Green sticky stuff !!!

Discussion in 'Electricians' Talk' started by Tiff, Feb 20, 2006.

  1. Tiff

    Tiff New Member

    Been asked to look at a 1964 three bed semi with green sticky substance 'oozing' from the Phase & Neutral terminals of most of the downstairs socket outlets. I think it must be some sort of reaction between the copper core (hence the green colour) and the pvc or something used in the cable manufacturing process.
    Question is, is it ok just to clean up the cores in back box and fit new fronts,(new 'modern' fronts being fitted anyway) or has anyone found this before and had to do a re-wire?
    No other problems on installation, no tripping of rcd (recent ccu), upstairs no sign of sticky stuff.
    The stuff can be cleaned off using a solvent cleaner, nothing else touches it.
  2. rutspark

    rutspark New Member

    The green goo is degraded di-isoctyl phthalate and is considered to be a reaction between the plastisiser of the insulation and the copper conductor. Between 1965 and 1971 the temperature performance of pvc was uprated with an anti oxidantin the pvc compound , the side affect is the green goo
    High temperatures accelerate the condition
    the exudate is of low flamability and low toxicity and does not reduce electrical integrity of the conductor or insulation

    The issue is with its unsightly appearance and damage to decorative finishes of face plates

    If you can put up with green slime it does no harm. If you want to iradicate then you have to rewire, or rewire the sections that are chased into walls.
  3. dingbat

    dingbat New Member

    It's a common problem due to the plasticiser leaching out of the PVC insulation. In time the PVC will end up becoming brittle, making any changes to accessories tricky at best. For now though, the best thing you can do is a full insulation resistance test on all affected circuits. (This should, of course, have been done for the CU change)

    If all is well and you find nothing else of concern then it should be safe to clean it up and leave it, but as the installation dates from the construction of the house it probably leaves a lot to be desired in terms of provision of socket-outlets. It is also likely that the (Imperial sized) CPC is smaller than a modern equivalent.

    In this situation I would normally recommend that (provided all is compliant) if it ain't broke don't fix it but a full rewire should be considered at the next change of occupancy.
  4. Tiff

    Tiff New Member

    Thanks for the replies, knew it had to have a long complicated name!
    They do want more sockets, and bonding already upgraded, probably done with ccu. Resistance checks all ok and as there is only one or two single socket outlets in each room, there is plenty of scope for additions.
    Got to go now and buy some more solvent cleaner!
  5. Cronos

    Cronos New Member

    If they want a number of extras in each room it's dirty pool not to rewire.
  6. ChubbyPhaseWire

    ChubbyPhaseWire New Member

    Been asked to look at a 1964 three bed semi with
    green sticky substance 'oozing'

    Unfortunately, where an installation is seriously affected, the only practicable solution is to REWIRE.
  7. The Green Gooh is believed to be a "Carsogenic

    DUMBSPARKY New Member

    IT, always looks a lot worse on vertical runs, but most of time, can save an installation!
  9. dumbass

    dumbass Member


    I think the major issue with phthalates leaching from plastic is not being carcinogenic but more mutanagenic deformation of sperm and unborn foetus.DOP has been replaced with DIDP/DINP which are more stable and less aggressive,since links of decreased sperm counts and modern plastic food packaging.

    11 yrs at a chemi plant using sh't like this.It aint nice dont touch the 'goo'

    ps i was careful and have sirred

    DUMBSPARKY New Member

    dumb, you trying to start intelligence?
  11. dumbass

    dumbass Member

  12. Tiff

    Tiff New Member

    Popped home for lunch, wow, didn't realise I'd get such a big response to my little question! Love the pic, haven't been surfing for donkeys years (ears?) looks like the beautiful waters of Weston Super Mare, hope you kept your teeth together to sieve out the jetsom & flotsom !!!!! I used to sail off Weston (dinghies) and once had to avoid a huge dead sheep floating by, lots of other small things, but the sheep was definitly the scariest!!
  13. dumbass

    dumbass Member

    hi Tiff

    Nice to meet a fellow

    Its far east Kent,and yes there is a surface drainage outlet(skank pipe) 50 yards from this position which is far from fresh.Still not as dangerous as the goo though !

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