Crawl Space Junction Boxes: inspection and capping

SparklingWaterAugust 28, 2014

Hello. I'm in the process of crawl space improvement. I snapped the photo below as I see it warrants a junction box cover. Most of the junction boxes in the crawl are affixed to the joists (still lacking covers, but all wires capped). This one is hanging down which is bothersome to me.

Do you see any obvious wiring problems in this box? The other jboxes seem fairly consistent wrt number of wires and capping). I believe this was installed mid 1970's.

If no wiring problems (e.g.,fraying, blackened wires, wrong gauge wires), is it a matter of hiring an electrician to apply the covers? I think there are about twelve of them in one crawl space, almost all firmly attached and all capped. How can I get the one pictured below better secured? Btw, I have removed all of the debris, cleaned up all the tar sprayed on and other, and installed proper membrane to side. Floor does'nt look like that anymore.

Thank you for your advice.

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Ron Natalie

The box needs a cover and should be attached to something. The cables running into it should be also attached near the box and elsewhere. An electrician could certainly do it, though this is one of hose things that is probably within your own abilities. Screw the box up to the joists or some other structure. Cover plates are available at the home centers and just attach to the box with screws.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2014 at 12:55PM
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Thanks ronnatalie. I've asked an electrician to help. Not sure yet how we're going to secure that crazy placed cable.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2014 at 3:31PM
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I have been remodeling the house and have a cut up crawl space. It is an old house and has been added onto over the years, so there are all kinds of walls/corners/access holes, etc. I had the electrician install small, about 6", fluorescent dome lights in all the areas. I can now hit a switch at the single entry point and see what is under there. Many years ago I was under a house with a maximum depth of 18". I got the work done and turned to go out and there was a rattlesnake on each side of the access. I changed under there. Illumination is good!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 12:29PM
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Gosh, Jackfre. Everyone's crawlspace nightmare. How long did you have to wait it out until they moved? I just read yesterday that snake smell is similar to watermelon? I do look for red eye reflex and take a good wiff when I go in, in addition to looking and listening. Spiders are silent though.

I'm glad I came back to this thread. Tomorrow hard wired lights will go in. My current three Husky 1000 LED re-chargable lamps have seen me through a month's worth of work though. Definitely worth their price.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2014 at 8:24PM
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What kind of sadist designs structures so they require electrical work to be done in crawl spaces?

Is this a common practice?

    Bookmark   September 2, 2014 at 8:29PM
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eibren, as often happens when industry designs change, so do commercial and residential spaces typically not called upon in the past such as crawl spaces.

I have a mid century Colonial close-in to a major city in the Mid Atlantic with humid/wet summers and recently increasingly wet/cold winters. Our crawl spaces were added in mid 1970s. GreenBuilding design is catching on even in crawl spaces, widening the debate to vented vs unvented and if the later, conditioned space.

I'm changing my crawl spaces to unvented, conditioned space after extensive reading and thinking on our crawl spaces. I'm fixing problems which need fixing and the process requires light. Surprisingly or not, all who have given quotes have said lit crawl spaces are increasingly common to better keep an eye on them and to make them more inviting/inclusive. I've spent many an hour dragging LED portable battery rechargable lights (great light btw) around while working, so it will be nice to flip a switch or two.

That's my take on it anyway.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2014 at 9:32PM
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great idea, the light is very important ,thank you SparklingWater


    Bookmark   February 19, 2015 at 8:24PM
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