What is this thing on the exterior wall of my house?

I purchased a house a few months ago. Prior to that I always lived in a rented apartment and never have learned what a lot of common and less-common things are in houses. The house I purchased was previously owned by someone who liked to take on do-it-yourself projects, so there are a lot of strange wall objects and other random things in my house I haven’t figured out yet. The previous owner was on the other side of the continent when I bought the house, so I didn’t ever have a chance to ask in person, and I didn’t see this one until sometime later at any rate:

The wall directly behind it is my utility room, but there isn’t anything obvious on the inside going to the outside. This is pretty close to the ground, only a few feet up and is in my backyard. I would love to know what this is!

Looks like 6 strand telephone wire to me. Is this where your phone and internet enter the house?

WAG: A motion-detector thingie that is part of an alarm system?

The previous owners of this house had a fairly elaborate alarm system installed, and we have weird devices stuck all over the place from it.

The object on the left is a tape measure. The object on the right needs a wire trace.

I’m guessing some kind of high explosive.

Clothesline. You pull it out and stick that bottom part into an attachment on the opposite wall. Then you hang your clothes on it. That’s why it’s next to your utility room, where your washer and dryer would be.

Is the black part housing a spool of cord? If so, you’ve got your answer.

Looks like some kind of gadget to allow a meter reader to read your water/gas meter remotely.

Weather station sensor?

What does that wire connect to?

This - most likely water, as most gas meters are outside in North America. If you look in your basement, you should see that wire continue to your water meter.

The meter works by flowing water power, and the handheld reader must provide electrical power somehow to return a reading. I don’t know how they work more than that. :slight_smile:

If it connects to a box with a plunger, don’t push the plunger!!

Another vote for a water meter sending unit of some kind. If you go look at the water meter, it will have a similar wire coming off of it.

My water meter is inside the utility room and thus not accessible to a meter reader and I had been wondering how they figured out my usage to bill my properly, so this is a good guess as to what it is. I will go with it.

The previous occupants had installed a pretty elaborate home security system, with even sensors on first floor windows that detect if the glass is broken, but there are no window close to here and no other gadgets like this anywhere on the outside of the house.

I hope it isn’t some sort of explosive!

Most zoning restrictions don’t allow for explosives. So I wouldn’t worry about that.

Ooh wait! Unless they didn’t file a permit. Hmmm…

Homeland Security voice vibration tap.

If it was put there to monitor you, your ass is grass for whatever it is that you are doing, you socialist.

If it was put there to monitor the previous owner and was mistakenly left behind by Homeland Security, your ass is grass for holding secret technology, you entrepreneurial socialist.

Either way, your only hope is to emigrate before Homeland Security catches up with you.

Doubt me on this? Try to find the previous owner and get back to me.

Why would you put a land mine on the side of a house?

Oh, hush my mouth.

Might be a zit. Try popping it.

It’s a nozzle for an air pump. You need to keep your house inflated to 14.7 psi for maximum efficiency.

It’s a clothesline for bubblegum.

Definitely for water meter reading - I have one just like it on my house, except mine is squarish instead of round - but same bump in the middle, wire, etc (although my wire enters the siding fairly quickly). On the water meter I see the same or similar wire running into the wall and disappearing. Saw the meter reader walking away from it once too.