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Flickering light and water leak

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by Jupiter01, 23 Mar 2021.

  1. Jupiter01

    Jupiter01

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    A friend of mine recently had an issue where the flat above his had a leak. This water eventually came through his ceiling and amongst other damage, it affected his light fitting which was quite close to the spot of the leak. The light was flickering when switched off at the wall switch. Switching the light on seemed fine but it was flicking when the switch was in the off position.

    I considered, switching off the lighting circuit at the board but all the lighting was being run from a single breaker. I assumed the issue was being caused by the live feed (presumably at the pendant) coming into contact with water. Does this sound plausible and what would be your advice in such a situation?

    Thanks in advance.
     
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  3. ericmark

    ericmark

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    I have had this with LED lighting with no water leak, it was caused by the electronic switch, so I would try even if temporary swap the light switch.
     
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  4. HERTS P&D

    HERTS P&D

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    Call someone who knows what they are doing!

    Andy
     
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  5. sparkwright

    sparkwright

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    If there is water running into a light fitting, that and maybe other circuits need turning off at the mains IMMEDIATELY.

    Then, someone competent needs to test that the effect wiring is completely dead, and set about drying out the wires and fittings.

    Some fittings need to be replaced, as the terminations can go black, which means poor contacts.

    Leaving the circuit on at the mains without ensuring the light fitting was dried out nicely was completely the wrong thing to do.
     
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  6. Jupiter01

    Jupiter01

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    Could water contact with the wiring cause this issue too? Seems a coincidence as there were no flicker issues prior to the water leak
     
  7. sparkwright

    sparkwright

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    It is likely that when the light switch was turned off, the water in the light was bridging between the switch live terminal and the permanent live terminal.
     
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  8. ericmark

    ericmark

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    I have all RCBO protection in my house, I also had water ingress and the RCBO did trip, on replacing the socket it was clear it had warped due to one assumes heat even with RCBO protection at 30 mA, so yes it does need items checking, and you want it done while fresh if for no other reason than claiming on the other flats insurance.
     
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  9. Jupiter01

    Jupiter01

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    Did the socket warp? Were the cables ok?
     
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  11. Jupiter01

    Jupiter01

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    What’s the process for drying cables once the supply has been disconnected?
     
  12. sparkwright

    sparkwright

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    Usually with a kitchen towel to get the excess off, then judge if any more water will emerge from the ceiling.

    Turning the heat up can work if it seems really wet.

    But you need to check if the connections have been blackened.
     
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  13. ericmark

    ericmark

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    My cables were OK, needed to swap one light switch and one socket due to leak.
     
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  14. Jupiter01

    Jupiter01

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    Is this the connections to a fitting e.g. light, socket, etc.?

    Fo the cables themselves ever need replacing after water ingress?
     
  15. JohnD

    JohnD

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    after turning off the electricity, puncture the ceiling with a skewer or similar so that any water can escape. Do this wherever you see damp patches, sagging plaster, or bubbles in paint or paper.

    It is easy to fill and redecorate a small skewer hole once the ceiling is dry.

    Put a bucket or other container under any drips.

    It is very convenient if you can make drain holes above sinks or baths so that any dripping water will go down the drain without damage.
     
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  16. sparkwright

    sparkwright

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    Yes, a fitting that has got wet.

    The cables should be ok. The ends may go black. Cut the ends off and re-strip. If still black, rub them back to clean copper with some steel wire wool.
     
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