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Drilling in your wall and not in cables
TIL when you drill in your wall (eg to hang up a shelf), these are ways to avoid drilling into a power
supply:
- I always thought this rule of thumb would suffice: do not drill within a straight vertical or
horizontal line from power sockets. TIL in Germany to be on the safe side, you need to add a 20cm safety
distance to each side of these lines. Within this distance can be supply lines too!
- Power supply line detectors are worthless when they are cheap, the pricier ones can help you a bit, but
they still are no guarantee: when the lines are deeper within the wall, they can not be detected exactly
at all.
- Instead, the electrician recommends to drill slowly and feel how the wall feels. When it feels softer
than stone, you drill against the rubber cable, then stop and examine the hole.
- If you want to be on the very safe side, remove the fuse before drilling (that's what they teach
electricians at school, but he said no one does it).
When you have hit the cable, it will blow the fuse if you are lucky. If you are very unlucky and the fuse
doesn't blow, you hopefully have a plastic isolated drilling machine. In the worst case, the whole wall
can be charged up and sparkle, but that's very very rare.
Fixing a destroyed cable is actually not as hard as I've always imagined. The electrician hammered a
little hole in the wall around the broken cable, cut the cable, and put it together again with little
metal/plastic thingies. Then he plastered the hole again. Took him 45 minutes and cost less than 50 euro.
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