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Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

Posted by travisc77 (My Page) on
Mon, Feb 6, 12 at 11:51

So I am remodeling my kitchen, and removed the soffits above the cabinets, and sure enough electrical wires were cutting through the soffits to the wall, instead of going through the top plate into the wall.

Of course power off the circuits at the main, then I need to re-route these wires into the walls. In most cases the existing wire isnt long enough and I need to cut the wires in the attic, splice the wires with new wire, drill hole in the top plate into the wall, and connect to the switches. These splices should be contained in metal boxes in the attic, attached to a joist. Is this correct? Am I missing something.

The reason I ask, is that this will require many boxes in the attic (10-12?). Just curious if I'm on the right track. Whatever I do, I plan to have an electrician inspect once it's complete.

Thanks
Travis


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

The boxes in the attic don't need to be metal (plastic is okay). Make sure the boxes are closed and accessible. Instead of getting an electrician to inspect your work, you should get a permit from your local authority (city, county,...) before the work is done. Then, that same authority will perform the inspection of your work when completed.


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

Thanks, I'll get the permit instead. It will likely be a lot of jboxes and will need to find a chart on how many splices per box.


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

Your attic needs to be accessible so that the boxes are accessible. Doesn't mean you can't do the work from below, but they need to be accessible later on.


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

There's no limit to the number of splices per box, but there are "box fill" rules about how many wires can enter and leave a box, depending on the box volume. Box fill rules are a bit involved, so I have provided a link that explains it fairly well.

Here is a link that might be useful: box fill calculations


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

If you want to file an electrical permit you need a licenced electrician to file. When you file work you need a licence number that you get with passing a test from the BEC which is a federal dept. to file it or else anybody could do it. But really you can get away with not filling but at your own risk. If something goes wrong with the electrical work that you did and you cannot prove a licenced electrician did the work and there is a fire or something worse happens the insurance company will not cover the cost of the damages. To answer your question though you do not need in residential homes within an attic to even secure a spice box to a support. I know it sounds wierd but by code its not necessary. Also it may be plastic as well make sure though you follow the wire fill on the box. Which is the number of wires legally alound in a box. To do this remember this the gound wire which you may splice all together are considered all one wire every other white, black or red are known as current carring conductors which are counted seperate. ie inside most plastic or metal boxes should have the box fill number on it. Also each wire has a different fill potential. Meaning that you cant legally put as many #10 wires as you could #12 or #14 gauge wires the box should have a label with #14, #12 and #10 gauges and label how many of each can go in them. Also further every wire is counted as the largest wire in a box so lets say you have 3 #14 wires in a box but you have one #12 then every wire for box fill puposes per code should be concidered also as #12 Gauge wires. So i will give you an example you have 3 #14/2 wires ie the /2 means a white conductor, black conductor and a ground. The #14 or #12 means the gauge of each individual wire within the set of wires. So we again have three #14/2 and one #12/2 in a box what is its fill? Well all of the grounds when spliced together are considered one wire ie. there can be fifty grounds in a box, still its considered one wire. You also have three Black #14 wires three white #14 wires one #12 black and one #12 white because you have a #12 in the box all other wires will be concidered #12. So if you add all wires together with my explaination then you get 9 #12 wires if the you have box cannot handle the number of boxes within those standards dont fret get a bigger box. I hope this helps.


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

Don't know where he is located, but in many jurisdictions, individual homeowners do NOT need to be electricians to apply for permits. I have no idea what "BEC" is but I can tell you there's no FEDERAL department that plays any role in the licensing of electricians in either of the states I deal with.

I've never seen any jurisdiction that would allow boxes in residences to not be supported. The NEC specifically requires them to be attached to something whether in the wall, ceilings, or on surfaces.

Box fill is an important consideration however.


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

I only read part of adinota3's response, since it was fairly hard to understand, but there were enough wrong statements in the first few sentences to make it not worth trying to read.

(1) Most places allow homeowners to pull their own permits and do their own electrical work.

(2) Insurance companies can't deny your claim unless they can prove that you purposely tried to start an electrical fire. You are covered for you're own ignorance or shoddy work.

(3) I highly doubt that you don't need to secure a junction box to a support. I'm not an electrician and I don't have a quote from the NEC but this just seems strange and I'd request more than someone's word before I believed this.

That's where I stopped reading.


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

"If you want to file an electrical permit you need a licenced electrician to file. When you file work you need a licence number that you get with passing a test from the BEC which is a federal dept. to file it or else anybody could do it."

Wrong as a general statement for the USA (and we do not know the OP's location)
Homeowners are often allowed to pull a permit to work on their own house.
An exception is some of the Northeastern states with strong electrician's unions, but even some of them have changed.

"But really you can get away with not filling but at your own risk. If something goes wrong with the electrical work that you did and you cannot prove a licensed electrician did the work and there is a fire or something worse happens the insurance company will not cover the cost of the damages."

A typical 'all peril' homeowners policy in the USA covers you for your own mistakes and errors.
Insurance companies like if a licensed person did the work since they can then go after their insurance.

To answer your question though you do not need in residential homes within an attic to even secure a spice box to a support. I know it sounds wierd but by code its not necessary."

Wrong under the NEC.
All junction boxes must be solidly secured in place.

"Also it may be plastic as well make sure though you follow the wire fill on the box. Which is the number of wires legally alound in a box. To do this remember this the gound wire which you may splice all together are considered all one wire every other white, black or red are known as current carring conductors which are counted seperate. ie inside most plastic or metal boxes should have the box fill number on it."

At least this is correct.

"Also each wire has a different fill potential. Meaning that you cant legally put as many #10 wires as you could #12 or #14 gauge wires the box should have a label with #14, #12 and #10 gauges and label how many of each can go in them."

Also correct.

"Also further every wire is counted as the largest wire in a box so lets say you have 3 #14 wires in a box but you have one #12 then every wire for box fill puposes per code should be concidered also as #12 Gauge wires."

This is just wrong under the NEC.
Every wire size is assigned a volume requirement, and then you add up the individual wires volumes based on what is in the box (and pigtails do not count).
Things like grounds, internal clamps, and devices ARE assigned volume allowances based on the largest wire present.

"So i will give you an example you have 3 #14/2 wires ie the /2 means a white conductor, black conductor and a ground. The #14 or #12 means the gauge of each individual wire within the set of wires. So we again have three #14/2 and one #12/2 in a box what is its fill? Well all of the grounds when spliced together are considered one wire ie. there can be fifty grounds in a box, still its considered one wire."

One volume allowance of the largest size wire.

"You also have three Black #14 wires three white #14 wires one #12 black and one #12 white because you have a #12 in the box all other wires will be concidered #12."

Wrong under the NEC,

"So if you add all wires together with my explaination then you get 9 #12 wires if the you have box cannot handle the number of boxes within those standards dont fret get a bigger box. I hope this helps."

It might help if it was correct under the NEC.
I make no judgment about correctness under any Canadian code (though it sounds strange).

The reference to a box fill calculator would be more useful since many folks with enough skill to do residential wiring do not have a full NEC (arguably they should at least have a copy to look through or better yet one of the annotated code handbooks).


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

As a code matter, you can have as many junction boxes stuck up in your attic as you want - provided the attic is accessible.

As a practical matter, every junction provides and unnecessary point of possible failure. It is legal, but it is bad practice to make a ton of short jumps from box to box. As long as you are ripping holes in drywall already, why not make a couple more and just run new, intact lines wherever possible?


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RE: Simple electrical splicing....I think...advise?

I am in Baton Rouge, LA and I can pull my own permit should I choose to so. My instincts are to first and foremost get the electrical work done correctly (regardless of permitting). The work is fairly straight forward.

My plan is to work along side an electrician and get these wires extended correctly in the walls.


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