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Hack 12-14-2007 12:56 PM

Service panel connection.
 
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I have a question about a service panel connection...

I need to get power to the upper floor of my home. I plan to replace the Romex running through a conduit on the outside of the wall up to the attic with individual wires. You might be able to see the conduit running up the tall wall on the right between the two drafty windowsl in the picture. There are three things going up the wall. Power (3/4" rigid conduit), gas pipe, and A/C coil drain pipe.

The conduit goes into the house through the wall and is terminated at either end just inside the walls with a bushing. The "bare" Romex then runs along joists to the main panel downstairs, and to a junction box in the attic.

My plan is to remove the romex from the conduit and replace it with 7 12ga. wires (three black, three white, and one ground) to increase my circuits from two to three upstairs. I will attach a piece of flex conduit to the end of the rigid and extend the conduit over to the junction box in the attic. In the basement, I would do the same...attach a piece of flex conduit to the end of the rigid just inside the wall and run it over to the back of the main panel.

Of course, I know that I need to encase the individual wires in something through the open attic and open basement...

So, long introduction for a "simple" question:

Can I run flex conduit from the back of the main panel through my basement (attached to floor joists) and attach the other end to the rigid conduit, or do I have to use rigid conduit for this purpose?

I live in CA, in case that makes a difference...

TIA.

kok328 12-14-2007 04:21 PM

reply rescinded ... sorry.

travelover 12-14-2007 06:06 PM

Wow, that is a cool looking house.

Re the wiring, I would suggest that you ask for advice from your local building department. They may even have the information on line.

glennjanie 12-14-2007 10:49 PM

Hey Jeff:
Beautiful home there. I would run ridgid (even if it has to be PVC) on both ends. I'm not an authority on the NEC or the CA electrical code but I know the 3/4" conduit has a maximum load (or number of wires) and I believe you are within the limit.
I think the flex is limited in length to 6' and that is only to connect to a drop in flourescent light or something of that nature. I also know the ridgid conduit in metal is acceptable as a mechanical ground, leaving you to use a grounding pigtail in each fixture box.
Where is Petey when we need him?
Glenn

speedy petey 12-17-2007 07:51 PM

Sorry, I haven't checked in here in a while. Better late than never.

The flex idea is fine. The 6' limit has it's limits. As long as a ground is run you can run as much flex as you want. I'd run an actual ground wire in ANY case. I've seen way too many compromised conduit systems to rely solely on that.

I'd use a box to change over from flex to conduit. I'd not like to see a flex fitting in the middle of a conduit run.

Also, you can run multi-wire circuits if you are familiar and comfortable with them. This will let you run less wires in the conduit.

glennjanie 12-17-2007 09:56 PM

Thanks for comming in there Petey, YOU DA MAN when it comes to electrical. I've been out of it too long and am not up with the NEC.
Merry Christmas
Glenn

Hack 12-18-2007 03:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by speedy petey (Post 13403)
Sorry, I haven't checked in here in a while. Better late than never.

The flex idea is fine. The 6' limit has it's limits. As long as a ground is run you can run as much flex as you want. I'd run an actual ground wire in ANY case. I've seen way too many compromised conduit systems to rely solely on that.

I'd use a box to change over from flex to conduit. I'd not like to see a flex fitting in the middle of a conduit run.

Also, you can run multi-wire circuits if you are familiar and comfortable with them. This will let you run less wires in the conduit.

Thanks for the information everyone.

I will be running a ground up to the attic rather than relying on the conduit itself...better safe than sorry.

Petey, Couple of questions...
Is it necessary to use a box between the rigid and flex? If so, I'll just eliminate the flex and run romex from the box to where I need it.

I'm not sure I understand what you mean by multi wire. If I was to guess, you're saying that I could run two black, two red, two white (and a ground) for four total circuits? I thought sharing a neutral was bad???

TIA,
Jeff.

kok328 12-18-2007 05:06 PM

You can run a total of four circuits with the same amount of wire. Four black, two white and 1 green. Just make sure that the two blacks sharing a white come from opposite phases in your breaker box. Also, match all hardware (wire, switches & outlets) to the amperage of the circuit (12ga = 20amps, 14ga = 15 amps). Due to the cost of wire, I'm seeing alot of electricians leaving out the ground wire and trusting the conduit to be the ground. You can do this also but, be sure to bridge anything non-metalic w/a ground wire (i.e.-seal tight and/or plastic jboxes).

Hack 12-19-2007 01:56 PM

I'm running a dedicated ground. My plan is to run three black, three white, and one ground (all 12ga.) through the conduit up to the attic and into a large metal box to make wiring easy. From there, I'll run Romex to the circuits.

I think I now understand shared neutrals, but I don't know that I'm comfortable enough doing this and doing it right. If I run dedicated hot/neutral pairs, I don't have any question...

Thanks for all the input! I guess it's back up to the attic with me...

Oh, and off to the rental place for a really big boom lift.

I had thought about renting a 40' extension ladder, but getting their 66' boom lift is only $300 for the day, and my Emergency Room deductible is $200. I'm goin' with the boom. The top of the conduit run on the outside of the house is ~35' up :eek:

kok328 12-19-2007 05:01 PM

I don't know your situation but, if it were me, I'd just run a non-metalic fish tape down the conduit and pull my wires back from there. No ladder or boom required.

P.S. - Nice house!


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