How well do you know the Code? Think you can spot violations the original installer either ignored or couldn't identify? Here's your chance to moonlight as an electrical inspector and second-guess someone else's work from the safety of your living room or office. Joe Tedesco, who has a knack for finding shoddy electrical work, did the dirty work and found this mess. Now it's your turn to identify the violation.


December Winners

Our three winners this month (Kevin Rick, president and supervising electrician, Rick Electrical Contractors, Inc., Sugar Grove, Ill.; Josh Schroeder, electrical engineer, MBN Engineering, Fargo, N.D.; and Marek Tenerowicz, controls engineer, OFS, Sturbridge, Mass.) all cited most of the same violations with regard to the December photo. Here's a sampling of their findings along with the appropriate 2005 Code reference.

“The missing meter socket panelboard covers, conduit not being securely supported/connected, debris inside of cabinets and surrounding electrical area, and the exposed tangled nest of conductors are clearly not installed in a neat and workmanlike manner [110.12]. In addition, the cabinets, meter socket enclosures and gutters are not effectively closed since they are missing covers. [110.12(A)]

“It appears that there is some type of foreign material or garbage (white) inside the bottom of the second cabinet from the left-hand side. The gutter also contains a corrosive residue on its perimeter opening where the cover should be installed. This violates 110.12(C) and 300.6(A).

“The conduit or raceway on the far left-hand side cabinet is not firmly secured to the surface on which it is mounted. [110.13(A)]

“The gutter is not a completely secured system due to the missing cover. [366.100]

“The conduit on the far left hand side is not connected to the cabinet, which means it's not electrically continuous [300.10], mechanically secured [300.11], or mechanically continuous [300.12].

“The loose raceway/conduit in free air on the far right-hand cabinet is not securely connected to the meter socket cabinet. Therefore, this raceway/conduit does not have any means of bonding to the cabinet/meter socket. [250.90]

“It appears the white conduit connected to the second meter socket cabinet on the right hand side is plumbing PVC and not rigid nonmetallic conduit (RNC). Plumbing PVC is not recognized as an electrical raceway for use in electrical installations. [352.120]”


Correctly identify the Code violation(s) in this month's photo — in 200 words or less — and you could win something to put in your toolbox. E-mail your response to Joe Tedesco at, and he'll select three winners (excluding manufacturers and prior winners) at random from the correct submissions. Winners will receive a set of insulated hand tools from Ideal Industries, Inc. valued at more than $125.* The set includes 9.25-inch insulated side-cutting pliers, 10-inch insulated tongue-and-groove pliers, and a 0.25-inch × 6-inch insulated screwdriver.

* Please allow six to eight weeks for delivery of tools.