dslreports logo
site
 
    All Forums Hot Topics Gallery
spc

spacer




how-to block ads


Search Topic:
uniqs
11588
share rss forum feed


49528867
Premium
join:2010-04-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:3

1 edit

1 recommendation

reply to tschmidt

Re: Electrical problems in double-wide trailer

said by tschmidt:

In my experience with ours and those of our friends mobile home constriction is much lighter then stick built. 1/4" plywood walls rather then 1/2" Sheetrock. 2x3 rather then 2x4 studs. 1" dimensioned lumber in the roof truss rather then 2". I agree both stick build and factory built structures burn fast, but mobile homes becomes incompatible with life much quicker.

I know of what you speak and maybe it’s regional but I haven’t seen that type of construction since Andrew which by the way was the straw that broke the camels back dragging the manufactured housing industry down here kicking and screaming into the 20st century.

Nowadays most states having been prodded by the insurance industry now require trailers/MH’s to be certified to be in compliance to HUD standards and HUD jacked up many of those standards (wind fire resistance electrical) post Andrew.

In Florida a pre-Andrew mobile cannot be re-sited and must be moved out of state or demolished.

I'm not a fan of residential sprinklers, or any active safety devices that have to remain idle for decades and then function correctly at a moments notice.

Sprinkler systems are an old technology and a simple technology that seldom fails and when one does it is usually cause by a human error.

I have one in my home and would never again have a home without one.

Wayne
--
It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence. - Charles A. Beard


49528867
Premium
join:2010-04-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:3

4 edits
reply to nunya

said by nunya:

That's a shame. Just giving slum lords more latitude in taking advantage of poor people.

I can assure you around here trailers do not equate to “poor” people, go through a community down here and you will see a strong presence of middle class professionals living in those trailers.

The reason is simple, during the real estate boom the price of housing became such that that buying a three bedroom site built home would run $450,000 to $600,000 pricing homes out of the reach of the working class, so what happened lots of them moved into “trailer parks” aka communities forcing out the rentals and a lot of the older units, these where middle class workers and professionals new to and priced out of the real estate market, they wanted new homes and the idea of manufactured homes really took hold.

Now lets do the math buy a home for half a mil and pay 3K to 4K a month in mortgage and property taxes, ya ain’t doing that on a phone mans salary, nor with most other middle class earnings.

So on the other hand one could go out and buy a new 1400sf 3/2 manufactured home for $60,000 and drop it on a lot for another $90,000, pull a 125% mortgage on the lot and cover a good chunk of the building cost and siteng fee and pay 1.5K per month.

What would your salary cover?

Furthermore and the best part is, the owner gets to thumb his nose at a handful of AHJ’s because they do not have jurisdiction over his home.

By the way the majority of the units here in Broward are owned by the residents who live in them who own the lots and pay the management company a monthly fee to maintain the common areas.

These things sit on a pad for years. Hell, they even get strapped down with about 8 turnbuckles to pad. They also remove the wheels. To me, that says permanent in the eyes of code.

Then the code is blind or mistaken…

Oh there are way more than eight tie downs per unit.







Wayne
--
It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence. - Charles A. Beard


hortnut
Huh?

join:2005-09-25
PNW
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to nunya

To add my experience to some of the other comments - in my neck of the woods, my Manufactured Home was on property I owned in an unincorporated area of a County in Oregon. It was considered Personal Property and licensed by the DMV. Advantage there was less taxes than my neighbors with stick built homes.

To place the MH, I had to submit a site plan to the County. Pull permits for the Plumbing, Electrical, Septic and meet conditions for a Certificate of Occupancy, that included properly built front and rear steps, plastic under it for moisture control, to just name a few.

I chose the manufacturer [there were plenty that skipped a lot of corners] and it was built with 2x6 framing and 1/2" Sheetrock [I went down and looked at it while it was being built]. It had extra insulation and upgraded windows. I added extra wiring for ceiling fans, future heat pump and more. So it was custom built to my specs. In 1992 it cost about $24/sq foot for the Home alone.

I prepped the site, but had the Septic and Electrical installed by others. I did the rough plumbing for waste from the MH to the Septic and fresh water from a pre-existing well and water line/s [had a 2" back flow preventer in place].

As to code I had to meet what I consider fairly strict requirements, even though I was dealing with County.

Just to give some perspective what can be done with a MH and how Inspectors consider them.



tschmidt
Premium,MVM
join:2000-11-12
Milford, NH
kudos:9
Reviews:
·G4 Communications
·Fairpoint Commun..
·Hollis Hosting

1 recommendation

reply to 49528867

said by 49528867:

I know of what you speak and maybe it’s regional but I haven’t seen that type of construction since Andrew which by the way was the straw that broke the camels back dragging the manufactured housing industry down here kicking and screaming into the 20st century.

Sounds like they have tightened building code requirements for manufactured housing and mobile homes since I was involved 30 years ago.

That's great, everyone deserves the same level of safety in their structure.

/tom


neonhomer
KK4BFN
Premium
join:2004-01-27
Edgewater, FL
reply to Timmn

Could it be an interconnect between the two halves causing an issue? I am not sure how they are wired together, but this could be a possible cause.

I used to live in a single wide back around 1990. I remember power came in underground from the main source, and then went up into two meter cans, and then to two breakers. One fed my house, the other fed the neighbor's house.

IIRC, the power was fed from the meter down through PVC, underground, and then came up through PVC through the bottom of the trailer and into the main panel.
--
"F is for Fire that burns down the whole town...
U is for Uranium...... Bombs...
N is for NO SURVIVORS!!!!!" Sheldon Plankton



Daarken
Rara Avises
Premium
join:2005-01-12
Southwest LA
kudos:3
reply to Jack Legg

-1 for you
+1 for Channel One
--
Getting it Done.



Daarken
Rara Avises
Premium
join:2005-01-12
Southwest LA
kudos:3

1 edit
reply to tschmidt

Modern mobile homes (at least down here) are constructed with the same material as stick built, and are required to be built that way.

Maintenance on a sprinkler system is far easier and cost effective then you think, (turn a valve and flush the system on a monthly basis or as needed).

I am not a fan of AC powered detection systems, mainly because the smoke detectors are usually ion based detectors that homeowners tend to disable or not provide extra batteries.
For instance, I inspected a 20 unit apartment complex, that had interconnected smoke detectors, installed by a electrical contractor.
However the interconnected devices did not properly function in several units, and I found several units where the detectors where actually disabled.

If you want to go and get a smoke detector (or smoke alarm) at least get one that is the photoelectric, which won't go off when your taking a shower, or cooking bacon. Also a system based smoke detector is automatically tested by the control panel and would annunciate a trouble signal if it detected a problem with a detector.
--
Getting it Done.



Jack Legg

@comcast.net
reply to Daarken

said by Daarken:

-1 for you
+1 for Channel One

LOL! How much did your sprinkler system cost?

Personally I'm sick of government mandated regulations and I'm even more sick of having to pay for all this fsking nonsense.


Daarken
Rara Avises
Premium
join:2005-01-12
Southwest LA
kudos:3

1 recommendation

A residential sprinkler system installed properly and to code should only cost about $5k to $7k for an average sized home.
I live in a house that has about a 15 minute response time for the fire department to get here, and with the rate a fire will burn, I would lose my home.
A residential sprinkler system could flood the house and ruin the room it went off in, but I would still have a home to live in.

Oh considering I have been designing and quoting fire and life protection systems for almost 18 years I would know.

The building and life safety codes are there for a reason, because jackasses did shit they didn't know how to do and got other people hurt or killed.

Good luck with that garden hose.
--
Getting it Done.



Caddyroger
Premium
join:2001-06-11
To the west
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to neonhomer

said by neonhomer:

Could it be an interconnect between the two halves causing an issue? I am not sure how they are wired together, but this could be a possible cause.

I used to live in a single wide back around 1990. I remember power came in underground from the main source, and then went up into two meter cans, and then to two breakers. One fed my house, the other fed the neighbor's house.

IIRC, the power was fed from the meter down through PVC, underground, and then came up through PVC through the bottom of the trailer and into the main panel.

That is a possibility.
--
Caddy


LazMan
Premium
join:2003-03-26
canada
reply to Daarken

said by Daarken:

If you want to go and get a smoke detector (or smoke alarm) at least get one that is the photoelectric

Ionizing and photoelectric detectors respond to different smoke profiles; and most fire departments suggest a combination of the two types... Slow, smouldering fires are better detected by a photoelectric detector; where free and rapidly burning fires are picked up by an ionizing detector more quickly.


Caddyroger
Premium
join:2001-06-11
To the west
reply to Timmn

I think this thread is getting little off topic. The op ask why he losing some connection not fire sprinkler's tie downs.
--
Caddy



Caddyroger
Premium
join:2001-06-11
To the west
reply to Timmn

It could be what neonhomer wrote. If it just one circult it could a bad breaker.
--
Caddy



LazMan
Premium
join:2003-03-26
canada
reply to Caddyroger

said by Caddyroger:

I think this thread is getting little off topic. The op ask why he losing some connection not fire sprinkler's tie downs.

True - but this little tangent is just while we're waiting for pics of the installation; as the description could be interpreted several ways, which may or may not be code compliant...


The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11
reply to 49528867

said by 49528867:

said by The Pig:

Here all mobile homes (permanent or on jacks) have to meet code, a state inspector comes out to check electrical, gas and plumbing hook ups and if it's done wrong you can not move in the mobile until it is corrected!

Not down here, city inspectors will check electrical and gas connections and a county inspector will check the sewer connection, but no one inspects the unit itself as it is signed off by the manufacturer to HUD standards.

I was talking about the hook ups to the mobile home!
But as you said the mobile has to meet code before it is sent out to the market place, so the mobile does has to meet state codes!
said by 49528867:

Mobile homes will burn down to the ground in about 5 minutes! No faster than site built frame structures as there is little difference in the construction styles, however the real solution is to install a fire sprinkler system in the unit, which in my less than humble opinion should be required for ALL newer built residential units.

Wayne



The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11
reply to Caddyroger

said by Caddyroger:

I think this thread is getting little off topic. The op ask why he losing some connection not fire sprinkler's tie downs.

Since when does any thread stay on topic?


The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11
reply to Thespis

said by Thespis:

said by The Pig:

said by robbin:

Sounds like she needs to hire an electrician to look it over and fix the dangerous items and then she can examine the sales contract and see if she has any recourse with the seller.

All mobile home sales are "As Is"!

All blanket statements are ridiculous.

Go to any real estate agent where you live and ask if mobile home sales are "As is" or not!


aurgathor

join:2002-12-01
Lynnwood, WA
kudos:1

3 recommendations

reply to Daarken

said by Daarken:

Modern mobile homes (at least down here) are constructed with the same material as stick built, and are required to be built that way.

quote:
In my experience with ours and those of our friends mobile home constriction is much lighter then stick built. 1/4" plywood walls rather then 1/2" Sheetrock. 2x3 rather then 2x4 studs. 1" dimensioned lumber in the roof truss rather then 2". I agree both stick build and factory built structures burn fast, but mobile homes becomes incompatible with life much quicker.

quote:
I have a double wide home. The dry wall is 1/2 with 2x4 framing

I think we need to clear up some misunderstanding with regards to trailers, mobiles homes, and manufactured homes

Anything built after 1976 Jun 15 is a manufactured home, and they must conform to a much stricter standard than mobile homes built before that date.
quote:
Mobile homes built since June 15, 1976, must conform to the National Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards established under a law passed by the U.S. Congress. The standards are administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Mobile homes are the only homes with a national building code. Every home has a red and silver seal certifying that it was built in compliance with the federal code. These homes are the only homes that are “manufactured homes” as defined by HUD since June 15, 1976. “Mobile homes” are synonymous with “manufactured homes” with regard to the industry’s use of these terms.

So anything after that date is actually comparable to on-site construction, except it's made in a factory. The inside is sheetrock, siding is usually wood (LP, T1-11, etc) and the roof is usually composite shingles. (here in the NW, other areas may be different)

Mobile homes built before that date are kinda lightweight and cheap with 1/8" or at best 3/16" wood panels on the inside. Outside framing is usually 2x4, inside is 2x3 or 2x2. Siding is usually aluminium, the roof is metal, and insulation is very little.

They're called for "trailers" because the very first mobile homes were descended from trailers (only 8' wide) and they could actually be moved with a full size car or a pickup truck. Later, their allowed width increased to 10', 12' and 14', and obviously those (especially 12' and 14' wide ones) require a larger vehicle plus permit, and once they set up, they are usually not moved very often.

Most of the mobile homes are single wide. Manufactured homes -- I'm not sure, but I think the majority of them is double wide, and there are some that even wider than that.
--
Bachmann 2012!

Timmn

join:2000-04-23
Tinley Park, IL
reply to Timmn

I will get pictures, but from now, it looks like I won't get back out there until Tuesday or Wednesday.



Caddyroger
Premium
join:2001-06-11
To the west
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to The Pig

said by The Pig:

said by Caddyroger:

I think this thread is getting little off topic. The op ask why he losing some connection not fire sprinkler's tie downs.

Since when does any thread stay on topic?

True
--
Caddy


nunya
Premium,MVM
join:2000-12-23
O Fallon, MO
kudos:12
Reviews:
·Charter
·voip.ms
·surpasshosting

1 recommendation

reply to Timmn

Even the brand spanking new doublewides I see now are of low quality. I am thoroughly convinced that the trailer industry (mobile home) is a slight on the most vulnerable people. People who can't afford anything else. Electrically speaking, I've found them to be absolute nightmares.
For instance, even as recently as this summer I've seen new units that don't even have electrical boxes in the walls. They use "trailer" type switches and receptacles. Even those were installed improperly, as the romex sheath was cut back too far. The inside walls are so thin, you couldn't put a box in if you wanted too. They also still have the good old 3/8" drywall.
The doublewides also have a common "failpoint" of the wiring connectors in the "middle" of the unit. They are always these cheesy things: »www.ampnetconnect.com/documents/···3%5D.pdf

Let me tell you, they don't hold out well in the environment of the underbelly of a trailer.

Granted there are a few exceptions if you are willing to pay more for "customization", but then your almost at the same price point as conventional construction.

As far a modular goes, it's quite the opposite. I've found modular construction to actually be superior to site framed construction.

I have lived in a trailer, and I have lots of family who have lived in trailers - the only reason, because we were dirt ass poor. I think very few people live in trailers by choice. I don't think it's something people aspire to.
My grandparents had a snowbird trailer in one of the "old folks" parks on one of the barrier islands on the Treasure Coast. When
Jeanne or Frances (I can't remember which) was done, there was literally NOTHING left. It was GONE. Fortunately they were almost done with a nice new house (concrete block).
--
I just might be the most "licensed" S.O.B. you know.



Thespis
I'm not an actor, but I play one on TV.
Premium
join:2004-08-03
Keller, TX
reply to The Pig

said by The Pig:

Go to any real estate agent where you live and ask if mobile home sales are "As is" or not!

Selling or buying anything under specified conditions is perfectly legal. Including mobile homes. If I wanted to buy a mobile home only under the condition that the seller fix the air conditioner, there is no law that prohibits the seller from agreeing to that condition. Why would you think there would be?
--
Fast. Cheap. Safe.
Pick two...


tschmidt
Premium,MVM
join:2000-11-12
Milford, NH
kudos:9
Reviews:
·G4 Communications
·Fairpoint Commun..
·Hollis Hosting
reply to nunya

said by nunya:

I have lived in a trailer, and I have lots of family who have lived in trailers - the only reason, because we were dirt ass poor. I think very few people live in trailers by choice. I don't think it's something people aspire to.

One more slightly off topic post. We built our house in 1982 and lived in a mobile home for a couple of years prior to that. We purchased a circa 1969 mobile home used in 1980 and moved it to our property. As an aside I would recommend doing that for anyone planning to build their own home using sweat equity.

On multiple occasions the subs we hired wanted to know why we were spending all that money to build a house when we had a perfectly good trailer to live in.

/tom


xrayman

join:2008-12-09
Kansas City
kudos:1
reply to nunya


Junction Boxes
Thanks nunya for getting this thread back on track.
Because I live in an older double-wide, built in 1973, I have firsthand experience with the electrical problem the OP is talking about.
I don't know when they switched to the new type of connector nunya posted about but in my house the two units are connected by two duplex wall boxes with wire nuts as connectors. The junction boxes are located in a small bedroom behind the door. The installers did a very poor job of hooking up the wires in the boxes. The bad connections were a source of dim lights (low voltage) in parts of my house.
I took the wire nuts off the connections sanded the wires down to bright copper, twisted together, soldered, installed new wire nuts and tape. That solved most of my electrical problems.
I also had electrical problems in overhead light boxes. Heat from light bulbs help to oxidize the connections. I had to refurbish several of the overhead light box junctions the same as I did with the junction box connectors as described above.
More problems were caused by the old duplex outlets. They were the old push in the wire connector type. I replaced all the outlets with new ones and used the screws on the side of the outlet to connect the wires to. This made a big improvement.
Also my house came with an old Federal Pacific electric breaker box. The breakers and the FPE box can be a source of electrical problems.
Just my 2¢ worth on the topic.


The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11
reply to Thespis

said by Thespis:

said by The Pig:

Go to any real estate agent where you live and ask if mobile home sales are "As is" or not!

Selling or buying anything under specified conditions is perfectly legal. Including mobile homes. If I wanted to buy a mobile home only under the condition that the seller fix the air conditioner, there is no law that prohibits the seller from agreeing to that condition. Why would you think there would be?

While it may make it harder to sell a used mobile home with something broken on it it won't be worth it for the seller to fix anything!
Air conditioners and swamp coolers are not part of a mobile home they are add-ons!


aurgathor

join:2002-12-01
Lynnwood, WA
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to tschmidt

Click for full size
said by tschmidt:

One more slightly off topic post. We built our house in 1982 and lived in a mobile home for a couple of years prior to that. We purchased a circa 1969 mobile home used in 1980 and moved it to our property. As an aside I would recommend doing that for anyone planning to build their own home using sweat equity.

While I'm not looking for one, I regularly see *free* mobile homes on craigslist, or in some other publications, the only gotcha is that they need to be moved. But it's hard to beat the price.


On multiple occasions the subs we hired wanted to know why we were spending all that money to build a house when we had a perfectly good trailer to live in.



Back to the topic, the unique construction method and connectors used in many (most? all?) mobile homes can present some serious challenge. I had lost power to my bedroom once, and took me about 3 weeks to find the root cause (pictured) and fix it. I wasn't rushing things, and I had to order some test equipment -- that's why it took so long. I'm not sure what an average MH owner would've done, but I have a feeling it wouldn't be a cheap fix if an electrician were to be called.
--
Perry 2012!


nunya
Premium,MVM
join:2000-12-23
O Fallon, MO
kudos:12
Reviews:
·Charter
·voip.ms
·surpasshosting

1 recommendation

It would have have been a cheap fix if you called a competent electrician. I would have put a tracker on it and found it pretty quick. Probably in less than 1/2 hour. A lot of it is having the right tools and knowing how to use them.
--
I just might be the most "licensed" S.O.B. you know.



EGeezer
zichrona livracha
Premium
join:2002-08-04
Midwest
kudos:8
Reviews:
·Callcentric
reply to 49528867

+1 on the demographics in FL - My wife's relatives had a very nice home in a great mobile home development in Naples. They owned the lot. They had a club house, swimming pool, some lots are on canals with docks.

Check out Briny Breezes for the last mobile home community with beachfront property - at one time, a developer offered 510 million for the 500 lots. That deal fell through, but one can still see pressure on Florida communities located in prime real estate.

»maps.google.com/maps?q=Briny+Bre···,,0,5.45
--
Follow your dreams, except the one where you're naked in church.



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to aurgathor

»/r0/download/1···humb.jpg

And the NEC allows that? If so any pretense of the safety and well being of people just evaporated. Wonder if it's UL listed? If so how did it ever pass. (maybe a pile of money under the table?)



aurgathor

join:2002-12-01
Lynnwood, WA
kudos:1
reply to nunya


Remove this! :)
  

switch-1
Click for full size
switch-2
Click for full size
outlet-1
Click for full size
outlet-2
said by nunya:

It would have have been a cheap fix if you called a competent electrician. I would have put a tracker on it and found it pretty quick. Probably in less than 1/2 hour. A lot of it is having the right tools and knowing how to use them.

Finding the problem under 1/2 hour -- most certainly. I think it took me like 15 - 20 minutes once I got the toner, and I was a first time user. But fixing, as you should know, can be a bit laborious in MHs, and may present some unexpected challenges, like on the 1st picture.

What I ended up doing is gluing some wood to the wood panels from the inside, and attach the boxes to them. No idea if that's code compliant or not, but definitely much stronger than what I had before. (just a plain cutout in a 3/16" wood panel) That took -- mostly because I had to wait for the glue to dry -- a couple of days, and I kinda doubt that any electrician would do this.

BTW, only the outlet was bad, but since I also had access to a switch behind the same panel, it was a no brainer to replace that one, too.
--
Perry 2012!