Inexpericense will get you KILLED

This was from this morning see the male plug hanging by the middle screw hole on the dead front. My 40 years of experience working high voltage HVAC saved my life today. I treat all electrical as if it has power applied even male plugs when in see them going into a panel.

This apparently was used last winter for a backup generator to back feed the main panel. The dumbA** just unplugged from the generator and left everything connected and when the power came back on the male plug was still hot no telling how long it has been hanging there. I can just picture someone grabbing that male plug to move it out of the way

Generator was running?


P.S. Since I have a knack for finding energized junction boxes, I went out and got EH rated shoes.

Charley, thanks for sharing, and I’m glad you’re still with us . . . I’m sure it will help many of us to be always remember to be careful and trust nothing when it comes to electricity.

No not since the last ice storm over a year ago

The bottom left breaker looks like the generator input point.
The cable shown in the picture most likely goes into the wall under the pictured area and into that breaker.

A 30 amp female outlet is needed in the wall to obtain a “poor mans generator hookup” not a long hot cable.


That is correct there was a A/C type pull out disconnect just out of the picture below the panel that is what made me check for power.

Charley, may I please use those photos? They are GREAT example to the idiots who use these suicide cords and how unsafe they are.

All I ever hear is *“I’ll be careful…” :mad: :mad: :mad:
*Obviously someone was NOT so careful!

Go for it by all means

Do you have a picture of the pull-out? I’ve learned much from this post, thanks!

For example…

Thanks Larry! I was thinking along the line the pullout being the cable itself was in the wall/on the wall somehow, thanks for the clarification.


Your to mean to be killed by mear electricity! It would take the Hoover dam full electrical output to send you to the grave! That Homeowner special would only have tickled you a bit!:mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Seriously electricity is dangerous and needs to be respected, can see it cant smell it and its sneaky.

Thanks for sharing,

Exactly why NACHI needs to ensure everyone is aware of electrical issues and hazards…and frankly why educators do what we do…hoping to keep you safe and going home at night…safe.

Thanks for sharing Charley!! I will definitely keep on eye out for connections like this in the future. And I’m happy to hear that you “Survived” the Inspection.


What I do not understand is that hooking a generator into a home is so easy and can done properly

Good find

I would have been tempted to short out the plug with a large screw driver

I love sparks


I was on an inspection about a year ago. I walked around the back of the house and the pipes wer still out of the wall where the AC unit had been connected. The wire was still hanging out of the panel and two inches of bare copper on all three wires that were bent away from each other. As I went into my tool bag for my tester the purchasers son ran around the corner and right for the wires. I grabbed the kid right in front of his parents and he started screaming. The woman freaked on me for touching her kid and I said I would do it again if I felt the situation warranted it and to watch as I tested the wires. My tester started to flash and she asked what the flashing meant. I told her it was 220 volts and I just saved her kids life. At that point the agent called the sellers agent and told her what happened and her sellers had created a death trap for an unwary person.
I advised everyone that I was turning the breaker off and told the agent that the the sellers needed to get an electrician to remedy this asap.
About an hour after the inspection it hit me how close someone had come to dying.
The sellers called me the next day stating the electrician told them I had wasted their money, the only needed to turn the breaker off, and I should be paying for a service call. I told them they should call the ESA and ask their opinion and be happy I had not called the ESA as they would have turned the power off to their house. I also told them if I had not reacted as quickly they would be paying for a small kids funeral and facing a lawsuit and or facing criminal charges. They hung up and I never heard from them again.
Right now I am in a bit of a pissing contest with one builder (houses start at $647,000). I finally told them I would call the ESA and come to my next house with an ESA inspector, as every house I have looked at so far has had stupid stuff wrong with electrical. Stuff like 10guage, 220 wires hanging out rear windows, just wrapped in a loop. Live. They advised as long as the marrets are on the wire ends, it is safe. I cannot figure out if the branch wires are holding the furnace ductwork up or vice versa. Almost half the GFI were wired wrong in one house. And not one panel has been labelled, Electrical code failure right there.
And then the insulation in the attic is atrocious. The representaive told me the site supervisor had checked the insulation and said it was good, that I am making things up. I sent her the pictures. She told me this would be repaired asap.
AHHHHH the fun of home inspections.

I wish I have kept a photo of the one that was done correctly They had a separte breaker box for everything when the house was on generator. The wife was an office manager for Square D. Got it for pennies she said.

When the feed from the generator goes directly into the main panel without having a proper generator panel with a power transfer switch, there’s no such thing as a “poor man’s generator hookup”, only a stupid man’s generator hookup!!!

You did GOOOOd, Dave. This can be a thankless job, but KNOW that you did good.

You saved a life. :cool:

You know and I know and many others, as well.

Life ain’t always fair, but He sees all.

Can hear hom saying, just about now.

“Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

Listen. Can you hear.

I hope so.