A Little AC Voltage Only Tickles
I don’t know how handy you might be around the house, but I find that for small improvement jobs…it only makes sense to take the challenge on yourself. Plumbers and electricians can be damn expensive, and when all you want is a new fixture over your dining room table…why would you spend more on the labor than that darling Ikea fixture?
You remember the game Operation? Careful manipulation of the flimsiest pair of tweezers mankind has ever produced, to remove tiny plastic bones from cramped spaces. I wasn’t even drinking coffee when I started playing this game, and still couldn’t help but get buzzed. Maybe half the battle was in retrieving popcorn kernels and other random small goodies from those fictitious body cavities when the original game pieces were unsurprisingly lost.
That game never did teach any real world life skills. Swapping out a light switch with the breaker on could be compared to a game of dexterity and nimbleness, but in reality…it isn’t. Electricity is simple. When it’s live, just don’t touch the wires together. The electrical box with all it’s wires stuffed in place was designed to be installed and serviced by people like you and me. It’s not rocket science, it’s just a matter of having a screwdriver and a little willpower.
As a kid, you saw the outlets on the wall. That weird little happy face staring back at you. You knew that when mom plugged the vacuum in, the thing came to life with a flurry of activity. Blenders, TV’s, even fans all sucked life from the wall through these portals. As a child, you also realized it must be something purely magical on the other side of that wall, so it’s just a matter of finding something pointy to stick in and see what transpires.
I did just that. Sure a bit of a zap. That never stopped me from continuing to fix extension cords that were plugged in. Sometimes, the breaker is either just too far away to shut off or was never labelled correctly. Why would I go about shutting down every breaker in the box to find the one I should shut off. I don’t want to reset the clock on the microwave or stove. If I kill power to the router, there goes my movie download too. Take a chance. It might bite a little, but if you’re careful not to touch the wires together…you’ll be just fine.
Which wires shouldn’t you touch together? You’ll know soon enough.