wiring problems

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by londonrain, Jul 27, 2007.

  1. londonrain

    londonrain LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,129

    Two wiring problem calls today. First call - two out of the four zones not working.
    Tracked wire path with the 521 and it passed right over the trouble spot.
    Ground fault pinpointed two areas, first was where the wire was between two pipes and the wire was pinched. This area was fine so I continued onto the next area.
    I cut this taped up part out.

    The only connection that should be made are with water proof connections and not with electrical tape.

    Second call was for a rewire, I did not have my camera with me so this is phone pic.

  2. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 23,148

    Jeez, what a suprise it failed! I've been using a "shrink wrap" butt splice for
    years that has (knock knock) not failed me. The septic guys turned me on to
    them...look like a normal butt connector, only you heat it & it seals. Uh, there
    is a learning curve here, especially on 18 gauge; I'd suggest some practice first..easy to fry the 18 g. sheathing. I wrap the whole connection with tape.

    PROFESSORRAIN LawnSite Member
    Messages: 246

    Heat shrink splice kit is what I use on sub pumps for motor conn. works great! King has a new product well their about a year ol now called DB+ the wire nut is made into the grease cap just strip wire about 1" insert wire turn until tight shut the cap move on to next connection and it is less than a dby!
  4. turfnh2oman

    turfnh2oman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    I think you'll appreciate this recent story. I will try to condense. Got a service call to a guy's system that hasn't worked for 3 years. He had several contractors out over that period to attempt to get it running. My asst. and I went out and started from scratch. Found a valve installed backwards, a few heads needed to be replaced, etc. Took care of that, okay now on to the wiring. Tested controller, okay. SO here we go. After testing from the controller out, three strands of 13/18 multi strand took a litte while. Got goofy numbers doing continuity checks here and there, etc. Traced wires all over this guys yard. Finally got to a 10inch valve box with no valve in it but it had 5 strands of 13/18 in it instead of just 3. Oh boy, splices all over made with everything from scotch tape to bubble gum. Okay, found the probable location of problems, yes ? Anyway, it took several hours to get to this point after initial troubleshooting and (lack of) diagnosis ?? After deciding that more troubleshooting was completely pointless the homeowner asked us if we wanted a sandwich from a local restaurant. We accepted. He was gone for about 40 minutes. Perfect. Dove into that junction box and CUT, CUT, CUT. Okay now got all that crap out of the way. Lets start seeing what we actually DO have here. Stripped all ends and started testing between controller and there then from there to valves. Folded the dead ones and reconnected the good ones. $ 1,750 later the man thought we walked on water (pardon the pun). His entire system worked.
    Moral of the story is: Sometimes you just have to give up trying to figure out somebody else's mess and rebuild from scratch. Go with what YOU know, not what someone else tells you regardless of history.
  5. WalkGood

    WalkGood LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,910

    Did you need to pull new wires? Must have been there a long day for that kind of billing. One location and the customer bought you lunch too! Sounds like a good day to me.
  6. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,496

    Unless I tell someone about something on district property. It'd better be taken as the Gospel truth. :laugh:

    Seriously... sometimes yanking everything out and re-working the whole sitch is a lot easier than trying to figure out some monkey's doo-doo. It's usually a lot less expensive in the long run.
  7. turfnh2oman

    turfnh2oman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127


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