
    get a replacement cable of same size and type, mechanically attach hte two cables together by tying knots with the strands of copper,
    cover the joint in tape and put a load of washing up liquid on the new cable.

    Hopefully if you pull on the cable at the top of the roofspace/floorspace, you’ll pull the old and damaged one up, which will
    drag up the new one up .

    using the connector box, cut of the damamaged part of the cable and join the two cables together!

    if there is no socket or switch, then the cable needs to be replaced top and bottom using two joint boxes.

    open the floorboards up where you were standing and drilling, find the cable going up, cut cable, join new cable to it, as above,
    and pull out the old one and hopefully drag up the new one. Now you will have to jointbox both ends of the cable.

    by now, it’s probably worth getting an electrician in unless you are use to DIY! a sparkie would have it fixed in an hour, it’s going to
    take you a few hours and a constantly worry about the quality of your terminations skills with the joint boxes!

    Hope that helps

    swisstony
    Member

    the smoke alarms are mains with battery backup so that’s ok.

    nige, i’d like to think it may have something else but there was a very big sparking flash

    jerry, i’ll dig it out and have a look then i might give you a call, unfortunately it’s i’m doing parents evening tonight so won’t be it untill 7

    warton
    Member

    ta, i’m not paying for a spark to come out, not for something like this.

    Brilliant

    leebaxter
    Member

    You can do a repair to the cable. The by the book way is to do an enclosed, crimped connection.

    A stud finder will be helpful when taking the plasterboard off, so you can take out a neat section of board then replace it, then fill the joints.. BOSH job done

    Spongebob
    Member

    It’s difficult to give advice without seeing the installation, but I’d avoid hacking plasterboard unless it’s absolutely neccessary.

    If the damaged cable runs to a socket, down from the floor above, why don’t you attach a fresh bit of cable at the socket and pull it up using the old cable as a pull through? You will have to identify the correct cable above and this will involve taking up the floor above.

    If the power socket is a spur, this will be easy. If it’s on a ring, you might have damaged both cable drops to this socket. So you will need to establish where these two cable run to.

    After you fix this, get a power cable detector before you drill any more walls. They aren’t expensive.

    swisstony
    Member

    thanks folks, esp fatboyslim

    i think i’ll dig it out and post a pick of what i find and we can go from there.

    ta for help

    oldgit
    Member

    If it’s plasterboard you can easily cut out a large section to assess the damage, and the repair is easy enough.
    Not sure what the regs are on mechanical connections that are within the wall, personally I’d go for a new run. That could be a cheap job if the electrician only has to draw a wire through.

    oldgit
    Member

    Swisstony please don’t get sucked in by the ‘what you can’t see can’t hurt you’ attitude to things.
    If it was a water pipe you’d probably have someone there already.

    Premier Icon paulosoxo
    Subscriber

    Oldgit, I agree, I work in the gas industry, and the amount of people who tell me with pride, that they don’t mess with gas or water suprises me, they’ll happily have a go at doing electrical work in there houses, but the risk of a flood or leaving an escape scares them. Whereas the risk of killing themselves in an instant seems worth saving £50 over 😕

    The amount of electrical work I can legally do has changed vastly over the years.

    oldgit
    Member

    Yeah.
    I’m not an electrician, but have two electrical wholesale businesses.
    The things I’ve seen.
    The horror….the horror.

    Gary_M
    Member

    unfortunately it’s i’m doing parents evening tonight so won’t be it untill 7

    Aye if your house is still standing 😉

    If you bodge a repair and it ends up causing a fire and your house burns down, don’t be surprised if your insurance company won’t payout.

    Better still, call you insurance company now and put in a claim for accidental damage and get it fixed by a properly qualified sparks?

    dropoff
    Member

    cheesyfeet – best reply on here so far.

    RegP
    Member

    Sorry are any of the replies from quilified sparky’s?? Just a small point?

    RudeBoy
    Member

    Get WCA to have a look at it for you.

    Premier Icon woody2000
    Subscriber

    I thought it was illegal to do anything more than change a lightbulb if you’re not qualified?

    Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy
    Subscriber

    Looks like someone’s going for a Darwin award…

    shoefiti
    Member

    erm is it a semi? if so pop round next door and tell them to sort their bloody wiring out asap.

    Spongebob
    Member

    RegP – Member

    Sorry are any of the replies from quilified sparky’s?? Just a small point?

    Why? I know a qualified sparky. He’s the biggest bodger I know! Caused me no end of trouble! You either have a way with hands on work, or you don’t! Complying with regulations on a job like this is not a difficult.

    woody2000 – Member

    I thought it was illegal to do anything more than change a lightbulb if you’re not qualified? Wrong!

    You must have all work carried out in bathrooms, kitchens and oudoors certified by a qualified electrician. Anyone can do the work so long as they are reasonably competent, just so long as the qualified person will sign it off.

    Those regs have got quite strict – good to prevent against cowboys and people who know nothing about electricty.

    I now find that even as a qualified electrical engineer, I can commission HV substations upto 132kV feeding entire city areas and even replace house hold cutout fuses – But I need an electrician to come out and sign off any wiring extensions I do in my house?

    Oh well if it means not invalidating the insurance…….

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    Ahhh – the old engineer versus technician debate.

    mk1fan
    Member

    You don’t have to be qualified to be certified to carry out domestic electrics. And vice-versa as jumping_flea has commented.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 58 total)

The topic ‘Electrical help, i drilled into a cable!’ is closed to new replies.