Saving Two Hundred Twelve Dollars and Fifty Cents

My hanging porch light hasn’t been working for a long time. I was too lazy to check it for myself… What if it was something serious? I’d go to all that trouble for nothing. After I finally got around to calling an electrician, I got a shock: he said it would be $75 for the visit and $75 for the first hour, for a minimum of $150. Yikes! It was enough for me to at least look at the light. I took the fixture down and tested the wires. There was power in lines.

When the tester lights up, the wires are live.

That meant the fixture was broken. No problem. I’d get a new one. But it was harder than I thought to find something. Apparently, pendant fixtures are not in vogue right now. I couldn’t find anything I liked. Out of curiosity, I started taking apart my non-working light. I saw the problem: the wires had shorted and burned out. You could even see the burn spot:

It must have made pretty sparks.

As I continued to pull the light apart, I started thinking that maybe I could actually reassemble it. I laid all the pieces out carefully.

To re-assemble, go from left to right.

After a visit to Home Depot with my burned out wires for reference in buying new wires, I carefully put the light back together. I was following my dad’s method of repair: look at how it was put together when you take out the old parts, and put the new parts back in the same way. And lo and behold, IT WORKED! Thanks, Dad!

I like this fixture because it has three bulbs - it's so bright!

Instead of spending $150 for an electrician and $70 for a new light, I spent a total of $7.50 on some wires. I have a new light for $7.50! PLUS, I can add “successfully rewired a light” to my resume! I’m a genius!

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7 Responses to Saving Two Hundred Twelve Dollars and Fifty Cents

  1. Carol says:

    Is there NOTHING you won’t try can’t do?! I stand in awe. (Actually, I sit in our living room right now…but that’s another story.) You. ARE. a. genius! I’m making a “honey do” list for you right now…and don’t think I’m kiddin’!

  2. Kristi says:

    Way to go! Those are lots of tiny, little parts spread out all orderly-like.

  3. Lauren says:

    Wow!! I am in complete awe – that took some guts and planning. Wires scare me a little. No, wait – a lot. I’m impressed you have that ‘does it work’ gadget!

  4. Peggy says:

    Dude! Your skilz our OUTSTANDING!!! You are amazing!!

    (not to mention your memory….try as I might to note how I unfolded the curtains, I can’t for the life of me get them folded back again to fit in the package to return.)

    • Carol says:

      …or road maps, right? [Now that everyone uses Mapquest or a GPS, I guess htat’s less of a concern than it used to be, but I sympathize nonetheless.]

  5. Elaine Royuk says:

    With all that money saved, you can buy us some lovely crab for dinner when we come east – right?

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