Recessed cans?

footwedgeJuly 10, 2011

I open the molded jb on my recessed cans and the wires have push in connectors. I would like to cut these off and use the correct wire size nut.

Are there any issues by doing this?

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texasredhead

What is your problem with the push in connectors? The wiring feeding the cans is either 14 or 12 ga. The wiring in the cans is usually 18ga. IMO, it is trickey to wirenut these different gauge wires together.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 12:55PM
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countryboymo

The push in connectors have been discussed in here from time to time at length and everyone has their own opinion. They are not like the backstab receptacle issues. There are a lot of hotels/motels that are full of them of which one person discussed before. I just recently stayed at a Radisson and took the cover off in the bathroom where the blow drier was plugged in and found push in connectors which is a fairly high load environment. I would not worry about using them on any house circuit. I actually prefer them where multiple wires are coming together and make a pigtail in a cramped area especially on lighting circuits.

Even if you do not like push in connectors there is no reason to worry about the connectors.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 1:57PM
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footwedge

A friend of mind who moonlights as a journeyman electrician mentioned that he prefers the wire nut over the push in. Wanted other's opinion.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 2:24PM
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petey_racer

That is a common opinion from those that don't really know any better. Especially someone who "moonlights" as an electrician.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 10:18PM
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footwedge

I used the push in connector and it worked great. I liked it.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 11:27PM
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Billl

Having an opinion on what type of connector you like to use is perfectly fine. That doesn't mean that it is the only way, or even the "best" way for all situations. When the manufacturer of the can lights decides to ship them with push connectors already attached, it really doesn't make much sense to cut off a perfectly good connector and replace it with wire nuts. It won't hurt anything, but it won't help either.

BTW - the push connectors are just easier to "fit" into places. Once you start twisting the wire to put on the nuts, it somehow gets harder to neatly fold into place.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 8:37AM
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footwedge

No instructions came with the cans. So before I get to far along is there any special/particular details I need to know about when connecting the wire?

For the 2 I have installed so far, I stripped about a 1/4" or more and pushed the bare wire into the hole until it stopped. The end of the wire is touching the plastic cover but there is no exposed bare wire where the wire enters the connector.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 9:26AM
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brickeyee

"I stripped about a 1/4" or more..."

There should be a strip length marked/molded into the connector body you can see/read.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 10:58AM
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footwedge

Found it and it's obvious that I stripped way to much and the wire should not be abutted to the back of the connector. I guess I will try to pull them out and trim but more than likely I will have to cut and add a wire nut. ???

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 11:53AM
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kurto

I wouldn't bother re-wiring. It sounds like their design (as it should) took into account wires being stripped back just a bit too far.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 3:17PM
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footwedge

Kurto, the wire was stripped a lot more than "just a bit more" to the point the wire is touching the back of the connector.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2011 at 8:16AM
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kurto

Are you saying that the extra long wires are shorting out the fixture? Unless they're causing an electrical problem, I wouldn't change them. If they're causing a short, then you need to pull them out and trim them off.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2011 at 8:35AM
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footwedge

The breakers are off at this point to the cree led cans and won't be activated until the cree bulbs are installed.

Thanks for the advice but I think I'm just going to add a wire nut and been done with it.

Should have asked this question before I started.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 12:17AM
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brickeyee

"The breakers are off at this point to the cree led cans and won't be activated until the cree bulbs are installed. "

Turn the breaker on and see if it trips off.
Bulbs are not required.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 11:01AM
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footwedge

Thanks Brick, I will need to install the switch to get power to the first can. The second can has not been installed due to needing to patch the ceiling where the old light fixture was removed. Will this provide enough of a test?

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 1:56PM
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