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Old 08-17-2009, 10:14 AM  
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Default Code question

Hello, this is my first post here and I was wondering if anyone can help me shed some light on a question of mine.
I am in the commercial trades and I know this varies a lot from commercial to residential. However some direction would help me! I would like to put can lights in our home living room. I was planning on adding a new wall switch and then run the wire up the wall into the attic where I would then run the wiring to each individual light fixture. I am going to have this inspected by the city and im trying to find out what I can and cannot do. My question is I KNOW I canít just run my romex accost the ceiling joist; that deff not code. So do they expect me to drill into the ceiling joists and then run the romex threw the joist??? I think however this STILL isnít to code because I have no "screw blocker" on the face of the joists to protect the wire (obviously im trying not to rip down all my drywall). can anyone help me here? I know remodeling companies dont rip down the drywall to add a few can lights, I just need to know
#1 what is standard code for running romex in a crawl space, and #2 if im adding can lights I believe I need a transformer (believe I havenít researched it yet as I type this to you) (I just thought Iíd ask you if you knew to save me some time). I appreciate you time everyone!

P.s I was there is a wall switch that turns one light in the center of the room on and off, I am planning on taping into that line, what do I need to do to make it code?

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Old 08-17-2009, 08:57 PM  
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Codes vary from place to place as prescribed by your building and planing dept. or whatever your local authority would be. The NEC sets minimum national standards. Some times you can ask your local inspector and he will tell what is required by code. They can not give you advice normally, that would out them in a liability situation. If you ask them they may tell what is required. If not see if you can find a friendly local electrician to maybe help you out. I would think though that if you are replacing the light fixture exactly at the point of the center ceiling light and branched to the other fixtures from there that would be O.K. Yes, it would be best to go through the ceiling joists and not over them. I don't believe that nails plates would required but that would be something to ask your local inspector. As a note if all else fails sometimes some of the home stores actually hsve someone in the electrical dept. that is a licensed electrician, but take that with a grain of salt. Good luck.

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Old 08-18-2009, 04:54 AM  
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I know of no code requirement for running the cabling thru the joists. I've seen long runs above the joists; others that pased thru every other joist; yet others that passed thru every joist.

What would that transformer you cited be needed for? None would be necessary for ordinary 120v operation.

Tapping into any existing wiring requires a junction box that will remain accessible.
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:35 AM  
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I am doing an entirely new kitchen and my inspector came over today. I had run two new circuits over the rafters in the ceiling. He said the wires cannot be left anywhere they can be stepped on. If the height to the ceiling is < 30 inches where the wires run, that is ok because people won't be stepping in there. Otherwise, they need to be run along a "blocker" or board or piece of wood that can protect them. An alternative is to attach the wires to the roof rafters (I don't know about all the terminology). Wherever you put them, the wires are supposed to be attached every 4 feet and within 8 inches of a box. This information applies at least in the city of Sacramento, CA.
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:36 AM  
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As long as t he cable are 5 feet(I think that's the distance) from the access hole there are no problems running them on top of the ceiling joists, unless this is a walk up attic. The idea is they need to be safe from damage.
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Old 10-02-2009, 01:04 AM  
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Originally Posted by JoeD View Post
As long as t he cable are 5 feet(I think that's the distance) from the access hole there are no problems running them on top of the ceiling joists, unless this is a walk up attic. The idea is they need to be safe from damage.
THat's right

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