DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Electrical and Wiring > 12/2 Romex or 14/2 Romex for Recessed Can Lighting?




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Old 01-05-2014, 05:38 PM  
savatreatabvr
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Default 12/2 Romex or 14/2 Romex for Recessed Can Lighting?

I'm installing 6 can lights in my kitchen and I bought 12/2 Romex for the wiring, a friend said I need 14/2 Romex, will 12/2 work or do I need to spend the money and get 14/2?





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Old 01-05-2014, 05:50 PM  
bud16415
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12-2 will work fine. Number 12 is a little harder to work with and costs more. Other than that it's fine even better than 14.



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Old 01-05-2014, 06:08 PM  
speedy petey
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Are you adding to a circuit or wiring a new circuit?
If you are adding to an existing you must stay with the size of the circuit.
Either way I'd return the 12 and get the 14. MUCH easier to work with in those boxes.

And your friend was wrong, they don't have to be on #14 and a 15A circuit, but they can. Unless you're in Canada, I believe up there lighting must be on 15A circuits.

Have you done any wiring before?

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Old 01-05-2014, 07:56 PM  
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Yes in Canada lighting is limited to 15 amp circuits.
The circuit breaker for the circuit determines the wire needed. If the circuit is 20 amp then you must use use the #12 cable. If the circuit is 15 amp then you can use #14 or #12 although #12 is a waste of money and harder to work with.

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Old 01-06-2014, 09:41 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy petey View Post
Are you adding to a circuit or wiring a new circuit?
If you are adding to an existing you must stay with the size of the circuit.
Either way I'd return the 12 and get the 14. MUCH easier to work with in those boxes.

And your friend was wrong, they don't have to be on #14 and a 15A circuit, but they can. Unless you're in Canada, I believe up there lighting must be on 15A circuits.

Have you done any wiring before?
Yes, I install commercial/residential security, fire, access control and CCTV systems but normally it's only 12vdc to 24vac max. We sub out the 120vac that powers our panels so as MORONIC as it sounds I've never really made it a point to learn 120vac wiring. Another issue I'm having is I hired a couple laborers from HD parking lot, (big mistake) but it never crossed my mind to have them ID the cables once they ripped out the appliances and lighting so now I've got several mystery cables that I have no idea were they go. Is there an easy way to ID these cables without ripping out drywall to see where they go?
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:02 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy petey View Post
Are you adding to a circuit or wiring a new circuit?
If you are adding to an existing you must stay with the size of the circuit.
Either way I'd return the 12 and get the 14. MUCH easier to work with in those boxes.

And your friend was wrong, they don't have to be on #14 and a 15A circuit, but they can. Unless you're in Canada, I believe up there lighting must be on 15A circuits.

Have you done any wiring before?
I'm basically deleting one ceiling light and replacing it with 6 can lights throughout the kitchen ceiling. Since I didn't demo the cabinets I'm not sure where the power for the original ceiling light comes in at, there are several unidentified cables that seem to disappear in the ceiling/floor, (2 story house) so I'm not sure how to power the new can lights now. Is it possible to get power from a kitchen outlet without overloading the circuit?
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Old 01-07-2014, 09:15 AM  
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I would think the first step is to figure out what those existing cables are and what you are going to do with them. You can’t just leave live feeds in the ceiling joists. First step is to figure out what breaker they are on and then figure out what switch if any controlled them. You could reuse them even if they will reach your first light. If not you need to kill power to them at some junction box. I would suggest breaking the 6 cans up on 2 or 3 switches. I just did something similar on my remodel the center light location became a ceiling fan and light unit and then I added 4 can fixtures. I put the fan on one switch and the fan light another and then 2 cans on one switch and two on another. We found that highly desirable as we often just need light on one end of the kitchen or the other. I added one more hanging light above the sink with its own switch. The one thing I didn’t do that I wish I had was wire at least one of the lights as a 3 way switch, we normally control all the lights as we come in from outside and all the switches are located there. But at night it would be nice to not have to walk across the dark kitchen to the far side. I did leave a wire unused in the wall from that side of the room to above an upper cabinet with the plan of adding an up light for just this reason. Really glad now I have that wire ready to go. Take your time planning because you will never have good access to that area again most likely.

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Old 01-09-2014, 07:50 AM  
speedy petey
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Originally Posted by savatreatabvr View Post
IAnother issue I'm having is I hired a couple laborers from HD parking lot, (big mistake) but it never crossed my mind to have them ID the cables once they ripped out the appliances and lighting so now I've got several mystery cables that I have no idea were they go.
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Originally Posted by savatreatabvr View Post
I'm basically deleting one ceiling light and replacing it with 6 can lights throughout the kitchen ceiling. Since I didn't demo the cabinets I'm not sure where the power for the original ceiling light comes in at, there are several unidentified cables that seem to disappear in the ceiling/floor, (2 story house) so I'm not sure how to power the new can lights now. Is it possible to get power from a kitchen outlet without overloading the circuit?
WOW! You actually hired men off the parking lot at HD to do this???

Unless you are really good at electrical troubleshooting, at this point my only advice is to bite the bullet and hire a pro. It might really bother you to pay a professional for a well earned day's work, but sometimes you have to do it.
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Old 01-11-2014, 07:16 PM  
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Originally Posted by speedy petey View Post
WOW! You actually hired men off the parking lot at HD to do this???

Unless you are really good at electrical troubleshooting, at this point my only advice is to bite the bullet and hire a pro. It might really bother you to pay a professional for a well earned day's work, but sometimes you have to do it.

Some of us don't make as much money as you do so I'd rather do it myself and hire "men off the parking lot at HD" then hire an over priced arrogant pro that MILKS his time and charges for every single wire nut!!!
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Old 01-12-2014, 08:01 AM  
speedy petey
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Some of us don't make as much money as you do so I'd rather do it myself and hire "men off the parking lot at HD" then hire an over priced arrogant pro that MILKS his time and charges for every single wire nut!!!
Well, I don't make as much as you might think, which is why I DIY pretty much everything in my home.
And what makes you think that EVERY professional tradesman is A) arrogant, and B) "MILKS" his time on a job??? Have you fallen victim to a shady fly-by-night contractor? If so I am sorry. There are unfortunately plenty of them out there to give us legitimate honest guys a bad name. This is why you should always go by recommendations and word-of-mouth.

Also, WHY would we not charge for every wire nut???? I paid for them, I use them on your job, WHY would I give them away for free??????
What do you do for a living? Is it customary that you give things away? Or work some of your time for free?
Every been to a layer, or an accountant, or Target?? Not many freebies there either.


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