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Old 08-29-2006, 08:17 AM  
Scot Clark
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Default 20 amp circuit - recessed lighting.

Hi:


I have a 20 amp circuit for lighting and want to use 24 recessed fixtures with no more than 75 watt light bulbs so I never plan on exceeding 1800 watts.

I already have 150w rated fixtures. Wondering if you think that's OK or if I need to use fixtures rated just for 75 watts?

It's for a music practice room in a metal building separate from the house.
I can always write inside the can "do not exceed 75 watts". It's at a place where I live and plan on staying forever so it's not like I would plan on selling some day.



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Old 08-29-2006, 04:46 PM  
petey_racer
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Code is code, and common sense is common sense.

You need to use the maximum rated wattage when figuring circuit size.
Sorry, but the code doesn't care if you live there forever or if you put your own label. The code is in place for safety and we should adhere to it. I must adhere to it regardless.
Why is it a problem to use two (or more) cirucits for these lights?


NO WAY I'd put 24 recessed fixtures on one circuit.



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Old 08-29-2006, 07:22 PM  
Square Eye
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On a lighter note,

24 fixtures x 150 watts = 3600 watts

3600 watts = 30amps
120 volts

You would be so far ahead with 2 or 3 circuits that I see no excuse to not run another circuit.

If you do this, and your house burns down, the wire and the fixtures will still be there. The insurance and criminal investigators will see it, they'll write it down and you will be accountable if that is determined to be the cause of the fire.

It's best to do it right the first time and keep it to code.
Though you may get away with something occasionally, it seems that things have a nasty way of catching up to us.

Be careful,
Welcome to the forum!
Tom

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Old 08-29-2006, 07:57 PM  
petey_racer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
If you do this, and your house burns down, the wire and the fixtures will still be there. The insurance and criminal investigators will see it, they'll write it down and you will be accountable if that is determined to be the cause of the fire.
First off this will not happen. The problem is the breaker will trip. 15 and 20 amp circuits have a large cushion as to ampacity and wire size. As long as a circuit is properly size and wired there is almost no chance of fire. This is what codes are in place for.

Second of all, unless the cause of a fire is found to be intentional you would NOT be held liable and you are covered. This is NOT a criminal act.

It is an old wives tale to say your insurance will not pay because someting was not done to code.
This is not at all saying things don't need to be done to code though.
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Old 08-29-2006, 08:02 PM  
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Petey you're such a darling
I love you!

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Old 08-29-2006, 08:05 PM  
petey_racer
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???????????
Ummmm...thanks?

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Old 08-29-2006, 08:25 PM  
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Petey,

This guy did not specify if he has a breaker panel or a fuse box.

He didn'y specify what size wire he was using.

If he was planning to put 24 150 watt light fixtures on one circuit, what else may he have done that could be potentially dangerous?

If circuit breakers are the cure-all for electrical fires, how do homes with breaker panels still burn down due to electrical problems?

What if he has a Federal Pacific panel?

I have personally seen older homes with 14ga, 2 wire systems (no ground) and a fuse box full of 30 amp fuses. I'd dare say, that 24 150 watt light fixtures run on a wire out to the garage could certainly be a dangerous situation for the home and garage.

Not criminal, but negligence is usually corrected by asking and accepting advice.

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Old 08-29-2006, 08:37 PM  
petey_racer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
This guy did not specify if he has a breaker panel or a fuse box.
He states 20 amp. Fuses or breaker matters not.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
He didn'y specify what size wire he was using.
He states 20 amp. Unless we ask, or he tells, we have to assume #12.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
If he was planning to put 24 150 watt light fixtures on one circuit, what else may he have done that could be potentially dangerous?
Like I said, IMO it is not potentially dangerous. It is illegal and potentially annoying.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
If circuit breakers are the cure-all for electrical fires, how do homes with breaker panels still burn down due to electrical problems?
I CLEARLY stated "sized and wired correctly". Deviate from that and you have problems.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
What if he has a Federal Pacific panel?
Then the whole house is at risk. Why would a new circuit matter? I have to add circuits to FPE panels all the time. Not everyone wants to replace a panel to add a circuit, even with encouraging from us. Unfortunately they are still legal.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
I have personally seen older homes with 14ga, 2 wire systems (no ground) and a fuse box full of 30 amp fuses.
I'm not sure how this relates to the OP with a new circuit.
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Old 08-29-2006, 09:07 PM  
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Petey in your very first reply,
"The code is in place for safety and we should adhere to it. I must adhere to it regardless."

You imply a dangerous situation by siting safety in your first post.


Then in your last post, you assume he's running #12?
Then you say "like I said, IMO it is not potentially dangerous. It is illegal and potentially annoying."
And let's not forget that you also said "I CLEARLY stated "sized and wired correctly". Deviate from that and you have problems."
What size is he supposed to have? We know he's supposed to have a minimum of #14 for a 15 amp and a #12 for a 20 amp, but does he?


Good Golly! You're more interested in trying to make yourself look like a living code book than trying to help these guys.

If this were one of my jobs, I'd run 3 15amp circuits on #14 wire. I'd put one switch on each circuit. The #14 would be much easier to work with and much less likely to bind against the edge of the box and possibly cause a short by rubbing through the wiring insulation although, proper connectors would help to avoid that situation. I really don't like using the romex clamps that are made into the box.
If I was going to use dimmers, I'd break each of the 3 circuits down to 2 dimmers with 3 fixtures on each dimmer. Then you could use standard easy to find 600 watt dimmers. 6 dimmers with 450 watts potential rated load on each.


Tell me what the code says Petey.

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Old 08-29-2006, 09:17 PM  
petey_racer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye
Good Golly! You're more interested in trying to make yourself look like a living code book than trying to help these guys.
Great Googly Woogly! You get so riled when anyone questions you or has a differing opinion.
Go back and read my first reply. I DID try and help him.

Sorry I corrected your reply. No, I'm sorry I had a different opinion. I guess that's taboo around here.

You can pick my replies apart however you want. It seems we will continually differ. And I'm OK with that.



You know what is really funny. I'd wire it the same as you.


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