Every month, Jack Pullizzi picks the top four Ideas That Work submitted by you, ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR readers. These ideas can't be found in any code or guidebook and are only learned or devised through years of experience and thinking, "There's got to be a better way to do this!" Please remember, the ideas presented in this article are for consideration only. Before using such ideas, make sure codes and safety standards have been fully adhered to. Now, without further ado, here are this issue's Ideas That Work!


Wirenuts pointed up
We all know weatherproof J-boxes are never waterproof and can let water inside. When making splices inside of weatherproof J-boxes, leave the wirenuts pointing up. This way, when water gets in, the wirenuts don’t hold it like a cup (making the whole splice slowly rust and deteriorate).

Jeff Weissman
IBEW Local No. 716
Bellaire, Texas

Drill driver holster
Can’t find a place for your cordless drill driver when you’re up on a ladder? Get a 3-in.-long piece of 2-in. PVC pipe or conduit. Cut a section out down the middle about 1-in. wide, and apply heat to make it pliable. Then, form the material at the top to make the circumference wide enough for a drill driver. Next, screw a ¼-in. steel screw into the bottom of the pipe, and attach it to your stepladder. The bottom screw holds the compact drill driver. Use a flathead Sheetrock screw for the top of the pipe.

Joseph Hofer Jr.
Madison, S.D.

Get a grip
Inevitably, the handles of your hand tools wear out. However, before your tool wears out, wrap the handles with rubber splicing tape. The overlapping tape provides a nice rib effect. When I used this trick, the rubber splicing tape corrected the problem caused by silicone added into conductors, which had made the handles of my lineman’s pliers extremely slick.

Evan Scholz
IBEW Local No. 1
St. Louis

Come out of there
Removing slugs from a hole saw can be aggravating and time-consuming. If you remove the spring from a spring nut and place it inside the hole saw, pressure from the spring will force the material out when you are done drilling.

Robert Forrest
IBEW Local No. 176
Lemont, Ill.


IF YOU HAVE AN IDEA that has saved you time or money on the job, ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR readers would like to hear about it. Be sure to include a good photo of your idea—hand sketches are often hard to interpret. Note that some ideas are submitted by more than one person. In these cases, the one that is more clearly written and includes a photo is given precedence. Send your letter and photo to Jack Pullizzi, Ideas Editor, ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR, 3 Bethesda Metro Center, Suite 1100, Bethesda, MD 20814-5372, email IdeasThatWork@necanet.org, or use the online submission tool at www.ecmag.com/ideasthatwork.

CASH PRIZE FOR WINNING IDEAS Each published author in “Ideas That Work” receives a $50 American Express gift card from ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR.

DISCLAIMER: The ideas presented in this article are for consideration only. Before using such ideas, make sure codes and safety issues have been fully adhered to. ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine disclaims any liability from your use of these or any other ideas. ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR reserves the right to reprint the words herein at its discretion.