What is wrong with this wire?

From yesterdays inspection, one branch conductor appears to be wearing “baggy” sheathing. What do you think was going on here?

Could this be a Bare ground wire that some one has covered it with loom to use as a feed .
Or has it overheated and the insulation has fallen off .
It is wrong and needs repair by an electrician .

Can you see where it comes from .


appears to be black duct tape
possibly to properly re-identify a white conductor

Aside from the loose sleeve around the wire, it is bare. I suppose that makes it a ground wire used as a conductor.

We would need wider and more shots to really make any determination.

Was it a white on a two pole breaker? If so it was tape to identify the white as a hot.

** from above Post**

Aside from the loose sleeve around the wire, it is bare. I suppose that makes it a ground wire used as a conductor.

Ewwweeeooo! Spooky stuff just in time for Halloween! Basic electrical tape & mystery sheathing are NOT an ASTM, ANSI, UL, CSA, NEMA,CE or any other tested and or approved type of wire insulation for modern building wire. Used for tidying up some splicing, maybe, but not for this use. This stuff is lacking any and all manner or VW rating, voltage rating, type, temperature ratings, approved uses, approved locations, as well as the manufacturer’s name, for it to be used as insulation on any building wire at any nominal voltage excluding 50VDC/VAC or less (<50 volt C class circuitry). That is most definitely a code violation, a defect and it’s potentially VERY dangerous. There is no VW rating on that sheathing, no approved for____ locations, ____ uses , no degrees C rated, or any other ASTM, ANSI, VW, NEMA, CE or any other ratings, info and or approved uses are listed on whatever that sheath is or was. I suppose, (depending on the actual situation), some approved rubber splicing tape & some vinyl PVC tape over the rubber might be passable, but that is still a stretch, and not one that I would readily attempt to negotiate on with any electrical inspectors on new build. I would still rather see the rubber & vinyl, than that mystery mess, though. Now we come to the most dangerous part: If that bare wire is actually running into some NM cable (Romex), or MC cable, and then it was sheathed in the panel, & now is used as a current carrying conductor, we have compounded the code violations even more, and created far more dangerous situations throughout the building. That means there might be some NM cable with a mis-labeled, and energized grounding wire(s) in it, and no grounding conductor in the cable assembly. To make matters worse, it is running about the building, off to parts unknown. We need that bare wire ground reference for the hot wires to short to, should it overheat & melt, short out in a box, have an appliance or other item short to ground. Without that return path back to the breaker panel, the breaker(s) may not function as intended, now, and someone can potentially get shocked or electrocuted. Modern building wire shall have the type, VW ratings, temp ratings, mfgr, etc, clearly marked on it (I believe it is every 24 inches) all along the entire length of the wire (or the outer sheath for NM {Romex} & all other sheathed, armored cable, & other multi-conductor manufactured assemblies). Neutrals shall be white or grey, and ground shall be green, green with a yellow tracer, or BARE wire. If it was a white wire, marked with black tape, or sheath, it would be acceptable, but definitely NOT EVER a bare wire, or a green wire. Neutral wires are current carrying conductors, and the old standard for using 14-2 or 12-2 for a light switch was to put the hot on the white, and the black was to be used as the switch leg back up to the light fixture. Therefore, an electrician would, & should have a reasonable expectation of finding 120 volts to ground on a white wire, but never ever on a bare wire, and rarely if ever on a green wire. That situation very much needs the attention of a qualified electrician.