Spontaneous Fire: Have you checked your wiring

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by JoeWelbourn, Dec 9, 2007.

  1. JoeWelbourn

    JoeWelbourn "The Flats Solicitor"

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    Wow! I never dreamed I would walk into a room of my house smell a funny smell, look up and see smoke pluming from the grill of an air conditioner vent.  Yeap, my house was on fire!  

    I got home 45 minutes later than planned.  I had been at my shop making carbon fiber parts to get caught up on demand.  My wife and I were supposed to attend a Christmas party for my office.  I got home.  No one there.  I began to get ready and noticed the dryer stopped running right after I turned it on.  I check the break---tripped off.   Hum?  I reset it...trip right away---not good.  I left it to fix the next day after the party.  By chance I walked to the back of the house and smelled a slight hit of cigar-----and it ain't in my hand.  Not good again.  Out of the corner of my eye, I see a hint of smoke pluming out of the ceiling AC vent.   I ran for the phone dialed 911.  Ten minutes later about 8 firefighters are running throughout my house.  One had a thermal image camera.  He found the hidden fire sandwiched on the top-plate of a interior wall.  Get this, the firemen move all the furniture out of that room, laid down plastic sheeting, smashed open the wall and ceil---Boom, the fire flashed and flammed up and the whole house filled with smoke in 30 secs.  Big fire.  They carefully sprayed a small stream of water and the fire died.

    Now the shocking part.  They removed all the debris, asked for my trash cans, loaded the cans, moved them to the street for pick-up, shovel up the debris\dust, sweep the tile floor, and walk out of the house backwards as they mopped the tile floors clean!  Needless to say, I am extremely grateful---AWESOME guys.  

    (Side note, 2 of the firefighters that saved my house Saturday also delivered my son 3 years ago in the EMT rescue ambulance when me wife unexpectedly went into laber 2 weeks early. Good guys.)

    You may not like paying homeowner property taxes, but when you least expected it, you will be glad you have these guys around.  Thank a fireman!  I am thankful and grateful.  

    Now the moral of the story:  I bought my 1958 house from a "real estate" investor.  He added a ton of appliances and central AC.
    He never upgraded the 60 AMP meter and breaker box---yes, 60 AMPS only.  Current code requires 200 amps.  After the fire, I learned all of the wiring was not up to code and very dangerous.  This guy could have killed my family.  Shame on me for not having the electrical checked before buying the house.

    If you live in an old house.  Call an electrician for a proactive inspection and fix any issues.  Had I not been home, we would have lost our house.  Do not trust old electrical wiring---house, boat, car, etc.  Check your connections for corriosion and signs of heat.  Fit it now if you see anything less than perfect.

    We are all fine, the house is a miss, and the repairs will be about $8,000 to $10,000. Lesson learned.  

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Joe
     
  2. Dustin

    Dustin Well-Known Member

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    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you checking your wirin

    Wow Joe,
    Glad you are all ok! You are in my prayers.

    Dustin
     

  3. JoeWelbourn

    JoeWelbourn "The Flats Solicitor"

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    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you checking your wirin

    Thanks Dustin.  We are remodeling.  Instead of drywall, we will use carbon fiber.  That's what I am talking about!!! :eek: :eek:

    What does not kill us only makes us stronger!

    Joe
     
  4. backwaterbandits

    backwaterbandits Well-Known Member

    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you checking your wirin

    Joe, GLAD everyones OK!!!!! Dave
     
  5. beavis

    beavis Well-Known Member

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    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you checking your wirin

    impressive work by the firefighters. glad to hear the damage was only minor as to what to could really have been and no one was hurt.
     
  6. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member

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    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you checking your wirin

    911 is great ain't it? I'm glad you were there to dial it.

    I had a very similar experience in 1988 with our old farmhouse that we live in now. The 60 amp fuse box actually caught on fire! I was there and used a dry powder fire extinguisher to put it out with. Thank you Lord. Needless to say, I installed a new 200 amp service after that.
     
  7. Tom_C

    Tom_C Well-Known Member

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    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you checking your wirin

    Glad you are all ok.
     
  8. JoeWelbourn

    JoeWelbourn "The Flats Solicitor"

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    Re: Spontaneous Fire: Have you check your wiring

    Thanks guys. I have a licensed electrician coming out this morning to begin re-wiring the house to current code including a 200 amp meter and breaker panel.

    Joe
     
  9. Weedy

    Weedy Well-Known Member

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    Glad you and the family are safe and didn't loose to much. You always hear of the horror stories this time of the year. Again, GLAD you guys are safe.
    Walt
     
  10. iMacattack

    iMacattack busy, too busy

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    Good catch there sparky! ;D ;)

    Glad your ok!

    Cheers
    Jan
     
  11. JoeWelbourn

    JoeWelbourn "The Flats Solicitor"

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    The worst was yet to come. The electrician had to smash holes in almost every wall to re-run the proper wire to make the house safe. If you own an old house---brace yourself. The whole house is a complete drywall mess. But---I am happy alive and able to fish again another day.

    Joe
     
  12. LoneRanger

    LoneRanger Temporarily Boatless

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    damn, THAT IS NUTS!


    glad ya didnt have a cold or something (may not have smelled the smoke! ;) )






    so, whats the price on one of your front casting decks? ;D :cool:
     
  13. zero_gravity

    zero_gravity Well-Known Member

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    glad your you n your family are ok
    you were right on the boarder after 50 years your electric has to be updated to be insured
    my house was built in 51
    remoldiling is a pain but always makes the wife happy in the end ;D
    take care
     
  14. inboardgheenoeguy

    inboardgheenoeguy Well-Known Member

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    holy crap joe! If you need anything give a call. We can get it back together. Carbon fiber dry wall patches
     
  15. Un-shore

    Un-shore Well-Known Member

    Wow! Right place at the right time is all I can say! My ex and I owned a house built in '44 in Lake Worth, we used to cringe if we were out and a fire truck went flying by! it seemed like there was a house fire in that area about once a week because of the age of the houses.
     
  16. aaronshore

    aaronshore Well-Known Member

    Its good to hear those guys hooked you up. At my fire department we try to do the same stuff. We really try to use only the amount of water necessary to do the job. Water can damage a house worse than fire. Also, that visqueen they covered your stuff with is awesome!!! Definitely worth the money.
     
  17. JoeWelbourn

    JoeWelbourn "The Flats Solicitor"

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    Thanks Guys for the support. I am taking it day to day. I am not impressed by Citizens Insurance.

    Joe
     
  18. chandler27

    chandler27 Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to hear bout that! :eek: :-/

    It was a good thing no more damage happened and that no one was hurt!
     
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