1) Running Romex Horizontally 2) Studs layed flat

pete_p_nyOctober 21, 2007

Is there any height requirement running romex horizontally between studs? Is any height "OK"?

Also, I have one wall with the 2x4 installed horizontally along a concrete block wall (to save space). On this wall, there is about 1/2" of space between the stud and the wall. I want to run wires along this wall..in lieu of drilling the layed flat stud on its 1-1/2" surface, can I run the wire between the stud and the wall. I thought may be I can use a wire tie around the romex that has the screw anchoring hole on them which I could attach to the stud? Is this OK. If this is not code compliant, what else could be used.

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joed

Romex wire is required to be 1.25 inches from the face of the stud. If you can't manage that then it must be protected so that a nail or screw can not penetrate it.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2007 at 9:44AM
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cobraguy

I have seen a simple metal plate secured to the face of the stud to protect wiring and plumbing. It's very effective. Even with a drill, you will notice you're hitting metal. Of course, that assumes that the nut behind the drill is sharp enough to realize what he's hitting and stop!

    Bookmark   October 21, 2007 at 10:14AM
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itsunclebill

From 2005 NEC®©

Nonmetallic-sheathed cable shall be supported and secured by staples, cable ties, straps, hangers, or similar fittings designed and installed so as not to damage the cable, at intervals not exceeding 1.4 m (4½ ft) and within 300 mm (12 in.) of every outlet box, junction box, cabinet, or fitting. Flat cables shall not be stapled on edge.

If the cable is behind the studs, that puts it 1½ inches back from the nailing surface, and fastened with a cable tie screwed to the stud, it is a code compliant installation

    Bookmark   October 21, 2007 at 1:36PM
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pete_p_ny

OK..THANKS...!

It appears I am OK running behind the studs securing with wire ties. What about when I run the wire into the outlet box? I need to run down along the layed flat 2x4. Does this 1.25 inch rule still apply for a romex cable running vertically to get to the outlet box. It technically will be stapled to the stud in the middle of the 1.5 inch surface.

What does the statement, "flat cables should not be stapled on edge" mean?

Also, when running horizontally, can the romex run along the wall at any height from the floor, or is there a restriction to this?

    Bookmark   October 21, 2007 at 9:26PM
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badabingbong

Pete p

You're not saving all that much space running the 2x4 on the flat, which will cause a flexible wall. Your drywall will crack. The 2x4 is stronger when installed the proper way as a stud wall.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2007 at 11:28PM
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pete_p_ny

Unfortunately, space was an issue...I had a wall at the bottom of the staircase with a door to the right that just fit into the space. The 3-1/2" full stud would not work. The door jamb was the smallest possible. The 1.5" layed flat stud width plus 1/2" sheetrock it the most possible.

What about when I run the wire into the outlet box? I need to run down along the layed flat 2x4. Does this 1.25 inch rule still apply for a romex cable running vertically to get to the outlet box. It technically will be stapled to the stud in the middle of the 1.5 inch surface.

What does the statement, "flat cables should not be stapled on edge" mean?

    Bookmark   October 22, 2007 at 7:24PM
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saltcedar

"flat cables should not be stapled on edge"

It means to staple it flat across the widest dimension.

HTH.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2007 at 9:14PM
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hendricus

If you've got that 1/2" space why not just tuck the cable behind the stud all the way to the outlet?

    Bookmark   October 22, 2007 at 9:50PM
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pete_p_ny

I guess I can do that...but I thought the cable needs to be stapled within so many inches of the outlet. Does the setback apply to the stapled edge of the stud too? Or just the center hole drilled.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2007 at 10:26PM
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stlrocker

there is no minimum height requirement. you can run it at the floor if you want as long as it is secured and supported at least every 4 1/2 feet.

as for getting to the box, i have stapled it to the side of the stud. just got it as far back as possible. this has passed, but is technically not ok.

what works better, is to use cj's, or stackers to support the wire when running vertically. this will keep it back far enough from the face of the stud. the code is happy, the inspector is happy.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2007 at 1:28AM
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tom_p_pa

What is a CJ or stacker? Is there a link to a picture of this? Curious.

What is the issue with attaching it to the side of the stud...is this in case someone drives a nail and misses the stud?

    Bookmark   October 23, 2007 at 7:45AM
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hendricus

The cable needs to be SECURED. Use the wire tie.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2007 at 8:07AM
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saltcedar

CJ-4 Colorado Jim Cable Support. (I couldn't find a picture)

HTH
Chris

Here is a link that might be useful: Cable Stacker

    Bookmark   October 23, 2007 at 8:35AM
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parkplaza

It looks like the cable stacker will not work on a stud layed flat...there would be no room behind the stud either.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2007 at 10:58AM
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pete_p_ny

How does this look...kind of weird to twist the cables this way?

On the pict below, I had to wire tie the one cable on the other side of the stud.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2007 at 6:17PM
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radioguy4ever

pete, thats a tight squeeze behind the studs... i know my inspector wouldnt allow it...

    Bookmark   October 24, 2007 at 7:24AM
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cobraguy

radioguy, that may be the camara angle making it look so tight. Notice how the wire and tie protrude behind the stud. Looks like there may be plenty of room there. Also, the wire is protected from the concrete wall by the soft insulation.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2007 at 8:07AM
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pete_p_ny

Regarding the room, the wire can slide back and forth behind the stud, but it can be considered snug I guess because you can hear it rub along the wood. It does pull through without much force...is this considered OK?

What other solutions are there? How does one build a "furring" strip wall with electric? Do I need to drill the studs and install a metal plate? I was concerned the wall strength would be compromised by drilling the stud layed flat?

Can the one cable be anchored on the other side of the stud, I found it akward anchoring 2 on the same side of the stud. How tight should the wire tie be. I actually needed two ties, on wrapped around the cable, then a second one looped into the first one to get the screw hole to lay flat against the stud.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2007 at 12:08PM
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mowers

I think the cable needs to be anchored "x" inches from the box. Not sure of the distance though.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2007 at 8:43PM
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brickeyee

"pete, thats a tight squeeze behind the studs... i know my inspector wouldnt allow it..."

ASk him for a code cite.
If you can get the cable in without damage the clearance is adequate.
I routinely use 3/8 holes in old work for single NM runs.
Drilling 80+ year old studs is not a fun job.
Southern yellow pine of that age is like rock, and even a self feed bit on a hole hawg routinely strips out.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2007 at 8:42AM
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saxmaan1

Why don't you attach to the studs the normal way. I am sure you can get a bracket to cover the wires. May be tack weld a metal plate on.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2007 at 3:51PM
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matt_r

"I am sure you can get a bracket to cover the wires. May be tack weld a metal plate on"

Who would have welding equip around...is this a bit overkill to worry about a future nail hitting the wire. And that wire is so low to the ground, why would someone hang something there?

    Bookmark   October 28, 2007 at 4:16PM
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cobraguy

"...is this a bit overkill to worry about a future nail hitting the wire. And that wire is so low to the ground, why would someone hang something there?"

Because it's code. And you can run screws into walls for a multitude of reasons.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2007 at 9:33AM
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mowers

From reading this post...it tells me any firring strip basement remodel job cannot pass code if electric outlets are involved. It is a common practice to use lumber strips to tapcon or shoot into the wall. There would be no way to get the setback on the wire.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2007 at 10:49AM
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hendricus

mowers

Its very simple, just run a piece of metal conduit down the wall. You can run romex in conduit if it isn't very long and only for protection. If you want to use conduit fo the whole thing then use individual conductors.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2007 at 5:17PM
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brickeyee

As long as the cable does not pass through a furring strip it is allowed without protection.
The code rule is for studs and lumber that a cable passes through.
A drywall screw into the stud could hit a cable to close to the edge.
There is no general requirement to protect all portions of a cable from nails and fasteners.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2007 at 7:37PM
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GoHawks44

In regards to why someone would turn a stud wall flat to save 2" of space, it comes down to a critical need or homeowner obsession. Mine was both.

If you want to tighten that wall you could put blocking between each stud. Or if your basement foundation wall is a half wall you can take full studs and secure them horizontally across the back of the existing studs for the length of the wall just above the concrete foundation (avoid studs in the typical switch height of 44-48").

If someone were to use standard staples to secure to the 1.5" face then I'd still use protector plates for the up to 12" length to be safe. The easiest solution is to just use another mounting style cable tie near the center of the stud that loops the NM cable behind the stud within 12" of the outlet box. I assume that passed inspection without issue?

    Bookmark   January 31, 2011 at 10:37PM
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