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stevieray 01-25-2011 08:29 PM

Solder Instead of Wire Nuts?
Hello everybody.

I am currently rewiring much of my home. It is a converted commercial space, built in the late 40's with additions done at least once per decade... so the place is veritable museum of the evolution of electrical practices (and plumbing and insulation, etc...).

Today I ran across something I've never seen before -- electrical splices made with solder instead of wire nuts! In my younger days I was an electronic hobbyist, so I know electronic connections are commonly made using solder... but I've never heard of it done on house wiring. These connections were then wrapped with some kind of resin impregnated tape, which is as hard as a rock. As you can imagine, it is truly a joy to work on these things... :rolleyes:

Anyway, my question is this: Would these things pass an inspection today? As it is I will be replacing many of them to accomplish the job I am doing, but I wonder if I should seek out all of them and redo them in the interests of safety?

JoeD 01-26-2011 06:41 AM

Connections that old likely don't have gounds so seeking them out and replacing the cables would be a good idea. The connections themselves are fine.

joecaption 01-26-2011 07:21 AM

With wiring that old and added on to so many times I would also be looking at the incoming power line to see if it needs to upgraded (power company most often will do this for free. Making sure there's at least a 200 amp. service with breakers not fuses.

stevieray 01-27-2011 12:07 AM

Thanks for the responses guys.

The power and breaker boxes have already been upgraded, as it was a commercial space up until recently. It has two 200 amp panels. As for the grounds, well that's one of the reasons I am doing all this work. At some point an aluminum ground wire was daisy-chained between some of the outlet/switch boxes, but not all. And some of the old wire is BX, grounded through the armor, but the insulation is crumbling in much of it.

I guess I'll just replace it all. A bit more work, but I'll sleep better that way.

frozenstar 02-04-2011 02:38 AM

I agree on checking the incoming power lines with the old wirings. Hope it went well.

stevieray 02-05-2011 09:06 PM

I am just curious if anyone else has ever run across this way of doing it. I've been doing kitchen/bath renovations for a decade now, and I've never seen it before.

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